Marriage of Cowboys, Dolls, Bicycles and Chopsticks

It’s culture shock when I return from sushi, salmon and ocean in Vancouver, to yeehaw hijinks of the Calgary Stampede. The Stampede is Canada’s annual and biggest bash on bucking rodeo sports, country western music and cowboy culture. Let’s face it, in the 21st century, there aren’t a lot of true cowboys and cowgirls in Calgary….

Snowshoeing: Humble Snow Steps in Canada’s Vastness and History

The first time I had heard of and even seen snowshoes, was when I was 12 years old. A father of a boy in my class, occasionally took business trips to Frobisher Bay in the Canadian Arctic. Remember, this was in the early 1970’s when the Canadian Arctic was still a whited-out blizzard blank slate…

Whimsical Dreams of Christmas Gingerbread Magic

Whenever snow falls near Christmas, any serious thoughts vapourize into child-like dreams of fun, sugar plums, sleigh bells and lovely baked pastries with hot chocolate. I like soft Christmas cookies with different spices, less sugar but more delicate in taste . Gingerbread cookies are cute, but do not stoke my sweet tooth. To me, gingerbread houses and…

Are You a Couch Foodie, Garden Foodie or Stove-Top Foodie?

Recently in a cycling forum, a question floated over the Internet: “Do you have a discerning palate?” That got me thinking about foodies, people who pride themselves as food connoisseurs, worldly arbitrators of food dishes from a dizzying array of cuisines. Just a Stove-Top Foodie: Homespun Knowledge I fancy myself as a foodie. Not a…

Ice Sculptures: Frozen, Ethereal Aspirations

A few weekends ago, we bused up to Lake Louise in Banff National Park, for their annual ice carving competition and some mountain snowshoeing. It is an international competition that’s been slowly gaining an ice crampon foothold with more intricate, arresting sculptures this year. After 14 km. of snowshoeing and straining a groin muscle, we…

Climbing the Skies, the Roughness: Painting and Cycling

Now this is not about cycling mountains, because honest, I haven’t cycled up a high, long steep mountain on a bike yet. Strange for someone who lived within sight of mountains in Vancouver.  But I’m willing to bet you, I’m like  many Vancouverites who have never biked any mountain either.  Still it is strange, for a cycling enthusiast…

Red Rock Canyon: Nature’s Open Heart Surgery

When you look down Red Rock Canyon towards the parking lot, it appears the green Earth busted an angry vein and ripped open its heart to blue sky and mountains. We were confronted by this rocky bloody slash in the earth, after driving 15 km. through Blakiston Valley, along a winding, peaceful road in Waterton…