- -- - -- - -- - -- - -- - -- - -- - -- - -- -

Art--Animals--Food--Links--Lists--Map--Movies & TV--Music--Nature--Places--Performances--Souvenirs--Structures--Timeline

Monday 20 May 2024

De Waag Doesburg

De Waag Doesburg

Location: Doesburg, Netherlands
Address: Koepoortstraat 2-4
Date: May 2024
Website: waagdoesburg.nl

    De Waag means the weigh house.  Across the Netherlands these were large public buildings and they contained scales used to weigh goods.  When goods came into town they would be weighed and taxes could also be imposed.  These buildings were very common prior to there being an international standard for weights as different towns might use a different method of weight measurement.  De Waag in Doesburg has been around since 1478 and the metric system was not around until about 1790.

De Waag Doesburg Giant Weighing Scale
 
    Inside De Waag one of the giant scales can still be found hanging from the roof.

De Waag Oerblond Hanzebier.

   De Waag in Doesburg also claims to have the distinction of being the oldest operating restaurant in the Netherlands.  This is because the owner of the weigh house also had a monopoly on foreign beers and ran a pub from the same facility.  We tried their De Waag Oerblond Hanzebier.

De Waag Tap Specials

  De Waag offers many beers on tap.  They also offer what is known as Trappist beer.  La Trappe in the Netherlands has been producing beer since 1884.   The beer is brewed under strict conditions.  It is brewed on the grounds of a Trappist monastery either by or under the supervision of the monks that live there.  The monks cannot profit from the beer production so any profits in excess of what they need is given to charities.  The monks are monastic which means they are devoted fully to spiritual work.

De Waag Doesburg Interior.

   The high ceilings in the restaurant were once needed for the large weighing scales but now just enhance the interior. 
 
De Waag Doesburg Chandelier

    We enjoyed a nice meal sitting under one of the giant chandeliers.  We did order a beet burger and received a beef burger, but we may have fared better if we ordered in Dutch.

Looking Down The Street From De Waag Doesburg.

   You don't have to know someone who was born there or briefly lived in the town to visit Doesburg.  It is a nice little town in its own right and has been a city since 1237.  While you are there you can eat at Netherland's oldest restaurant De Waag.


Map of Our World
De Waag Doesburg

Post # 335

Saturday 20 April 2024

Total Solar Eclipse 2024

Eclipse Glasses.

Location: Crystal Beach, Ontario, Canada
Address: 89 Ridge Rd S  
Date: April 2024
Website: visitniagaracanada.com

  April 8, 2024 saw a total solar eclipse occur in parts of southern Ontario. A total solar eclipse is caused by the moon passing directly in front of the sun and blocking the sun from view. This was the first total solar eclipse to be visible in Ontario since February 26, 1979.  In order to view a solar eclipse safely you need special glasses. We had our glasses ready and then we chose our destination of Crystal Beach in the Fort Erie area. Crystal Beach was one of the places that was getting close to totality of the eclipse. As you move away from the line of totality you will experience less darkness and be able to see less of the show. Millions of people would be on the move in order to witness this phenomenon. This is how our adventure played out.

Morning Sky On Day Of Solar Eclipse.

  The early morning sky was coloured with bands of orange, red and purple. There was more cloud cover than we had hoped. Unfortunatey, any sort of lunar event seems to draw in the clouds and storms. We set off on our journey, optimistic that things would clear up as the day progressed.

Third Street Louth Ontario.

 We started out early in the day to avoid traffic. As we headed along the Queen Elizabeth Way near St. Catherines we decided to exit the highway and explore the side roads. We turned south onto Third Street. Our GPS said to turn on Third Street Louth.  We thought the GPS had a typo or speech impediment, but it turns out that Louth is the area. With so many First, Second and Third Streets in the surrounding farmlands they had added the area name to the end. Louth was named after a county in Ireland. We continued our journey Louth.

Tin Man Effingham
 
    This tin man was standing on Effingham Street. Sometimes people wear tinfoil hats to protect from harmful electromagnetic waves or alien mind reading. We are not sure what effect a solar eclipse would have on this tin man. We do know that we would not stand beside him in a thunderstorm.

Comfort Maple Niagara Conservation Area.

  We stopped into a Niagara Conservation area to visit the Comfort Maple. This tree is over 500 years old and is being preserved. It is called the Comfort Maple not because of how it makes people feel, but because the farm land used to belong to the Comfort family.

Comfort Maple Niagara Conservation Area.

