Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Botany in the time of allergies, and ice maintenance.

A few nights ago we went to the Middle Arm of the Fraser River, near the Olympic Speed-skating Oblong. We walked along the dyke (son and I), looking for birds and otherwise. The sun was low, casting yellow light. The birdlife was uninspiring, and backwards: ten adult Canada Geese and two goslings.

We came across large patches of blue-green grass. I will call it dunegrass, without knowing for sure what it is. I liked its colour in the light. Notice also among the leaves are the young, reddening flowerheads of the invasive sheep sorrel, Rumex acetosella.

It was while I was trying to find a wallpaper-worthy shot, one that didn't include discarded beer cans, that my son started complaining of stinging eyes. Oh hell, I had forgotten about his allergy to grass pollen, which first surfaced a year ago. We turned to hurry back to the car, which was parked in the Olympic Speed-skating Loop basement parking lot.

On the way I paused to photograph a few things, including this beach pea,

and a cow-parsnip (more on this species here), but son was looking grim so we hurried onward. I thought the cool air within the Olympic Speed-skating Doughnut might reduce his symptoms, so we went inside.

As luck would have it, the Zamboni was performing. Everyone loves the Zamboni. Check how they lean into that turn.

Son felt better, and so did I.

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