annathepiper: (Music All Around You)

As I’ve already written about several times on my blog, it’s always a pleasure to hear Le Vent du Nord perform–although this time, it was on a seriously rainy Wednesday night at the Rogue. Yet the loyal fans filled the place nonetheless!

This time too we actually were without Olivier Demers. If you’ve been following my posts and have seen my earlier Le Vent concert posts, you know Olo’s my favorite of all the members of the group! (And I’m not just saying that because he follows me on Facebook and therefore might actually read this. Auquel cas je dois dire SALUT OLO!)

But this time he had to stay home, due to having a death in his family. :( He posted to his Facebook wall that his father had passed away just a couple of days before the show. (And I was simultaneously very sad to hear the news and a bit relieved to have been warned about it in advance, because if I’d shown up without knowing M. Demers wouldn’t be on hand, I would have been even sadder!)

So Le Vent had to pull in Jean-François Gagnon Branchaud as emergency backup fiddler. If you know Quebecois trad, you may well recognize his name as one of the two fiddlers currently playing with La Bottine Souriante, who also sings some lead on La Bottine’s last album. And if you know La Bottine, you know that anybody who plays for them is guaranteed to bring their A game to a stage. Jean-François did not disappoint, and so even though we all missed Olivier, it was still a delightful show!

Let’s get down to the details, shall we?

Read the rest of this entry »

Mirrored from angelahighland.com.

annathepiper: (Music All Around You)

As you know, O Internets, in the ongoing dearth of Great Big Sea shows in my life, I have turned to the joy and consolation of the principle of “Any Band With a Beaudry gets me across the border”. Which of course means mes gars of De Temps Antan–who last year broke my personal record of “How many times I visited Canada in one year to see the same band”–and most definitely, Le Vent du Nord!

By now the Rogue in Vancouver has a very warm place in my heart, since I’ve seen both Le Vent and De Temps Antan there twice each. This time around the venue was not set up with tables, which surprised me! But Le Vent did sell the place out, so it does not surprise me that they wanted to get as many people in there as possible. And most importantly, they did leave space for us to boing by the stage as we liked. That’s important, you know.

As for the show itself–it’ll surprise exactly no one that I enjoyed myself immensely. Particularly because this show included five, count ‘em, five brand new songs that’ll be on the forthcoming new album, AND because we got the rare and unexpected treat of Olivier Demers taking a break from his usual masterful fiddling to demonstrate that he also plays guitar. AND: “Papineau”, a multi-layered turlutte that showcases all four of the boys’ voices to splendid effect, is now officially one of my top favorite Le Vent songs and that album isn’t even OUT yet. Everyone was in excellent voice and high spirits, band and audience alike, and by the end of the proceedings we had quite the crowd dancing around to “Au bord de la fontaine”. It was AWESOME.

In-depth show proceedings behind the fold!

Read the rest of this entry »

Mirrored from angelahighland.com.

annathepiper: (Alan and Sean Ordinary Day)

My third visit to St. James Hall, a.k.a. the Rogue, proved every bit as delightful as expected and as they always do, De Temps Antan put on a lively and spirited show.

A satisfyingly large posse of my local AND online Quebecois trad fandom friends were on hand: in addition to myself and Dara, Dejah and Michelle from the Seattle crowd came up for the show. Ginny and Gary from Coquitlam were on hand, as well as Carol all the way from Iowa! And this time I brought Geri along so that she could see De Temps Antan in action, since she had not before. We all claimed a table close to the front of the room, since Ginny and Gary had ever so helpfully reserved it. There was singing! There was podorythmie! And there may possibly have been mammoth jigs on Dara’s head while the band was playing “Valse St-Sévère”.

Full deets behind the fold!

Read the rest of this entry »

Mirrored from angelahighland.com.

annathepiper: (Bouzouki Fandom)

Let it be officially noted: De Temps Antan has now officially COMPLETELY STOMPED all over Great Big Sea’s record for “Most number of times in one year that Anna has gone north over the border for the express purpose of seeing a band”–because they’re coming back again to BC in November. And I’ll be scampering up there for two, count ‘em, two shows!

They’re hitting the Rogue again, which y’all may recollect was where they played this past February after Festival du Bois, a show at which many delightful shenanigans were had! AND they’re going to Cumberland, to hit the very same teeny tiny venue where last I saw my boys of Le Vent du Nord.

Because I mean honestly, if my Quebec boys keep wanting to come to BC so often, it just behooves me to scamper up there to see them, as much as my available time off will allow. As I have said before, there are critical principles here of Bands With Bouzouki-Wielding Beaudrys to uphold here! Especially given Great Big Sea’s until-further-notice hiatus. A girl’s gotta get in her bouzouki SOMEHOW.

This will be a rather more complex road trip, though! Dara will be coming up with me for the show at the Rogue, but then taking the train back while I proceed on to Cumberland. Seattle friends Dejah and Michelle are also eying hitting the Rogue show, and there’s a strong possibility that Vancouver-based friends may be showing up at the Rogue as well. And in between shows I’ll be buckling down for hardcore writing work, with periodic outbursts of practicing, because you better believe I’m coming up there with flutes.

