Sunday, March 14, 2010

Visiting Kingston

Early this month, Frank and I spent a couple of days in Kingston, Ontario. It's situated just about halfway between Toronto and Montreal, and just happens to be where my son attends university at Royal Military College (RMC). As luck would have it, our intended trip to see blues singer Matt Andersen perform at Kingston's Grand Theatre coincided with Jeffrey's return from his week long trip to Cuba. We were able to spend Saturday afternoon with him at our hotel room watching Canada's Olympic gold medal hockey victory.

(please click on photos to enlarge)

Jeffrey gives the thumbs up to our record-breaking Canadian athletes.

After a victory dinner, we returned to watch the closing ceremonies, before Jeffrey headed back to campus a few minutes away.

A night time view of Kingston's beautiful City Hall as seen on our way to dinner.

The lovely domed clock tower.

The next morning Frank and I wandered around town for a bit. This door just happened to catch my eye.

Eventually we stopped for refreshment. Cup of chai, anyone?

That afternoon, while Frank settled in for a nap, I took my camera out for a walk.

I headed over the bridge toward RMC and snapped a shot of Memorial Arch. Students are requested to walk around the arch, and not pass beneath it more than twice in the entire time spent at RMC. The first time they march under it is when they arrive as new cadets. Four years later, they will once again march under the arch when they graduate as Officers of the Canadian Armed Forces. That day is coming up for my son this May.

On my way back to the hotel. I had a clear view of the city's skyline.

Colourful textures at the side of the dock.

In the evening, before the show, we had dinner out. The brick wall and wooden shutters demanded that I snap a shot.

Then they insisted it be in black and white. I have very demanding surroundings.

Here's another showy wall, complete with mirror.

It was soon time to walk over to the Grand Theatre to see Matt Andersen perform. If you ever have the chance to listen to this young, blues artist, please do yourself a favour and go. He's a wonderful songwriter with an incredible voice, and he plays a fine guitar. You can have a listen to some of his own music here. He also performs a few classics. The time just flew by.

And then we were on our way back to the hotel.

This lovely view greeted us outside our window at night.

See you in a few days with some more photos.


Dave said...

Facinating photos Hilary, and quite different to your normal style. Thanks for sharing you trip. Glad you saw your son too. Well done Canada for winning the ice hockey! - Dave

Jinksy said...

I'm so glad your surroundings made demands on you...Or we might have missed out on some lovely pics...

Sueann said...

Oh how I loved your photos. The ones with the shutters really catch my eye. What a beautiful place. And it was nice meeting your son. A very handsome lad!

Tabor said...

Has that cutie patootie got a girl friend? Nice phtos as always. You have a wonderful eye for texture and color.

Brian Miller said...

wonderful pics hilary..thanks for taking us on this trip with you and congrats to canada...

NJ said...

Great pictures of Kingston. I'm so glad that I only live about 40 minutes away from it. Were you in the Grande before they made her grander? They did a nice job although I don't think it's as nice as the Empire Theatre in Belleville. The seats there are like sitting in an armchair at home.

Bonnie Zieman, M.Ed. said...

I enjoyed your photos of Kingston. A long time since I have been there.

Your son is a handsome young man - must look wonderful in his uniform.

Sounds like a perfect getaway!

LadyFi said...

Gorgeous shots: especially the pink door and those golden bricks.

Kerri Farley said...

Fabulous pics Hilary ~ and I LOVE that you surroundings are so demanding of you :)

I checked out the link to the Blues artist ~ great music! Have passed his name on to hubby who is the Blues lover in the family. I LOVE all music :)

blunoz said...

Beautiful photos. I'm especially impressed by the nighttime photos. I can never get night photos to come out so crisp and colorful as that.

Thanks for sharing the tradition of walking under the arch at the RMC. That's pretty cool.

Steve Gravano said...

Great set, I love all door handle. Checked out Matt Andersen's utube also. He's fantastic.

Unknown said...

Hilary ... these were fantastic.
You must be so incredibly proud of your son.

