Territory

“Why do you go away? So that you can come back. So that you can see the place you came from with new eyes and extra colors.” -Terry Pratchett, A Hat Full of Sky

On a downtown walk with the urban forest behind me, I traveled the length of my own street and unexpectedly found a lost piece of myself. I crossed through a lively parklet one street over, enjoying the quiet community of older houses, condos, and towers. As the early spring sun shone down, I came upon a pop-up art show in front of a large wooden brown house. Several canvases were for sale propped up against a fence – landscapes depicting that very forest and the ocean left behind. A homemade sign advertising painting lessons added to the bucolic feel and stirred a longing within to go on a road trip, notebook in hand, to draw upon the creative threads this scene inspired – I could imagine my senses wide open, the joy of collecting all kinds of ephemera, and exploring unknown paths. It’s always a delightful surprise to come across a part of one’s self in this place, the territory of our own sacred selves, casually walking down a street both known, yet unknown.

Another part of my self was found at a reading at our local community centre, the Indigenous writer-in-residence invited by the downtown main public library to read from his collection of children’s stories. Our small group was at once transported by the cadence of his spoken words, enchanted by the magical sturgeon, the romance and heroism of a sasquatch and  lyrical frog renderings. The part that awakened a self quietly slumbering was prodded by the haunting songs sung in newly reclaimed language, filling the lecture hall with the echoes of ancient forests, fast running rivers, and lands now known by other names. I left the hall feeling that I had entered another’s sacred territory…

Spring increases access to all kinds of territory – we find ourselves outside more often among leafing trees and fragrant blooms. The language of light and shadow invites us to sit awhile, breathe in the scent of Sakura wafting through the air and open our senses to the new unfolding all around us, creating spacious territory within.

Spring is painting Lost Lagoon in Stanley Park (Vancouver. B.C.) with Monet colours that take one’s breath away!

A lone Great Blue Heron fishing quietly in Lost Lagoon in Stanley Park (Vancouver, B.C.).

Another Monet-like capture of pink tulips in Stanley Park (Vancouver, B.C.). Can you see the lone orange tulip?

Today, after a break from blogging (to celebrate my May birthday and spending time with Terry’s sister out from Toronto, Ontario),  I notice on a recent walk home from downtown that time has moved us deeper into spring. There is now an exuberant green lushness amid the receding winter grey on the mountains and flourishing beside the deep blue of the ocean. Ten days of warm sun gifted us with days for wandering the cobblestone streets of Gastown, the bustling market stalls of Granville Island and the enticing stores at the Park Royal mall in West Vancouver peppered with tasty lunches along the way. The falling rain today has slowed down time, bathing that lush green in sparkling droplets – the busy streets much quieter now and friendly faces hidden beneath colourful umbrellas,  leaving a sense of mystery, creating precious space between seasons and territories.

 

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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.
This entry was posted in blog, journaling, life, memoir, photography, travel and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

34 Responses to Territory

  1. areilly88 says:

    Beautiful. Thank you for taking us with you!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Shirley Ross says:

    Don’t know where the above comment came from. Not something I would write. Love Mom

    Liked by 1 person

  3. calmkate says:

    wow your writing is as exquisite as your pics … your serenity pervades ❤

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Samuel says:

    Wow, I love that Pratchett quote ❤
    From the other end of the world, I've felt for some time a longing for home. It's not something I expected, but I can't deny it 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I love how wide-awake your posts feel, Kim. You seem to notice something worth your time and attention in every venture. And your beautiful way of sharing it always makes me want to do a bit of exploring on my own. Those ten days of glorious sunshine couldn’t have been more welcome. Thanks for the lovely thoughts and photos. And Happy belated Birthday!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you, Diana! A love of reading at a young age encouraged me to seek out the beauty and magic of the world around me…it’s a joy to share some of that with you, your lovely support always brightens my day!

      Liked by 1 person

  6. ugetse says:

    Your eyes capture beauty. everywhere. Your words bring magic to our street. Today feels like summer. Where will you make us travel and dream next? 💐❤️

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Ali Grimshaw says:

    Welcome back and happy belated birthday.
    “The part that awakened a self quietly slumbering was prodded by the haunting songs sung in newly reclaimed language, filling the lecture hall with the echoes of ancient forests, fast running rivers, and lands now known by other names. I left the hall feeling that I had entered another’s sacred territory…” This sounds like a soul nourishing experience.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Mackenzie says:

    Stunning words & pictures to pair. I think I have told you this before, but you have a way of articulating experiences that I totally resonate with, but would never find the words to actually describe. It’s like magic! Thank you for sharing, Kimberlee. Enjoy the beautiful rest of spring into summer 🙂 Oh, and I can’t forget- Happy Birthday to youuu! ❤

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Belated happy birthday dear Kim and what a treat to reconnect with these parts of yourself through such wonderful encounters. In Celtic wisdom this month is all about reconnection and rebirth and seeing this mirrored in the natural beauty around us. Here’s hoping this lovely journey will continue to bring you joy 🙂💖 xxx

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Beautiful! Your words and the pictures! Wishes galore for your birthday and wish you an amazing year ahead!

    Liked by 1 person

  11. markmkane says:

    Happy Belated Birthday Kimberlee! The picture of the bridge over the water was simply lovely. I always love how you take us on a journey of the sights and sounds that you experience. I would’ve like to see that art show and the artists’ interpretations of the scenery. You somehow absorb all that’s around you and call attention to the things that most people would glaze over. A true artist with your words!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you so much, Mark! I had a wonderful birthday month…I met my dear neighbour, Huguette, yesterday afternoon at a tiny French café in the neighbourhood and she said she enjoyed reading about the artist as she knows him well. I remember when he used to sell his art beside the seawall down at English Bay! Of course, when I come across images that catch
      my eye, I have no camera (usually, it’s in the hands of Terry!).

      Liked by 1 person

  12. Quirky Girl says:

    Spring is such a lovely season. Watching the world come alive with vibrant colors is one of the most glorious joys.

    I love the photo with the lone orange tulip among a field of pink tulips. It’s like a hidden treasure waiting to be discovered by those who take the time to truly see and appreciate each individual flower. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  13. michnavs says:

    Reading a beautiful post like this is what makes me come back to blogging always..you never failed to bring me literally to where you are at the moment you write it…the photos are so beautiful too..

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Robin says:

    I love your writing and your descriptions. This, in particular: “It’s always a delightful surprise to come across a part of one’s self in this place, the territory of our own sacred selves, casually walking down a street both known, yet unknown.” So beautiful.

    Liked by 1 person

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