We recently played a show in Edmonton at Avenue Theater put on by Raised Fist Production. Here are some pictures.
We recently played a show in Edmonton at Avenue Theater put on by Raised Fist Production. Here are some pictures.
Over the last 3 weekends, I’ve been taking an NSL course so I can be a lifeguard. I took it at the university and the guy who taught it was the pool director there. The first two days were a lot of swimming and some first aid. It wasn’t too hard, but definitely challenging. The second weekend was all first aid and learning how the pool works with all the chemicals and the behind the scene functions at the pool. We didn’t even get in the pool. The third weekend was pretty much all swimming. We did fitness tests, scenarios and some more first aid. In the end, I thought it was easy. I knew my first aid and knew what I had to do, so I passed without a problem.
We went to moose mountain yesterday do ride some shuttle runs. We went a few weeks ealier in the year when it was warmer. When we got there, there was snow on top and the trails were really wet. I hit a couple of trees trying to avoid the big puddles that gave you a mud bath every time you went through them. It was still a really fun day though. I hit some bigger gaps that I didn’t do the last time and found out that they were easier than I thought.
Here are some of the best pictures that we took at Silverstar.
Watership Down and the Displaced People in Our World.
Tree of Life
June 30, 2012
Watership Down, written by Richard Adams, is an adventurous story of some very brave and inquisitive rabbits that are outcasts from their own warren. They chose to leave and to find a new place to live. Hunted by predators and other rabbits they have to learn to survive in the wilderness while looking for a new, safe home. Facing harsh weather, predator attacks, and trying to get along, they embark on the journey of their lives. Watership Down is an example of the plight of displaced people in our world in that the characters in the story, when in search for a new home, experience danger in the hopes of finding freedom.
A displaced person is a person who has been forced to leave his or her native place. The rabbits in this story knew they needed to leave because one of them envisioned something very bad was going to happen. Fiver had a feeling, “but it’s not exactly danger that I seem to feel about the place. It’s–oh, I don’t know–something oppressive, like thunder: I can’t tell you what; but it worries me.” From a reader’s perspective, we know that they were going to be displaced by a housing development.
An example in history would be the Jews during WWII. Some knew something was going to happen to them because they saw it in their cities and towns so they decided to leave. The rabbits from Hazel’s home warren died from being gassed in their burrows and the Jews that stayed were caught and gassed in chambers. Their own warren wouldn’t listen to Fiver and Hazel’s warnings so they had to take whoever would come and escape to face other problems along the way.
They met up with another warren with strong, healthy rabbits. These rabbits were nice at first and showed them their interesting way of life. The warren filled with big healthy rabbits was confusing to Fiver and Hazel. It seemed that somebody put food for them in a field not too far away. “Sometimes there is nothing at all, especially in good summer weather. But in hard weather, in winter, there’s nearly always something.” They sometimes carried food back to the burrows for easier feeding and in case there was bad weather. Hazel and his companions found this weird at first but eventually came to see that it was a good idea.
Fiver had a feeling that something was wrong. Once in awhile, a farmer would trap one of them. He put the food out as bait and he was careful only to trap one every so often as not to scare the other ones away. The healthy rabbits were complacent. As long as it wasn’t their turn to be snared, they didn’t care. Hazel didn’t understand Fiver’s feelings and tried to convince him to stay. “No, said Fiver very quickly. You are closer to death than I.” Hazel decided to trust Fiver because he had been right in the past.
They also were in danger of the Efrafan rabbits. Many other rabbits tried and failed at escaping and it was very dangerous. The Efrafan warren had plenty of rabbits, lots of land and they were very organized, but the bad things outweigh the good. The leadership was very authoritarian. Once you were in, you could not get out. When Bigwig realized that, “they thought of us as their prisoners,” it shook him awake for him to realize what was happening.
If a person was taken away from everything they’ve known and are looking for a place to feel comfortable, Efrafa would seem like a good place to stay. If the person was welcomed and lead to feel like they were needed, they would want to stay. They would be willing to give up their freedom to gain food, shelter, and security. If there are strict rules, it would give a sense of security to a person if they were in danger. But, as in Burma, “many in opposition are either imprisoned or killed. In most of the country there is a false peace due to the dictators’ ability to control dissent”. This would lead to a false feeling of home.
The rabbits also faced danger from man. The rabbits from the home warren were killed by men just because they were in the way of the housing development. In the big healthy warren, the men tried to catch and snare the rabbits a few at a time. Hazel also rescued four rabbits hutch rabbits that belonged to humans and almost got caught and killed for trying to help them escape.
Displaced people face many predators. Women and children are especially vulnerable. “Around 58% of the displaced population are women. In welfare centres, women have been subject to sexual harassment, abuse and rape by the security forces and paramilitary groups as well as by other men. Women are also affected by domestic violence. ” “Children displaced by both natural disasters and conflicts are often more susceptible to recruitment by armed forces.” Human predators are the most dangerous.
