|Mount Nelson, B.C.|
|Bob and Lev on the Sunbird chair|
|Bob & Mike at the Mile One Hut enjoying a Happy Hour|
Now that the sun is beginning to warm our souls, it is time to head towards the
land of the Big Lake to await a late arrival of spring. Our home, buried in snow for most of winter, is slowly making an appearance once again. A short visit with Stan and Liz in Calgary once again before we travel east. A beautiful and gracious couple indeed.
BOBCAT SKIBUM STATISTICS:
Total Ski Days:
Bob: 50 days
Cat: 35 days
Total Injured/too Tired to Ski Days:
Bob: 8 days: man cold
Cat: 5 weeks (fractured ankle)
3 days: bronchitis
Top Downhill Speed:
Bob & Cat: 66 kilometers per hour- whoa!!!!
Average Daily Vertical:
|All in a days' work|
|A slight inconvenience: The seat is missing|
|A little help from our friends|
Best Apres' Event:
|Boris & Boris Jr. At Scrabble night|
Total Snow Depth:
505 cm total snowfall
140 cm total depth
Best side trip:
|Bob & Barry....Playtime in the park|
And, let us not forget our annual nomination:
OUR FAVOURITE LIFTIE: (or shall we say: Ticket Validator) of 2014...
We spent our last ski day hanging out with Mike cruising on spring kissed snow under sunshine, tranquil blue sky and moderate temperatures teasing us wanting to abandon our winter cloaks. (thanks Mike for the loan of your jacket, as Bob left his back at the house)
Yes, we did see shorts and flip flops wandering around the village that day.
|The Bat & The Cat|
A toast at the end of another glorious season with a glass of wine and traditional hot chocolate and Amaretto for myself.
How true! we have both been blessed with wonderful friends, at home and abroad. We are so very grateful for each and every one of them. Our ski season is now over, but our memories will last a lifetime. Yes, a few bumps in the road this season, but still a great year.
|Bob & Walter|
And now that we are done for the season. It is time to pack up to begin our trek back to Northwestern Ontario. But first a visit to our dear friends, Stan and Liz in Calgary. Quality time with fellow skiers.
We left Calgary under warm temps and blue skies to arrive at Swift Current Saskatchewan for the night. The hotel is beside Living Sky Casino (our night's stay included a discount voucher for dinner and ticket toward the slot machines) We do not gamble, but what the $%$$##. There is not a great selection of dining establishment, so we defaulted and visited the casino. Totally ignorant on operating slots, we sheepishly asked for assistance. Fumbling over the lights and noise, we did manage to win enough earnings to pay for our dinner and cocktails. A win win situation!
A fun evening at its best. Thank goodness we left before we began to look like some of the hard core players with glazed eyeballs and worriesome expressions as they jump from machine to machine.
An early bedtime and a good night sleep is in order before heading to Moose Jaw to visit the tunnels and caves. A hideout for Al Capone.
|Moose Jaw, 1930's|
Next stop on our 2014 bucket list is Moose Jaw to visit the tunnels. We stayed in Swift Current, Saskatchewan for a night (we needed to use up our Holiday in Points....free night's stay) Us ski bums need to save our nickels & dimes (pennies are now extinct) as they add up quickly so we can purchase more lift tickets next year! Ha Ha We arrive now thirsty, so we Google Beer Store. We faithfully followed the directions as Happy Hour approaches quickly. Where do we land? Chappel Street should have been a good indication of 'an ERROR in communication' "You have arrived at your destination" WELL...our destination was The Church of Jesus Christ of the Latter Day Saints. We didn't think they supplemented their donations by selling beer. Plan "B". We asked a very lovely woman walking down the street for directions. She laughed and agreed that we were not standing in front of the Beer Store. She happily redirected us to our proper destination.
|Wall Murals, depicting life in town|
Once in Moose Jaw, a distinctive city. The name originated from the Cree word "Moose Gaw" meaning "warm Breezes.
The Railway came in 1882 & quickly transformed Moose Jaw from a lonely trading post into a bustling prairie town. And it is just that as we walked the streets that day.
By 1903, Moose Jaw had all the basic essentials of a growing community and was incorporated as a city. Along with the boom came economic prosperity, electricity, paved streets and a vision for the city reflected in its grand architecture.
Al Capone and his gang, Public enemy # 1. His goons, his guns, his gals....His secret world in the Tunnels of Moose Jaw. The fast pace tour offers a taste of the high life and the cost of laying low. Al Capone has captured the interest as prohibition created a new kind of "underground business" in this tiny community. We, of course did the tour and "went underground"
Of more interest, as Bob and I were ignorant of the fact that Chinese immigrants played a major role of the growth and prosperity of Moose Jaw.
|A Chinese Family|
With the completion of the C.P.R. in the late 1880's, Chinese migration moved eastward. Moose Jaw had the largest community reaching 162 in 1911. By 1921 there were more than 188 Chinese residing. Only 11 were female.
