Saturday, September 5, 2009

Now in Toronto!

Since I last wrote anything here, I can honestly say it's been an incredible period of my life, and something I expect I will look back upon for year's to come as one of the most remarkable of my life.

I've been to Indonesia, swam with manta rays and turtles, traveled across this amazing country of ours, moved to Toronto (truly a world class city), and got engaged! We've been to birthday parties, weddings, cottages, and many patios and the homes of family and friends in between, celebrating being back, and celebrating what is to come.

I don't know how much of it I will recap here in this space, but I do want to keep writing and seeing just what that means. Which brings me to the reason I am writing today: a change in the name. I've decided to change the web-address to to ensure the prying eyes of students and such have a little more difficult time finding what I write. Not that I believe anything I write here couldn't be for students' eyes and thoughts, it's just that there are some things better left out.

And so I hope the three or four readers of this will continue to follow. I'm not exactly sure how this space is going to be filled, but I hope to write here, at the very least, on a monthly basis, and hopefully it will be timely, thought provoking, but mostly interesting.

Sadly, what follows is probably none of those. Like I said, the period of May until now has been quite profound, but mostly for me. One thing I think I can adequately share is my enthusiasm for fulfilling one of my dreams - traveling across Canada by train.

This became a dream of mine for a few reasons:
1. I spent three years teaching Confederation to my Grade 8's in their history class, and the story of the railroad as the engine that really got Canada on the map, politically, economically, and literally is incredible.
2. This railroad of ours travels through some of the most stunning scenery found on the planet, and it just needed to be scene by my own eyes, as I've learned no matter how good the photo, it just never does Mother Nature justice.
3. After having been forunate enough to do some pretty good traveling over the last few years (I believe I have visited 22 different countries in just over 10 years) it was high time I did some traveling in my own country.

So if you ever have the time, and again I am very fortunate to have had some, take the train and explore all this wonderully HUGE country has to offer. West to east like I did, starting in Vancouver, or east to west. It doesn't mtter. And if you really have the time, like I did, you'll be able to hop off and spend time in places you have longed talked about or read about, but never visited.

And despite reason #2 clearly indicating that photos cannot do justice to an experience, at times they certainly beat words, especially my words. So here are just a few of the hundreds of photos I took on this journey east to home.

Not a bad sight to wake up to after your first night on the train!

The Columbia Ice Field...stunning!!

A lake with ice in June!?! Only in the Great White North!!

Banff! Not a bad main drag!

The Alberta Legislative Assembly - where Albertans count their billions!

Dinsmore, Saskatchewan...where it all began for the modern day Dinner clan!

Riel - traitor? hero? But definitely Canadian.

66 hours on trains, 9 hours on buses finishing off with one of the best skylines in the world - HOME!