Tag: Madden

The “Gate” House

The “Gate” House

I visited the house with “the gate” yesterday, you know….the “gate” house.

20120707-201608.jpgA few weeks ago I wrote about the gate, an inviting front entrance to a home near my daughters, framed by vines and greenery and beckoning visitors with it’s intrigue. I first noticed it on an earlier walk with Madden.

Seeing as I had some extra time on this particular trip I thought I should see if I could find out what was beyond the gate, behind the green door if you will.  My daughter and I took a walk with Madden to grab some lunch and on our route we decided to stop by.  It was as simple as strolling up the stone covered path to the entrance, passing through the swinging gate, and ringing the front bell.  My daughter waited expectantly on the street.

Unfortunately I was disappointed on my first attempt at contact with the keeper of the gate.  I approached the open front door and stepped over multiple pairs of shoes on the stoop.  I knocked and could hear sounds within the house but there was no one to answer my knock, no body to greet me and enlighten me on my quest.  I felt alone, and incomplete, somehow cheated and short changed.  I needed to know, to understand about the gate and what lie beyond.

20120824-215036.jpgWhile I waited behind the gate however I did glimpse the zen garden hidden from the street and whether it was my fearing unattended discovery or a respect for the owners I chose to leave the space without further ado.  There will be another time I thought.  And there was.

The opportunity came on our return pass.  We had finished our lunch and strolled back along our earlier path.  Again I approached the gate and passed beyond.   Again I knocked.  This time I was rewarded with a “Hi, how are you doing?”

I met the owner of the space, the owner of the gate.  She responded to my presence with a pleasant greeting.  I explained my purpose, my curiosity, my desire to know.   She understood. She acknowledged my need and my hope, she supported my request for pictures.

“Are they for personal use or professional?” , she asked.
“Personal” I replied.  I explained my purpose. I was intrigued by the gate, I wondered what it was protecting.

The timing was not good she told me, she suggested I return the next day, which was yesterday, when she could spend more time with me.   I complied.  I left and returned just after lunch.

I was greeted warmly on my return. Her husband Paul met me at the door and ushered me around the side to the back yard where Diane waited.

She appeared excited to see me and we began our talk and our tour of the many intimate sitting areas and gardens.  Their yard was lush and mature with multiple plantings of shrubs and trees, many transplanted years ago from their previous house.  A Japanese garden theme was predominant and a partially constructed pagoda dominated one corner.  It was to be her studio, to paint water colors and plan future projects.  It was to be her holy place.

We sat and had a glass of wine while she told me the story of the yard, how in it’s previous incarnation it was featured in Gardens West magazine, and how they dug up and transplanted most, if not all, the plants and trees from it to their current location.  It was an undertaking for sure, a labor of love.  I was amazed and inspired.

I enjoyed our chat and our tour.  We agreed to keep in touch and I said I’d love to come by again, perhaps take more photos when the yard was more “finely tuned”.  They had just had some very tough weeks personally and unfortunately hadn’t had the ability to weed and prune to their satisfaction.  It will be better on my next visit they assured me.

So the next time you see something like “the gate” be sure you stop in and check it out.  You will likely be pleasantly surprised what beauty and peacefulness it may protect.  You may make new friends and also be inspired.  The gate can be a doorway to a new world.

The Gate

The Gate

20120707-201608.jpgA few weeks ago I was out on a walk with Madden enjoying the morning sun.  The summer smells enveloped us as we strolled leisurely around the neighborhood, I pushing the stroller and he dozed, in and out of attendance.

On one nearby street I spotted this unique gate, and inviting flora.  I could say “we” but he was snoozing at that point, or come to think about it he was likely just waking, making noises that inspired me to give him his bottle.  Babies can do that.

The gate provided a doorway and was guarding the front entrance of the home, maybe not quite guarding the front door but protecting the grounds approaching the door.  Perhaps creating a retreat the owners relished as much as I yearned for my holy place.  Establishing a sanctuary of sorts, protected from the outside world and yet providing all the comfort and peace such a space could afford.  An oasis in the desert of city living.

I was immediately intrigued.  What’s behind the Gate I wondered.  Does the enclosed space carry the same coziness and natural feel that the gate inspires.  Is it really a nirvana behind there, or is it only a facade that teases the mind and imagination into believing in something that really isn’t there?  I have to know.

So I’ve made an agreement with myself, and you too I guess, that on my next visit I will make another trip to the home.  I will walk up to the entrance, along the gravel path, hearing my footsteps crunch as I approach.  I will take in the aromas of the flowers and greens and in anticipation I will approach the portal.  I will knock, tentatively, and if appropriate will push gently on the wooden structure and peer inside.  I have to know, what’s inside The Gate.

Missing Post – Madden and Me

Missing Post – Madden and Me

I don’t know what happened here, the post below was MIA, lost in the abyss, originally published (I thought) July 7.

Here we go again, the quality time one desires as a grandparent.  The holding and cuddling, the snuggling and feeding of the the baby and then having them fall asleep in your arms.  To listen to the purring of their soft breathing, the occasional sighs and the peaceful calmness of their trust.   It takes me back to the good times we had as young parents, except now as they say we can give them back as they misbehave or become cranky.  Not that we would.

20120707-135907.jpgAll the adults are out at present and Madden and I are having some quality time bonding whilst we walk.  It’s good for him to get out in the fresh air and sun (not direct sun mind you) and also good for me. I’ve been neglecting myself lately so here we can kill two birds with one stone.  He can get some air and I’ll get a stretch.

We are laying over here for a day or so before heading back off to camp. The time will be spent bonding with the kids, Madden time of course, and buying enough grub for the next phase of our journey.  We will leave here tomorrow morning for Herald Provincial park, across the Shuswap Lake from Salmon Arm.  We will stay there until the 17th and then back onto the highway for more adventures further south.

It will be interesting times.

Carry your Loved Ones in your Heart

Carry your Loved Ones in your Heart

20120622-223118.jpgLong days, and nights that fly by.

We have hit the road again to see the fam and celebrate a belated Fathers day and my upcoming birthday. I’m pooped and have become quite disillusioned with the time spent driving, but you knew that didn’t you. Be that as it may we will thoroughly enjoy our time and we will also look forward to going home. I certainly will anyway.

I will miss my lil’buddy but I will always carry him in my heart.

Life with the Fam(ily)

Life with the Fam(ily)

Photo 2012-06-07 9 23 01 AMMeet my grandson Madden.  Had I ever thought I could feel the way I do about a little human being I would have had grandchildren sooner, a lot sooner.  He was 3 months old on June 10th and he has the personality of my daughter.  He is one of my fam(ily).

Since he was born we’ve made about half a dozen trips to see him and his family, my daughter and son-in-law.  It’s about a 4 hour jaunt, well worth it when you consider the payback, his smiles or the way he gazes into your eyes.  He is my ‘lil buddy, I am his poppa.  Just looking at his picture while I type this puts a warm feeling in my heart.

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The Cycle of Life

The Cycle of Life

So today (technically Mar.10) I’m officially a grandfather.  Whether I’ll be Grandpa, Gramps, or I’m thinking Poppa, I am still very happy and can’t wait to meet the new addition.  His name is Madden, 9 pounds 5 ounces, and he is cute as a button.  Officially it happened last night around 8 pm and while we couldn’t be there we were with our daughter in spirit.

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