Spring at Last!

We made it!

Spring at last, it a long and brutal winter here in the Pacific North West. It was cold with lots of snow. Glad to see it melting away. I was thinking how much 2019 sucked for me, but 2020 is a close contender, and the year is only three months old. With the plague upon us, what my work colleagues call it, this had been a crappy spring so far.

Also with yesterday, being the spring equinox, this means the days are now longer than the nights. Good news, after the times change, which I hope our government will abolish soon.  because changing time sucks. To celibate  the day, I bought a lawn chair, to help soak up the Sun with. The last few days here have been awesome with the sunshine.

Living up here, practicing the social distancing due to the COVID-19. Unreal how this is affecting our daily routines, now. With a spars population here in the North, it is not hard to keep away from people in general–it is natural to keep away from others.

Glad that I have my job, and I am still able to work through all of this. So I have some income, which for some who are laid-off because of the virus- I feel for you. I have somewhat guaranteed employment through all of this. Less stress, as I hear that people are having troubles with the Government’s promise of Mortgage de-furls, I never rely on Government, as they are lairs and people at the top want to keep the free money-and not hand it down.

Needless to say, the warmer weather is upon us now. Maybe I’ll get a chance to go out with my camera, and shoot landscapes shots of spring. Happy Spring Everyone, and stay healthy.

Another Rant on Time

This Post is for Dan. My rant on the up coming time change, as North America switches the Clocks this coming weekend, and moving  them ahead one hour in the name of day light savings. If you read my blog from years ago, you will no doubt have come across, other passages on how much I hate the changing of time. Wishing I lived where they don’t change their clocks, but that is not possible for me at this time. I am not looking forward to this upcoming change.

This was created for the sole purpose of increasing productivity for workers back over a century ago when the light bubs had not yet been in full use. Well, guess what, we now have lights, electrics ones, where we can work 24 hours per day if we choose to. So why do we still practice this archaic changing of the clocks twice a year?

And why do have some jurisdictions that do not fall for this? While the majority people around the world still do?

The argument of changing the clocks is like talking to members of the Flat Earth Society. 

The Sum of all this changing, is the myth of commerce. There are presidents and Prim Ministers who believe that their poor lie tax payers will suffer if we stop changing the clocks, and if we have one country that is not going to do it, then that would bed for business. Sadly, this is just poor leadership, and misguided leading. There are greater powers than Tax Payers, they are called voters, assuming you live in a fair and democratic country. IF you live in the dictatorship, then you can vote with your money, or try and move.

The world is not perfect, and our days are not even. We still need “leap years” to fix these short coming. But there is nothing to fix regarding our day, and it’s hours. Most people do not know how modern day time keeping came to be, or why the noon time is where it is today. Hint:If you like trains, planes and automobiles then you are getting warm. High Noon or 12:00pm is 10 minutes late where I live when compared to the Sun’s position in the sky.

I do not want to spend a tonne of time on this, so I will leave it here. enjoy the time change. I hope it is the last one for Western Canada.

Happy Solstice Every One! Things Will Brighten Up Again.

The day of darkness, the night so long. On a positive note, an other side, after today, the days will become brighter longer and warmer too. The night time on Solstice day, is a special time of the year. In Canada, people are at their worst shopping, spending money they do not have. Retail businesses are tying to sell anything to everyone, always doing the hard sell. I feel sorry for them. And the night is so long.

Solstice is a truly natural phenomenon, there is no magic, of the Gods, that makes this work, it is the sole principal based on the fact that the Earth tilts on a 23.5 degree axes, giving us the seasons. In the medieval times, our Algerian forefathers, Used this day, to mark the time of the year that the days will grow longer, and the summer time will return. Astrophysics explains this nicely, weighing fact over fiction.

I see today as a marker too. A day to reset the calendar, and hope for a better newer season, than the one before it. I love how Christians cannot say the word Solstice, or ex knowledge its meaning, saying it is based on faults pagan beliefs. “Humm, wait a minute, hold on here. Science? “Numbers do not lie,” according to President, Trump, although here he could be referring to money.”

