My wonderful city has been building up to the Pan Am Games for quite some time now and they have finally arrived. I thought briefly about going to the Opening Ceremonies this past Friday, but ultimately got too cheap. I am planning to attend some of the competitions in both the Pan Am and ParaPan Am Games, though.
But what to do this past weekend? We talked back and forth for a bit and decided to go to the Islands to photograph a summer sunset. Why not Friday? Why not, indeed. Off we went to catch the ferry to Ward’s Island in the low sunlight of early evening.
Ward’s is a blissful, gorgeous place. It’s where the Islanders live and none of the houses are pre-fab or boring. On our way to find the perfect place to view the city, we came upon a flock of swallows, catching up on the day’s events.
When we got to our favourite place, the sun was low and rather blinding, so we wandered around the area. We played the game of which one of the gorgeous cottages we’d like to live in (so far, there are about a dozen), took pictures of flowers, and a few shots of the sun sparkling on the water.
I’ve never seen ducklings in real life and it’s been a goal for a few years now. When part one of this goal (swan babies!) was fulfilled at the Walk to Fight Arthritis about a month ago, I was committed to part two. And as we walked along the path on Ward’s… that’s when I saw them. Small and fuzzy and following in Mama’s wake.
I went haring off across the lawn, yelling “ducklings, my love! Ducklings!!” So focused was I on the wee fuzzy creatures that I didn’t see the dip in the lawn which caused a rather jarring moment that had my purse flying off my lap. Luckily, I remained in my wheelchair. But nevermind! I continued with half an eye on the lawn and the rest of my attention on the ducklings. My
obsession dedication was
I’d have been perfectly happy with going home at that point, but we would’ve missed the big show. It started with early fireworks from the CN Tower marking a particular point in the Opening Ceremonies. The day before, a practice session of these fireworks caused much of the city to think the CN Tower was on fire.
For us, the big show wasn’t the Pan Am Games Opening Ceremonies — that was held under the dome of the Rogers Centre and invisible to those of us on the other side of the bay. Our show was just as good, though, and only cost us a ferry ticket. There was just the right amount of clouds to change the sky to molten gold in one of the most beautiful displays of colour I have seen in a long time.
As the sun hid behind the clouds and sank towards the horizon, it set fire to the sky so intensely that the whole area was glowing. I caught the last of the sun just as it slipped below for the day.
This was the signal for a waiting swarm of mosquitoes to descend upon us. We were eaten alive. Which we tried to ignore, because the show wasn’t over. All evening, the sun had set out streaks through the clouds and even after having left the stage, it wasn’t done.
As the city turned on the lights, the mosquitoes turned up the heat and we decided to flee. Walking home along the shore watching the end of the light show, we both agreed that we live in a beautiful city. It’s a special treat sharing it with everyone who is here for the Pan Am Games.
Just remember to carry mosquito repellent.