Last Friday in July

This past Saturday I attended the 4th Annual African Descent Festival. 



The big name entertainer for the first evening was Ezra Kwizera.  Currently he lives in Vancouver but grew up as a refugee in Uganda before returning to his home country Rwanda after the 1994 genocide. 

His music is raw and powerful.  
I enjoy his soulful sounds which are born out of tragedy.



I've attended this festival for 3 years now and each year I can see it get more organized and grow in attendance.
I wasn't there on day 2 but the crowed was about 4x what it was on Saturday as people came out in large numbers to see the Ugandan sensation, Eddie Kenzo. I am not familiar with his music but I know he is very popular.

At the festival there is a combination of vendors selling their goods, stalls with information to raise awareness and food. This year I was happy to see the Nigerians have joined in selling their foods and that they had a very popular booth.






The lady with the white t-shirt holding a girl's hand is the awesome Jabulile Dladla who leads the group Bouna Vedere.  Jabulile is a wonderful artist and I was fortunate to catch her act last year. Sadly I missed it this year.  Jabulile used to be a  member of the world renowned Soweto Gospel Choir of South Africa and came to beautiful BC  some years ago. She is an indie musician now.



  Usually I go to the festival alone and often chat with new people. This year some friends joined me and they had a lot of fun.  We ran into others at the festival that we know.


Other news

I finished the booked entitled The Tuscan Child since my last post. I thoroughly enjoyed the book. In case you are interested you can learn more about the book by clicking here.  Currently I am reading Too Close to the Sun:  The Audacious Life and Times of Denys Finch Hatton.  The book is about the life and times of Denys Finch Hatton, someone whom I first came to know of as the lover of Karen Blixen when they both lived in Kenya. If you have seen the movie, Out of Africa you will know who I am talking about.  While I am keenly interested in learning more about Finch Hatton I am not quite enjoying the author's style of writing. As a result I have to work a little (a lot) harder at getting into it. It might just be that I'm very busy right now.



I started the latest book in the midst of going to the festival, attending a bridal shower (I didn't take photos to share) and dealing with my dryer repair (the steam function seems to be working now) as well at going to see the movie RBG.  The movie documents the life and times of Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Associate Justice of the US Supreme Court Bench since August 1993. It was a very nice documentary about this exceptional woman who helped chart the legal strategy for the achievement of women's equality in North America.

I finally managed to capture some different birds on the patio but it wasn't easy. The birds fly off very quickly as soon as there is movement or they hear a sound. I enticed them with fresh water in the bird bath.  I then  had to  position the bird bath closer to my open patio door then sit quietly and wait for them to appear while taking care not to make any sudden movements while they appeared.  My strategy was only partially successfully as they were gone in seconds and it takes longer for my camera to be ready since the zoom function appears to be sticking.  I was still delighted to get some photos. Now I need some help with bird identification. If anyone knows what kind of birds these are kindly let me know. By the way, this week is the first time I've ever seen these birds on my patio.




I end this post with a view of today's sky.
It is very hot here right now and has been for some time. It is expected to continue for the foreseeable future.
To cope I'm drastically limiting my errands and appointments so I don't have to go out in the blazing sun.
Indoors I have my fans going and I'm drinking plenty of fluids.  At night after the sun goes down I might go out and buy a bowl of gelato or ice cream or I make sure I have some fruit popsicles in the freezer.

I've been hearing that there are heat waves in parts of Europe, in parts of the USA and in Japan where many people have died.  Meanwhile my friends in Nairobi have been cold with temperatures lower than usual I think for this time of year.
I hope you are keeping cool enough and hydrated if you are suffering from heat.
Of course, the life in Kenya is very hard so I pray for the people for many different needs.


 That's it for today.
I hope you will come back and visit me again some time.

Joining in this week with



and

Prayers

Thoughts and prayers for the victims and loved ones of the horrific act of gun violence in Toronto.


I was moved by the Torontonians who showed love and compassion to the injured and dying, ensuring they were not alone in their final breaths. 



Let those of us left behind never cease to treat others with kindness, compassion and love.
We never know what tomorrow brings.

#RIP to those that have gone ahead.
May their families and loved ones be comforted in their grief.


♥♥♥

A Little of This and That

Hi friends and fellow bloggers,

This is just a brief update as I'm not yet back to regular blogging.

We've been having a mini heat wave here so my on-going task is to stay cool.

I had unexpected oral surgery a few days ago and am now in the process of healing. In a few weeks I'll get the stitches out. I hope just in time for my delayed hygiene appointment. As always it's been a process of dealing with insurance pre-approvals and claims as well as dentist schedules. So far so good but it keeps one busy.  The surgery itself went well but the dentist really worked hard and I worried I would feel the pain later. I didn't. So that is a good thing. Next step will be a crown but that will have to wait until 2019. In the meantime I'll get some other temporary work done to preserve the tooth.

Some of you remember I purchased a new washer-dryer just over a month ago. Well a few weeks later my new dryer had a malfunction with the steam function.  So I've been dealing with the repairman and all that entails. He had to order a part and it's finally come in. Now I have to schedule time for him to come and fix the machine. I hope it will work properly now.  The worst part of all this is having to haul everything out of the laundry closet and then return it all after each look at the connections because of course I looked at everything too before the repairman came. The good news is that the washer and dryer work just fine except for the steam function.

