Friday, 21 February 2020
It's raining outside in Timperley. It may be raining where you are, dear reader. Relief is at hand by way of a couple of books that I've recently enjoyed reading.
'Northbridge Rectory' wasn't a page turner, but I found the writing sublime. I kept wanting to highlight some of the descriptive passages. Nothing much happens in this book, but it held my attention as it tried to portray some of the characters (and their interactions) to be found in an English village during the Second World War.
'Where the Crawdads Sing' is not up to the same literary standard, but I found it to be more of a page turner. However, some readers may be put off by the unlikely sounding plot. It begins with a death. Is it a murder? Keep turning the pages!
Proper reviews of these books are available on-line, if you aren't sure whether to try them. Sue's book club members mostly enjoyed both books.
Tuesday, 18 February 2020
It's a massive place, serving a city that's twice the size of Greater Manchester.
We arrived on a lovely day (skiing in Gatineau Park would have been sublime) in an Embraer plane like the one on the right - less than 100 seats. We are leaving on one more like that on the left - a much bigger 787.
There are six terminals - all displaying lavish artwork and displays. Easy chairs make our seven hour sojourn here reasonably palatable, especially given the wonderful prose in Northbridge Rectory, by Angela Thirlell. Written in 1941, about a village in WW2, the author manages to enthral the reader without anything of any real substance happening.
I finished that book, and am hoping that Delia Owens will match Thirkell with her 'Where the Crawdads Sing' (2018) during the only horrible part of this trip - the overnight flight home.
Lego, and a few other things, features in the lower picture.
Sunday, 16 February 2020
While Ken went on another Personal Best adventure on the 50 km Freestyle Loppet (race), Sue and I enjoyed a ski with Helen, outside the 'Loppeteering' arena.
On a warm day with sunny intervals we set off from Meech and up the long trail 40 hill. Sue and I got a bit ahead, so we skied the easy section of black diamond trail 9, between Ridge Road and trail 1B. After a quick visit to Champlain Lookout, we headed back along 1B and then down trail 2 to Western Cabin.
Helen had arrived at the busy cabin a few minutes before us. We enjoyed a leisurely lunch, before returning nearly all the way back to Meech via trail 2, which becomes a black diamond trail for the final descent to join trail 40 for the plunge down to P12 car park. There were numerous pauses for photos in the sunshine.
Black diamond trails are the harder ones, many being along back country routes. We were happy to negotiate today's quota without any incident other than a comment from a gentleman ascending #2 along the lines that "I'd never be able to descend that slowly!' Admittedly, it does take an effort.
We were finished by lunch time - it being only 3.5 km back to P12 from Western Cabin by this direct route. That left plenty of time to prepare a feast to celebrate Ken's mutation into Superman, and his birthday - delayed due to his Superman activities.
This may be the final posting from Ottawa, where we wouldn't wish to overstay our welcome. Though, after looking at the UK weather forecast for the rest of the month, we would be happy to get stuck here.
P12 (Meech) > #40 > right on #24 > left on #1 > #9 > #1B > Champlain Lookout > #1B > #2 > Western Cabin > #2 > #40 > P12.
13 km, 300 metres ascent, 2 hours 10 mins plus stops.
The photos are of Helen and Sue on trail 2.