And it pleases me immensely to be gathering together folks from both Great Big Sea fandom AND Quebec trad fandom. Just call me Anna the Piper, Rallier of Fandoms, and Instigator of Vertical Movement and La Danse Verticale. :D

I’ve already gotten time off approved for these shenanigans, and have elected to take the entire week of November the 10th off. Which will give me plenty of time to get home after the show on the 12th, and decompress over the following weekend. And post the obligatory trip reports and pictures.

And this time? THIS TIME I will not forget Jean-Claude. It is important, yea, VITAL I TELL YOU, to not forget your mammoth on road trips to see bands from Quebec. It is KNOWN.

Mirrored from angelahighland.com.

annathepiper: (Bouzouki Fandom)

Let it be officially noted: De Temps Antan has now officially COMPLETELY STOMPED all over Great Big Sea’s record for “Most number of times in one year that Anna has gone north over the border for the express purpose of seeing a band”–because they’re coming back again to BC in November. And I’ll be scampering up there for two, count ‘em, two shows!

They’re hitting the Rogue again, which y’all may recollect was where they played this past February after Festival du Bois, a show at which many delightful shenanigans were had! AND they’re going to Cumberland, to hit the very same teeny tiny venue where last I saw my boys of Le Vent du Nord.

Because I mean honestly, if my Quebec boys keep wanting to come to BC so often, it just behooves me to scamper up there to see them, as much as my available time off will allow. As I have said before, there are critical principles here of Bands With Bouzouki-Wielding Beaudrys to uphold here! Especially given Great Big Sea’s until-further-notice hiatus. A girl’s gotta get in her bouzouki SOMEHOW.

This will be a rather more complex road trip, though! Dara will be coming up with me for the show at the Rogue, but then taking the train back while I proceed on to Cumberland. Seattle friends Dejah and Michelle are also eying hitting the Rogue show, and there’s a strong possibility that Vancouver-based friends may be showing up at the Rogue as well. And in between shows I’ll be buckling down for hardcore writing work, with periodic outbursts of practicing, because you better believe I’m coming up there with flutes.

And it pleases me immensely to be gathering together folks from both Great Big Sea fandom AND Quebec trad fandom. Just call me Anna the Piper, Rallier of Fandoms, and Instigator of Vertical Movement and La Danse Verticale. :D

I’ve already gotten time off approved for these shenanigans, and have elected to take the entire week of November the 10th off. Which will give me plenty of time to get home after the show on the 12th, and decompress over the following weekend. And post the obligatory trip reports and pictures.

And this time? THIS TIME I will not forget Jean-Claude. It is important, yea, VITAL I TELL YOU, to not forget your mammoth on road trips to see bands from Quebec. It is KNOWN.

Mirrored from angelahighland.com.

annathepiper: (Music All Around You)

When you go to Canada for two consecutive weekends, Internets, you tend to get behind on posting stuff to your blog. Which means for you that I got delayed posting my writeup of the MOST excellent concert by De Temps Antan at the Rogue. But I’m home again, and posting again, so here you go!

Previously in our adventures with Festival du Bois 2014, yours truly got to chat with both Éric Beaudry AND André Brunet after the close of official festival events on Saturday night! And y’all may recall that SOMEBODY got a little creative with how he did his signature on the inside of my copy of Ce monde ici-bas!

So what happened? Full concert blow-by-blow behind the fold!

Read the rest of this entry »

Mirrored from angelahighland.com.

annathepiper: (Alan Bouzouki)

48-hour turnaround time: fastest trip I’ve done to Vancouver in some time! Possibly EVER! Because yeah, my belovedest Dara and I zoomed up to Vancouver by train on Wednesday morning, and home again on Thursday night. We crashed at the home of friends Geri and Rob, and the purpose before us was, of course, GREAT BIG SEA!

We got up to Vancouver around noonish on Wednesday as per usual for the train, and promptly took the Skytrain over to Geri and Rob’s so we could crash for a while before heading off to the show. The B’ys played this time at the PNE, the Pacific National Exhibition, a venue that reminded me a lot of the Seattle Center during Folklife–only with a lot more of an amusement park/fairground feel to it. There were many more rides and a lot more fair food, but less music.

Shoutouts must be given to the other fans we met up with, in particular Kate, Helen, Robin, Angela, Angela’s mom Venus, and Angela’s grandmother as well (whose name I didn’t catch, sorry about that). Several of us all took time to go see the Superdogs show before GBS went on stage, and that was fun. Lots of acrobatic stunts with very cleverly trained dogs, and it gave us at least something else to spend our fair admission on. Which was $16 at the gate–and which also made it by far the cheapest ticket I’ve had to a GBS show in quite some time.

We nommed fair food for dinner, and as we were in fact in Canada, I naturally had to have poutine. Because nom. I have no idea who invented poutine, but my hat is off to whatever enterprising soul first decided that fries + gravy + squeakycheese = nom. And before we got into the show space, I amused myself buying a ten-dollar light-up toy that spun little colored bulbs on threads, thinking it’d be fun to have that during the show.

The show was outdoors, in a nice large ampitheater space, and we ducked in fairly early so that Geri and Rob could claim their seats in the reserved area and Dara and I could get as far forward in the GA area as possible. That let us also of course see superfan Lynda (I do always spot her at the concerts), and greetings were exchanged! This was the first time as well that I’d been at a GBS show large enough and in an appropriate space for using jumbotrons. There were two of them, one to either side of the stage, and all throughout the show they kept alternating between showing the band members and showing people in the audience.