And to answer, yes that was a hawk getting yelled at by two crows who apparently had laid claim to that tree. The hawk tried to flaunt his size but to no avail and eventually gave up and flew off. I thought it was appropriate for how I was feeling lately. You know, with all these teens in the house. Some quiet hours on the beach seemed silly at first, and then , not so much.
Glad to be back though.

solarity said...

You are So Bad for me! The dock picture is jumping up and down screaming "I want to be a quilt!" Unfortunately my head is full of things that want to be quilts, jostling each other trying to be first out the gate. There are only so many hours in the day.

Mary Anne in Kentucky

ellen abbott said...

I can definitely see you in Jeffery. Love the close-ups.

Leah J. Utas said...

I love the richness in your photos.

Daryl said...

Love the red door and doesnt those pilings at the dock remind me of the one I shot near Battery Park here .. wonderful nite shots ... a super contrast to your nature shots!

Daryl said...

OOPS forgot to add I am impressed with the clever way that Chai tea bag is anchored to the glass!

Land of shimp said...

Hilary, that's a beautiful area. I can completely understand why the door caught your eye. The handle worn slightly away? Think of all the people that represents. All with their separate lives, and concerns, all connected by having touched that door handle, and that there is evidence of that is fascinating.

Your son is a very handsome young man, and it must be almost mind blowing that he is so close to graduating. It seems we blink and twenty years go by in that time frame. At other times, it's almost impossible to believe that so much has happened over the course of our adult lives. Think of your own circumstances when he was born, and how much they have likely changed. How you couldn't have foreseen most of them. He isn't the only one who has likely grown and changed in so many ways.

On a completely unrelated note, I'm always startled when people have been to Cuba. Although Cuba allows U.S. citizens to travel there, the U.S. restricts travel by our citizens to only those with special license. So it is always startling to see people from other countries mention going to Cuba, because it's kind of a bear to do from here.

sarahjayne smythe said...

A beautiful blog and such gorgeous pictures. Thanks for sharing your eye for the lovely things in the world with us. BTW, I'm over here following you from Amy's She Writes blog.

Shammickite said...

Kingston is such a great place to visit isn't it? And what fun to watch THE HOCKEY GAME with your son. I spent a weekend in Kingston last November at a Scottish Country Dance weekend. We didn't get to stroll around downtown very much, too busy dancing, but we did spend a couple of hours browsing in the biggest Value Village in Ontario!!!!

Maggie May said...

Love the photos. You are good at getting unusual ones that people wouldn't normally look for.
Good looking son. Wonder who he takes after!!!!!

Nuts in May

Frank Baron said...

You nailed those night shots of the tower. They're terrific. And I'm glad you got Matt a little more ink. I'm a believer in the Butterfly Effect. He's a major league talent and it's only a matter of time before he gets the recognition he deserves.

It was a wonderful couple of days. We'll have to do it again sometime. :)

Thumbelina said...

Wonderful relaxing time. Thank you for sharing. It must be great to catch up with your son too. :0)

Love the demanding surroundings btw...

Grayquill said...

The door handle - worn, sturdy, simple and built to last - Nice!
Congrats to you and your son! Your pride came through.
Good job mom raising such a great son taking on such a noble endeavour.

ds said...

Awesome, relaxing, and a visit with your son. Doesn't get much better than that! Love that door (so glad you listen to your "demanding surroundings").

Cricket said...

Looks like a lovely vacation. And that cup of tea. That is a beautiful picture. When I'm done here, I'm making one. To my taste, a cup of tea should be indistinguishable from black coffee by sight alone, then add just a hint of milk and NO sugar, or else you taste sugar, not tea. Your mileage may vary.

I know, chai is something else again, but you've put me in the mood for tea on this dreary day.

your photos remind me of the vacations my wife and I took, post-Christmas, pre-children. Always to little seaside towns in the winter. Cheaper, uncrowded, and beautiful in their own way.

photowannabe said...

You have such a handsome son Hilary. Thanks for sharing him with us. We have just had our son and family here for a week so i know how wonderful it is to have some time with sons.
I really love the door handle too. Great detail and textures.

Karen said...

Neat to spend time with your son! I love your artistic eye. Your photos scream at you like some of my characters do to me, when I write. :P

the Bag Lady said...

