Monday, January 28, 2013

A not-so-nice surprise

When I looked out my office window yesterday afternoon, this was the sight that greeted me.

Where this chop-job now lies rotting stood three magnificent trees -- a Western hemlock, a Douglas fir and the tree considered sacred by many First Nations peoples, a Sitka spruce. There's a glimpse of their thick branches on a post from earlier this month, when the digger was creating the hole for the new home's foundation.

This happened Saturday afternoon, when both of us were away for an overnight in the city.

Clearly, there's nothing that can be done now.

I'd sure like to be able to fly over the fence to count the rings in that biggest stump. That's about the only honour I can think of that might bring some small honour to this mess.

Monday, January 21, 2013

Tonight's the night

... when the Township of Langley's Council will meet again to discuss the future of the McLellan Forest, also known as the Glen Valley parkland.

This is the forest that may still be sold to developers for proposed 'estate' homes, even though the provincial government has declared it to be of key ecological importance and defined it as an area that should be preserved.

The deal the Council offered Langley citizens earlier this fall was this: Raise $3 million in two months' time and we'll sell it to you so you can keep it as a park.

If you're scratching your head over how Council might be trying to sell public land to a group comprised of the public... you're not alone.

While the Council's goal is understandable -- they want to offset costs of a proposed rec centre -- they still don't seem to 'get' the fact that the plot of land in question is irreplaceable.

I'm hoping that the broad publicity garnered for this little tract of special forest has convinced Council members to find another parcel of land that could generate the income they're looking for.

Tonight, we shall see. Fingers crossed.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Snow day play time

Yesterday surprised me with the arrival of snow, something we've not seen much of this winter -- a situation I must admit is pretty much fine with me.

Still, because I didn't have to go out in it, I didn't. I stayed in and did more prep towards the workshop I'll be leading at month's end.

I like to use Magnetic Poetry as a start-up exercise. Its limited vocabulary usually stymies people just enough without making them crazy with frustration. Because I'd recently found some 'extra' pieces, I resolved to divide them up and add them to the various bags I've collected.

To be fair, this means dividing them so no one gets stuck with a bag limited to the, an and for. In other words, this mean I sort the sets into categories: articles, adjectives, prepositions, etc.

It gets tricky with words that can work as more than one part of speech. Free. Is that an adjective or a verb? Spell. Is that a noun or a verb? Fly. Adjective, verb, noun? So, the sorting can get pretty complicated.

Still, it's the sort of play (another of those words -- noun, verb??) I enjoy. Especially on a day when it feels sooo much better to stay inside, while a pot of soup cooks itself slowly on the stove. Almost as much fun as those endless coloured buttons I used to love sorting, the ones from my gramma's button jar.

Tuesday, January 08, 2013

Not quite Jurassic Park

Still, it kind of looks that way. A new house is going up next door, pretty much right outside the window of my office.

Those giant bite-dump machines always look like dinosaurs to me. And truly, the bumping and thumping (especially when the digger seemed to be head-butting the back end of a dump truck yesterday) sounds like a battle of the beasts.

At least I'm enjoying the light while it's still there. Three storeys, coming soon. Change. How resistant I can be to it!