Monday, 22 May 2017

That's a Wrap

It is the end of the long weekend and the end of the 154th Victoria Highland Games and Celtic Festival.

My day of volunteering was my easiest yet as, due to reasons, there was no hurling. There was, however, further discussion about starting a GAA club in Victoria. When I think about what we're committing to doing, I get really excited... and then question my sanity.


But let's not think about that right now.

Monday is the day of the Irish camp competitions. They had two stages set up. I have a couple of the little kids and they're adorable, but I don't have time (or energy) to blur all the faces right now.

This gentleman and his wife were delightful. I was just sad that I only ever saw them together at a distance.

The grass is always greener...

"Is it step-one-two-three or one-two-three-step?" They were practising their moves, but I wasn't quick enough with my camera to catch them.

The Highland Games portion of the weekend ends with the keg toss. What's the over/under on the organisers getting the damage deposit back on this keg?

I watched the 12" and 13" bar. They keep raising the bar until only one person successfully gets it over the bar. Given the clearance they were getting on the bar where it was, I could tell it would be a long time before the competition was over.

After three days of being the sun and heat for hours upon time, I called an end to my day there in time to go see "Alien: Covenant". Sit in a dark air conditioned theatre for two hours? Yes, please!

The movie was okay. I enjoyed it but I wasn't blown away. It set up a series reboot in the way Prometheus wanted to set it up. (Which is to say that I actually want to see what happens next after this movie. After Prometheus, I didn't give two hoots if we ever got another movie in the franchise.) The scare factor seemed tame compared to previous Alien films... or it could just be that I'm getting older and not as easily taken-in by jump scares. The one thing that the movie did share with Prometheus was that Michael Fassbender was the stand-out performance.


He plays two AI characters, different versions of the same prototype, yet the nuances of the two characters. Just masterfully done.

And with that, it's back to reality tomorrow.

Sunday, 21 May 2017

Highland Games 2017 Day Two

Another day down at the Victoria Highland Games and Celtic Festival. The hurling had a later start time today, so I took advantage of the extra gift of time and a half-charged camera battery.

I *knew* I forgot to do something Saturday night.

Oh well, I still got a good hour of wandering time before the battery died.

Practising for the band marches.

Caught up with some of the dancing.

Letting off some steam before the judging begins.

Tuning the bagpipes... but how do you know when you're done?

 I tried to be a stealth photographer but occasionally I was spotted.

Colours of the clans.

 Spinning wool.

Squad goals.

Floofy dog running the agility trails.

Good boys get a treat.

I found out that I hadn't missed the falconry demonstration. Two of the three falcons were molting and had lost tail feathers making the demonstration difficult for them. It was the third falcon's first time attending a festival and she was only there to get used to the crowds. It does, however, making taking photos of them much easier!

That's when my camera died.

The rest of the day went well, and I may have joined in on a discussion about approaching the GAA to start a club here in Victoria.

Happy Victoria Day weekend to me!

Saturday, 20 May 2017

Highland Games 2017 Day One

Day One in the bag and I'm beat. 

I had a fun time volunteering with the hurling. The clubs pretty much take care of the games, so my job was getting the water set up and then explaining hurling to the spectators that came to watch. Quite possibly the easiest volunteering gig of the whole weekend, but I'm as happy as a clam.

Once my shift was over, I went to visit the dog events. I caught the end of the herding and was really impressed to learn that the sheep used had never been hearded by a dog prior to Thursday. They were amazingly calm.

They sheep were hearded into a holding pen where they would stay until the sheep shearing demonstration. While I love the sheep shearing (the woman who does it every year is incredible!) I needed to sit down so I moved on.

Who's a good boy? Are  you a good boy? Yes, you are. You're a good boy.
 I missed the falconry demonstrations, but I did get to watch this guy eat half a quail. That was something.

I did catch Blood & Iron's sword demonstration. It was really interesting and I hope I can catch the full demonstration Sunday or Monday.

And the highlight of the day? They have Tayto Crisps!!! I posted this picture on various social media and now I have three different orders to pick them up for friends and family. Hey Tayto, it's time to expand into Canada!

Looking forward to see what the rest of the weekend holds.

Friday, 19 May 2017

Hurling in Victoria

My love of GAA and Hurling is well documented. I'm over-the-moon excited that I get to spend this weekend assisting and watching the hurling at the Victoria Highland Games and Celtic Festival.

My dad got a good laugh out of it tonight."I'm phoning Ireland tomorrow to tell them."

But for now... it's late and I have to get up early tomorrow!

Thursday, 18 May 2017


I hit checkout time at work today and all I could think about was this gif.

It's just been one of those work weeks and I still have one day to go. Ugh.

On the upside, I now have my stepmom's grandma's fine china. I know, that relationship connection is a bit of a ride. It sounds like the start of an urban legend. To keep it simple, she's grandma from here on out because that's what I actually called her when she was alive. When grandma moved into her first assisted living home, she gave the china to my stepmom. I've been asking for it since I was... five? I don't ever remember not being vocal about wanting the china. I am forever grateful that my little brother was a brother because he had zero interest in it.

As of last night, the china is mine. Half of it is. The other half was still in my stepmom's storage. It will be mine soon!

I'd post a picture but I haven't unpacked mine yet and there are a lot of rose china patterns so... you'll see it some day.

Another upside is that a cousin is coming to visit in a few weeks. YAY!

Finally, I'm spending this weekend volunteering at the Victoria Highland Games and Celtic Festival. I'm volunteering with the hurling matches so I'll be surrounded by the Irish diaspora while I'm there. Still, I'll be sure to venture over to the Scottish exhibitions for the lovely... views ;)

It's sure to be a great weekend.

Maybe I can make it through that last day of work.