assignment: describe british columbia

British Columbia
British Columbia is a large Canadian province with varied topography. Rivers and mountains tattoo the surface of the region, providing for a diverse collection of wildlife and natural species. Most communities are concentrated along the lower coast, littering the US and Albertan borders, connected by highways and names as varied as their inhabitants (cities from Hope to Invermere).

Lake Ohara at Dusk, Yoho National Park, British Columbia, Canada

British Columbia is beautiful.

BC stadium 2008

BC: spooning with

the océan pacifique and

the united states of us.

(a haiku).

I am an animal.

“I’d rather be a cannibal baby, animals like me don’t talk anyway.”

– Panic! At The Disco, The Calendar

Animals are everywhere. We are all animals.

I had an interesting conversation about how people are, in fact, animals. We have instincts and such a big part of life is learning to control them and exist with one another in a respectful and compassionate way. We are evolving like every other species. We like to think we are separate from the other creates on this earth but we have so much in common, how can you deny it?

I guess that’s part of the reason I am vegan. I have learned to live differently, I do not need to eat my brothers and sisters. We are one family. BE LOVE.

“Here we go again
We’re sick like animals
We play pretend
You’re just a cannibal
And I’m afraid I wont get out alive
No I won’t sleep tonight”

– Neon Trees, Animal

A Christmas Vision

By Joe Christensen

So for a while i’ve been pondering this vision i’ve been having. Picture this. It is Christmas but instead of being inside around a dead tree you are outside (in a forest? a SuperForest?) and you sit around the tree (maybe in it?) exchanging handmade gifts and sharing each other’s company. You have decorated the tree with flowers perhaps? I feel like someone is tapping the sleigh bells. There is no wasted wrapping or mess, just love and nature.

Can you see it?

The Grand BC Adventure Part IV

Before we left Glade I made Steve and Randy take me to their backyard to see their massive compost operation and their backyard garden setup.

Steve compared making compost to baking a cake. His strategy is to put a layer of hay, a layer of grass clipping or leaves or yard waste and a layer of food waste (if I recall correctly). The hay helps to create heat which helps the food waste to break down. He also recommended peeing on your compost. Pee has nitrogen which speeds decomposition and helps to create heat. They keep a thermometer in the compost to see if it is getting hot enough.

They have several bins going and once the compost is done they move it around into a bin for compost which is ready to go into the garden. They also showed me some of their growing techniques.

These tomato plants grow upwards on the strings which guide them.

I love Steve and Randy, they are beautiful people living a beautiful life.

On the drive back a lightening storm started. It was so amazing to be surrounded by the awesome power of nature. We passed two mountain deer (slightly different than the “city deer” in Grand Forks hehe).

The Grand BC Adventure Part III

The next day of our trip I thought I was sleeping in but I actual woke up feeling pretty rested at 9:30. After lunch we set out to visit my Dad’s friends Steve and Randy. They live in Glade, which is about 90 minutes away from Grand Forks. We had to take a ferry over to get to it. They were so welcoming and very accommodating. When we first got there we didn’t see them and they didn’t answer the door so we walked around back and I saw this view…

SO AMAZING! I was like wow, I never want to leave! For dinner we made a salad with stuff from the backyard that I got to help pick, so amazing! We got to talking about this nearby town Nelson that has lots of vegan cafes and whatnot. Randy showed me this book about Nelson and it had this beautiful poem in it.

My Symphony

To live content with small means.

To seek elegance rather than luxury,

and refinement rather than fashion.

To be worthy not respectable,

and wealthy not rich.

To study hard, think quietly, talk gently,

act frankly, to listen to stars, birds, babes,

and sages with open heart, to bear all cheerfully,

do all bravely, await occasions, hurry never.

In a word, to let the spiritual,

unbidden and unconscious,

grow up through the common.

This is to be my symphony.

– by William Ellery Channing

For dinner everyone else (Steve, Randy, their neighbor who stopped by and my Dad) had some fancy glazed salmon but I had grilled pepper/green onion (MMMM) with dal and the salad I helped make. After we ate they took us to the local waterfall. The waterfall is where they get their drinking water from in Glade (it is non-chlorinated and non-fluorinated. I miss it already)

It was so nice to walk and be surrounded by nature. They were asking me about the music I listen to and I told them about Jason Mraz. He’s reaching even remote parts of the world now! hehe.

They were also telling me about how they met my Dad and how they tried to start this community called “Harmony Farmstead Co-operative”. Basically several families bought a piece of land and were going to live on it but then they had disagreements and it fell apart. It reminded me a bit of what SuperForest Jackson is trying to do right now at Zero One, but I think Zero One will be a major success!

The Grand BC Adventure Part II

When I finally got on the road with my Dad we started our trek to Grand Forks, BC. Right after we started driving down the freeway I saw a hitchhiker with a sign that said “HOPE” I was too slow to get a photo but it inspired me so much. A few hours later I realized he was referring to the town in BC called “Hope”… not the verb haha! It was still cool though.

I think we left around 1:00PM and arrived in Grand Forks at about 7:00PM. My Dad has a house that he rents out in town so we stayed in the basement suite (which is in progress). There was all this old furniture in there that I hadn’t seen in ages, funny where stuff ends up. Right when we drove up we saw a CITY DEER which was super cool. I really wanted to just get away from technology and be with nature for a while so the seeing the deer was such a nice welcome.

We ate and then made out way over to my Dad’s friend’s place. It was really cool to meet the type of people they hug you even if they just met you and make you feel loved just with their state of being. We went rafting down the river near the property. The moon was so bright and it was beautiful. Just us and the water.

To see more photos from the trip I have an album on facebook posted here.

My Lover

I have just officially started a deep relationship. Today is not the beginning however. For many years now I have been romanced with sunsets and sunrises. I enjoy sweet gifts of perfume and fragrance from the flowers and trees. The kisses of the wind and a soft embrace of a summer’s day have always been special to me. Each morning, evening, daytime and night time is another chance for us to be together and allow our love to grow. We are together under the cover of stars at night (which often align).

The love I recieve is so bountiful and filling. I only hope that the tiny things I do to repay and reciprocate this love I receive amount to even half of what I am given. I am so grateful to have all my needs satisfied. I have been given so many opportunities and they allow me to grow and learn each day. They feed, water, clothe and shelter me from the storm. I am humbled and awestruck by the beauty which surrounds me. It gives me butterflies, but in fields and gardens, not my stomach.

Some people call it the almighty, others call it mother nature. Some think it is magic. I feel that the universe is my lover. Honestly though, it is ever bigger than that. Our universe may be one of many. There is no word that I know which describes everything. All encompassing and inclusive, this entity I speak of has a deep place within my soul.

“All good gifts around us, are sent from heaven above…”

– ‘All Good Gifts’ from the musical Godspell