Police Department Activity

A belated report on collaborative police work three weeks ago:

Charges of solicitation and prostitution were brought against two women who allegedly performed sex acts for money at an unmarked office in the Swarthmore Medical Office Building at the corner of Chester Road and Yale Avenue.

The arrests were made as a result of efforts coordinated by the Criminal Investigation Division of the Delaware County District Attorney’s office, which ran the investigation involving the Swarthmore Police Department among several law enforcement agencies. The sex acts were apparently arranged through the website backpage.com.

The service had proper use and occupancy permits and a business license, according to Swarthmore Police Chief Brian Craig. No borough ordinances prohibit paid massages, but the techniques involved and the objectives of the massage services provided at this site were allegedly against the law.

The disposition of the case is still in process. The two women arrested were not native English speakers, and there is uncertainty of whether they may be victims of human trafficking.

Letters to the Editor

Regarding SHHS Band origins

To the Editor:

Your July 14 article on Swarthmore Borough Council’s July meeting quoted Council President David Grove as stating that Jack Hontz started the Strath Haven High School band with a handful of Nether Providence band members and none from Swarthmore.

My daughter Sheri, who played the clarinet, was recruited by Jack that first year, and he also recruited her sister Wendy to be a flag bearer. I believe there were several other Swarthmoreans. Jack’s influence on my children and both communities is greatly appreciated and we are saddened by his death.

Mary Lou Parker
Swarthmore

Regarding Jack Hontz

To the Editor:

In honor of Mr. Jack Hontz: What an incredible teacher, leader and friend you were to our SHHS community. I will never forget the day you and Mr. Henry Pearlberg, with your enthusiasm, recruited my sister and her friends picking us up at “band camp” to be part of the flags. I was always hoping that we would relocate back to Wallingford-Swarthmore so our son could play trombone for you. You have touched my life in so many ways and made me a better person. Those marching skills came in handy when I joined the Navy.

My heart is broken for your family and the Strath Haven High School family. May God bless you and your family through this challenging time.

Sheri Parker, Capt., M.S.C., U.S.N.

Zombieland

To the Editor:

Interdisciplinary learning is a fine idea. Things are complicated and each discipline seems to get more and more complicated. Einstein said, “Things should be made as simple as possible… .” He added, “…but no simpler” and because the second part of his statement seemed to suggest the complexity of existence, he worked all his life on the first part of the statement. To combine the disciplines, perhaps Swarthmore College’s BEP program is a step in the right direction toward a unified field of learning; and the devil take the landscape — which is rather disheartening to me as I type this.

But BEP is not the correct order for the acronym. It should read BPE. Biology creates psychology, and psychology creates engineering. However, even if corrected, a problem obtains. When engineering is the result, AI will emerge. And with artificial intelligence, who knows what will be around the corner? Perhaps robots which might desecrate the landscape to further their own reproductive interests; exactly the way we are behaving.

John Brodsky for The Tomkins Institute
Swarthmore

OPINION

Charlottesville

Great. Charlottesville used to be a town, a hip but livable small city with a lot of country comfort to it, and a pretty good university. Now it’s a hashtag.

Not a place, but a place holder. “Charlottesville”, like “Birmingham,” like “Oklahoma City,” like “Charleston,” shorthand for the confrontation between racists, neofascists and their opponents.

It’s not that. It’s not a natural location for a proxy war between hate and hope.

The violence didn’t happen there because Charlottesville is a fertile field for hatred. In the 1970s at the University of Virginia, northerners (I was one), women and black students were distinct minorities, sometimes to uncomfortable effect. Now UVa has become more homogenous, like the town, like Virginia the state, like the South writ large. There are still people and groups who chafe with each other, but it is a town that works, grows, and generally operates with mutual respect among town and college, conservative and liberal, people of color and white folks.

Why there, then? It happened in Charlottesville because some of the more vicious factions of the alt-right decided to plant their rebel flag at the statue of Robert E. Lee, a symbol of the time when Virginia and the South gave legal cover to white folks’ hatred and subjugation of black Americans. It happened there because the U is the alma mater of Richard Spencer, who coined the term alt-right and is the closest thing the movement has to an intellectual leader.

