Summer in the City

ย Green was the silence, wet was the light, the month of June trembled like a butterfly.” – Pablo Neruda, 100 Love Sonnets

It feels like Mexico during this mini heatwave that has descended upon the city, after chasing the sun these past few months, shady spots have become prime real-estate and I’ve found some respite myself underneath a large maple tree on a well worn bench. English Bay and the quirky patch of sand lovingly named Bikini Beach by the locals are dotted with sunbathers. Two beautiful Vancouver Police horses have just cantered by, their dark chocolate coats well brushed and shiny, the riders upon their broad backs friendly ambassadors as Moms rush towards them with their small children.

As much as I love the park, walking by the ocean or exploring the cool depths of the forest, summer brings it’s own special cachet to our small corner of the world. As summer approaches, the weekends come alive with free festivals starting with the many car-free days throughout the city – our local main street (Denman) is closed from iconic Robson St. all the way down to Davie St. ending at English Bay. It was a treat to walk its length greeting old friends, collecting small tokens (magnets, buttons and pens) from vendors along the way as well as enjoying some delicious samples (hello white peach lemon soda!). I even jumped on a vintage transit bus and had a wander through time as the crowd ebbed and flowed beyond the dusty windows. Afterwards, I bought a yummy blackberry cheesecake popsicle from a tiny cart and happily lost myself while watching a talented breakdance demonstration – all in all, it was a perfect start to the festival season!

Around this time, I received a phone call from my local public library informing me that after an almost 3 year wait, I would finally be able to pick up an Inspiration Pass – a pass that allows library patrons free access to museums, art galleries, gardens, etc. What a lovely gift to behold, I could enjoy it over a two week period and right in the middle of festival season! It was hard to choose but we picked three favourites (there wasn’t enough time to see or do it all!), our first visit was to the Vancouver Art Gallery where we immersed ourselves in the exhibit, Pictures From Here ( comprised of a wide variety of photographs and video by Vancouver based artists). A lot of the work made me feel that I had seen these images before and with Vancouver being the backdrop, it made sense, certain streets or graffiti captured on film caught my eye over and over again. The hour we spent there went by much too fast…

Our second outing found us at the Museum of Anthropology located on a wild cliff nestled on the sprawling campus of the University of British Columbia. The glass, concrete and steel structure houses some incredible indigenous art, when one walks into the exhibit area, there is a hush in the air that reminds me of being in a sacred space, as if I’ve entered nature’s own heart. I have been here before to this exhibit but missed some small printed signs allowing us to touch some of the special pieces – I found myself drawn to a large cedar carving of a bear who is also a man, when I gently stroked his forehead and held my palm above his large head, I could still feel a subtle energy emanating from it even after many years of captivity inside these glass walls. I touched many other pieces and the energy present in those wood carvings seemed muted, the strongest by far, was the beautiful bear.

After an hour or two of exploring, we found ourselves at our third choice (steps away from the museum), in the lush green of the Nitobe Memorial Garden – what a wonderful respite from the glass and concrete, here was another sacred space, the silence here more profound as we walked and breathed in the visual beauty all around us. Even if summer in the city calls to me with its festivals and culture, it is nature that always brings me home to my sacred self. Here’s hoping you have a wonderful summer in your part of the world!

The stunning Museum of Anthropology located on the campus of the University of British Columbia nestled in the forest by the sea!

A sampling of totem poles standing watch in this sacred space.

A close up of the beautiful cedar bear carving that dominates this glass corner of the museum.

A different angle of this beautiful cedar carving depicting both man and bear, it was thrilling to be able to touch this piece of art!

There is so much cultural beauty to explore, the hours flew by!



About anotetohuguette

I'm currently blogging from the beautiful West Coast city of Vancouver, British Columbia - a vibrant city by the sea, surrounded by mountains and a very unique urban forest.
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18 Responses to Summer in the City

  1. Ugetse says:

    Oh Kim, thank you for sharing the photos of The Museum of Anthropology, my favourite in Vancouver. Must go back there very soon for a long visit. Enjoy the summer .๐Ÿ˜˜๐Ÿ’›๐Ÿ™๐Ÿผ

    Liked by 2 people

    • Even on the day that it was closed, you and I had a wonderful visit – there is so much beauty to explore and you got some great shots through the glass walls/windows! It is haunting, that’s for sure…

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Ugetse says:

    Really love your quote from Pablo Neruda.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. markmkane says:

    What I love about reading your posts is that you describe your adventures in nature and accompany them with pictures. It’s so refreshing to kind of experience what you saw. With your eloquent way of describing nature and places that you embark on, you should be a travel writer. One day soon, I’ll venture up to your neck of the woods and check out those places for myself. Thanks for sharing Kimberlee!

    Liked by 2 people

    • I would love to be a travel writer, nothing would make me happier but until then, I’m enjoying the small adventures that come my way! Thank you for your unfailing support, your comments add such lovely layers to my posts! We have two spots nearby that have echoes of Hawaii, Third Beach (a twenty minute walk from the West End!) and the small town of Egmont on the Sunshine Coast (which is a ferry/bus trip away from Vancouver), I think you and your family would love exploring the West Coast!

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Shirley Ross says:

    One great thing about this, I may be bed ridden for a while, but feel I have been there through your written word. Love Mom

    Liked by 2 people

    • The city is waiting for you, Mom! I’m glad you enjoyed the read and that it made you feel like you were there too, it’s tough to be bedridden and waiting to get back to normal (thank goodness for our indoor picnics!)!

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Beautiful photos! The popsicle sounds good too๐Ÿค—๐Ÿค—

    Liked by 2 people

  6. Oh, my gosh….I’ve never read the book, or saw the movie, but– having an idea of the feel of it–I imagine that it mirrors your writing…the woman’s experience, I mean. There is something so spiritual in everything you write. It’s not just about the beauty of your words, and how you choose and link each jewel, it’s about the soothing, elegant way you communicate. You are really do have such a profound gift. It makes it all the more humbling that you appreciate my creative offerings–you certainly aren’t a literary snob ๐Ÿ™‚ Thank you for sharing your experiences…they are so uplifting and have lit up my evening. ๐Ÿ™‚

    Liked by 2 people

    • I’m “truly” blessed many times over to have your lovely words grace my pages, warm connections like this soothe the soul…thank you for being so present and real!

      Liked by 1 person

      • I’m so glad you are attuned to my intentions even when I am not clear….what I meant to write is, “I have never read the book, nor seen the movie “Eat, Pray, Love…”
        And, you are welcome…the pleasure is mine ๐Ÿ™‚

        Liked by 2 people

      • I inhaled the book, “Eat. Pray, Love”, her (Elizabeth Gilbert) writing is so visual, I could imagine that I was on the journey with her…I always hope that someone reading my words might feel the same, thank you for this, you have left me smiling this sunny morning!

        Liked by 2 people

  7. Nice opening to your post, and it’s a lovely personal story!

    Liked by 2 people

  8. Congratulations on finally getting your inspiration pass. So glad that you had a wonderful time at all the three places you chose to visit. Summer is indeed a celebration in that part of the world and it is so good to know that you are having a warm and wonderful time enjoying the better part of the year. Loved those pictures especially the cedar bear carving.
    Thank you for sharing and enjoy the rest of the warm and wonderful summer.


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