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Edition #631  Friday, June 2, 2017

Victoria's Highland Games

Canada's Scottish connection is well documented and historically rich. One of the more regular and popular forms of all embracing Scottish culture and heritage is the holding of a Highland Games.

This year's Victoria Highland Games were held on May 20th to May 22nd at Topaz Park.

We could not have asked for a more perfect day. Not a cloud in the sky and the temperature in the low seventies. The massed pipers marched in precise formation on a nice dry pitch under the brilliant noonday sun.

Integral parts of any Highland gathering are the heavy events. Here, a hammer is in the process of being tossed.

The tossing of the stone is more of a grunt than a ballet.

The weight for height event involves tossing a weight vertically to clear a bar set at an ever increasing height. This young athlete, who came up from the USA to compete, ended up winning the event.

Just getting the caber up off the ground requires a huge amount of skill and strength.

The goal of the caber toss is to get the caber to do a complete 180 degree flip. It's just about as easy to do as it looks.

A Highland dancing competition, for both lassies and laddies, takes the full day to complete. The warm-up portion of the event was as much mental as physical.

Our good friend, Lorna Mace, is a competitive Highland dancer. Seen here, our favourite #352 is having a fling at the fling.

For a touch of the nautical, the Hornpipe was another of the events.

Traditional Scottish artillery and musketry were also on display. It reminded me of watching a city road crew work. A lot of people, each one doing a little something and then standing around.

Many of the early European explorers, immigrants and business people in BC, Vancouver Island and Victoria were of Scottish descent. The Hudson's Bay Company had a preference for Scots Presbyterians as employees. This is a model of a proposed Scottish Cultural Centre, to be built on the grounds of the historic Craigflower Farm. The Craigflower Farm was one of several farms established on the Gorge waterway, adjacent to Victoria, established to provide produce to the early inhabitants to the City of Victoria.

Perennial Ridge Farm in Duncan

Every year, Perennial Ridge Farms in Duncan, have a three-day (open to the general public) plant sale. The rest of the year they are a wholesale enterprise.

Andrew, our friend Rebecca and I headed up to see what we could see.

This beautiful planting of hens and chicks was not for sale.

The property, as well as being a working farm, also has a whimsical "objets d'art" garden.

The owners of the farm also keep a herd of goats for milk.

Their chicken enclosure looked to be pure paradise for the flock. Lots of cover, nice dry scratching areas with plenty of food, water and sun.

Another beautiful day on the island, what's not to like.

Here's the fern tent. We decided to acquire some for our garden. Nice to look at and easy maintenance.

Here are our selections. The shrub is an astilbe and ferns of four different types.

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Answer to Last Week's Salvation Army Quiz

We received five correct answers to our last stamp identification quiz. That means a $5.00 donation to Salvation Army.

Here's the portion of the stamp we asked you to identify

Here's the answer - Canada #1510, the 1994 T. Eaton Company issue.

The Salvation Army Quiz

We show you a minute portion of the design of a postage stamp. You have to determine which stamp it is. Send us an email with your answer.

We hold a contest almost every newsletter. For every correct answer we will donate $1.00 to our favourite charity, the Salvation Army. Click here to go to the The Salvation Army International Home Page to see what services they offer to communities around the world.

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Edition #645
Friday, May 11, 2018

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