The group of rabbits had some problems overcoming obstacles while traveling. They had to do things that rabbits don’t usually do like swim across a river. “Like all wild animals, rabbits can swim if they have to: And some even swim when it suits them. …But most rabbits avoid swimming.” They had to endure rain, lack of food and rest. “There is nothing like bad weather to reveal the shortcomings of a dwelling, particularly if it is too small.” They didn’t always get along or a agree on everything. “Cold and damp, Hazel felt impatient. He had always been accustomed to rely on Fiver and now, when he really needed him, he was letting them down… they had an anxious time and were all weary.” It was also hard finding shelter sometimes.
Displaced Rwandans had a similar problem. “There were thousands of makeshift shelters along rural roads. Many have walls of leaves and soil and roofs of plastic sheeting giving very limited protection against rain and temperatures which can drop to 10C.” Displaced Somalis found help from the U.N, supplying emergency shelter items, to these people they can be life-saving: plastic sheets so they can put a roof over their head, blankets and sleeping mats so they can sleep and put their children down, jerry cans for water and kitchen sets, pots, pans, plates and cutlery.” This gives the displaced people more hope for a new home.
As displaced rabbits, once Hazel and his companions got to Watership Down, they thought everything would be ok. Watership Down was easily defensible, had good food, a good burrow, and was far away from Efrafa and other warrens so that they wouldn’t have to worry about getting attacked. They brought more rabbits from Efrafa back with them so that they could have a bigger warren. Any displaced person would want the same thing. A safe place to live, food and water, and far enough away from enemies. They also would want companionship; someone else who was going through the same thing to go with them on their journey.
Watership Down is a novel about displaced rabbits and can be compared to displaced people in our world and what they might go through. Displaced people can face danger from anywhere at any time, whether prepared or unprepared, displacement is hard no matter what. Nothing can prevent it from happening, but it’s a thing that nobody should go through. Never let the hope to live in freedom die.
Adams, Richard George. Watership Down. New York: Macmillan Publishing Co., Inc, 1972.
“Burma Overview.” 2007 Free Burma Rangers Online. http://www.freeburmarangers.org/Features/burma_overview.html
“Displacement, Natural Disasters, and Human Rights.” October 17, 2008. Online. http://www.brookings.edu/research/speeches/2008/10/17-natural-disasters-ferris
Ensuring durable solutions for Rwanda’s displaced people: a chapter closed too early www.internal-displacement.org/…/Rwanda_indepth_report_July_05
“The Refugee Council”, September 2003, p.26
June 24 2012
The Development of a Young Man in The Cay
God sometimes wants to teach us things that we wouldn’t know if he didn’t give us that little push. We need to be pushed to do some things that we don’t necessarily want to do at the time. It might turn out well and you end up enjoying it and being glad that you tried something new. Sometimes he pushes us to take risks and guides us in directions that we don’t know where they lead, but there is always a reason. Just like Philip in The Cay, written by Theodore Taylor, God sometimes drags us kicking and screaming toward change in our lives to learn about other people, to learn new things and to learn about ourselves.
Philip thought that the black people in his town were weird and he didn’t want to be around them that much. It was sad that Philip had to be stranded on an island fighting to survive and lose a close friend, Timothy, who was a black, for him to realize that the blacks weren’t weird or strange at all. After what happened on the island, when he came back home he started to befriend the black people and hang around them more. He considered them friends. They were really good people. He learned about other people and the sacrifices of which they were capable.
Philip was taken out of his normal environment onto an island with a person he knew nothing about and was forced to learn to adapt to his surroundings. He learned how to fish, survive on his own in the wilderness, how to tell when bad storms were coming, and tell what the weather was like. Timothy left behind some useful tools so that Philip could go on living without him like the rope he put up for Philip to move around the camp and to fish. He also learned a lot about himself and what he could physically and mentally endure on the island.
Philip changed over the time he spent on the island. At first he was just a curious kid that got into trouble quite a bit and didn’t listen to his parents that much. He went from his comfortable life in the city to being blind on a raft with somebody he didn’t even know. He was really scared and disorientated. He also was angry about losing his eyesight and not being able to see a single thing he was doing, but eventually he got over the anger. It was hard enough being on that island, without many supplies, but with his injuries and disabilities, it took a lot of strength and courage from both Philip and Timothy. After Timothy died, Philip had a lot of determination, the skills, and the courage to live on his own until he was rescued.
God sometimes brings tragedies to our lives to learn about other people, to learn new things and to learn about ourselves. Philip experienced these tough times and it changed him into a better, more mature young man. When we’re going through tough times is usually when we can learn the most about ourselves and other people. So when tough times are ahead, we should think of what we could learn.
Right now we’re in Silver Star BC in a condo right on the mountain. I rained pretty much all day yesterday but today it’s nice and sunny. I haven’t been able to bike yet because of my collarbone, but I should be able to pretty soon. Here are some pictures of the village on the mountain.
This is what we see when we step out of the condo.
When we walk down the path a little bit. See more of the village.
A Bit farther down the path.