Naturally, Dara and I had our Cascadia flag! We had great fun waving that around, and Geri was startled to note that my pink shorts, taken together with the blue, green, and white of the Cascadia flag, actually made for very Newfoundland-friendly colors. I noted wryly that I had not in fact done that on purpose. But yeah, the Cascadia flag? Very Newfoundland-friendly colors. And Dara and I in fact were mistaken for Newfoundlanders by the girls behind us!

Round about 8:30, the show got underway! It was a single set show, and very tight and fast–not entirely without banter, but less rambly than some shows I’ve been to. I didn’t get any pictures since we were outdoors in the dark, and I’m not good at getting shots under those conditions. Dara did however get several nice shots, which you can find at her flickr page over here.

Alan in particular was rocking his bearded look, as he often does when he’s about to do another stint on Republic of Doyle or is just coming off of one:

Also, the light show was REALLY awesome!

And now, the Set List!

  • Ordinary Day
  • Donkey Riding
  • When I’m Up
  • Heart of Hearts
  • The Night Pat Murphy Died
  • Goin’ Up
  • England
  • Beat the Drum
  • When I am King
  • Safe Upon the Shore
  • Scolding Wife
  • I’m a Rover
  • Let My Love Open the Door
  • Sea of No Cares
  • Helmethead
  • Consequence Free
  • Mari-Mac
  • Run Run Away
  • Encore #1: Live This Life / Old Black Rum
  • Encore #2: Wave Over Wave

“Paddy Murphy” was the first big bit of amusing banter. Séan did the intro with “Alan got a little bit drunk / and Bob got a little wet! As long as a bottle was passed around, Murray Foster was feeling…” Then he trailed off meaningfully, getting the audience to roar “GAY!” This took a couple tries, in fact–and Séan got a huge cheer by adding, “We’re not in Russia, it’s OKAY!”

And I am chagrined to note that I TOTALLY missed that Bob sauntered over and laid one on Murray at that point because I was frantically typing notes into my phone. DARA, however, caught it and suitably lost it laughing! “Paddy Murphy” also, according to Kate, had our first indicator that the B’ys were dropping hints about where they’d be after the show–since they referenced the Railway!

ETA: I am informed that it was actually Séan who went over to smooch Murray. Either way: HA!

It was after “Beat the Drum” that Alan went into a lament about jet lag, remarking, “I myself woke up at 5:15!” Dara, at that point, yelled “SO DID WE!” And trust me when I say that Dara is in a position to understand that usually, when a musician sees an hour that stupidly early, it’s from the other direction.

Alan added that he went for a run in Stanley Park, where he ran into Séan–and Séan said that he loved Stanley Park, and that everybody is beautiful there. Even Alan. LOL. He then went off into an improv on “New Moon”, and Alan informed the audience that they did in fact have the day off tomorrow, with the unforgiving checkout time of noon. Another big indicator that “yes, we will in fact be on the loose after the show”.

I must also specifically call out “Safe Upon the Shore” for DEAR GOD DEATH BY HARMONY. We didn’t get “General Taylor” or “River Driver” this time, but whenever they unleash “Safe Upon the Shore”, I’m OKAY WITH THAT. This time around they nailed it beautifully and I kept having to brace for the impact of the choruses. They were shiver-inducingly glorious. That said, Dara and I still kept giggling and going “BRAAAAAAAAAAINS” at one another given that this whole song is about a corpse.

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: “Scolding Wife” is huge fun, and Dara and I had fun with our arms around one another singing this. I in particular let out with “Ahh, she’d sell me to the devil for a glass or two of VODKA!”

“I’m a Rover” was the point in the concert where Alan let out his funniest bits during the whole show–by looking up at the biggest and most notable ride within view of the stage, one of those ones that’s a great big whirling arm with two cars on either end. Alan took a look at that thing and told the audience it’d just then occurred to him that JAYSUS THERE ARE ACTUAL HUMAN BEINGS IN THAT! And that it was kind of freaking him out!

This song also got a wry little mention of Bob in the last verse as well: “we both shook hands and embraced his fiddle!” Muaha. It’s okay to love your fiddle. You might not however want to LOVE your fiddle. >:D

Leading into “Sea of No Cares” (the slow version, which is how they’ve been doing the song at the last several shows I’ve attended), Alan made cracks about their first show in Vancouver being back in 1956. Which always makes me giggle, since it totally reminds me of Elvis making jokes about HIS first shows being in 1912. And after SoNC, Alan joked further about the west coast always surprising the band since “people go in the ocean recreationally here!” At which point Séan joked that that isn’t ALL they do recreationally here.

After that they pretty much charged through the rest of the set non-stop. And I was stunned, STUNNED I TELL YOU, that we didn’t actually get “Excursion Around the Bay”! But I did love hearing “Wave Over Wave” again, and in particular pointing out to Dara how Murray’s been breaking out a bouzouki for this song. And I liked pointing out to her as well that both Alan and Bob had their own bouzoukis for “Live This Life”. Because all things are made better with bouzoukis, including Great Big Sea encores.

