By Linda Benson

Friday September 15th. What an absolutely gorgeous day to be walking along Pier 8, more spectacular as we are only a few days away from the beginning of Autumn. I absolutely love autumn weather, especially here in Canada. Fresh air, cooling breezes, the way leaves change colors, and just watching nature as a whole. Yesterday a few (about 8) gorgeous Monarch butterflies flew over my head, not once but three times, were they the same ones? I don’t know. But it was an amazing sight indeed. Perhaps they were starting their journey to Mexico for the duration of the year. It is always hard for me to imagine, how these beautiful & fragile creatures can fly so far. Is it one continuous journey, or do they stop to rest and take a drink? How amazing our world is, when we stop and really think about it.

The bees and wasps are slowly dying off, although on my walk I was surrounded by the wasps, gosh they are pesky creatures. They seem to swarm no matter where I walk. For some reason they seem to chase after me. Is it that I have sweet smelling blood or that I love to wear colorful clothes? Perhaps they mistake me for a flower! This year they seem to have taken up residence on my lawns. There are literally hundreds of them. I’m not sure if they are simply seeking wet earth or are they trying to build hives? They didn’t like me mowing the lawns though! Buzzing around my ankles and generally becoming a nuisance. I had to stop and tell myself, they are here for a reason. They are also pollinators and they do a fine job of chasing away other pesky insects. I am not sure if they actually scare the bees away, as I saw very few of them (bees) this year. I got excited when I came upon a bumble bee in my garden. I wish I had seen more, they don’t scare me half as much as the wasps do.

I don’t know about you, but I feel this has been a very disappointing summer, weather wise. Either it has been too hot or too wet to do my walks. I have missed meeting up with strangers and learning their story.

However, today, I decided to walk down to the water front, and I’m so happy I did. I came across a pair of delightful ladies. I had seen them walking together a few days earlier, but today I decided to approach them, introduce myself, and learn about them. We had a wonderful time just bantering back and forth, before I asked for a photo. Although neither of them lives in the N.E.B area, they promised to visit us on line.

Irene, is from the mountain area, and Marg is from Troy. They love walking at the pier and as Marg said, it’s a breath of fresh air for her, every few days. It’s a bit of a hike from Troy but she enjoys the journey and she especially enjoys her walks.

As I was talking to these lovely ladies, another couple of ladies walked by one yelling out my name! Pam, I hadn’t seen her in close to 20 years. She used to work for the Victorian Order of Nurses on Victoria Av, before retiring and moving to Burlington. Of course we promised to get together over a coffee, no doubt at Williams Pub Café, as she also loves being down by the water.
So you just never know who you will meet when you get yourself out and about.

I loved the couple of photos I took today too, the one of the Skyway Bridge especially. It is so clear, and taken just with my cell phone. And the Burlington sky line is also amazing. Well, here I am tooting my own horn, but you can tell I love it down by the water. Isn’t Pier 8 coming along nicely? Every time I visit, there seems to be something new to look at.

Have you noticed their “selfie” stations? This was totally new to me. At first they made me smile, then I thought what a great idea for when you are on your own and wanting to take photos of yourself. The interesting thing is, while I was checking one out, a man approached me and asked if he could take my photo for me! I didn’t actually want a photo of myself at this point, so I politely declined.

Also, have you seen these circular posters, on the ground? Take a photo of one or use the QR code, and you will be taken on a virtual tour. I have not tried it yet, so I can’t say where it takes you (metaphorically speaking), I’ll be sure to check it out the next time I am down there.

Well happy walking. Enjoy what the North End has to offer, go talk to someone you don’t know (for adults only!!) and listen to what they have to say. It’s amazing what you can learn …..

Until next time, Linda