Archive for the 'Photos' Category

11 Sep 2016

Posted by under Dave's Thoughts,Photos

New Motorbike

New Motorbike

… for a day.

It’s not like I can even afford to ride my own bike this year with almost a year of unemployment. However, this bike, which belongs to my friend Mark, was needing a ride home. It had been in the shop for quite a few weeks getting some clutch work done and when it was ready, Mark asked if I would be willing to ride it up to Sundre for him.

I picked it up on Friday, then yesterday I rode up in the morning to drop it off. I took some back roads that I had never traveled on previously – some nice scenic secondaries up through Water Valley. In a slightly disappointing turn of events, almost all of the roads were paved, so I only managed to try out a little bit of gravel. On the other hand, I learned about some nice routes for next year’s riding.

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13 Jun 2016

Posted by under Dave's Thoughts,Photos

Walking Weekly

Or is that weakly?

Mid-May we decided that it would be a good idea to join an urban walking club and see parts of the city that we weren’t familiar with and get a little bit of fresh air and exercise. Besides moping about the house engaging in the never-ending job search is wearing. A regular Tuesday morning outing sounded pretty enticing.

Brenda went on the first walk two weeks ago without me, as I had a phone interview. It was convenient, starting in Elbow Park not far from our place, and went through familiar areas – Britannia and over to Heritage Park. Turned out to be about 8km (plus another 1.5 to get to the meeting point) and to add insult to (near) injury all of the other participants (who are retired by choice, unlike us…) seem to be able to keep up a furious pace rather effortlessly.

Last week we were both occupied (this time Brenda had an interview) and so we missed the walk along the Bow River and through Prince’s Island. This week, though, we were both available and met up with the group in the Bowness area near the north end of Home Road. From there we did a 8.5 km walk along the escarpment on the east side of the Bow all the way up to Silver Springs. Not the community (well, that too), but the actual springs for which the community was named. I never even knew that the springs existed. It was a pretty fine day – warm with a clear sky and, having been doing a little bit of extra walking (and some stretching) we managed to keep up just fine.

Next week the plan is a walk in Fish Creek Park. We have been practicing though, with a couple of longer walks around the neighbourhood this weekend. Hopefully we won’t be walking weakly for too much longer!

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30 Dec 2015

Posted by under Dave's Thoughts,Family,Photos

Merry Christmas!!

Merry Christmas!!

Christmas day has come and gone; the new year is just around the corner. It seems that this year has just flown by! The week leading up to Christmas Day was full of family activity; we hosted Brenda’s two brothers and their families on the 23rd and had twenty-one cousins, aunts and uncles over for dinner to celebrate Barry’s birthday and it wasn’t even a major milestone (unless you are counting in hexadecimal, then it’s 40). Barry and Breana and their 6 kids headed home on Christmas eve (after an all-cousins laser tag outing), then on Christmas Day we gathered with my side of the family at my Mom and Dad’s on Christmas Day.
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16 Nov 2015

Posted by under Dave's Thoughts,Family,Photos

November on the Prairies

Sounds bleak, doesn’t it? November can often be blustery and grey – flurries of ice pellets rattling the windows as Old Man Winter stretches and yawns after a long summer’s slumber. This November has seen some of that, but we have also had some fine clear days with blue skies in abundance. Certainly the landscape’s palette has had the yellows, reds and fading greens removed in favour of browns and muted gold, but in the thin, bright sunshine there is still plenty to admire.

Brenda and I spent three days this past week working in the country around Gull Lake, Lacombe and Ponoka. We were doing antenna upgrades for the rural customers of a wireless internet service provider. I wouldn’t say that it was glamorous work, but since my contract in the energy industry wasn’t renewed at the end of September, it helps to cover the mortgage. Brenda had started in on this project a week or so earlier and had upgraded the transmit/receive equipment at a dozen towers throughout central Alberta. This past week, we were upgrading the customer’s antennas and inside equipment. We visited 32 properties over the three days.

We were fortunate with the weather, apart from a morning long snow squall on the second day that turned the roads and roofs icy slowing our progress considerably. By afternoon though, we were back to sunshine and temperatures just above freezing. At one point between customer sites, we stopped at the top of a hill on Range Road 11 north of Township Road 432 in Ponoka County. While Brenda took advantage of half-decent cell coverage (2 bars!) to call in the previous upgrade, I took a few (nine, actually) pictures and created a panorama of the view:
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I used the Microsoft Research Image Composite Editor to build the panorama (5300 pixels wide) from the still shots – quite a cool program, easy to use with some interesting features. Features like the ability to extrapolate to fill in the black areas:

2015-11-11 14.23.05_stitch_auto

There are a few funky artifacts like half fence posts and the trucks shadow disappears suddenly, but it is pretty interesting to see how well it completes the image.

In any event, on this day at least, it was anything but bleak.

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