|Mill Lake, Abbotsford, BC|
The last two nights of our trip were spent back in the Fraser Valley at Ann and Ken's house. Eddie was still terrified of the stairs down to our basement suite in their home, but was more settled this time being left down there while I visited upstairs for a while. On Sunday morning, I took him for a long walk, then left him in their care while I headed to Cloverdale for a family gathering to celebrate my mom's 94th birthday.
It's not often our small family can gather the clan all in one place, but we did pretty well. My sister-in-law Bev and her mom Pearl even drove down from the Okanagan (where Eddie and I had just visited with them) for the occasion. Also attending the party were my brother, my daughter, my two favourite cousins, and my nephew's mother-in-law. My two nephews, one touring Europe with his family and one in Winnipeg, were understandably not able to make it. We feasted on sandwiches and pickles and peach cobbler and birthday cake, drank tea and coffee and OJ, and talked and sang 'Happy Birthday' and opened gifts, and laughed. And laughed and laughed. Getting together is such a joyous occasion for us all. Mom had a very good time.
|Mom, on her 94th birthday|
Back to the Fraser Valley, where Eddie waited for my return - as long as he didn't have to climb the stairs or negotiate hallways or elevators, he was just fine thank you, though he'd rather be camping. We compromised by going to one of my favourite Abbotsford parks - Mill Lake, a beautiful oasis in the heart of town but easily accessed without much traffic in the mornings. When we lived in the Fraser Valley, I used to walk Sadie and Charley there often - a 2.5 km path loops around the lake. It is just as beautiful, and in the early morning hours just as peaceful, as I remembered:
|Large trees spread their branches above grassy lawns,|
|While leaves and marsh divide path from lake,|
|And lily pads provide shelter for frogs and fish.|
|There are resting places where one can watch the birds,|
|And scenes more reminiscent of country than city.|
|Beautiful stone walls add a touch of old-world charm,|
|And a walkway reminds us of home!|
|(Though Eddie insisted it was different, and|
just as scary as halls, stairs and elevators!)
|So we went back the way we came.|
And then we headed back to the ferry
|B.C. flag atop BC Ferries|
And soon we were back home!
Back home to Allie,
|'Bout time! Whereya bin?|
Back home to our Sea Walk
Back home to Crofton Lake:
And back home to our doggy friends, Sadie B and Georgi who we were looking after for the weekend,
I love my family.
I love my friends.
I love my beautiful, beautiful province.
And I love coming home.
|Sunrise on Osborne Bay|
It's good to be back.