It happened because the temper of the town is liberal enough to encourage freedom of expression, even expression of beliefs that appall the people who actually live there. And even (foolishly) expressions is of hatred and rage spewed by armed goons bent on provoking violence.

It happened because it had to happen somewhere, and it will happen somewhere else again, because this nation is full of people who are alienated and disadvantaged by economic and educational realities.

It happened because cynical demagogues who tell them that their racial identity has somehow dictated their destiny. And it will happen again because their leaders, and our leaders, refuse to condemn it.

White people have deep problems in America today, as do their black and brown countrymen. These real problems involve race, but also transcend race. It’s sad that those rioters “on many sides” can’t see that their warped interpretation of the call to make America great again doesn’t lead to a better future, but to a depraved and disgraced past.

Chris Reynolds

Scott Arboretum Landscapes the Roundabout

Swarthmore College horticulture coordinator Jeff Jabco, center, and gardeners Mike Rolli and Linda Garrity recently installed perennials near Swarthmore’s roundabout.

By Kit Raven

The plantings at the Swarthmore roundabout are already morphing from scraggly trees and weedy-looking little plants into specimens that are beginning to fill out, flower and spread.

Jeff Jabco, Scott Arboretum’s director of Grounds and coordinator of Horticulture, took some time away from the many plantings he is now overseeing to explain how the design came about, the new concepts evident at the roundabout, and how, soon enough, we’ll be seeing an interesting, gorgeous and frequently changing landscape.

Jabco pointed out that all gardens and landscape plantings need a few years to grow, to develop from promising to actually looking great. However, some long-blooming perennials are already in flower, including Coreopsis verticillata ‘Zagreb,’ with tiny, canary yellow flowers; Salvia nemorosa ‘Blauhugel’ (‘Blue Hill’), with blue spires; Ruellia humilis, a wild petunia with sprinklings of small lilac-blue flowers; Eragrostis spectabilis, purple love grass topped with clouds of rosy purple panicles; and Pycnanthemum flexuosum, mountain mint, with frizzy balls of white flowers.

More than a dozen varieties of perennials will fill in the planting areas and will bloom in overlapping succession, from spring through fall. The effect will be like a meadow, delightfully dense, varied and often changing.

Not only are the currently blooming perennials giving a sneak preview of what’s to come in much greater profusion, but these and the trees and shrubs will also provide food and habitat for beautiful and necessary winged creatures.

The roundabout’s design includes some trees and shrubs, as a traffic-calming measure required by PennDOT. The native trees are Gymnocladus dioicus, Kentucky coffee trees (the roasted seeds are a poor substitute for coffee, so Hobbs won’t be harvesting them) which will eventually provide high shade and evergreen Juniperus virginiana, eastern red cedar or aromatic cedar.

The native shrubs are Ilex verticillata ‘Winter Red,’ with red berries in winter; Diervilla sessifolia ‘Coolsplash,’ variegated bush honeysuckle with yellow flowers and red fall leaves; and Juniperis chinensis ‘Angelica Blue,’ a silver spreading juniper. These structural plants were selected by Jabco and former curator Andrew Bunting.

Some residents have been curious about why the Scott Arboretum used gravel to cover the planting areas and what the little colored flags are for.

The design approach for the plantings is quite unusual. Last October, the German landscape architect Cassian Schmidt gave a Scott lecture on landscape planting that is sustainable and low-maintenance, yet also naturalistic and stunningly beautiful. The low maintenance starts with natural, unfertilized soil, which is then covered with gravel. This creates a lean environment for tough plants, which are only watered their first year and never fertilized. As the desired plants fill in and cover the gravel, weeding will be minimal, only a few times per year.

The Arboretum invited a number of horticultural professionals to participate in a one-day workshop to apply Schmidt’s principles for the roundabout and nearby areas. As a group, they selected perennials in four categories and decided how much of each category to use: 15% structural ones, such as Baptisia ‘Lemon Meringue’; 35% companions, ones that will grow well with the structural plants, such as the salvia above; 50% groundcovers, including the purple love grass; and 10% fillers, such as the coreopsis.

