Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Vancouver Pride Parade

This post is a little (okay, a lot) late in it's arrival. But in my defense, I just haven't been blogging as much as I could or should be... wait, that's not much of a defense, is it? Basically, I've been busy being lazy and now I feel like I've missed posting some great things.

Part of the joy of being a teacher is having the summer months off to recuperate, rejuvenate, and re-open your mind to what life has to offer. And because I am international, I get the special joy of coming home and reconnecting with friends and family.

One of the days that I chose to go into the city of Vancouver turned out to be the date for the Vancouver Pride Parade. My friends and I hadn't thought about it in advance when we scheduled to meet downtown on Robson St. for brunch but what a happy coincidence! Myself and one other of my friends had never been to or seen a pride parade before and were more than happy to have window seats along the beginning of the parade route. All I can say is that it was a wonderful celebration of life and whatever your religious leanings or beliefs may be, you just can't deny how much fun these people were having and how much they were loving life!

Here are a few pictures that I got from our restaurant seats... enjoy!!

Made me think of Carnivale time... very cool.

Requisite tighty-whitey dancers...although, those are tighty-purplies... hehehehe

The belle of the ball, so to speak. Lots of fantastic drag going on on those streets.

Lots of great support for HIV/AIDS causes... loved the red feather boas!!

And, yes, there were Trojans... hehehe

All in all, it was a lot of fun and there were apparently over 600,000 people viewing the parade and all crowds were on their best behaviour... the city was electric with a Mardi Gras type atmosphere (they even threw beads). It was great!

Summer Coming to a Close

Even though it doesn't officially end for a little while, my summer vacation is coming to a close and so, by very definition, summer is coming to a close for me. Today I am doing that final load of laundry with a dryer (I don't have a dryer in Turkey, so the luxury of soft jeans is pretty amazing) as I am packing. I've become genius at fitting a maximum amount of things in a smallish space. I did purchase another bag for the return trip (I bought a ton of classroom things that I missed last year, treats for my teaching team and myself, some clothes, 4 pairs of shoes and I went through some of my stuff in storage and tossed that in too). So far one bag weighs in at about 42 pounds and the other remains to be seen as those last pairs of jeans are getting their dryer time right now.

At this time of year, I am usually stressed with packing and making sure that I am not overweight in my bags (as it is, I will most likely need to pay for the second bag) and that I have what I seem to feel is absolutely necessary for me to be successful in the coming year. Typically this leads to at least one spaz attack and a few tears (depending on the time of the month, of course). However, this year I feel blessed to have more than I thought I could take back in my bags already. I feel relaxed and organized. I'm super pleased with my purchases and with my packing. I am sure that once I get to Turkey I will realize that I've forgotten one of the most important items, but for the moment, I feel like I have it in control.

So that is the first sign that vacation and summer is coming to a close, the second is putting myself on the scale. Five whole pounds have been added to my weight as I gorged myself on all the things I don't typically get while in Turkey (REAL maple syrup, BACON, meat - I tend not to buy a lot of meat- Coffee Crisp, KD!!! and the list goes on). So I know the end is near when those dryer dried jeans feel a little (HA, try A LOT) tighter than they did when I arrived in Canada.

The next sign that summer is coming to a close is that I begin to get excited about the coming year. My brain begins to go crazy thinking of all the things I could be making and prepping for my students and fellow teachers. And I start to get bored with my endless days of reading, sun bathing and chatting with friends. (Don't worry... I am aware of how WEIRD that is.)

With that said, I need to get back to laundry, cleaning and packing... in 48 hours I will be hanging out in Turkey again (takes more than 24 hours to get there... you lose 10 hours with time change alone)! Look for start of the year blog posts coming soon...