Friday, February 23, 2018

Benched

There are a lot of memorial benches along the bike path. For whatever reason I like to take photos of the bench, and whatever a person sitting there would see. Some of the views are stunning. One of these days I really must go past Rockyview Hospital at exactly the right time, the benches behind it overlook the reservoir and you can see the mountains. Lets see if I can also time it so there isn't anyone sitting there in their hospital gown, smoking a cigarette.

Most of the views are nice, but there's at least one that faces a soil wall. Well, it was winter when I took the photo, but you'll get the idea. There are also some nice sunrise photos in that blog as well.

Or this one, where the view is the sky during a ramble in summertime Fish Creek.

There is almost zero challenge to sitting on a bench and taking a photo of the view. It's a bit of a challenge to get both the bench and the view into a photo, with all of it being in focus. Sometimes it doesn't quite work out, as in the bottom photo here. I want to try that one again.

In my various rambles over the last little while I've found several that I've not blogged yet. These ones also happen to be the ones where it would be most challenging to take that seated photo. Not because of the photo difficulty, it's just getting to the bench. In both cases there was at least a foot of snow around them. In some cases behind the bench is bush, or thorny bushes.

This is at the very east end of Fish Creek park, up on the hill behind Diamond Cove.

If you look a little to the right, you'll get this view. Much nicer.

Closer to the parking lot you get quite a different view.

The benches have a memorial plaque on them. I hadn't known it, but you can also memorialize via a picnic table. The plaque isn't forever, it's a renewable 10 year term. Getting a bench done costs about $4000, and I've no idea what the renewal fee is.

In some senses, this is better than a gravestone. Few people visit graveyards anymore. The paths see a constant stream of traffic, and it's common to see people sitting on the bench, or setting up a table for a picnic. Some places are so popular you have to make a reservation. 

But I wonder about the people memorialized. What were they like? Did they want such a plaque? Was this their favourite spot to walk? Or is it something the family did wanting to do the right thing? I was out for a walk with a buddy one day and we found a bench with his family name on it, but I can't recall if he was related or not.

For a while I had the thought of blogging about all the named buildings and bridges in Calgary. These are important people, after all, to have their name on such a prominent structure. Yet some of them are a complete mystery to me. For example, Henry Wisewood High School on Elbow Drive and 75th Ave. I pass it often, and I have zero idea who he is or why his name is on it. No, I'm not going to look it up and tell you just now. You might know already, and I wouldn't want to bore you. But back before the internet, I was thinking of that as a nice little research project to keep me out of mischief and off the streets at night.

Meanwhile, income tax season looms. I've got a bunch of tax slips to be organized. They are supposedly in the mound of stuff on my desk. Best get at it.

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