My heart aches . . . as I remember favourite places in Kamloops, the place of my birth, and of the first three years of my life (happy birthday to me on October 18 – Luke and all the saints celebrate!). I look back fondly at my early years with Mapaw and Papaw on the Thompson River’s steep southern shores. Now settling into small-town life in Summerland, after only one week I have discovered new adventures, new places of play, and yes, new canine and human friends. There are at least three dogs on my street! Newfound opportunities noted however, I will never forget Kamloops, and especially my favourite places, and spaces, and friendships.
It was a dark and somewhat gloomy morning when Papaw snapped some final images of Peterson Creek Park just below Kamloops Hospice only a few days ago. So many runs there, so many play times with so many four-pawed friends. So many sticks thrown; so many balls lost in the grass or over the cliffs; so many tumbles in the dirt or plunges in smelly, stagnant water. They even threw a going-away party for me followed by coffee for humans at Murphy’s place. So much love and laughter. So much joy!
Papaw’s images capture the rugged and static beauty of the place. The views from the pathway are stunning — almost every day Papaw would stop and comment on the view of the confluence of two great rivers, the Thompson and the North Thompson, both cradled by peaks named Peter and Paul (another saints day). It is hard to imagine a more beautiful space, but I must try.
Here in Summerland we have three separate dog beaches within town limits including Sunoka Beach a jewel in the Provincial Parks crown. There are numerous natural spaces north and south of town, lakeside or beside clear running streams. Closer in, and proximate to where I now live, there are paths circling ball fields, and a network of side roads where I can run off-leash. I have new neighbours to visit and can welcome newfound friends in return – all subject to strict strata bylaws, protocols and regulations. Height, size and population are all important to note – and of course, NO BARKING. On this last point there are few things which arouse my senses and threaten my social stability as was the case on Arrowstone Drive. Here I do find the bright white neon cross at the local Lutheran Church a crass misrepresentation of divinity; I am fascinated however by the construction equipment at the Alliance Church which now begins construction of a housing project.
Well enough about me. Here is a huge shout out to those canine and human friends of the last three years. Please, please, do come visit (restrictions noted above). I will never forget you . . . but life goes on.