After the show Dara and I sadly had to bow out of the attempt to head to the Railway, since Geri and Rob were our ride and they weren’t up for it. But we did fetch tasty Siegels bagels on the way back to Burnaby, and we drank cider, and that was a lovely close to the evening! I’m told that the B’ys did in fact show up at the Railway, and so next time I hit a GBS show in Vancouver, there will have to be a bit more judicious planning for possible post-show shenanigans. (Because I need me a pic of me and Alan and Jean-Claude the mammoth. I DO! >:D)

Further edits will happen to this post if anybody points me at publicly linkable pictures or videos!

Mirrored from angelahighland.com.

annathepiper: (Blue Hawaii Relaxing)

Not much more to report about the Harrison Hot Springs trip, but I do have enough to do a quick followup post!

I’d said in the previous post that there’d been an accident at the festival. Over on Facebook, Dejah threw me a link on a local paper’s website about the accident. The Agassiz-Harrison Observer reported that a family of four was involved, and that while there were some injuries and the father needed surgery, mostly everybody was more or less okay. Two vehicles were involved, and the driver of the SUV was arrested. (Dara and I and those with us at the second De Temps Antan show wound up seeing that SUV later, just after the concert. It was pretty badly banged up.)

After the DTA show on Sunday night, Dara and I took it pretty easy. We scampered over to one of the shops to get fudge (mmmmm fudge), and then saw the boys of the band, Dejah, Ginny, and Gary heading to dinner. Amused jokes were made about not stalking the band we SWEAR. And though everybody yelled farewells to us (I noted the good M. Brunet in particular yelling over in our direction), we left them to it since we wanted to hide in our B&B room for a while. And I had important pic-posting business to attend to!

We did later emerge for dinner of our own, though, and had Thai food on a restaurant balcony overlooking the lake. Our waiter turned out to be a bass player as well and Dara chatted with him a bit about the jam session we’d been informed would be happening at the lounge next door later that night. Dara did wind up hitting that jam session for a little bit, though I opted to take one last round of advantage of the jacuzzi in our room.

The next morning, we got up in a leisurely fashion, got our stuff all packed and ready to go, and headed west to Vancouver! On the way, heading along TC-1, I spotted a road sign that deeply amused us in our capacity as massive Elfquest fangirls.

(I mean, Clearbrook must live somewhere, right? Maybe this is the exit that leads to the Wolfrider Holt!)

After that, we went over a toll bridge we’d been warned about and which we hoped would be clever enough to note that we were an American license plate, not a Canadian one, since we’d been told it worked by snapping photos of licenses and billing the drivers. We don’t know yet if we’ll get a bill from British Columbia, but guess we’ll find out! I did like one of the pics I got going over the bridge, though.

Our agenda in Vancouver was a couple of quick surgical strikes on places we wanted to get to, and the first of these was the Laser Cutter Cafe in Vancouver’s Chinatown. Because tea. And LASERS!

We had a pleasant chat with the guys in there, including a guy named Adrian who was selling his digital carving art via the cafe. And while we didn’t actually carve anything, it was cool to see the machines the guys had available and the various and sundry little things on shelves that had come out of them. I particularly liked the little Jiji from Kiki’s Delivery Service.

Dara even got to talk up her music a bit and one of the guys piped “Shout At the Desert” over the cafe’s sound system. To wit: awesome.

And just to be thorough we did in fact also have tea! Which was very welcome, given that we hadn’t had any tea at all in Harrison. Our room at the B&B had included some bag tea in the stock of breakfast foods we’d been provided–but none of it was stuff we’d wanted to drink, actually!

We left kind of earlier than we wanted to, since the place was pretty cool–but we didn’t want to run our parking meter out, and we did actually have to get back on the road in order to get home in time for dinner.

Not to mention that we needed lunch, and it was critical, critical we tell you, to stop at Siegels Bagels for our obligatory few dozen bagels to bring home. Because yum.

And our last stop was at the mall that Dara likes to call Chibi Akihabara, but which is actually called Yaohan. She wanted to pop in there on general principles but also to see if she could find a replacement holder for her passport. She did not. What was kind of lollertastic though was that I found a cute new case for my phone!

Cute Phone Case

Cute Phone Case

I was pretty happy with that case, because it was cute but not TOO cute, and also form-fitting without adding bulk to the device. My previous case had that going on, too, but the molded plastic over the Sleep/Wake button seemed like it interfered with the button’s functionality. (Which may or may not have actually been the button wearing out on me–I don’t know! I had to replace the phone today!) I like this case better also though because it gives better open access to the top and bottom of the phone.

Only when we were aiming to get on the highway at last and head home did we realize that we had ERRED: i.e., we’d forgotten to visit a Timmy’s! Forgive us, Canada, for we did not actually indulge in Timbits! We’ll be making up for this next time we set foot in your lovely country, we promise!

Last but not least it’s worth mentioning that on the whole trip, on the way up and on the way back as well, Dara and I worked to get caught up on the Doctor Who Podcast! We’re big fans and quite enjoyed a marathon of listening to the podcast crew on the road. We’ll be doing more on our next road trip, to Clallam Bay, this coming weekend. Stand by for that report, O Internets!

AND! I was charmed to see that the Twitter account for Tourism Harrison, @harrisontourism, actually found my mention this morning of the posting I’d been doing. They quite liked my writeup! Which is all lovely, given that we enjoyed ourselves in Harrison immensely. And we will be coming back!

