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Flowers from IsraelFlowers from Israel…© Valorie Webster

We have just returned (very exhausted from the travel) after spending nearly a month in Israel and Greece. I looked through over 1000 images to find one to depict my feelings this morning. I decided on these flowers.

It takes me a while to sort through all the feelings I have after these trips, but today I want to say that I am grateful. We have so much in our country…some more than others, as in every country. Our worst days pale in comparison, however, to people who have lived their entire lives with religious wars, homes lost, all retirement funds stripped away and more. Yet, they continue…most with relative happiness.

If I write more blogs regarding this trip, there will be mixed emotions and differing opinions than you may have. That is okay. What I know, for myself, is that world travel points out all our differences…AND all our similarities.

Flowers seem to find a way to bloom everywhere! May we be at peace!

Thursday Doors – The Mouth of the Dragon

Would you enter this door?

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Outside of Vientiane, Laos, is a unique collection of statues and such called Buddha Park. This structure is meant to identify the world and its three levels with the tree of life extending from the top. You enter through the mouth of a demon. There’s an outer gallery with inner chambers on each floor. You can make your way all the way up to the roof, which affords a view of the entire park.

It was a bit of a gray day, which seems to add to the mood of this place and this structure, in particular!

Having recently returned from a trip to Laos and Cambodia, I have hopes of finding lots of interesting doors to post here on Thursday Doors from the thousands of pictures I took. Thanks to Norm for hosting!

 

Thursday Doors – September 15, 2016

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I only see one door, so I would guess it is the entrance. Glad they let us know!

Taken somewhere in New Mexico…exploring a bit of the southwest and exploring the possibility of owning an RV. That test passed for me, but failed for my husband!

Happy Trails and Happy Doorscursions…whatever mode of transportation you use!

Thanks goes to Norm for hosting!

Thursday Doors – May 19, 2016

Norm and his followers have a thing about doors! Check it out here.

My post for this week takes us to Canada again…a frigid, grey day along the Via Rail route between Vancouver and Toronto. I have been trying to research where we actually stopped, but you can see that it was, indeed, COLD!!!!

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As we had a chance to depart the train, most people donned their coats, hats, gloves and whatever they had to keep them warm….and went the opposite way I did. They were apparently more interested in a rushed walk about and some air outside the train. It seemed obvious to me that there was nothing of interest toward that little train station. There was one other person who had a camera and headed toward this deserted building. We were drawn to the curious and colorful, if old, artwork on this relic. I can only assume it is an old warehouse, long abandoned, but at some time painted with depictions of history of the area.

If you know me, you will understand that the very short…say 10 to 15 minute stop…was not long enough to explore this find, so I just snapped as many pictures as I could. I will admit that the temperature of well below zero degrees celsius was not an incentive to linger long!

I wonder about the people, the products, and the stories that could be told of this old gem!?!

PS – If you see this and can tell me where I was, that would be appreciated!!!

All images © Valorie Webster

 

Thursday Doors – April 28, 2016

In conjunction with the very popular Thursday Doors theme, hosted by Norm…

Today I have selected another subject from the recent trip to Toronto, The Campbell House Museum.

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An interesting article here, tells that this building was actually saved and moved to the current location. Another article is actually copied below, with credits given in the article:

“Saving Old House Inspires Preservation”

This text is from the free Toronto in Time app, which was created by The Canadian Encyclopedia…

When the Queen Mother officially opened Campbell House in its new University Avenue location, Torontonians saw a treasure from their past restored. In a city that had been demolishing many of its finest old buildings, this demonstration of reverence for a distinguished work of 19th-century architecture and a piece of Toronto history showed a change in public opinion in favour of heritage preservation. The Campbell House was built by Sir William Campbell, Chief Justice of Upper Canada, and his wife Hannah in 1822. The stately Georgian house originally stood at what is now the intersection of Adelaide and Frederick streets. After serving as a private residence for most of the 19th century, it was turned into a business office and even a factory for horseshoe nails as its neighbourhood transformed into a commercial and industrial area. In 1972, its owners, the Coutts-Hallmark Greeting Cards Company, wanted to use its location for a parking lot. They offered the building to anyone who would move it.

Given the home’s association with a former Chief Justice, an association of trial lawyers (The Advocates’ Society) raised the funds to move the Campbell House to its present location. The move was a spectacular public event. Streets were shut down and crowds gawked as the 270-tonne structure crept the 1617 metres to its new foundation.

Today the Campbell House is a museum and art gallery, as well as a club for members of the Advocates Society. Most importantly, its move inspired those who shared a love for architectural integrity and a sense of history to unite in preserving remnants of Old Toronto.

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This being a post about doors, this one is admirable, but I also enjoyed the placement of this old Georgian beauty in front of a more modern (though nothing as modern as many in Toronto…watch for a future post) building behind it.

Unfortunately, the museum was not open when we went by, so no pictures of the inside. You can find those online too!

Happy doorscovering!

 

Canadian Railway Trip – Part 2

As an aside, let me first say that my list of blog posts to read seems to be growing by the minute. I am trying to catch up without deleting posts…I am a loyal reader, if nothing else, here in the blogosphere! But I feel this also needs to be completed…for all MY faithful readers! 😉 So I am writing Part 2 of the Canadian Railway Trip today.

Today, I think I will talk about scenery. Note two things…we went in March/early April and spring had not really “sprung” yet. Also, taking photos from the inside of a moving train can be less than fruitful. Lawrence, a Britt that we came to really enjoy, always had his camera around his neck and was also at list a bit annoyed by this fact. He has traveled the world on trains, though, so I think he knew what he was in for!

Going through the files, let me see what images I can find…we started off from Vancouver at night, so not much to show until the next day.

The first daylight leg of the trip goes through the Northern Rockies. This time of the year, we still see lots of snow and ice, but the views can be stunning.

IMG_0046 They try to announce when photo opps are coming up. This is the best shot I was able to get of Pyramid Falls, with droplets on the window and the bright sunlight blowing out the highlights.

There are a few places where you can actually get off the train…very welcome, even in the frigid weather. A short walk around Jasper on this chilly day…

Wildlife abounds along the way, and again, they try to let you know if something is coming up.

At one point, we were just sitting on the tracks (which is not uncommon, more on that later). Only to learn that we were waiting for a herd of long-horn sheep to cross. Above are the shots I was able to grab of them as the train passed by. I think some of these guys are telling us, by their pose, what they think of the train being on their turf!!!!

Moose seem to be what everyone wants to see in Canada. We were fortunate to get a bit of a distant glimpse of a mother (called a cow) and her not-so-little one (called a calf). Given their size, they actually have a rather stately gait.

No, Dorothy, we are not in Kansas…though it looks like we could be! The plains…

My favorite day for pictures was this beautiful morning…it may seem that the images are boring when you expect the majesty of mountains and Canada, but I was enthralled with the colors, textures, reflections, and lines…

You get to stop often (as mentioned above), as the freight trains have priority on the rails. They pass by very close to you!

I like that these empty cars were the same, but different colors…and always enjoy graffiti. (Is that wrong?) And yes, that black line on the side of the pictures is the edge of my window…close!

To wrap up this mostly visual review of scenery, here is a must-get shot from the last car…

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Until Part 3…thanks for looking!

All images © Valorie Webster