I've been keeping busy with various other appointments for things I seldom do (infrared sauna, body massages, foot reflexology). It's all in a bid to help me feel better in addition to trying to eat right and do a bit of exercise. Every little bit helps but when the weather is too hot mostly everything is a challenge.

My reading goal for 2018 has been surpassed. I had a goal of reading 35 or 36 books and I've now completed 37 books. My goal has been modestly increased to 42.  I may have to increase that again because I've got several books on the go that will push me over that number soon.

I'm about to start reading this book




I'm preparing for my niece to visit me in a few weeks so I've got a number of things to do around the house. I ordered a very long curtain rod and when it arrived I put it up. It was barely long enough when I put it up (I knew that when I ordered it but it was the longest one I could find). After a day the rod and curtains started to sag and I had to take it all down. Sadly my efforts were all for nothing. I managed to locate one more rod which is much longer. I'll see if I can return the first one and order the next. I want to get this task done before the Fall. I've also ordered some "snakes" to put at the bottom of the windows and doors.  Together with the curtains it should really help keep the draft out this Winter.



My garden has been struggling this summer, especially the vegetables which are currently all looking stunted. But thankfully the flowers in containers have been doing well. I hope they last through the end of summer. Here is one photo during a cooler day when rain was expected. Our daily temperatures this summer have been much higher than the norm but thankfully there have been cooler days in between.




I've got some fun things planned this weekend. I'm attending a festival on Saturday and I'm going to a bridal shower on Sunday. In between I've got appointments so I'll be keeping busy. I also want to try and see a few movies:  RBG (probably its last showing on Monday night) and Christopher Robin which will be released in early August.

Photo taken last week while at bus stop. See the large cruise ship docked downtown.

The following photos were taken earlier in the month on a day when weather turned from hot to rain.




 

These final photos were taken at a plant nursery. 
I was happy to spot a lady bug crawling on some branches.
Sadly my camera phone couldn't get a good close up.





Even though I'm not back to regular blogging I've been managing to visit some of your blogs and hope to continue doing that over the next few weeks. Until then, take care and enjoy your summer.

Joining in with



and

Skywatch

This is my input to Skywatch Friday, Friday Foto Friends and Nature Notes this week. 
These photos were taken on June 26th with my phone camera.
I was out running errands when I came across this sight in the sky.  I was intrigued with the formation of clouds.
At first I thought it was chem-trails but later thought it it might be different clouds like I had never seen before. At least I've never seen them forming into a V shape before.
I'm really not sure what these were in the sky.



In the photo below the domed building is of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church.  On Friday night's the church hosts a traditional meal of perogies and sausages or you can purchase a bag of perogies from the church and boil and fry them up yourself. I haven't been to a dinner there for many years already. How times flies!
 
 


Since I was out late running errands I stopped to have a light meal. I decided on a Seafood Udon Noodle soup (with fish, calamari, fish balls, noodles and vegetables) and a BC Cone  stuffed with rice, vegetables and Pacific Wild Salmon.


It was all yummy!

I hope you've been enjoying your week.
It's been a catch up week for me. 
I've been very busy and this month I am trying to streamline my activities. 
I have a few events I have to attend but also need to catch up on some business stuff so I'm not sure how often I'll be blogging over the summer.
I hope to at least visit you now and then.

Blessed by the Watoto Choir


On Friday I was blessed to attend the one and only concert of the Watoto Children's Choir performed in Vancouver, British Columbia.  I've heard of this Ugandan choir for many years and have seen them on television but never had the opportunity to go and hear them live.  This year's concert was held  at the Vancouver Chinese Pentecostal Church in East Vancouver. Pastor Ivan Chu gave a few brief introductory and welcome remarks before turning the stage over for the evening.


This young man and his wife (not in photo) lead the contingent of the Watoto Children's Choir that travels throughout Canada for six (6) months each year. His wife conducts the choir. Together they have been travelling with the choir for the past 4 years.


the children give a very high energy performance.  I love the expressions on their  faces. When they are not dancing, speaking and singing, they are very serious about the message of the gospel.  They are also very young. The girl in the front with black suspenders is only 7 years old. I believe the eldest child is 12. There are also 11 adults who travel with the children, some who are playing the instruments, some who are looking after sound and so on.













The young girl in the red dress is living with her mom and travels with the Children's Choir. Her family is the recipient of help from something new the Watoto Ministries is doing, expanding their help and support to single mothers.  This girl's mother makes jewellery which is then sold by the choir when they tour.  This is how the mother can support her family. 


I was impressed by the heart of worship of these children.


I was moved by the lady in the black print top (red bow in her hair). Her mother was captured twice by Ugandan rebels. During the 2nd capture her  mother was murdered and she became an orphan. Watoto Children's Home gave her refuge and she now travels with the choir. There are many equally touching stories.





 


I was very moved by the children's concert and by the heart of love the adults seem to have. I know they were very tired as they have been touring for the past 6 months. They will be finished their touring this week and then have a break before returning home to Kampala.

I managed to make a video of their opening song "Signs & Wonders" which is also the name of their choir's latest recording and 2018 Tour. I hope you enjoy. 




If you would like to learn more about the Watoto Ministries, please click here.

Thank you for visiting. 

I leave you with a few shots of the sky on Monday about 5:30 a.m.






I'm joining in today with 

Thanksgiving 2019

Hi friends, It's Thanksgiving weekend here in Canada so I'm popping in to wish my Canadian readers a wonderful and Happy Thanksgiv...