Notes for an Address by
The Right Honourable Stephen Harper
Prime Minister of Canada
Mr. Speaker, I rise today to formally turn the page on an unfortunate period in Canada’s past.
One during which a group of people - who only sought to build a better life - was repeatedly and deliberately singled out for unjust treatment.
I speak, of course, of the head tax that was imposed on Chinese immigrants to this country, as well as the other restrictive measures that followed.
The Canada we know today would not exist were it not for the efforts of the Chinese labourers who began to arrive in the mid-nineteenth century.
Almost exclusively young men, these immigrants made the difficult decision to leave their families behind in order to pursue opportunities in a country halfway around the world they called “gold mountain.”
Beginning in 1881, over 15,000 of these Chinese pioneers became involved in the most important nation-building enterprise in Canadian history – the construction of the Canadian Pacific Railway.
From the shores of the St. Lawrence, across the seemingly endless expanses of shield and prairie, climbing the majestic Rockies, and cutting through the rugged terrain of British Columbia,
– This transcontinental link was the ribbon of steel that bound our fledgling country together.
It was an engineering feat –one for which the back-breaking toil of Chinese labourers was largely responsible-
– That was instrumental to the settlement of the West and the subsequent development of the Canadian economy.
The conditions under which these men worked were at best harsh, and at times impossible: tragically, some one thousand Chinese labourers died building the CPR.
But in spite of it all, these Chinese immigrants persevered, and in doing so, helped to ensure the future of Canada.
But from the moment that the railway was completed, Canada turned its back on these men.
Beginning with the Chinese Immigration Act of 1885, a head tax of $50 was imposed on Chinese newcomers in an attempt to deter immigration.
Not content with the tax’s effect, the government subsequently raised the amount to $100 in 1900, and then to $500 – the equivalent of two years’ wages – in 1903.
This tax remained in place until 1923, when the government amended the Chinese Immigration Act and effectively banned most Chinese immigrants until 1947.
Similar legislation existed in the Dominion of Newfoundland, which also imposed a head tax between 1906 and 1949, when Newfoundland joined Confederation.
The Government of Canada recognizes the stigma and exclusion experienced by the Chinese as a result.
We acknowledge the high cost of the head tax meant many family members were left behind in China, never to be reunited, or that families lived apart and, in some cases, in poverty, for many years.
We also recognize that our failure to truly acknowledge these historical injustices has led many in the community from seeing themselves as fully Canadian.
Therefore, Mr. Speaker, on behalf of all Canadians and the Government of Canada, we offer a full apology to Chinese Canadians for the head tax and express our deepest sorrow for the subsequent exclusion of Chinese immigrants.
Gar nar dai doe heem.
This apology is not about liability today: it is about reconciliation with those who endured such hardship, and the broader Chinese-Canadian community,
– One that continues to make such an invaluable contribution to our great country.
And while Canadian courts have ruled that the head tax, and immigration prohibition, were legally authorized, we fully accept the moral responsibility to acknowledge these shameful polices of our past.
For over six decades, these race-based financial measures, aimed solely at the Chinese, were implemented with deliberation by the Canadian state.
This was a grave injustice, and one we are morally obligated to acknowledge.
To give substantial meaning to today’s apology, the Government of Canada will offer symbolic payments to living head tax payers and living spouses of deceased payers.
In addition, we will establish funds to help finance community projects aimed at acknowledging the impact of past wartime measures and immigration restrictions on ethno-cultural communities.
No country is perfect. Like all countries, Canada has made mistakes in its past, and we realize that.
Canadians, however, are a good and just people, acting when we’ve committed wrong.
And even though the head tax – a product of a profoundly different time -- lies far in our past, we feel compelled to right this historic wrong for the simple reason that it is the decent thing to do, a characteristic to be found at the core of the Canadian soul.
Mr. Speaker, in closing, let me assure the House that this government will continually strive to ensure that similar unjust practices are never allowed to happen again.
We have the collective responsibility to build a country based firmly on the notion of equality of opportunity, regardless of one’s race or ethnic origin.
Our deep sorrow over the racist actions of our past will nourish our unwavering commitment to build a better future for all Canadians.
Back home, Our man, Geoff has been working on clearing the driveway and digging a tunnel to our front door prior to our arrival in a few days.
|White Swan Provincial Park|
|I just had to do this!|
|Paju Mountain, Red Rock|
|Mike (Epic Adventures) & Bob|
|Paju Mountain, Red Rock with friends|