Mirrored from angelahighland.com.

annathepiper: (Blue Hawaii Relaxing)

Not much more to report about the Harrison Hot Springs trip, but I do have enough to do a quick followup post!

I’d said in the previous post that there’d been an accident at the festival. Over on Facebook, Dejah threw me a link on a local paper’s website about the accident. The Agassiz-Harrison Observer reported that a family of four was involved, and that while there were some injuries and the father needed surgery, mostly everybody was more or less okay. Two vehicles were involved, and the driver of the SUV was arrested. (Dara and I and those with us at the second De Temps Antan show wound up seeing that SUV later, just after the concert. It was pretty badly banged up.)

After the DTA show on Sunday night, Dara and I took it pretty easy. We scampered over to one of the shops to get fudge (mmmmm fudge), and then saw the boys of the band, Dejah, Ginny, and Gary heading to dinner. Amused jokes were made about not stalking the band we SWEAR. And though everybody yelled farewells to us (I noted the good M. Brunet in particular yelling over in our direction), we left them to it since we wanted to hide in our B&B room for a while. And I had important pic-posting business to attend to!

We did later emerge for dinner of our own, though, and had Thai food on a restaurant balcony overlooking the lake. Our waiter turned out to be a bass player as well and Dara chatted with him a bit about the jam session we’d been informed would be happening at the lounge next door later that night. Dara did wind up hitting that jam session for a little bit, though I opted to take one last round of advantage of the jacuzzi in our room.

The next morning, we got up in a leisurely fashion, got our stuff all packed and ready to go, and headed west to Vancouver! On the way, heading along TC-1, I spotted a road sign that deeply amused us in our capacity as massive Elfquest fangirls.

(I mean, Clearbrook must live somewhere, right? Maybe this is the exit that leads to the Wolfrider Holt!)

After that, we went over a toll bridge we’d been warned about and which we hoped would be clever enough to note that we were an American license plate, not a Canadian one, since we’d been told it worked by snapping photos of licenses and billing the drivers. We don’t know yet if we’ll get a bill from British Columbia, but guess we’ll find out! I did like one of the pics I got going over the bridge, though.

Our agenda in Vancouver was a couple of quick surgical strikes on places we wanted to get to, and the first of these was the Laser Cutter Cafe in Vancouver’s Chinatown. Because tea. And LASERS!

We had a pleasant chat with the guys in there, including a guy named Adrian who was selling his digital carving art via the cafe. And while we didn’t actually carve anything, it was cool to see the machines the guys had available and the various and sundry little things on shelves that had come out of them. I particularly liked the little Jiji from Kiki’s Delivery Service.

Dara even got to talk up her music a bit and one of the guys piped “Shout At the Desert” over the cafe’s sound system. To wit: awesome.

And just to be thorough we did in fact also have tea! Which was very welcome, given that we hadn’t had any tea at all in Harrison. Our room at the B&B had included some bag tea in the stock of breakfast foods we’d been provided–but none of it was stuff we’d wanted to drink, actually!

We left kind of earlier than we wanted to, since the place was pretty cool–but we didn’t want to run our parking meter out, and we did actually have to get back on the road in order to get home in time for dinner.

Not to mention that we needed lunch, and it was critical, critical we tell you, to stop at Siegels Bagels for our obligatory few dozen bagels to bring home. Because yum.

And our last stop was at the mall that Dara likes to call Chibi Akihabara, but which is actually called Yaohan. She wanted to pop in there on general principles but also to see if she could find a replacement holder for her passport. She did not. What was kind of lollertastic though was that I found a cute new case for my phone!

Cute Phone Case

Cute Phone Case

I was pretty happy with that case, because it was cute but not TOO cute, and also form-fitting without adding bulk to the device. My previous case had that going on, too, but the molded plastic over the Sleep/Wake button seemed like it interfered with the button’s functionality. (Which may or may not have actually been the button wearing out on me–I don’t know! I had to replace the phone today!) I like this case better also though because it gives better open access to the top and bottom of the phone.

Only when we were aiming to get on the highway at last and head home did we realize that we had ERRED: i.e., we’d forgotten to visit a Timmy’s! Forgive us, Canada, for we did not actually indulge in Timbits! We’ll be making up for this next time we set foot in your lovely country, we promise!

Last but not least it’s worth mentioning that on the whole trip, on the way up and on the way back as well, Dara and I worked to get caught up on the Doctor Who Podcast! We’re big fans and quite enjoyed a marathon of listening to the podcast crew on the road. We’ll be doing more on our next road trip, to Clallam Bay, this coming weekend. Stand by for that report, O Internets!

AND! I was charmed to see that the Twitter account for Tourism Harrison, @harrisontourism, actually found my mention this morning of the posting I’d been doing. They quite liked my writeup! Which is all lovely, given that we enjoyed ourselves in Harrison immensely. And we will be coming back!

Mirrored from angelahighland.com.

annathepiper: (Sky Full of Dreams)

This being Part 2, and the biggest part by far, of my and userinfosolarbird‘s Grand Four Day Weekend of Marriage and Music!