    The tree is so old that there are ropes used to help support its branches. Hang in there Comfort Maple and enjoy the eclipse. We headed on towards Crystal Beach.

Beachcombers Crystal Beach
 
 There is a large group of seniors living in Crystal Beach as many people retire here or own cottages.  This happy gang is from the Beachcombers Seniors Centre.

Sweet E's Crystal Beach
 
  We had arrived well ahead of the crowds and had plenty of time before the moon and the sun put on their performance. We parked our car at Crystal Ridge Park and took a walk towards the northern part of town. We stopped into Sweet E's Bakery and had coffee and scones. We also chatted with some locals about the upcoming eclipse.

Friendship Trail.

  After our coffee break we took a walk along the Friendship Trail. The Friendship Trail is a biking/walking pathway built where the train tracks used to be. The trail starts well before Crystal Beach and goes all the way to Old Fort Erie. We timed our walk in order to be back for the opening of Brimstone.

Brimstone Crystal Beach.

Brimstone is a brewery and special events space. It is also a restaurant/bar that seems to be built into and around a former church. We came here in order to have something to eat before the eclipse started.  The waitress informed us that she had selected an eclispe themed playlist in honour of the days big event. We didn't hear any Bonnie Tyler while we were there, but did hear several moon themed songs such as Echo & The Bunnymen's The Killing Moon.

Brimstone Brews On Site In Crystal Beach.

   Brimstone is usually not open on Mondays, but opened especially for us eclipse seekers. They brew several of their own beers on site. We had a Purple Lizard and a Sinister Minister which is one of their beer selections
 
Brimstone Hail Mary Ale
 
     They also have other ales such as the Hail Mary Ale. After enjoying our meal and beverages we headed back down to where we had parked to see if any crowds had gathered.
 
Crystal Ridge Park Crystal Beach Pre-Eclipse
 
    More people had arrived for the event but we had chosen a good spot. We are sure it was crowded down at the water's edge. Crystal Beach sits on the northeast side of Lake Erie.
 
Deer Crystal Ridge Park.
 
    A pair of deer had walked out into the park to graze. A few minutes later something spooked them and they both bounded away into the bushes.
 
Sun Peeks Through Clouds Crystal Ridge Park.
 
    The eclipse was slowly approaching. It would take the moon about an hour to slowly cover the sun.  Then there would be about 4 minutes of darkness until the moon would slowly reveal the sun once more.
 
Solar Eclipse Through Eclipse Glasses.
 
    We looked through our special glasses just to be safe as the eclipse started. Everything looked orange and we could see the sun through the clouds. We took this photo through the lens of the glasses. The eclipse had begun as the moon crept over the edge of the sun.
 
Solar Eclipse Halfway Crystal Beach
 
    More and more of the sun was covered. We realized that with so much cloud cover we didn't need the special glasses to protect our eyes or take photos.
 
Robin Crystal Ridge Park.
 
    The robins were singing in the trees. They didn't seem confused and sang throughout the eclipse, even in the total darkness. Spring is their season after all.
 
Darkness from Total solar eclipse.
 
    Then it happened. The sky went from day to night in about a minute. A cool breeze swept in and we were in the totality of the eclipse. Almost 4 minutes later we went from night to day again. The clouds robbed us of seeing the corona of the sun. We still enjoyed our day in Crystal Beach and viewing the spectacle of the eclipse with others. Next, we had the pleasure of many hours driving back home in traffic.


Map of Our World 

Crystal Ridge Park


Post # 334

Wednesday 20 March 2024

Arthur Conan Doyle Room

Sherlock Holmes Walk Toronto Reference Library

Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Address:  789 Yonge Street
Date:  March 2024
Website:  www.torontopubliclibrary.ca

  A little laneway behind the Toronto Reference Library has been named Sherlock Homes Walk.  This is because the Reference Library is home to one of the largest Arthur Conan Doyle collections in the world. The library has collected over 25,000 items since 1969 that are mostly works of author Arthur Conan Doyle and his most famous character, Sherlock Holmes.

Sherlock Holmes Walk  Toronto Reference Library

    After taking a brief visit to the laneway we headed inside to check out the collection.

 Fifth Floor Of Toronto Reference Library.

  The Arthur Conan Doyle Room is located at the top of the library on the fifth floor.  It is part of the Marilyn & Charles Baillie Special Collections Centre.

Arthur Conan Doyle Room.   Toronto Reference Library.