Thanks for taking us along, Hilary! Great photos, as always!

Mental P Mama said...

Always beautiful...

Anonymous said...

I loved going along on your trip. Your photos are very nice. I know what you mean about your surroundings being demanding. Sometimes I just see a view as if it's through the camera lens.
Congratualtions to Jeff on his upcoming graduation. That is an interesting tradition of only walking under the arch twice. We have a gateway at the university where I am employed. It is considered bad luck to walk under it. I am not superstitious, but walk around anyway. I think I would feel weird to walk under. Have a good week!

Nancy said...

You have a very fine looking son, Hilary, and one to be proud of, it seems. How great to spend some time with him. The concert sounds right up my alley!

I loved all of your photos - especially those taken at night.

Hilary said...

• Thanks, Dave. They are somewhat different. I don't often get the chance to hang around a city. Thanks so much for your always kind words. :)

• Thanks, Jinsky. I go to demanding places. ;)

• SueAnn, thank you so much. And I sure won't argue with you about my son. :)

• Tabor, why? Do you know a cute girl? ;) Thanks so much for your ever so kind words. They're much appreciated. :)

• Brian, thank you. I'm always happy to have you along on my various wanderings. :)

• NJ, I envy your close proximity to my son's town. :) I had never been to the Grand theatre before. In fact, I've never really been to Kingston before Jeffrey started at RMC. And I've never been to the theatre in Belleville but it sure does sound comfy. Thanks for your kind words. :)

• Bonnie, thanks. I'm glad you enjoyed the photos and you're so right about how Jeffrey looks in uniform. No doubt I'll be posting some photos around grad time. Thanks so much for your always warm words. :)

• Thanks, Lady Fi. I'm glad you enjoyed them. :)

• Kerri, thanks very much. Yes, my surroundings can be incredibly persistent sometimes. ;) I'm glad you checked out Matt Anderson. He's absolutely incredible - particularly for such a young guy. Thanks for the visit. :)

• Kevin, thank you kindly. I generally have a tough time at night too but I've been playing with the settings and beginning to get the hang of it - at least when there are enough city lights upon which to focus as there was in this case. I'm glad you enjoyed the photos and the arch tradition. Thanks always for stopping by. :)

• Thank you, Steve. I'm so glad some folks are checking him out. He's so worth a good, long listen. Thanks for your kind words. :)

• Thanks you so much, Deb. You're right, of course. I am most proud of that boy, and his brother, of course. I am blessed with great kids. Thanks for confirming about the hawk. And that's very logical that you related to that situation at this time. Thanks so much for the visit. :)

• Mary Anne, I'm guessing that I'm so bad for you in a so good kind of way. I'd like an explanation though as to how a dock can be a quilt. :)

• Ellen, that's not something that I hear very often. Jeffrey looks much more like his Dad, and my younger son Alex has been saddled with my appearance. ;) Thanks for stopping by. :)

• Thank you so much, Leah. That's a very kind compliment. :)

• Daryl, thanks so much. I did think of your wonderful shot when I took this one but yours was far better. Somebody designated it the post of the week! I liked how the presented the tea too. I've only seen that once before but it's a cool way to serve loose tea. Thanks for the visit. :)

Hilary said...

• Alane, when I see a wonderful essay-length comment I know that I'm in for a good read from dear Shimp. :) I love the way that you think about the life of everyday items.
It seems to me that everything you see evokes an intricate thought and story. You always make the commonplace so much more entertaining. You're so right about how incredible it is for me to see my baby boy all grown up like this, and yes, a lot has changed all around since his and his brother's births. I know how unusual it is for you Amurikans to hear about us Canucks going to Cuba. It's kind of a shame that it's not made easier but such is life. Thanks always for your visit. :)

• Welcome, Sarahjayne and thanks so much for the very kind words. I'm glad you dropped by from our mutual friend, Amy's blog. I sure hope that you'll be back again soon. :)

• Shammy, yes.. Kingston is great. It reminds me a bit of my native Montreal.. history and age-wise. The game was fun to watch with Jeffrey and Frank and a bottle of Cuban rum. ;) Thanks always for stopping by. :)

