Today's first two shots show a bit of excitement that occurred in the neighbourhood in the late afternoon one day last week. The dog and I were working our way home from our afternoon walk when we became aware of a lot of sirens in the vicinity. We live only a block away from a fairly major thoroughfare that often has emergency vehicles rushing from point A to point B, so I wasn't paying undue attention until a fire truck trundled down our own relatively quiet street, heading west. When I looked along the street I could see great clouds of smoke being blown by the quite strong north wind. It looked to be coming from the vicinity of the school, and was pretty much where Rony and I had been on our walk only moments before. Of course I had to grab a camera and head down to where the action was.
Shot one shows the scene from a couple of blocks away. At this point I was right beside the neighbourhood school, so I knew that wasn't what was burning. I never notice the proliferation of overhead lines in our area until I see them in a photo like this--not very attractive, but they do give the birds something to perch on.
When we got close to the source of the fire, I realized it was the garage behind the house where our eagle and bear friends, featured on last week's blog, reside. There was a lot of smoke, and apparently had been some explosions from propane and oxygen tanks inside the garage, along with concerns about the fire causing arcing in the above-mentioned overhead power lines. By the time I was witnessing this, the fire crews had it pretty well under control. Not a good day for the garage, but better that than the house, which appeared to be undamaged.
In a less exciting vein, here is a shot I got along the grid road to the stables last week. This would look very different now as we had our first serious snowfall on the weekend and much of this would now be covered. I always appreciate the soft colours and the texture of the roadside native grasses.
Jim and I went to a craft sale on the weekend in the midst of the snowfall, and ended up parking on a street with a view of the iconic Bessborough Hotel and downtown buildings from a different vantage point than the usual. The original version out of the camera looked almost like a black and white photo with very muted tones. I was playing around with it in Photoshop as I tend to do, and this is the result I got when I applied a blending filter that I don't generally use. It's kind of an odd effect, but for some reason I find it quite appealing, so this is the version you get to see. I do plan to work on some of these shots in monochrome, but that will have to wait for later.
Ice wine, anyone? Much like the brightly coloured frozen sweet pea flowers of last week's blog, the few remaining grapes on our backyard vine have retained their good looks and strong coloration. While a bit on the tart side for eating "as is", these grapes make wonderful jelly and juice. I've got a good deal going with a friend who is a fanatical picker. She gets to pick all the grapes she wants, and we get a few jars of grape jelly in exchange. Same deal goes with our sour cherries. We have more jelly most years than we can eat our way through, yet I haven't made any for years!