In my annual Solstice ritual, I took out my camera, and took some photos, in the twilight of the day. I like to do this, a challenge of sorts. Now that I live even farther up North, the days light period in even shorter than what I am used to. Then me the the girl friend, went to a concert. To listen to classical music. It was awesome. A perfect night for a perfect time. There was lots of fog, and mist during the night. It was totally dark at 4:00pm. So taking photos, today, is very limited. I got some during the shorten day.

I will be working the rest of the week. Yup, it appears that I will have no holidays this year, as everyone wants more money. Funny how the money Gods, have taken over. SO in the crossfire, my services are required at my work. I’m cool with that too, as the money keeps rolling in, and Prime Minister Trudeau get some Taxes too that he needs so badly.

So happy Solstice Every one! Things will brighten up again. I guarantee it.

Here are the Photos!

This shot was not taken today, I took this a week ago, when we had clear skys. This shows the Sun just making it over the hill behind my place. Making my day even Shorter, and cooler.

I did not have to wait long for it to get dark, for this shot, of my LED Lights along my driveway.

Inside, where it is nice and warm, my hallway floor.

My latch on the gate, going to my back yard on the Southside.

Northern Lights Over Terrace, BC

I am working with one good eye right now, and I have cranked the Font to its largest size, this is cumbersome. Anyway, last night we the free light show in our skies, over the Skeena Valley. They were brilliant, and put on a awesome show–The one thing in Canada the Federal Government Cannot screw up.

We took these around midnight in a place called Old Remo, just South of Terrace. Here the trees have been logged out, and one of the thing that you notice is that there are no wild life: no birds, sound, just nothing. I guess that is the way people like it around here.

The Auroras danced in the sky all night, we left around 1am, as we were getting tired, and the lights seemed to slow down when we left. the lights were bright enough that Suz., was able to capture them on her phone. What a perfect end to the last long weekend of the Summer.

We Made it: Summertime Season Has Started 2019!

It was a long six months of cold, and rain, plus the snow, but we have come full circle in time to reach this day, and the Skeena Valley is exploding with festivities and summer time life as the longest day of the year is upon us. The city of Terrace had a free breakfast/lunch, which was free. and today, we are heading out to the theatre for a free movie, also sponsored by the city of Terrace, BC. We are probably going to see (Men In Black 2019) as we are Si-Fi fans, instead of (Toy Story 4). So Happy Solstice, and all the goodness that goes with it.  The only down side to today is, that after today, the days get shorter again.

UPDATE:

This image, to me signify the start to the summer season, in Mm Humble Opinion, as this one, I took today at the Lake, just moments after a good down Pour of Rain, from a fast moving storm that reached the Lake and lasted only a few hours. This is Suz, conducting the clouds to move away from the lake and head over to Prince Rupert, and rain their. It worked, as she worked her magic, and conjured up the powers of nature and other mystical forces. You can see the clouds scattering away on the horizon in this shot over to Prince Rupert, BC.

OK, we were having some fun taking cool photos, but The day turned out awesome.

Yay, it is summer now, and let the party rip away for the next four months! We saw Men IN Black 2019, for free at the Tillicum Twin Theartre. It was awesome, and a bit of the Farmer’s Market before it closed for the day. Then we drove out to Shames Mountain, the Ski Hill, and took a bunch of photos. Then off to Kitimat, BC to see the Ocean. It was a packed day. We drove all over the place. We even went to the Art Galley in the Terrace Library, and seen some really awesome paintings. I have taken so many shots but have so little time to post.

First Full day of sping2019

Yes, I am back. I had some issues with my domain name renewal time, as the credit card information I gave them was incorrect. That is all fixed now, so I can once again blog. Plus there was lots of stress issues from my work, as that was dragging my home life down a bit. Everything is back to normal now, and even better, spring is here, as it is not winter. And I drove around the valley, taking photos, celebrating the equinox. as from now on the Days rule the Nights. so happy about that too, as we went through a really weird cold snap of Sunny yet cold weather for a bout five weeks.

