Yes Emily

Yes Emily, girls can ride motorcycles!

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Wine, Wine, Wine ... A Trip to Terroir

Saturday Barb, Ron and I (3 means in an SUV) headed off to Terroir, a celebration of the wine makers and the wine from Canada's newest wine region - Prince Edward County.

The Prince Edward region, located on the shores of Lake Ontario near Picton, is quickly becoming known for it's outstanding vineyards and award winning wines. The 'County' boasts 34 wineries and Terroir, held in Picton, was an invitation to learn about the these wine makers and their product. With our admission tickets we were handed a glass and invited to sample the wines from 19 different wineries while several local chefs, culinary students and cheese producers prepared a deluge of appetizers to accompany the fine wine.

Pete Bradford, cooper, discussed the art of barrel making while local winemakers Geoff Heinricks, Dan Sullivan, Norman Hardie, Paul Battilana and Jenifer Dean spoke about the attributes of the County, its soil, its climate, its geography, its wine, its cider and its sparkling wine.

Honestly - can you think of a better way to spend a Saturday afternoon?
Norman Hardie / Norman Hardie Winery & Vineyard talks wine with some enthusiasts at Terroir 2011.
A few enthusiasts talking wine.
 The Crystal Palace resounded with words only a wine connoisseur would understand. (Fortunately for me, I was the designated driver, my glass filled with water, I wasn't expected to comment on the wine because I really had no idea what they were talking about.)
Karlo Estates Winery.

Wine barrels - Karlo Estates

View from the Ferry Hwy 32 Glenora

Ron & Me (Barbara reflected in the 'shades', thanks for taking the pic) returning home via the Glenora Ferry.

Bergeron Estate Winery, Hwy 32 east of Adolphustown the final of 3 wineries we stopped at.

We stop to take some  more photos on the way home.

The day ended with a delicious dinner, complete with some spectacular country wine (cheeky red, with fruity undertones, pepper nose but full bodied finish .... just kidding - it was, just plain FINE) On the walk home there were fireflies and the scent of lilacs, a perfect end to a fine day.

(If you missed it this year, Terroir is happening again next year on Saturday, May 26, 2012)

Monday, May 23, 2011

The Tale of the Turtle

Stranger things have happened this week, but not many, well, okay, actually none. I happened to be outside and noticed a rather large turtle attempting to cross the busy road near my house. This, being the first ‘cottage’ weekend, has made my road nuts with traffic – people zooming to and from the lake. Now I know turtles have incredibly hard, protective shells and this was a seriously large turtle (big enough to dismount a rider) but I assumed the chance of it surviving, if run over by a two plus ton vehicle, would be slim. Being a good Samaritan I decided to suggest, with my shovel, that it should get off the road - sooner than later.

The most prevalent turtle species in this area is the Snapping turtle (Chelydra serpentina) and she (I’m assuming) was a big one, close to 12 inches long (not including tail) and just as many pounds (at least). Judging by her size I'd say she was an old gal and should have had a little more common sense than to play in traffic. She didn’t take my suggestion well and made it clear she didn’t want my help by ferociously trying to snap the end off my shovel - better my shovel than my hand. Turtles are known for their slowness, but believe me, when she decided to snap, she did it with lightening speed. Clearly, she hadn't heard that the Ontario government considers her part of a special concern species under Ontario’s Endangered Species Act  and sitting on the road was a bad idea. Having had enough of her attitude, I reluctantly gave up hoping that she would choose, on her own, to drag herself off the road and into the safety of the ditch (which, when I looked back over my shoulder, she appeared to be doing.) Even though I’m not a turtle expert I expect she was looking for a suitable spot to deposit her eggs, but she had to be close to 1km from the nearest lake (pond or swamp). Okay, there’s looking for the perfect spot then there’s being obsessive about it – really!

Ms. Attitude taking up residence under
bistro table on the porch.

You might think that this was the end of the story, I did – that was until I went to step out the front door about an hour later and there was miss personality, on my porch, glaring up at me from the door mat. Now, if I was the type I’d almost say she had taken it personally and had come to get me, maybe she was just there to ask directions - whichever. Since the shovel idea worked so well for me the first time I called for reinforcements to deal with the 'killer' turtle. Number 1 son was clear that the turtle had no beef with him. She was my problem and perhaps I should just sleep with one eye open from now on (I'll remember that in my will). Number two son , Mr. Naturalist, eager to see the ornery old dame (the turtle, not his mom) came to my rescue. After taking a number of photos of the lady with attitude he managed to convince her to take a shovel ride to a more turtle friendly spot away from the house.

Just goes to show that even an independent woman might need help when it comes to clogged dryer vents, skunks, coyotes and ill tempered turtles. My question is, how the hell did she get up on my porch and WILL SHE BE BACK? (Maybe I will have to sleep with one eye open after all!)

