U.S.A., Washington State. USDA zone 8b. Sunset climate zone 5

Monday, April 6, 2009

It All Started With Hockey

Click on the pictures to enlarge them. Then click Back to return to the blog

Spring break went fast. It was time to think about sunny beaches, palm trees, snorkling and swimming. And this is what some families did - they went to the south eager to have a break from the long cold and wet winter. Not us. Like birds returning home from warm countries, we went to the north.

And what is the north for us? It's Canada! Do you have some countries associated with something in your mind? Canada in my mind is associated with hockey. Ice hockey. Ice hockey is a very big deal in eastern Russia where I came from. A thousand years ago, my Dad, sister and I used to get up at night and watch the Soviet Union - Canada hockey games. Whether it was a weekend night or a school night, it didn't matter. We would wake up and root for our team. Next day, the whole town would talk about a game. I suspect that labor productivity went up or down depending on the result. Olympic games, world championships - we watched them all. This is what comes to my mind when I hear "Canada". Interest in ice hockey, respect for a strong rival team led to interest in that country and my respect for it. Add astonishing natural beauty, friendliness of the people, metric system and you'll understand why I love Canada.

The moment we cross the border and signs km/h appear along the road, I am starting to feel like I am almost home. Mountains, lakes, tall pines and furs remind me of the Russian Far East.

Well, back to our sheep.
Next February, Whistler will host some of the winter Olympic games. We decided that if we want to ski, we'd rather go there now. And we loved it!

The only sad thing was a lack of crowd. Not that we wanted the slopes to be crowded, not at all. We enjoyed an absence of the lift lines and diner lines, but it was clear that times are tough.

We saw very few cars with Washington license plates, although it was a spring break. All in all, Whistler was beautiful and skiing there was one of the best experiences we ever had.

I took next two pictures at the same time, one after another. Why do they look so different?!

Now, back to gardening!
Well, several more pictures.

On the slopes, I had time to admire all the beauty that the mountains offer.

Beautiful moss:

The weather was OK. We had sun and clouds and snow and even rain.

I hope spring has sprung for our Canadian friends-gardeners!


  1. Your pictures are just beautiful! I too would rather go somewhere cold, I can't stnad the upper 80's and humidity we have been having already! This is still late summer weather to me.

    We should just switch to the metric system, lol, the USA can't be easy.

    Thanks for the insight as to where you are from and all.


  2. Such a beautiful scene, Canada is a beautiful country indeed.

  3. Each photogrpah was so beautiful!
    Whistler does look to be a lovely place. I have only been to Canada int he summertime! The winter looks amazing!
    Thank you!

  4. Amazing trip. Your photos are excellent. It took me away for a few minutes. Isn't it nice how something as small as a km sign can take you back to such good memories!!! I am glad you had a safe and wonderful trip. Glad to have you back to the blog world :)

  5. All the ones I've talked to today are all still swamped in snow! T'would drive me crazy!

  6. It's all so very beautiful, but way too cold for me. I always tell people that I never voluntarily go somewhere colder for a vacation, only warmer!

  7. Tatyana~~ Beautiful photos! What a magnificent trip it must have been.

  8. Sorry I'm a day behind - been playing. Beautiful pictures/place. I only tried to ski once and stood in the same spot on the slope for so long the ski guy came over and said he was gonna declare me a monument soon. Guess I was petrified! LOL Nice that your family is so sportsminded though and you all get out alot and do these things together.

  9. Hey Tatyana

    It sound like you enjoyed yourselves. I think you would make a great ambassador for Canada!

    Lovely photos.


  10. I must have been destined to arrive at your blog. The first period of the hockey game between our team, Montreal Canadiens and the Boston Bruins just ended. You have the same memories I do of the Russian/Canadian series. The most memorable was in 1972. It must have been watched by nearly every Canadian. That's all we talked about for weeks and weeks. Every series was a big deal here. I'm glad you have a good view of Canada ~ so many times we're seen as those poor frozen northerners. (Well we still do have snow, but I'm thinking it might be better than having an early spring only to have plants cut down by frost as so many people seem to be having in warmer zones). Your kind words and beautiful photos made my day!!

  11. What about a great ambassador for Russia? Does anybody know the score of(in?) winter Russia-Canada championship in beloved 70-ties?

  12. Beautiful, Tatiana! I love the picture of the sun showing between the pines. And no -- I don't know why the two photos are so different -- will you tell us, please?

    My husband and I were married in Vancouver many more years ago than we can remember, but we never went to Whistler. Vancouver was so beautiful it was impossible to tear ourselves away!


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