I have been getting a lot of emails about where I have been lately. Rest assured that I am OK, and fine. I bought a new TV that is 4k, being that it appears that I might be staying in the compartment for a while longer than I want to in Thornhill, BC. House prices are still way out of reach for me for the moment. So, I’m just saving money for that rainy day when something affordable comes along.

spring started so fast around here that the Pussy willows are not out yet, but the trees are starting to turn. You have to look hard in the low area of the valley to see any remaining snow on the ground. Just a drive up on the bench and the snow is still 30cm deep there. But the air is warm and summer like. It feels so nice.

Motorcycles are out on the roads too. along with the girls wearing their short shorts (Daisy Dukes) and T-shirt. Not quite bikini weather yet for them, but we are close. The yoga pants are the norm around here, even the out of shape wear them. Women love them. The guys are still wearing their winter fashion, in the Sun.

I turned on my A/C today, for the first time this year. It still works. My car sat in the Sun the whole day, so it was really hot inside it. The joys of owning a black coloured car. It is an oven during the summer periods.

Happy fiirst full day of spring!

New Camera Lens: 420 to 800mm Telephoto.

New toy: a 420 to 800mm telephoto lens, for my Sony A77 Camera. And when you factor in the crop-sensor size, the lens becomes a 630 to 1200mm lens, just like that. It was bitterly cold, yet clear out, and as soon as I got the lens home from the Post Office, I just had to try it out. Our first stop was just down the Kalum highway, North of Terrace, where we pulled over to an open field, and I snapped a few shots of the surrounding mountains, while there was enough light. I took about ten shots before I got the focusing figured out on the lens, but once I got it, the results were unexpectedly great.

The very first thing I realized about using this lens is, you have to be very still with it. You need lots of light to shoot with it, as a handheld lens, or everything becomes blurry. The second issue was the focusing ring, it is very tight. You giggle around a lot while turning the ring, and loose the shot. Lastly, the locking ring had too many turns before it would lock the lens, and you needed that locking ring tight, or focusing was next to impossible. The camera has to be put into full Manual Mode, as the lens has no automatic features what so ever, meaning you have no auto anti-shake from the camera’s electronics. So, you are back to old school shooting with it.

A must, with this size lens, is a tripod. Once the light levels drop off, you need a tripod for clean, no shake, shots. This lens, you are between F8.3 to F16, at the fully extended rang. So your shutter speed become longer during darker times of the day. And as I found out, with lots of wind, you really need to weigh the tripod down to avoid camera shake, as this lens is super sensitive to movement. I tried taking some Moon shots out at the airport, and the wind was pushing the lens, so slightly, but it was enough to blur the shot becuase I was at less than 1/4 shutter speed. So, needless to say, I have no good Moon shots for this post. Perhaps tomorrow?

The lens did do very well at the minus nine Celsius mark, as it did not fog up. I could only shoot for five minutes in this weather, but the camera and lens held up the whole time I was outside, except for me–I was freezing.

Weird, I am Awake.

I just thought I had to share this becuase it is rare that my body is “awake” when I am starting the day at 5:00am. Last night I fell asleep around my usual time, about 9:30pm, and had no troubles diving into full on REM sleep. In fact, I do not even remember any of my dreams. But needless to say, when I awoke, the whole worlds seemed to be up with me.

Starting the day was awesome. There was no one else commuting at the same time. I saw one truck on the highway, and he was going East bound, in Thornhill. When I got into Terrace, BC, across the Skeena River Bridge, there where only the “Walkers,” or homeless people, walking the main street (Lakesle Avenue) on my way to fill my coffee mug with the Black Throat Charmer that is served at 5:00am in town.

Once loaded up with coffee, I haul butt to my work place, on the other side of town, in the area called South Terrace. There ahead of me, the freshly built Cell Tower, shining its bright red beacon, pulsating every second, lighting up the mist around it, and it seem to say, “you work here.” Yes, if you love radiation, over several  thousand Watts of it, then you will be at home here. And the work day started. With out a hitch, snag or hick-up.

Maybe I ate something that made the difference? Perhaps I got just right amount of sleep I needed? Maybe the alignment in Four Dimensional Space and Time was perfect, and caused a well deserved ripple, at a quantum level? Maybe, being over fifty years old, my brain does not care anymore, and all seems relative now. It all does not matter; I feel awesome. I wish somehow that this moment could be bottled up and stored for later days that suck. Oh, wait, they have that already.