Though that said, it was also actually one of the simplest days of the entire weekend. Here’s the thing, O Internets: if you’ve read Elfquest, you’ll know what I mean when I say that Dara and I got as close as you can get in real life to Recognition, and we went from 0 to lifemates in pretty much no time flat. For us, there’s no particular difference between that and being legally married. This entire affair therefore was a lot more about just reinforcing the legal status as far as Canada (and hopefully soon by extension, the state of Washington) was concerned, as opposed to any real change in status between us as far as we are concerned.

So I hope I won’t disappoint any of you all when I say that this was the most relaxed and groovy wedding ceremony ever! We didn’t dress up, and we didn’t exchange rings–though we probably would have done the latter if Dara didn’t have an issue with rings that keeps her from wearing them (she gets a mild claustrophobia reaction off of them).

Here’s how the whole thing went!

Read the rest of this entry » )

Mirrored from annathepiper.org.

annathepiper: (Sky Full of Dreams)

This being Part 2, and the biggest part by far, of my and userinfosolarbird‘s Grand Four Day Weekend of Marriage and Music!

Though that said, it was also actually one of the simplest days of the entire weekend. Here’s the thing, O Internets: if you’ve read Elfquest, you’ll know what I mean when I say that Dara and I got as close as you can get in real life to Recognition, and we went from 0 to lifemates in pretty much no time flat. For us, there’s no particular difference between that and being legally married. This entire affair therefore was a lot more about just reinforcing the legal status as far as Canada (and hopefully soon by extension, the state of Washington) was concerned, as opposed to any real change in status between us as far as we are concerned.

So I hope I won’t disappoint any of you all when I say that this was the most relaxed and groovy wedding ceremony ever! We didn’t dress up, and we didn’t exchange rings–though we probably would have done the latter if Dara didn’t have an issue with rings that keeps her from wearing them (she gets a mild claustrophobia reaction off of them).

Here’s how the whole thing went!

Read the rest of this entry » )

Mirrored from annathepiper.org.

annathepiper: (Sky Full of Dreams)

For those of you who have not already seen this breaking across Facebook, Google+, or Twitter tonight, userinfosolarbird and I would like to announce that on March 2nd, we will be getting a Canadian marriage license!

We were already planning this before today’s Washington state law signed by Governor Christine Gregoire. In fact, we are planning this as part of a Grand Four-Day Weekend of Marriage and Music, starting off with seeing these handsome boys perform on the night of March 1st! On March 2nd, Dara and I (and two other friends of ours who I will not identify publicly so as to respect their privacy, but who will be joining us for a dual ceremony) will be taking the appropriate steps to get legally married in Canada! On March 3rd, we will have yet more music as we attend Festival du Bois!

Mad props to userinfogerimaple who has very kindly agreed to put Dara and me up for the weekend!

I have been asked as well if Dara and I are planning anything with the new law being passed in Washington state. To this, I note that to the best of our knowledge, if we are legally married in Canada, then that will count in the state of Washington–assuming that the law is not shot down in November. So for now we will be focusing on Canadian marriage fun, and getting in a boatload of awesome Quebecois music to go with it. :D

And! And! And! This being my and Dara’s 25th year of being together, there’s a whole extra layer of anniversarial awesomeness to celebrate here as well! So if you’re so inclined, raise a jar on March 2nd and think of us!

Mirrored from annathepiper.org.

annathepiper: (Sky Full of Dreams)

For those of you who have not already seen this breaking across Facebook, Google+, or Twitter tonight, userinfosolarbird and I would like to announce that on March 2nd, we will be getting a Canadian marriage license!

We were already planning this before today’s Washington state law signed by Governor Christine Gregoire. In fact, we are planning this as part of a Grand Four-Day Weekend of Marriage and Music, starting off with seeing these handsome boys perform on the night of March 1st! On March 2nd, Dara and I (and two other friends of ours who I will not identify publicly so as to respect their privacy, but who will be joining us for a dual ceremony) will be taking the appropriate steps to get legally married in Canada! On March 3rd, we will have yet more music as we attend Festival du Bois!

Mad props to userinfogerimaple who has very kindly agreed to put Dara and me up for the weekend!

I have been asked as well if Dara and I are planning anything with the new law being passed in Washington state. To this, I note that to the best of our knowledge, if we are legally married in Canada, then that will count in the state of Washington–assuming that the law is not shot down in November. So for now we will be focusing on Canadian marriage fun, and getting in a boatload of awesome Quebecois music to go with it. :D

And! And! And! This being my and Dara’s 25th year of being together, there’s a whole extra layer of anniversarial awesomeness to celebrate here as well! So if you’re so inclined, raise a jar on March 2nd and think of us!

Mirrored from annathepiper.org.

annathepiper: (Blue Hawaii Relaxing)

userinfosolarbird and I love us some Vancouver, and we hadn’t been up there since going to see my beloved B’ys last year for the Olympics show–so we were sorely wanting even the slightest excuse to scamper up there for the weekend. VCON handed us that excuse in spades. It turned out that the convention was great fun in its own right, and assuming I have enough spare vacation time next year, we are totally coming back.

I took this past Friday off from work so that we could go up on the morning train, which required us to get up at stupid-o’clock. This would have been easier if I hadn’t had to work for four hours on Thursday night, and if I hadn’t had to spend most of the train ride up working on this year’s employee review–but even given that, and even given that we were operating on four hours of sleep, it was still quite nice to roll into Vancouver. We were kind of silly about not planning the arrival better, as we wound up missing an opportunity to go to the HMV earlier than planned. But that was all good. We dropped our stuff off at the hotel and then went right back out again for two Extremely Critical Missions!