     The Arthur Conan Doyle Room is designed to resemble the study from Sherlock Holmes' London address of 221B Baker Street. There is a real 221B Baker Street in London, but obviously the fictional Sherlock never lived there. The location has been turned into a museum for fans of the stories to visit.

Arthur Conan Doyle Room Toronto Reference Library.

     The shelves in the room were filled with various books. Most of them were crime fiction like the Sherlock Holmes stories.
 
Book Shelf Arthur Conan Doyle.
  
  The majority were written by or contain stories from Arthur Conan Doyle. Other books are exploration into Arthur Conan Doyle's career and characters. All of the books on display are available to read in the library.
 
Watson Statue. Toronto Reference Library

  The room also contained non-literary works of art such as a figurine of Dr. Watson. Watson is Sherlock Holmes' friend and companion on most of his adventures. The stories of Sherlock are usually told from the point of view of Watson as the narrator.

Moriarty.  Toronto Reference Library.

       Professor James Moriarty also has a figurine. Moriarty is Sherlock Holmes' nemesis. In fact, it was in a battle with Moriarty that Sherlock Holmes died.

Richenbach Falls Rock.  Toronto Reference Library

    Sherlock and Moriarty fought and both fell into the Reichenbach Falls in Switzerland.  There is a piece of rock retrieved from the bottom of those falls in the Arthur Conan Doyle Room.

Sherlock Holmes Mantle.  Toronot Referemce Library.

      Sherlock Holmes first appeared in print in 1887. Another famous fictional detective, Hercule Poirot would not appear until 1920.

Thin Sherlock and Pipe.  Toronto Reference Library.

     Sherlock Holmes is considered the world's greatest detective. Sherlock would also agree that he is the greatest.  

Sherlock Holmes Study Toronto Reference Library.

    To enter into the Arthur Conan Doyle room you must leave your coats and bags outside. You are able to spend as much time as you like and take photos. You can sit and read about Sherlock solving mysteries until the library closes for the day.

Shelock Holmes Hat Arthur Conan Doyle Room.

    On a coat rack was a Sherlock Holmes hat known as a deerstalker. This hat is never properly described in the books but was a best guess at what Sherlock would wear. It became a popular symbol of Sherlock, along with a curved pipe, as the character started to appear in drawings, movies and television shows based on Arthur Conan Doyle's novels.

Arthur Conan Doyle Room. Toronto Reference Library.

     Outside of the glass enclosed study were even more books and a chess set on a round table. 

Sherlock Holmes Chess Set. Toronto Reference Library.

     Even the chess set was Sherlock Holmes themed. Sherlock Holmes solved crimes much like a chess player. Chess is the ultimate battle of wits and trying to figure out what the next move of your opponent will be. We recommend your next move is to the Toronto Reference Library to check out a wonderful collection presented in the most interesting way.


Map of Our World
Toronto Reference Library

Post # 333

Tuesday 20 February 2024

The Golden Lion

The Golden Lion Hotel. 

Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Address:  5120 Yonge Street
Date:  February 2024
Website:  www.torontopubliclibrary.ca

  There is a lion living at the North York Central Public Library. The lion is over 190 years old and started out as a symbol of the Golden Lion Hotel back in 1833. This lion is the second lion to stand guard over the hotel. The hotel opened in 1824 and was operated by Thomas Sheppard. His brother Paul carved a lion out of a pine tree stump. In 1840 the lion was stolen and Paul carved a second lion out of an oak stump and used putty for its mane.

Emerald Park & Nestle Building At Yonge & Sheppard In North York.

    The Golden Lion Hotel was located at the southwest corner of Yonge and Sheppard.  Sheppard Avenue was named after the Sheppard family. The hotel could hold about 20 guests. The Sheppard family owned the hotel until 1870.
 
Golden Lion Hotel Sign North York.

    A sign located on the northwest corner of Yonge & Sheppard remembers the hotel. Across the street today is a commercial Nestle building and the curvy Emerald Park condos. The Golden Lion Hotel was demolished in 1933.

Golden Lion North York Central Library.

     The lion has done some moving around through the years but in 1997 it finally became a permanent resident of North York Central Library thanks to the North York Historical Society. This photo was taken while the lion was being prepared for its newest location.

North York Central Library.

       North York Central Library is the second biggest branch of the Toronto Public Library. The Golden Lion can be found up on the fifth floor.

 Golden Lion North York Glass Enclosure.
  
     If you want to see the lion, it is now safely behind glass to ensure it survives for many years to come. 


Map of Our World
North York Central Library

Post # 332