Saturday, April 23, 2011

Paschal Easter

View from Old Kaleden Road of Skaha Lake

Penticton from Linden Gardens

Paris and Ellen with a large planting of Primroses, Linden Garden

Linden Tulips
Michael, Ellen, Paris, having coffee, photo by Hanne

Easter is the season upon us. Named after the pagan fertility goddess of Spring, "Oestre". Thus Easter means simply Spring. ( Nothing to do with compass direction.) In many European languages, Easter is called "Pashka", with spelling variations of course. This is derived from the Jewish word for Passover, which in Danish is PĂ„ske. Danes celebrate it by decorating with daffodils, which are named Paschal Lillies. Hence too in Jewish and Christian terminology, the sacrifice of the Paschal Lamb.
So we have two competing word groups for this time. Even more confusing perhaps is Pashka meaning a delicious Russian dessert eaten around now...
Yesterday we enjoyed Oestral Flowers and Paschal sunshine on our walk on the Old Kaleden Road, afterwards for coffee at our lovely Linden Gardens' "Frog City" restaurant, including a walk amongst the blossoms and bulbs...
Yesterday's photos start here.

Friday, April 22, 2011

Holy Friday

Holy, Pious, or Good, either way, a special Friday is here once more; in the Okanagan we are blessed with a high pressure system above us and glorious wind-free sunshine all around us. It is time for some of us to smear the blood of a Spring lamb on our doorposts to ensure the Spirit of the Lord passes over our house. And make flatbread.
Saskatoon Flowers coming out on Skaha
Old Car and New Cherry Blossom, Keremeos

For others, it is another Bank Holiday decorated with lambs, bunnies, and eggs. One is encouraged to stay home and enjoy local beauty-spots rather than clog roads and airports. We are off with friends to explore cherry-blossomed lanes and old Kaleden Road with views of the lake, then to our favourite Linden Gardens to see the Spring Flowers. The gardens open this week-end for visitors. Happy Easter!....

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Green Thursday

Five Girls Leading Two Boys Astray Upstream on the Green River

Path up from the River, with fresh Green Grass.

New Maple Flowers and Leaves
There are many different customs associated with today, but one that caught my eye is what they do in old Czechoslovakia. The children have to go skinny-dipping early in the morning in the river. ( Some say it is a cure for laziness. ) then they have to eat some strange green vegetable made into the shape of a rope, fortunately laced with honey, for their breakfast. The rope has something to do with the fact that Judas Iscariot hanged himself. Then, they go out knocking on doors for candy. The Germans also call it Green Thursday and have to eat spinach. I don't know what they do in Switzerland and Poland, but maybe our commenters will enlighten us....
We hope you all have an enjoyable Maunday Thursday!

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Sunburn in April?

Tree Elf, Okanagan River at OK Falls

New Willow Tresses

Well I expect you Englanders will be dipping in the sea, eating ice-cream, and sun-bathing this coming long week-end, so don't forget your sun-block cream! Meanwhile in the Okanagan it is still cool and today started at minus one Celsius. All this coolness is from the jet-stream flowing over our heads, and South of the border more tornadoes are on their way. Our new hazard just now is the start of tick season. Walking in "nature" one can acquire these sweet little critters, which can bite and give one Lime disease amongst other nice things. I had my first one a week ago but he walked away on the carpet somewhere, without biting me ! But at least we aren't threatened by overhead helicopter gunships securing the Royal Wedding, and we don't have any demonstrations to deal with, and no petrol rationing like in Nepal, so we have to be very thankful....

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Enough Snow, it's Easter!

Magnolias are out in Penticton

Saskatoon flowers are opening again.

Warblers are returning

Cherry blossoms downtown are opening.
OK, no more snow, I hear you. But what about Tornadoes? I hear they are having a bad time in the USA now. We saw three at once bearing towards the camera yesterday in Oklahoma, on TV. Spring is the season for the worst ones, but they can come anytime. They have some bad ones in South Africa too. The British ones, about 33 per year, are not very strong. There can be tornadoes in S. America, Europe, N India; particularly devastating in Bangladesh; E. China, The Philippines, S. Korea, Japan, Australia, and New Zealand. Anyway, here are some nice Spring photos to make your blood warm up again...

Monday, April 18, 2011

Spring in Alberta

Michael trying to keep warm, Canmore, Alberta, 2008, Minus Fourteen Celsius.

Pigeon Lake Sunset

Grandson Kevin has " Air-Time" tobogganing
Here are a few photos from April in Alberta. The white and orange stuff is snow. It will be Spring there, maybe for one day, eventually, but not yet, then it turns to Summer. Thoughts come around to Earth Day, this year on Good Friday, the ground will be a bit too hard with ice to plant trees... Anyway, Happy Easter!, and keep warm! Don't work too hard, Irena, and all of you, preparing for Easter, get some of the others to do the jobs!

Sunday, April 17, 2011

April Showers Bring May Flowers

Old Forsythia Bush

Cherry Blossoms

Driveway Decoration
It was showery when we walked on Old Kaleden Rd., and we discovered that the cherry trees were now in bloom.( A week earlier in Oliver, and a bit earlier again in Osoyoos, as one moves further South.) But there was enough sunshine at intervals for warmth and cheering up. April showers also help April flowers! There were quite a few yellow Balsam Root in bloom already, and we saw about eight Mountain/Western Bluebirds flitting about the cherry trees...
PS Funny coincidence that I should blog about the Trans-Canada Highway being closed yesterday, when today I find that the M1 is to be closed for about a week in UK !!