One was me going to the HMV in downtown Vancouver, which, as I’ve mentioned in my previous post, is my current Vancouver source for Francophone music. I was disappointed to not find the live Les Charbonniers de l’Enfer DVD, but quite happy to find the Le Vent du Nord Symphonique album! Along with that, as per the recommendation of userinfoscrunchions, I also grabbed En Famille by Mes Aieux, and Dara got herself a Barenaked Ladies album she didn’t have yet. AND! I grabbed the season 1 DVDs for Republic of Doyle. I really hope I like it, because I’m buying it sight unseen here, just to work my way up to Alan Doyle’s guest spots in season 2!

The second, even more critical mission was this: hitting this place for OMG SO VERY, VERY TASTY rosemary and rock salt bagels. Dara bought every single one they had available, which meant thirteen of ‘em. Because SO. SO. GOOD. We are given to understand that these are in fact Montreal-style bagels, and that the shop was founded by a guy who brought that style of bagels to Vancouver. This pleases me immensely, because if Dara and I do make it to Montreal during the Trainventure, we now know to expect to find awesome bagels.

Then we settled down to the business of actually attending the convention.

Read the rest of this entry » )

Mirrored from annathepiper.org.

annathepiper: (Blue Hawaii Relaxing)

userinfosolarbird and I love us some Vancouver, and we hadn’t been up there since going to see my beloved B’ys last year for the Olympics show–so we were sorely wanting even the slightest excuse to scamper up there for the weekend. VCON handed us that excuse in spades. It turned out that the convention was great fun in its own right, and assuming I have enough spare vacation time next year, we are totally coming back.

I took this past Friday off from work so that we could go up on the morning train, which required us to get up at stupid-o’clock. This would have been easier if I hadn’t had to work for four hours on Thursday night, and if I hadn’t had to spend most of the train ride up working on this year’s employee review–but even given that, and even given that we were operating on four hours of sleep, it was still quite nice to roll into Vancouver. We were kind of silly about not planning the arrival better, as we wound up missing an opportunity to go to the HMV earlier than planned. But that was all good. We dropped our stuff off at the hotel and then went right back out again for two Extremely Critical Missions!

One was me going to the HMV in downtown Vancouver, which, as I’ve mentioned in my previous post, is my current Vancouver source for Francophone music. I was disappointed to not find the live Les Charbonniers de l’Enfer DVD, but quite happy to find the Le Vent du Nord Symphonique album! Along with that, as per the recommendation of userinfoscrunchions, I also grabbed En Famille by Mes Aieux, and Dara got herself a Barenaked Ladies album she didn’t have yet. AND! I grabbed the season 1 DVDs for Republic of Doyle. I really hope I like it, because I’m buying it sight unseen here, just to work my way up to Alan Doyle’s guest spots in season 2!

The second, even more critical mission was this: hitting this place for OMG SO VERY, VERY TASTY rosemary and rock salt bagels. Dara bought every single one they had available, which meant thirteen of ‘em. Because SO. SO. GOOD. We are given to understand that these are in fact Montreal-style bagels, and that the shop was founded by a guy who brought that style of bagels to Vancouver. This pleases me immensely, because if Dara and I do make it to Montreal during the Trainventure, we now know to expect to find awesome bagels.

Then we settled down to the business of actually attending the convention.

Read the rest of this entry » )

Mirrored from annathepiper.org.

annathepiper: (Blue Hawaii Relaxing)

The last time I remember having my passport was on the way back from Vancouver last year, when userinfosolarbird and I went up for the Olympics to see Great Big Sea. We haven’t been back since, so I haven’t had reason to need the thing–but the problem is, I cannot find it for the life of me. Dara and I have looked in all the reasonable places it should have been in and many of the stupid ones, to no avail.

This is important because we want to go to VCON next month! One, we want another excuse to visit Vancouver, and the B’ys have not favored us with another Vancouver show on the tour schedule yet this year. Two, it’s a fairly tiny convention and we’re looking forward to attending a convention Dara doesn’t actually have to work. Three, we haven’t had a formal vacation this year, and don’t have one scheduled, so this’ll be a bit of a mini-vacation!

So I’m going to have to fill out the forms for reporting a passport lost and applying for a new one. Fortunately the courthouse down in Lake Forest Park takes the appropriate forms, AND they have Saturday hours. So I’m going to get that done and dealt with next weekend, and pay the fee to expedite a new passport, and hopefully that’ll get VCON all squared away. We have hotel reservations but we don’t have train tickets yet.

Anyway–yo, Vancouver peeps, if there’s any chance you’ll also be at that convention, let Dara and me know! It’d be nice to see you.

Mirrored from annathepiper.org.

annathepiper: (Blue Hawaii Relaxing)

The last time I remember having my passport was on the way back from Vancouver last year, when userinfosolarbird and I went up for the Olympics to see Great Big Sea. We haven’t been back since, so I haven’t had reason to need the thing–but the problem is, I cannot find it for the life of me. Dara and I have looked in all the reasonable places it should have been in and many of the stupid ones, to no avail.