This is where you can start to see the biking trails starting. You have to take a trail down to the chairlift to go up. The chairlift is lower down the mountain than the rest of the village. The one in the background is for hiking.
Here is more of the village. Quite colorful I must say.
It’s hard not being able to ride when Caleb and Dad can. I should be good to go within the next few days, but it’ll still be painful for a while. Advil up!!
Yesterday I broke my collarbone biking. You can see how in the video that I have provided in the bottom of this post. But for now you will have to read my explanation. HA! My friends and I went biking one day and he knew of this drop in the river valley near rundle park. We went and looked at it and I thought it was pretty crazy, but I didn’t do it because I had the wrong bike. A few days later I came back with the right bike and after a few (about 20) run-ins, I finally did it. I came up a little too short and bottomed out on my rear suspension, but other than that it was ok. I did it again, but this time I nailed it. Feeling accomplished, we went and rode some other stuff. Yesterday, I wanted to hit it again, so when I got there, I did some more run-ins, and realized it was pretty windy. I’ve had experience with windy jumps and although I’ve come close, I’ve never crashed because of wind up until this point. This drop was one of the biggest free falling drop that I’ve done and it was out in the open so I was exposed to a lot of wind. I timed it to where I thought it had died down a little and started to gain speed for it but right as I was about to take off, I could feel the wind pick up again. When I was in the air, I was blown a little bit to the left and landed on the side of the landing. That caused me to try and correct but I ended up turning too much and went off the trail and almost hit a tree. I was still trying to control myself in the long grass, but I hit something which caused me to go flying off and shoulder-plant into the ground. As I was laying there and trying to answer caleb’s silly questions and comments (“Oh sure, blame it on the wind…”) I realized that I couldn’t bend my knee that easily. I got up and tried moving around and realized that my right collarbone was sticking out more than usual. It hurt a bit, but I was more concerned with my knee. We pushed back up the hill and met a friend at the top and talked for a while before going home. My knee was working fine, so I started to wonder about my shoulder. It hurt quite a bit from just riding home and once we got there, my dad said it was broken and that we should go to the doctor. Long story short, we got it X-rayed and put a sling on it and now I’m just waiting for it to heal so I can go biking!
Here’s the video.
This is how you should do it.
This is how you shouldn’t do it.
This is what I look like now…
I was careful not to put the rocks exactly in the middle of the picture. There is good perspective and contrast of how high the top of the cliff is to how low I was. There is more color in the top part which draws your eye to the center or top of the picture.
I like the color in this one and the green really stands out. There is pretty good detail with the water drops on the plant. I was trying to get even weighting on the top and bottom. I also used the rule of thirds and slightly off set the main subject to the right side. The contrast is beautiful.
I used the rule of thirds here to not get the fence or the tree in the middle of the picture. The fence adds a depth of field and also has leading lines. There is a little bit of repetition with the fence but it doesn’t continue all the way through the picture because of the depth of field.
This picture is really top heavy and there is a lot of negative space in the bottom. I was careful not to put the drop in the middle of the picture. I could have but I would have to be a lot closer. The light in the higher left corner makes the adds interest to the back ground and keeps it from being boring.
This picture looks a little confusing because of the canted angle and it has some nice hue. There is some interesting depth of field and contrast change between the trees and bushes close up and far away.
The grass in this picture has nice color and looks good when there are the darker trees around it. It looks like there are layers of the hill sliding down like a summertime avalanche which looks really neat. There is asymmetrical balance because the right part of the picture is heavier or more weighted than the left side.
This one is my favorite because the two trees that are close are really bright and all the other trees that are farther away are pretty dark and it really brings out the color. There is a lot of contrast in this picture.
In this picture the water looks a little like milk running down the rocks. The water draws the eye up to where the water comes down. I felt it appropriate to put the waterfall in the center of the frame instead of on one of the sides.
I felt it was appropriate to put the main object in the middle of the picture because it didn’t look that good if it wasn’t. There is a lot of change in color and contrast between the dandelion and the grass. They eye is drawn to the dandelion which makes it seem to pop out of the picture a little bit.
Assignment: Write about somebody in your life who you know that could be seen as a modern christian hero.
The person who I have chosen as a modern day Christian hero is my uncle, Harvey Stuart, because his ministry with the indigenous missionaries to the North American church. He is a missionary for I.N.N (International Needs Network) who now lives in Lynden, Washington. He and his wife lived in Slovakia for a year where he taught English in order to teach people about God. He lived in Morocco for a year and tried to get a school going. He goes to different countries every few years, but what he mostly does now is he organizes meetings in North American churches and schools for indigenous missionaries from countries like Zambia, Egypt, and Ghana to speak and perform. He travels with them as they raise awareness about the state in which their country is in and to raise funds for their ministries. He has come to our house numerous times to stay for a few days while they present to the local churches and schools. The people he brings over are always really interesting and some are school children to represent their school. I see him as a hero because he has respect for these people and their cultures and he wants to help educate the North American church to help support the indigenous people’s goals.