Ms Attitude taking a shovel ride.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Two-Four Weekend

The Canadian two-four weekend, cottage weekend - it’s our kick off to summer. Who cares what the forecast is when you’re staring into summer with sunshine in your eyes. The forecast seemed to change hourly leading up to the weekend but Saturday turned out to be absolutely stellar. It made me a believer! I spent the day celebrating birthdays and nice weather with family, friends and former neighbors at the lake – it was fantastic. On my walk home I was struck by the fragrance of apple blossoms and the buzzing sound of thousands of bees happy to be working on a sunny day.

Of course one day of play means catching up on indoor jobs the next day but by two I’d had enough of the indoors. Even though the weather network was still forecasting rain it wasn’t happening and I was hearing motorcycle after motorcycle go by …. I decided to ride up 10 to Westport then head east to Delta. I stopped to take pictures at the historic bridge in Lyndhurst just before the rain started. Not wanting to get any wetter than I needed to I headed for home – today’s ride just over 100 km.

This weekend, the warmth, the sunshine, the sweet smell of new mown grass and lilacs made me believe summer is just around the corner … and when you’re staring summer in the face even the smell of manure seems sweet when you’re on two wheels. 

Historic Bridge - Lyndhurst, ON

Saturday, May 7, 2011

A Day Late - But Not A Penny Short

My own personal female ride day: 188 km round trip. The weather forecast called for sun, the radar showed clear so where did the big black clouds come from?

So, when I stopped (Tichborne, ON) to take a photo of the looming sky ahead I realized why I didn't see anyone else outside. Moments after taking my helmet off I was swarmed by a cloud of blood thirsty black flies. From there it was on to Sharbot Lake then Perth with the mandatory stop at "Timmys", Westport and home again ... I followed the same dark cloud most of the way. There were a few sprinkles but luckily nothing to cry about. The temperature was a little less than expected so I tried out the heated grips once again (just for comforts sake)

Westport ON, foot of Foley Mountain

Friday, May 6, 2011

International Female Ride Day

Did you get out for a ride on this fabulous International Female Ride Day? Sadly, I did not. It's Friday and it seems, according to my principal, that my class still expected me to show up regardless of how many other women were planning to ride their motorcycles all day. I thought about riding to work this morning, just to say I'd ridden on International Female Ride Day but then life got in the way. It's Friday, the end of the week. There was 15 kg of dog food and 2 kg of cat food ... and so on and so on. Excuses or reasons - it just wasn't in my stars today. On the way home I saw some ladies riding, two in the pack were even on stars.

Motress - I missed it on Friday, but I've decided not to let a little thing like Friday stand in my way. I've decided to make Saturday, May 7 my own personal Female Rider Day. I've got most of the day to ride and the weather looks fantastic. Better late than never. I'm going with the "Month of May" ... it's Female Rider Month so any day is a good day to ride. See you on the road tomorrow (and the next day and any day you can) ladies!

Thanks Riders Plus for the 'must follows.'

Monday, May 2, 2011

Thanks Gary ...

ABCD was great fun ... I certainly enjoyed running around the city looking crazy and I know my son and friend also enjoyed following me with the camera (all the while muttering under their breath, "What's she on?")

But really, I want to thank Gary for such a great idea and for having all the links posted to his site - it gave us a terrific venue to find other riders and has got a lot of blogger/riders checking each other out. I know I've found some new sites that I've added to my favorites bar. And thanks to you for all your comments. Loved checking your blogs and adding them to my favorites.

Now I'm madly trying to tag the favorites on this computer as yesterday, just before all the fun started, I had a little computer issue complete with the smell of melting plastic and I'm thinking that probably wasn't a good sign.

Happy blogging - hope I haven't missed adding you to my favorites this time around- make sure I don't miss you by sending a comment with your link if you're a rider slash blogger so I can add you to my favorites bar too.

Keep riding - keep posting!

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Postcards from Kingston - ABCD

There are hundreds of beautiful roads and places to see and visit in Ontario. My favorite of course, is my road. It's the first road I travel in excited anticipation of a new journey and the road that welcomes me home again ... unfortunately, it's a country road and it doesn't have a centre line to stand on.
But I am lucky enough to live near one of Ontario's most picturesque cities ... Kingston, Ontario.

Kingston was Canada's first capital for a short time. This is me standing on the centre line, Ontario Street, in front of City Hall.  The street was closed to traffic for the Runner's Choice 21km run today (how convenient). Son, Justin took the photos early this morning.

The view across from City Hall - "Confederation Basin" is just as stunning. All summer long it's filled with spectacular boats touring the lakes.
Kingston is home to two universities of note, RMC and Queen's plus Fort Henry and it's pretty famous for the number of penitentiaries too - that's me on the Star at the Olympic Harbor (in the background, across the harbor, is Kingston Pen.) (Photos by Justin and friend Barbara)

Today was boat in day at the Portsmouth Olympic Harbor. At the crack of dawn big boats began being crane lifted back into the water after a long winter dry dock. The Olympic Harbor is home to CORK the Canadian Olympic Regatta Kingston.

The big cats were on show today at the Harbor ... the Boot and Bonnet Club of Kingston was showing off their Jaguars.

Kingston - The Limestone City, The First Capital - built on the shore of Lake Ontario where the Rideau River, The Mighty St. Lawrence River and the Lake rush to meet.