This is important because we want to go to VCON next month! One, we want another excuse to visit Vancouver, and the B’ys have not favored us with another Vancouver show on the tour schedule yet this year. Two, it’s a fairly tiny convention and we’re looking forward to attending a convention Dara doesn’t actually have to work. Three, we haven’t had a formal vacation this year, and don’t have one scheduled, so this’ll be a bit of a mini-vacation!

So I’m going to have to fill out the forms for reporting a passport lost and applying for a new one. Fortunately the courthouse down in Lake Forest Park takes the appropriate forms, AND they have Saturday hours. So I’m going to get that done and dealt with next weekend, and pay the fee to expedite a new passport, and hopefully that’ll get VCON all squared away. We have hotel reservations but we don’t have train tickets yet.

Anyway–yo, Vancouver peeps, if there’s any chance you’ll also be at that convention, let Dara and me know! It’d be nice to see you.

Mirrored from annathepiper.org.

annathepiper: (Blue Hawaii Relaxing)

By far the bulk of this past weekend was devoted to bringing userinforavyngyngvar up to visit Vancouver. Our main purpose was of course GREAT! BIG! SEA!, but my B’ys were hardly the only Awesome that Vancouver had to offer.

Details about the weekend in general, and pics as well, behind the fold!

Read the rest of this entry » )

Mirrored from annathepiper.org.

annathepiper: (Blue Hawaii Relaxing)

So yeah, Saturday in Vancouver has failed to suck. Made it safely up here to Chez userinfocow, with hardly any wait time at all at the border. And today, we went out on various and sundry shopping sorts of excursions.

userinfocow took userinfosolarbird and userinfospazzkat and me over to the nearby HMV–which proved to be a way more fruitful visit this time around than on the two previous visits, because this time I actually scored an album by La Bottine Souriante! Also picked up one by the Punters, who I’ve been meaning to listen to anyway by way of introducing myself to more Newfoundland music; plus, this album has the magic words “Produced by Alan Doyle” on the back, so I’m figuring that’s a strong recommendation right there. Lastly, got one by the Rankins, since I like their track on Fire in the Kitchen.

Relatedly, userinfocow also gave Dara and me a copy of userinfohsifyppah’s very first filk CD, Steel Cage Match. Looking forward to listening to this, in no small part because “I Fell Asleep (Reading the Silmarillion)” made me LOL, and also, I want to hear “Livejournal Shanty” too.

And, userinfocow snagged me a couple of loaner copies of La Bottine Souriante albums from the Vancouver Public Library as well. These shall have to stand me until I can acquire actual copies of these albums–which I have now ordered from Amazon, since apparently Amazon’s actually stocked up on La Bottine Souriante a lot since the last time I looked. To wit, bitchin’. Or should that be bitchin-ez moi?

Anyway, aside from all this musical love, we stopped in at Little Sister’s, which is Vancouver’s oldest queer bookstore. Which was kind of neat. I walked out with a novel called Salt Fish Girl which sounded interesting to me and SFnal (it mentions shapechanging and biotechnology), even though it doesn’t call itself a science fiction novel. I told the dude at the counter that I was a bit surprised that they didn’t have Tanya Huff in their (teeny) fantasy section, given that she’s a queer Canadian author and that she has a whole trilogy of books starring a queer boy, set in Vancouver even! He thought that was cool, so who knows, maybe they’ll stock ‘em. Also, they had a big black Labrador-lookin’ doggie who reminded me a lot of Sheriff, the doggie who lives along the goat trail.

OH OH OH, also, they had a magazine on the rack there with a cover blurb about an interview with the actress Alex Hedison. Wait a minute, I thought, Hedison? She did look suspiciously familiar, so I thumbed into the zine to check the interview–and yep, that there was the daughter of David Hedison, my very own Captain Crane from Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea. And she’s not only queer, she’s the former partner of Ellen DeGeneres! That’s some pretty high-profile queer there.

And after that, userinfocow went back to his place while Dara and Paul and I proceeded to hop on the bus and head down to the Asian-heavy community in Richmond, where they have a couple of largish Japanese/Chinese/Asian-friendly shopping mails. That was neat. Quite a bit of flashbacks to Japan there what with the layout of the stores and the sorts of stuff they sold. We snagged a couple of gifts for folks, had tasty lunch and later on tasty yogurt, and eventually staggered back to Chez userinfocow for zzz’s.

We’ll be heading to Steamworks for tasty food in a little bit, and to meet up with userinfogerimaple and possibly also userinfoelfmaid. Which should be a fine closer to a pretty fine day indeed.

Mirrored from annathepiper.org.

annathepiper: (Starbuck)
So yeah! [livejournal.com profile] solarbird and I took a super-quick road trip up to Vancouver BC this weekend, to visit [livejournal.com profile] cow, hang out, check out the city, and just in general get out of the house. It was a delightful trip in general. We had beautiful weather, a beautiful city to hang out in, extremely tasty bagels and other food, and a chance to greet [livejournal.com profile] vixyish and [livejournal.com profile] gfish.

And, best of all, we had a Surprise Jam Session!

Saturday... )

Sunday... )

We must do this again ASAP, hopefully not too long after my surgery recovery period. I want to see more of Vancouver in general, hang out with other folks up there--and maybe bring Rags up so Dara and I can jam again with Michael at SFU!

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