We will see how far it takes me.

Mother Nature Would Not Let Us See it!

As Mother Nature’s shroud blanketed the sky above us, the Moon and her glory sank into the Earth’s shadow, and all we could do was to imagine what it is she looked like as her reflective light faded, then reappeared again. The night seemed to become thicker with clouds, and yet the air warmed, an odd combination for the North Coast of British Columbia this time of the year. The winter snow was melting in the Skeena Valley, and there was no rain falling from the sky. Yet, we were unable to whiteness the Lunar Eclipse, but for one 3 minute period, when the clouds parted for one brief moment during the first phase of the eclipse cycle.

So, the short story, we saw nothing of significance, but the pretty lights of Terrace, BC, from up on the Bench of Kalum View Drive. Sadly, as much as I wanted to photograph the Lunar Eclipse, all I got were clouds shots. But the day was not a total loss…

The trip to Lakelse Lake, in the early afternoon, was a nice departure from the usual Sunday drive into town. It had been at least three weeks since we were at the park last, and the first thing we noticed was amount of snow that had fallen there since. Only half the parking lot was cleared of snow, though. The lake did have a layer of ice on it, but nothing close to being safe to walk on it, though some had tied, when it was colder the week before. But it was the setting Sun that made the day. Oh, was the Southern sky awesome to watch over the lake, as the clouds moved in from over the horizon. It was warm out at the lake too, a mere 3C, though Suzette was not dawning her two-piece bikini just yet.

The second stop was Onion Lake. Because this lake is a little higher in altitude, it was a little more frozen over, but not enough that I would try to walk on it. There sure was a lot more snow at the summit than there was in the low lands. Many vehicles get stuck on this stretch of the highway during the winter months.

The drive home was fun too. Yes, I am being sarcastic. Drivers on the Kitimat Highway love to speed, or have that “me first,” attitude while driving on it. And part of the speeding fun, is to pass other motorist going up hills, while you are doing the speed limit. My poor car did get sprayed with small rocks as the SUVs sped by me; but all was good, there was no damage.

Dinner at my home: Pork-Chops with veggies and salad. All of this smothered with Cream of Mushroom Soup. I got a passing grade! Then we watched a movie on Netflix, “IO,” 2019. and then left to seek out a view of the Lunar Eclipse. None of us saw the Lunar Eclipse, except for that very brief moment on the hill over looking Terrace.

The Yearning of the Sun

Actually, when I saw the sunrise last week, it felt as if I saw an old friend again, the Sun, but really, the yearning was for the return of summer. Yes, I had that feeling of needing the good old days of summer back, as I saw the Sun rise. Here in the Skeena Valley, you have the winter position of the Sun, which is just 25 degrees above the horizon, coupled with the mountains that circle around us. This leaves us with a very short day period during the fall and winter months. Seeing the Sun sink below the horizon, as the Earth spins, (this happens around 4:30pm in the afternoon), puts the damper on daily life, when you get home from your work day.

The above image is Miss Egghead enjoying the Sun rise in the mythical Cube Land. The image is a render done in Blender 2.8 Beta.

It is normal to have weeks with overcast sky, and days with rain in the valley. During the colder months, snow is the daily routine, sprinkled with ice, as the sky is cloud filled, with moments of clearing, allowing the Sun sneak through. But it is the darkness that creeps in, making the night life some eighteen hours long, leaving some people with the “Winter Blues.” However, with seeking moments like this day, where the Sun shines, getting out and absorbing its rays, is a natural rite.

Also, one more point: This has been an unusually warm winter, so far. We have missed the full onslaught of the Arctic Vortex, but nonetheless, it is winter. The Earth spins it usual way, and nothing can be done about that. However, there is, with out any doubt, less snow, than normal. The Skeena River is still way below its usual level, and the Coastal Mountains do not look that snow packed, as compared to last year. These are just my opinions, not scientific facts. Though, I have read some articles in the media agreeing with me.

May we see more Sun, and less clouds in the coming weeks, without causing drought conditions like last year.