Gratitude 


I was on my way to another doctor’s appointment last week regarding this strange tingling in my face, and feeling quite low. But it was a foggy morning, and driving out past the fields, I noticed the mist rising from the furrows. It was so breathtaking and magical, I had a moment of deep gratitude that brought tears to my eyes.

Because I’m going through this, I was able to see that sight.

Because my body is doing something weird and scary, instead of being parked in front of my computer screen at work, I was driving out in the world.

I hope we figure this out soon. But I am grateful that I was able to see the mist rise from the fields.

Advertisements

And then…

While I didn’t have a great day today either, being chased home by my headache and tingling, my walk to work was pretty nice.


Some little Scilla on someone’s front lawn (I think).


Silly wonderful magnolia is blooming! (Photo adjusted to bring out the colours because we were in shadow and looking towards a bright sky)


A slightly more photoshopped one to make the colours pop!

(Something sweet to end the day – sorry for the downer post this morning)

The trail less travelled

We restarted our meeting punctually and slogged through the initial part very slowly. We hadn’t made much headway through our document before we stopped for a quick coffee break. We had a lot of work to do and we were all worried that the little outing we were planning after our quick lunch might eat into our productive time.

However we motivated ourselves and got through more of the agenda and our document before lunch. But still, the rest of the document seemed insurmountable and I considered staying back from our walk to help push our work forward. We had realized that many of us were supposed to miss the last scheduled hours of work this morning, because we all had flights to the rest of the world. So we really needed to finish our work by 7:30pm, since that was when our fancier group dinner had been arranged.

But even our co-chairs decided to go for the walk so I joined them. I walked with the forward, faster group, since my colleague and I had explored this route the day before.

  
And we kept following the path along the river. It was a gorgeous day, and we all were wondering at the great warm weather. I found a neat beetle on the path, if they needed any more evidence that I was (am?) a field biologist.

  
He has purple feet!

And then I found a little juvenile frog, who looked like a wood frog to me.

  
I had to zoom in to the maximum to get a halfway decent picture because he was so tiny and he kept running away from the crazy lady on the ground making weird happy sounds at him.

Then we were at our destination – a replica of the Nydam boat. One of the local group members told us about the discovery, all the broken weapons inside the boat, and their theory about why. Apparently the Nydam holy lake contained 5 captures warships, sunk into the lake as an offering to Odin, and the broken collected weapons from those 5 warships as well.

  
The ship in the shelter – they were re-sealing the floor wih tar. It smelled very piney.

  
Inside the boat – there was room enough for 30 oarsmen and 20 additional warriors. They usually fill the bottom of the boat with about 2 tonnes of rocks for ballast but they don’t know if the Angles (it was an Angle/German warship) would have done that. But otherwise the ship isn’t super stable.

  
The interpreter said that they had looked everywhere to find an appropriate tree for the keel beam – it had to be very large and an oak. They finally found one in the forest  nearby the lake and they were able to convince the landowner/farmer to allow them to harvest it for the boat rebuilding.

Because of the local history, the Nydam boat is in a German museum to the south, since they had been a part of Germany for about 60 years. So the landowner/farmer was quite happy to contribute to the rebuilding of their boat. The local group is also continuing to archaeologically excavate the holy lake site (now a field because the lake was filled with detritus over the years).

We headed back to our meeting and were very productive for the rest of the day. I credit the fresh air. We even finished earlier than we anticipated. Then we had some time before our fancy dinner.

  
The dining room of  the manor house.

  
The sitting room we had found in our explorations the night before.

  
The library with many Danish books.

It was a lovely meal and a good time to connect with different colleagues.

Now I’m on my way back to North America. I’ll blog about that tomorrow. :)

  
Danish outlets look so happy/cute.

  
Roses still blooming outside of our meeting place.

Snowshoeing

This weekend, I went for a snowshoe hike with a couple of friends. I got up early (for me these weekend days) and made some “to-be-grilled” cheese sandwiches. Then I was saddened by my ill fitting snow pants, but I persevered.

20140217-224439.jpg
Tracks in the snow.

We drove up to a more northerly trail in Gatineau Park. It was quite crisp and clear. The sky was blue with a depth to it. The snow glittered like crushed diamonds. A bare dead tree marked the entry to the main trail we were following. Maybe next time we could try the other route.

20140217-225252.jpg
Tree at the crossroad.

20140217-225420.jpg
Vista across a frozen lake.

We had a lovely picnic at the first cabin we found. The sandwiches grilled perfectly on the top of the wood stove, wrapped in tinfoil. My friend even suggested we add sliced green olives to them, which was a really interesting addition I’d never thought of before. It was really tasty. J brought a thermos of coffee, fresh veggies and olives. N brought trail mix and delicious brownies. We sat and chatted in the cabin, trying to dry out a bit at the wood stove.

I had to take my snowshoes off early on the way back, which made certain parts of the hike more slippery and challenging, but the way the snowshoes were forcing me to walk was beginning to chew at the skin on my heel. The trail was pretty packed down, thankfully. We stopped to chat more intensely at one point (so we could hear each other better over the squeak-crunch of the snow) and to let a speedy pair go by, and I made the mistake of backing a bit too far off the trail and sinking into the soft snow up to my knee. Yeah, the snow was deep. This is why snowshoes are useful and necessary.

20140217-230358.jpg
Snow covered swamp. We knew it was a swamp because it smelled like a swamp. Even in winter.

We didn’t kill ourselves rushing back and had lots of great conversation. It was a really lovely hike.

20140217-230657.jpg
The vista view coming back towards the beginning of the trail.

I just have to say, snowshoeing is not like hiking nor is it like running. Whole other parts of your legs are working. At one point, I could feel my hip flexors saying, “Hiiiiiii! We’re working haaaaaard!” Oy… But it was a great day with the ladies.

Pretty walk

I promise I’ll do a real post soon – I’m just trying to get my yoga exam done most nights (on the last question!). Busy busy!

But I took a nice, crisp autumn walk at noon today with a couple of colleagues. Here are a few pictures.

20131023-235554.jpg
I believe this is a portion of the Rideau River, if my geography is correct.

20131023-235700.jpg
Parliament Hill on the horizon.

20131023-235738.jpg
A “little” bridge back to the campus we visited today for our workshop.

What a whirlwind

Wow, one if those long weekends that seems really long and yet flies by.

It all started on Friday (as weekends often do) with our friends’ wedding. Which was lovely and fun.

20131014-221920.jpg
The arbour where it took place.

Then Saturday was a lot of running around and then cooking in anticipation of Thanksgiving dinners on Sunday and Monday. Because if that, my boyfriend and I went to my favourite pub, The Manx Pub, for dinner that night. I have to say, after so much yoga all week during training, I felt strong, aligned and like I was floating all Saturday. Unlike Friday night when my whole body hurt and dancing was less fun.

Sunday was Thanksgiving chez Mom’s. It was lovely, and we were hugely full. We sat in the backyard and were pecked at by mosquitoes, which is so wrong for October.

Today, we went for a walk in Heart’s Desire forest…

20131014-222623.jpg
On our way in…

20131014-222726.jpg
On our way out. Pretty.

Then we went to my boyfriend’s brother and sister-in-law’s place for dinner with his family. It was a lovely time as well.

I can’t believe it’s back to work tomorrow. What an intense week of yoga and then busy-ness. The busy will continue, however, because I have to do a report on the Bhagavad Gita book I’m reading and I have to do my take home exam. Plus starting my new temporary job for real. My first week was lacklustre because I fell ill. Bah.

Breathe. Equal ratio in and out, for balance. ;)