• Maggie May, Jeffrey looks like his Dad. Thank you for such kind words. They're so much appreciated.:)

• Thank you, Frank. I'm glad you like how they turned out. I was pretty pleased with them too. Matt Andersen was incredible and yes, our two days, and the few afterward were indeed wonderful and I'm very much looking forward to the next time. :)

• Thumbelina, good to see you, my friend. Thank you for joining me on my pictorial visit to Kingston. Thanks so much for stopping by. :)

• Grayquill, thank you. I'm glad you liked the door handle pic. Thank you so much for such kind words. I am indeed intensely proud of my boy. :)

• DS, thanks very much. Those surroundings just never stop nagging sometimes. ;) I'm glad you could join me on my visit. :)

• Thank you, Cricket. I love tea, too and Chai in particular. I never used to sweeten my tea at all and then Frank got me into the habit of using a bit of honey. Chai demands honey and milk - it's too bitter without. I half expected you to come up with Tea for the Tillerman for this one. ;) Thanks so much for stopping by. :)

• Thank you so much, Sue. I'm happy to share my boys. :) The time together is so special since he's been away from home. Thanks so much for your always kind words. :)

• Thanks very much, Karen. Screaming words and images. It gets pretty noisy in our collective brains, eh? ;)

• Baggie, thanks for joining me and for the kind words. I miss you! I think it'll time for a call before too long. :)

• Thanks MPM. :)

• LadyCat, thank you. I'm glad you joined me. That's exactly right. I so often see things as if they're already a photograph. That's interesting about the similarity between the gateway at your university and the RMC arch. Do you know what the story is behind that superstition? I'd be interested to know. Thanks very much for your very kind words. :)

• Nancy, thank you kindly. I'm glad you liked the photos and I'm certain you'd have loved the show. Thank so much for the kind words. :)

Unspoken said...

Hilary this looks lovely! I know how much it means to see your son :)! Love the picts.

Anonymous said...

You truly do have a photographer's eye, Hilary. I love the warmth of the colorful bricks and wooden shutter. And Kingston looks like a lovely place!
I'm sure you had a terrific time. :)

L. D. said...

You had a wonderful journey and were able to see your son too. That is great. Your photos are spectacular, just like the Olympics. I really enjoyed most of it. I missed some of it through the weeks and they didn't do reruns. Thanks for sharing all the wonderful shots.

Country Girl said...

I feel as though I shared the day with you. Interesting about the arch. And what a handsome young man.

Dawning Inspiration said...

Very nice post and all of a sudden I'm craving a cup of tea! ;o)

Joanna Jenkins said...

Very nice! The colors and textures are so rich, but the City Hall pic is my favorite.

Congrats to Canada's hockey victory!

Have a happy week.

Anonymous said...

Oh my, you take some fabulous shots. I especially love the second and third ones :)

Indrani said...

Great shots Hilary!
I like such posts that help me virtually visit places that I may never visit in real life.

Suldog said...

Love the door, with its worn handle and oddly-bright paint job.

Unseen India Tours said...

Beautiful post and lovely images !! I Would love to visit this place someday !!

Tabor said...

Just a comment on your are way too punny!

järnebrand said...

Wonderful pics. :) Wow. I loved the clock tower! And the pink door! And the bricks! Oh, and the tea, too! Lovely. Thank you so much for sharing! Peace and love/ Jo.
Oh, and congratulations Canada! Well done. :)

Linda said...

Hi Hilary,

I am first-time visitor, and want to say just how lovely your photographs are. I am always seeking interesting and inspiring places to visit. Thank you for sharing.

MaggieGem said...

Once again, gorgeous pictures! Love the City Hall and skyline shots, oh and your son is a handsome young lad too!

Jingle said...

what eye opening post!
I learn from you via your view,
Happy Monday!

Jingle said...

an award for you in my blog!
Happy week ahead!

Dianne said...

I love the pinkish door

and all your night shots are incredible

looks like a wonderful trip

Jeffrey is so handsome

Wendy said...

Oh yes, I'll have a cup of chai! Thank you!

