Sunday, November 29, 2015
Saturday, November 21, 2015
|Maybe we should think about flying south...|
|Looks a bit too cold to swim to the Point today!|
|Some call it a weed, some a wildflower, some a work of art...|
|Christmas lights really need the snow to make them sparkle|
|Asparagus, gone to fern, decked out with its red berries|
Posted by Nancy Tapley at 7:17 PM
Check out the stash of pinecones that our industrious squirrel has carefully gathered together at the foot of the pine tree...
He then carefully carries them farther away, under the edge of the spruce hedge, where the snow never gathers.
And there, pretty far back underneath the protective spruce branches, he has built a enormous "pantry"
Posted by Nancy Tapley at 7:14 PM
These aren't taken from Bondi, so don't try to figure out the angle. I was a at a friend's place down Port Cunnington, looking back toward Lumina Resort.
This shot IS taken from Bondi -- so you'll recognize it!
Posted by Nancy Tapley at 7:12 PM
Robin Tapley captured the muted pastel colours that paint the Park after the brilliance of the autumn leaves has past.
Isn't she wonderful, this lovely cow moose in the wetlands? We certainly think so.
Robin Tapley also captured this photo of one of the young loons, not in the more familiar summer plumage that we are used to, but in his 'end of season' garb. The more mature loons leave earlier in the season. The juveniles hang around until, well, until about now. Late November. Even early December, before heading south. Best of luck and safe migration, that's what we wish for them. And hurry back come spring!
Although this could almost be a black and white photo, the colours within are still fascinating.
Kent Nonomura was in the right place, right time, to capture this image of one of Algonquin's timber wolves, looking a bit unimpressed with the first snowfall of the season.
Jennifer Howard's patience was rewarded by this fox....
And earlier this autumn Robin Tapley caught up with this pair of hungry beavers, enjoying a light snack before returning to the serious business of stashing enough twigs on the bottom of the pond to see them through the winter. They are busy this time of year, as the cold closes in, finishing up those last 'outdoor jobs' that must be completed before freeze up.
So for those of you who think that Algonquin is a Summer Place only, we've got news for you. This is one of the best times to be in Algonquin, hiking the trails, making tracks in the early snow.
It is quiet, uncrowded and your chances of seeing the wildlife are much greater.
Early December is a wonderful time to get away and recharge before the craziness of Christmas.
Posted by Nancy Tapley at 6:55 PM
Wednesday, November 11, 2015
I have been honoured this year to represent the Township of Lake of Bays at two Remembrance Day services, one in Baysville, one in Dwight.
I was asked for a copy of my address, so I'm printing it here. With huge thanks to my Mother, Rosemary, for sharing her memories over the years.
‘It was three miles wide, ten miles long, and took an hour to pass overhead. The ground shook. You felt it in your bones. In your breath.’ That was my mother watching the 1000 bomber raid fly overhead, the moon on their wings, bound for Cologne.
A young woman, in a London blown apart by the Blitz, she was thinking of the men in those planes. Crews of 8. Average age, 20. If you were 24, they called you “Grand-dad”. Four weeks was the life expectancy of a tail gunner.
How many of these young men were not coming home that night.
But she knew what was at stake in that war. She was one of the people to whom Winston Churchill was speaking with his famous speech, “we will fight them, we will NEVER surrender.” He was firing up the troops, asking America to come to England’s aid, but he was also talking to the people. Because Peace doesn’t come just from wishing.
He was talking to us. Freedom is not free. It requires vigilance and determination to stand up for the values we find important for ourselves and for our country. Peace, respect and tolerance, kindness and honour --These qualities are alive in our national conscience precisely because we hold them as precious.
We have just completed an election – it was a peaceful, safe, democratic exercise, the likes of which much of the world can only envy. We enjoy the right to be free, to be a democracy, to work together without tyranny. And we owe that great luxury to those who we gather to remember today, men and women who believed those were qualities precious enough to die for.
For that we must be ever grateful.
We stand to remember those who did not come back. Not from that bomber raid seared on my mother’s memory, not from all the other theatres of war, all around the world. For those who still, today, may not return to us. We gather to remember what happens when Peace is lost, to vow that never again should we descend into that madness of war, never again should the very sky be blotted out by bombers flying wing to wing...
We stand to thank those who are still serving, on the sharp end, defending these values. Those who go where we wouldn’t go, to do what we couldn’t do, to keep us safe. We honour those who stand between us and the abyss.
And we gather to honour, too, those who have returned. You can take a person out of a war, but sometimes that war is harder to take out of the person. Not all wounds are visible, not all scars heal. Not all bad memories fade. Fifty years later, my mother, standing outside on a moonlit night would sometimes shake her head and softly say, “Bombers’ moon.”
It is up to us to stand up every single day for those who have returned to ensure they have the support and help they may require to come back to us. For some, that return is terribly hard, and terribly slow. I am again mindful of Churchill’s words – success is not final, failure is not fatal, it is the courage to continue that counts.
We all need that courage, to stand up and ensure that our fortunate, our free society steps up for all our veterans. We need to remember, as we express our gratitude today, the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them.
Posted by Nancy Tapley at 11:31 AM