Monday, May 21, 2007

Dinosaur Provincial Park

Isn't this an amazing place to visit? Did you see that rock with what looks like gold trickling out of it? The only thing we had to watch out for were scorpions and rattlesnakes, which little Miss A was pointing out. I don't think she really enjoyed putting her little finger there, even if it was only a picture. Other than that it is a great place to visit.

Actually we saw neither snakes nor scorpions. In fact, the only bugs and critters we saw were either extinct or splattered on the windshield and perhaps a solitary bee that tried to get into the car but we closed the window real fast.

Everything else was breathtaking. We did see some cute little birds and the new museum adequately prepares you to identify the fauna, flora, and geography of the park. I think the neatest thing about this place is you can let your imagination run, not only with the odd shaped hoodoos, but also with the creamy gray clay that becomes brittle when dry, and with the idea that dinosaurs of all shapes and sizes roamed these curious nooks and crannies. Click on the collage and you can get a close up.

In addition, I don't know how the cows got in the collage but they have a way of sneaking in and stealing the show in these badlands. Couldn't help but take the picture of the sign pointing out a Texas Gate in Alberta and oh the flowers! Isn't God awesome, creating these sturdy little flowers in the midst of this dry and so called barren land?
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Things I saw with my Granddaughters

Right in front of the Brooks Health Clinic there is the zanniest little fire hydrant of which I couldn't avoid taking a picture. But yikes, you canines stay away, she is only for looks!!

Then what would Alberta be without cattle? Some of these ranchers have the neatest designs for their ranches. I know I took a picture of one that was titled Badlands Black Angus, and when the girls and I were driving to Dinosaur Park, they had all the cows out with their brand new little black calves. It was a sight to behold but going a 100 kilometers per hour doesn't make it easy for braking. So I thought I could postpone the picture for my return trip, but when we went by later, they were out to pasture. And so was my picture!

Here's some cattle that obliged me with a nice smile, and actually a stare! When we came back around to take more pictures, they were surely wondering what were doing there again.
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Brooks and Newell Curiosities

Brooks, Alberta, Canada

An up and coming city that is blossoming in many just like Annie's tulips.

These beautiful tulips come from Annie's little garden, which were tenderly waiting for her and Chris to get home from Egypt, just like their little girls.

I really enjoyed my two weeks in Brooks and surrounding communities. One day I went out with Rose Borkent and visited The Wool Mine. A very interesting rural art store whose owner, Tracey Kuffner, is a soon to become world renown writer, who also happens to spin wool and creates artwork with the felt she makes. While there I purchased one of her published books, When Max Became a Mom and the cutest wool hat, that according to Rose and Tracey, they would not be caught wearing unless it were 20 degrees below (Celcius!). To which I responded, "then no one would wear hats!" You can find The Wool Mine on your way out of Brooks to Newell. You make a right as if heading to the Dinosaur Provincial Park, and it is less than a quarter of mile down the road.

Another curiosity on the way back to Brooks, on the right side of the road, not more than a mile from the same intersection was a very humorous set up in a farmer's adjacent hill, depicting a hunter on top of a very rusty pickup hunting ducks. What is funny about it, is that the ducks who live in the duck pond, have no clue about the setup. You have to slow down and look down if you want to see it, since it isn't easily visible from the road, especially at 100 kilometers per hour. If you look closely there are actual ducks waddling along and a sign showing ducks crossing! Too funny! Thank you for sharing your good sense of humor and Rose for stopping so I could take the pictures.

Then finally there are those beautiful contrasting landscapes, the irrigation wheels with their crooked metal pipes resting softly on the side of the barbed wire fence and at another angle the wind breaking yellowed branched trees ready to signal that spring has arrived. Someone carefully planted these trees and calls that place home. How lucky. (Lucky really isn't the word, it's blessed.)

Brooks, if you look closely, you will see between the artwork, the cowboy shops, the bronze elk and horses on the side of the road, the colorfully painted water hydrants, the humorous farmers, your diverse community comprised of Dutch, South Africans and Sudanese immigrants, Cowboys, Ranchers, Canadians from all provinces, Americans, and more and then your plains full of lovely landscapes brimming with plants, what a wonderful place you are!

Whew, that was a mouthful!

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