Hilary, you have a special talent for finding beauty everywhere you turn. Your pics reflect this - and they are good! I love that clock tower.

Sounds, like you had wonderful time.

Michael said...

Very cool photographs. Very, very cool. :)

Anonymous said...

Wow, I really like your close-ups!
O Canada: Great Olympics
:) The Bach

Clowncar said...

cuba? I've always wanted to go there. and almost certainly never will. j is lucky!

nice pix, as always. but you knew that.

This Is My Blog - fishing guy said...

Hilary: What a neat tour of the town for a fun time.

cheshire wife said...

That was a different sort of post but as always brilliant photos!

Kelly H-Y said...

Beautiful shots, as usual ... I just love how you can make even ordinary things look extra special and amazing!

Unknown said...

I posted a few nature pics from Cuba if anyone might be interested.

SandyCarlson said...

I loved this post. I want that cup of tea. And I am glad you had a nice time with your son and with Frank. That is awesome.

abb said...

That brick wall...amazingly comes alive when in black and white. That last photo is wonderful, too.

Hilary said...

• Amy, you've got that right. Thanks for the kind words. :)

• KC, thank you so kindly. We did have a fine time. I think you'd like Kingston, too. Thanks for stopping by. :)

• Larry, thank you very much. I appreciate your encouraging words. I'm glad you got to enjoy most of the Olympics. Thanks for the visit. :)

• Kate, I'm glad you joined me. Thanks for the kind words. I have agree about my boy. :)

• Stacey, thank you. Have a seat.. I'll pour you a cup. ;)

• Joanna, thanks. I'm glad you enjoyed the photos. Thanks always for stopping by. :)

• ED, thank you very kindly. I'm pleased that you think so. :)

• Thanks, Indrani. I like those too which is why your blog is always exciting to visit. :)

• Suldog, thanks. I liked that about it too. :)

• UR, thank you very kindly. I'm sure you'd love it there. :)

• Tabor, by now I'm not sure just which comment you're referring to, but thanks. :)

• Jo, thanks so much for all of your kind words and wishes. They're all so very much appreciated. :)

• Welcome, Linda and thank you so much for your very kind words. I hope you'll be back again soon. Thanks for stopping by. :)

• Thank you, Maggie Gem. You have great taste in young lads. ;)

• Thanks very much, Jingle. I'll come around to get that when I'm back in town next week. Thanks for thinking of me. :)

• Thank you, Dianne. It was a great trip. And Jeffreys just all seem to be so handsome, don't they? ;)

• Wendy, enjoy the chai! Thanks so much for your always-kind words. They mean a lot to me. Thanks for the visit. :)

• Thanks, Cabo. Much appreciated. :)

• Bach, thank you. Yes, they were great games this year. Thanks for stopping by. :)

• Clowncar, we Canadians are lucky that way. Too bad it's not as easy for you Amurikans to visit Cuba. Maybe one day. Thanks for the kind words. :)

• Fishing Guy, thank you. I'm glad you joined me. :)

• CW, thanks. It was a different sort of a day. ;)

• Kelly, thanks so much for that. I'm touched that you think so. :)

• Deb, I'm heading over as soon as I finish these comment replies!

• Sandy, have a seat and I'll pour you a cup. Thanks so much for stopping by. I'm glad you enjoyed the post. I always enjoy your visits. :)

• TSannie, funny how that happens sometimes, eh? Thanks for the kind words. :)

steviewren said...

The city has a lovely skyline. Your son's not bad either.

Hilary said...

Thanks kindly, Steviewren. I'd have to agree with you on both. :)

Cheryl said...

I am glad you enjoyed your time in Kingston with both your son and at the concert. I took my son down to Kingston and RMC to see his dad over reading was Taylin's (my sons) first time there. He really enjoyed himself...who knows, maybe he will follow in his dads footsteps one day...LOVE your pic of the Memorial Arch by the way!

Hilary said...

Cheryl, I'll bet your son loved his visit with his Dad at RMC. It's an impressive place in a lovely city. I'll be back again in May when my son graduates. Thanks for stopping by and offering your kind words. :)