Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Seasons Greetings

Haven't been too active on this blog recently so thought it was time to drop by and do a small update.



Monday, May 16, 2011

Cruise ships galore May 14 2011

It was a busy day in downtown on Saturday as there were four ships in town - the Golden and Sapphire Princess and HAL Zuiderdamn at Canada Place and the Norwegian Star at Ballantyne Pier.

Norwegian Star a Ballantyne Pier as seen from the entrance to Canada Place

Golden Princess on the east side of Canada Place

Zuiderdamn on west side of Canada Place

The stern of the Sapphire Princess - it was a close fit for these two large vessels at Canada Place

The Sapphire Princess with Pan Pacific in background taken from the new Convention Center promenade

Sapphire and both the Pan Pacific and Fairmont Waterfront hotel

 New Pink Bus service

 Sapphire from north end of Hornby Street

View of both Princess ships and the City skyline from the promenade at Canada Place

Zuiderdamn at Canada Place.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Assembling the new BBQ May 13, 2011

One of the items that has been on my bucket list for some time is a new BBQ and now that I have received my first pay cheque from the census work it was time to head to Walmart and get one - this particular model had been on sale some time ago and then went back up in price but yesterday it was back on sale.

Putting it together went okay for the most part until it came to the lid - couldn`t get the nut to fit through the hole but I was able to use some other screws and a wing bolt and that did the trick.

I started it up and my condo is still in one piece so I must have done everything right - eating out tonight but will fire it up tomorrow - also with a proper tank I won`t be running out of gas any time soon.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Marathon Day May 1, 2011 - the Bike team in action

Sunday was the 40th Annual Vancouver Marathon and once again I found myself down at the course start a little after 5AM meeting up with some of the 30 + members of this year`s team - we do some short prep rides , go over our radio protocol and get ready to do our various tasks - while cool in the morning it was at least dry - the first group out at 6AM are the walkers and then an hour later the half Marathoners and finally at 7:30AM the full course runners - I am riding patrol which meant I follow the race around the course trying to ensure that there are no obstacles in the way of the runners - after completing the course I then start to work on the sweep team until break time at Milestone`s - then another hour or so getting the stragglers off the course by the 2PM deadline  - only one or two didn`t make it. Then it is time to turn in the equipment - vests, radios etc and head for the volunteer where they are setting up a BBQ and some beer - I have a couple of hamburgers and one beer as I still have some Census work to do - It is a little bit of a bittersweet feeling this year in that our long time Captain Brian is retiring after 15 years at the helm and next year there will be a new course and many of us are interested in the route at this time. I was exhausted by the time I got home and more than a little sun tanned - it warmed up during the day which lead to an increase in the number of people who were cramping up and a run on water and refreshments - don`t know of any serious injuries.

For the complete photo story go to the following link on my facebook page.

Here are a few more images of the day - we were honored with finisher`s medals this year as a thank you for our work on race day - I ended up with some 70KM = 42 miles on the odometer by the time I got home.


Saturday, April 30, 2011

Much ado about nothing post April 30, 2011

Not a lot of activity here on my blog but I have been busy

1. Once again this year I am a bike escort rider for the Vancouver Marathon but will only be a patrol rider and not a lead rider - this was partly my request due to other events you will see in the post below. Tomorrow is the Marathon and unlike last year the weather looks dry and sunny so the short will likely be the dress order of the day.

2. Monday is voting day and I will ask that all of you Canadians please take the time to go to the polls and vote for the candidate of your choice.

3. Normally I would post who to vote for or vote against but ______

4, I am now a fully trained crew leader - ie - supervisor for Stats Canada for the purpose of the Canadian census and thus I am unable to to politically active in any way so no thoughts on the current campaign etc.

5. The Canucks are now into the second round and I think this one will go 5 perhaps six at  most as I feel that the Canucks have too much fire power and more playoff experience that the Nashville team.

6. Have had to spend some time at the hospital ensuring that my sibling is getting good medical care - he as a long term chronic and terminal illness and every time he gets sick there is considerable concern about his recovery - it was touch and go for a couple of days but he is once again on the road to recovery.



Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Update and potpourri March 29, 2011

While I was out for a bike ride over the weekend along the Boundary Bay Dyke I came across a number of bald eagles that were starting to nest - this one decided he didn`t like his perch on a power line and decided to head for a more friendly tree top - I had the telephoto lens on at the time so was able to capture him in full flight.

Well it doesn`t look like I will end up working on the census - the time for supervisor`s assignments to be filled is passed and I likely will pass on being an enumerator - part of the reason for applying was financial but I got some good news when I did my income tax - instead of having to pay I got a good return - second reason - now that a federal election has been called I will be able to get work with Elections Canada as a deputy returning officer - have done this before and put in an on-line application some time ago - their local office is in the same place as last time - a block from my condo - will head over there tomorrow to see what`s up and if they need any office help.

I have started the training rides with the Vancouver Marathon Bike Escort team - there are about 20 of us returning from previous years - this is my 5th year of doing this event. So far the weather has cooperated but that could change tonight as there is rain in the forecast.

I continue to plan for the Panama Canal cruise in the fall - have the hotel booked and paid for  in Tampa - decided to skip staying a couple of days in Orlando - too much lugging of luggage and after three weeks on a ship will want to get home. Have my Amtrak trip booked and paid for - if on time will have a full day in Washington DC so will take a tour of the area.

Next weekend I head over to Yellowpoint Lodge for my annual visit - depending on whether I have some work on the election - I may head over a spend a night in Victoria before hand and then do the Sunshine Coast Loop on the way back with an overnight in Powell River.

I am now on Twitter - it`s @yvrcruiser


Saturday, March 5, 2011

Well it has been some time since I posted to this blog - not that I didn`t want to but I am using Facebook more and more for my day to day activities and photos and going to keep the remaining space on this blog for my outdoor and travel activities - once I run out of space here I will move over to word press and continue there.

A year ago I was headed to Whistler to take up my position as a National Paralympic Committee volunteer to the Slovakian delegation - it was one of the best months of my life enjoying the friendship of my fellow volunteers and athlete`s.

I have attended a couple of reunion events in the past month - the flash mob to promote John Furlong`s book Patriots Heart and the relighting of the cauldron on the first anniversary of the opening ceremonies.

If the weather is nice - no snow on the roads I will head up to Whistler and visit the Athlete`s Village which is now called Cheakamus Crossing - curious to see what my accommodation from the Games looks like now.

On the travel front - my major trip this year will be a Panama Canal cruise - it is a two part cruise - the first leg is Vancouver to LA and the second is LA to Tampa - I am looking forward to visiting Tampa - only previous time there was a short stopover on the train on the way to Washington DC from Miami - then a couple of days in Orlando before leaving for home.

I am still hoping to get on as a Supervisor for the Canadian census but I haven`t heard from them and it is pass the time they were suppose to contact me. If I don`t get the Supervisor`s job I still hope to get on as an Enumerator.

In about two weeks the Bike Escort team for the Vancouver Marathon will start our twice weekly training rides - I have been doing some riding over the pass couple of months when the weather has been dry.

I have two friends who will turn the BIG 65 in May so some planning will have to start taking place on that.

Booked a weekend over at Yellowpoint Lodge in early April - provided the Supervisor`s job doesn`t interfer I will probably head over a few days early and enjoy some of the Island scenery - might do the Sunshine Coast - Vancouver Island loop.