Monday, July 25, 2016

Season of Completing

Like many people I have projects and tasks that get started or envisioned but take time to finish due to distractions or other priorities.

This past week and a few days I've turned my mind to trying to finish a few things. I didn't completely finish but I made good progress on: reading, knitting and paperwork.

This beautiful coffee table book below is a book about famous gardens in Paris. I read about several of the gardens though if I ever get to Paris I'm sure I'd be hard pressed to remember what I read. I'm so used to seeing English gardens (which I absolutely love) on television or in books and I wanted to broaden my horizons a bit by reading about French gardens.

Author: Zahid Zardar, Photographer: Marion Brenner

Here are just a very few photos. Of course they look much better in the beautiful book.

Monet's garden

Rooftop garden

While I was catching up on watching several recorded television shows I wanted to make use of my hands.  I decided to use up some small bits and pieces of yarn left over from my winter of knitting dishcloths by making a few "crazy" dishcloths.  I call them crazy because I just use up the yarn and join them together when I no longer have matching or complementary yarns to use in the completion of one cloth.  The cloths are only being used to wash my dishes not as gifts so it will only be me that sees them. I really enjoy using cotton knitted dishcloths a lot and go through a fair number of them each year. I also use them for cleaning around the house especially in the bathrooms.

In others indoor tasks, I've made ever so slight progress on sorting through paperwork. The 3 bags of paper that are in the photo have been sorted once (there is even more paper as I also have mom's paperwork to go through). They need much more sorting before I can decide which ones need keeping and which ones can be destroyed. This kind of work is my least favourite thing and I not only have my own paperwork to sort but I have my mom's too. I do procrastinate in this area just because there is so much of it that needs mental work and I have a multitude of things to distract me.

This photo captures about a third of what I have to sort and organize.
It's good to take a break from paperwork after a few hours so I went off to a festival and spent several hours of enjoyment there.

The festival was organized by people of African descent and I think (and hope) it will be the first of it's kind in Vancouver. It was a bit on the small side in terms of food offerings and stalls with arts and crafts or information but it was a good first start. There was a band stand with various entertainers throughout the time I was there and a handful of stalls selling African goods and food.

You can see the sign "Central" in the background. That is the train station where you catch the train to Seattle. It is also where you catch the Greyhound bus to just about anywhere or buses to Vancouver Island or Whistler where people love to go skiing.

The park in front of the train station is called Thornton Park. The organizers of the African festival selected this venue because it is very close to where the first blacks settled in Vancouver. 

Kayode Fatoba, the artistic director of the festival had this to say about Thornton Park and surrounding area in a 
"Hogan's Alley was sort of  the first settlement of African Americans who came during the gold rush" 
That alley is the unofficial name for Park Lane, a T shaped block that ran from Main and Jackson Street in between Prior and Union Streets.

 In some of their publicity the festival organizers stated their vision:

The goal of the platform for this year is to establish itself, while using the input gained to build on subsequent years. Culture and Art festivals are an amazing way to form strong bridges of which the team will look towards showcasing public art, installations, modern and traditional based showcases, night markets, crafts fair and musical performances. With a focus on rejuvenating the spirit of Hogan's Alley, this platform will work with a wide range of city groups, main street businesses, and at large Vancouver organizations to bring awareness to Vancouver’s prominent and growing African community!

These women must sit for hours and hours to have their hair done like this.

Headline singer from Nigeria. Too bad most of the crowd had gone home by then.

Musicians listening to other musicians.

Booth with goods from Ghana in foreground, other counties in background

I love how this man is listening so intently to the elderly woman.
I like this red print dress. Very pretty on the dark skin.
This seller came all the way from Edmonton, Alberta

This young lady, Desiree Dawson won an award for talent. She is an awesome vocalist.

I spoke to the vendor of this booth who has these sandals beaded by the Maasii women in Kenya.
These sandals were $45. Canadian a pair. Not bad when you consider the extremely high cost of postage that must be paid to ship things to Kenya and back.

 For my dinner I had injera with beef sauce and some kind of vegetarian sauce (I think yellow peas) and some cabbage and carrots along with a bit of yogurt. I have had similar dishes and I like it very much but I do not like the injera once the hot food has made it soggy. I prefer the "dry" injera around the edges.

Here is me relaxing in my zebra print maxi dress.

Shortly after I took the photo of myself, I met some people from Morocco and Ethiopia. It was fun meeting them and they were very interesting. The young woman I started talking to first was Moroccan and she was speaking Hebrew with an Ethiopian woman.
It turns out they both met in Israel which was also fascinating. I spent a very enjoyable time talking to them, and the Moroccan woman's father who immigrated to Canada in 1968 and her boyfriend who is Canadian but has travelled to Kenya, Uganda and Tanzania and spent time doing some humanitarian work there.

All in all I enjoyed the festival.
I look forward to seeing it again in years to come.
 I also love the accessible location and think it is a prime location to attract a larger crowd once more people become aware of it.

Linking up with Our World Tuesday.


Phil Slade said...

I've been to lots of African markets in Africa itself as well as the Mediterranean and The Canaries. The are always colourful, fun and happy events.

Joe Todd said...

Great post.. I love festivals. Hope to get
to your part of the world someday soon.
Stay cool

carol l mckenna said...

Well I must say you had a very productive, creative and fun week ~ love the festival time ~ Great post and photos ~

Wishing you a Happy Week ~ ^_^

Red said...

These festivals are eye opening and people can learn things when they go.

Pietro Brosio said...

Very nice post. Great shots of the Festival.

Birgitta said...

Great post and photos!

Reader Wil said...

What a colourful, beautiful event! You must certainly have been enjoying yourself.
You love English country gardens, so do I . In 2007 I was in England on a tour along the most famous gardens and we got an opportunity to see many great manor houses as well. The coffee was excellent!!

Melanie said...

What an interesting festival! Thank you for sharing your photos.

Joanne Noragon said...

A fabulous festival; I would have enjoyed it. I have begun knitting again, after an hiatus of three or four years. I just turned the heel of a second pair of socks. But, my hands are complaining.

Rajesh said...

That coffee book table is interesting.

Lady Fi said...

I like your dress!

jabbott said...

Wow I would have brought everything I love the patchwork bags and the jewellery!!

affectioknit said...

What a nice festival!

~Have a lovely day!

Jeanie said...

You've been busy! And productive too! The festival sounds wonderful and I admire your sorting through the paperwork. I really need to get a shredder. The book looks gorgeous. Might have to check that one out!

Jo said...

Hello Penny, I realized today that I don't see your blog on my dashboard and am now making a special effort every few days to check if you have a post! I love the sandals. I used to buy them in Kenya. Blessings Jo

ak_ut said...

so you've been busy. it's not much fun looking through all this papers but a good feeling when it's done ;-) in germany we have also those african festivals, and they look like yours :-) i wish you happy warm and sunny summer days!

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