The group came up with a recommended plant list and proportions, which Jabco and garden supervisor Adam Glas revised to consider conditions of all day sun on an open site surrounded by cement, asphalt and constant traffic. Accordingly, a number of selections are natives that thrive in poor soil and adverse conditions.

To get a naturalistic look, Schmidt’s method uses a grid. On the roundabout, the colored flags marked a four square yard grid.

First, the featured or structural plants were placed. Then, in each square, the correct proportion of each type of perennial was randomly placed. The Arboretum intends over time to use this system all along Field House Lane, as the sustainable, low-maintenance method is also easy to plan and vary.

Growing Up Fast

AJ Turner of Swarthmore communes with the piglets at 4H’s Pig Club stall in Newtown Square. It isn’t always this clean. Photo courtesy of Katie Turner.

Like many 10 year olds, AJ Turner is into hockey, soccer, and baseball. Unlike his Swarthmore-Rutledge School classmates, the rising 5th grader is also into pigs. One particular pig, in fact: Mittens, a 130-some pound adolescent whom AJ will accompany in the novice pig showmanship event Saturday at the 4-H Summer Fair this weekend in Newtown Square.

You think your kids are growing up fast? Since AJ and 13 other 4-H pig club members got their 60 pound piglets in April, some of the animals have grown to nearly 300 pounds.

AJ had cared for a guinea pig, but a market pig was a quantum leap. Once a week, he and his mother Katie Turner travel from their Swarthmore home to the 4-H pig club barn in Newtown Square. There they work with other pig club members to muck out a stall shared by 13 hungry pigs, to refresh the stall with straw, and to feed the hungry animals from 50 pound bags.

AJ Turner training with Mittens, the pig.

Katie Turner said, “We wanted an activity that was hard work, and something we can do together without any technology. And we also wanted to look at how other people live.”

Without farm wisdom from her time residing in Swarthmore or Connecticut, the prospect of the 4-H pig club was mysterious. Fortunately, a cousin had raised pigs in Georgia, and closer to home, Katie said, the Penn State Extension office helped the pair understand the porcine world and the demands of the undertaking.

Raising pigs is hard work, AJ said, but worthwhile and rewarding in a way that a visit to a farm or a zoo can’t deliver. “Seeing them close up, being able to touch them, getting to know them is the best part.”

AJ said Mittens is “Really cute, but hyper.” Part of the 4-H animal experience is showing the animal in conformation judging, during which the pig and not the handler should be closest to the judges. “We have to use a cane to guide them,” he says, and sometimes it takes a firm nudge or a tap to get Mittens going in the right direction. He suggests that perhaps pigs aren’t as smart as popular wisdom says they are.

By the end of the Saturday, Mittens and the others of his herd will be auctioned, with the pig club members sharing in the proceeds of the sale. AJ Turner will get back to school, soccer and hockey, but next spring, he plans to be back on the farm, growing up with another pig.

Young Local Exhibitors Groom
for 4-H Fair This Weekend

The 4-H Fair is a living connection to our country’s agrarian past, when raising and living with animals was part of life for most families. This weekend (beginning Thursday, August 10), this hidden Delaware County treasure is free and open to the public of all ages at the Cooperative 4-H farm at the Garrett Williamson Foundation, 395 Bishop Hollow Road in Newtown Square.

The 4-H Fair offers contests, pony and hay rides, informational displays, and animal showing in which young 4-H members present the animals they’ve helped raise, and the projects they’ve completed during the year. Poultry judging takes place on Thursday evening, and the show is open to the public beginning at 6 p.m. A horse show is featured on Friday evening beginning at 5 p.m., with other live animal shows continuing till 9 p.m.

Farmers rise early, and Saturday’s events begin at 8:30 a.m., running through 4 p.m. Check on progress and features of the show at the show’s Facebook page, facebook.com/delco4h. Admission and parking are free; the show goes on rain or shine. For more information, call youth education coordinator Rebecca McCafferty at (610) 690-2655.

EDITORIAL

One of the joys (and perils) of work in the Swarthmorean office is our access to bound copies of the Swarthmorean and its predecessor, going back more than 100 years, and endlessly tempting to amateurs of Swarthmore and newspaper history. Here’s an editorial we found from April 30, 1915, when a year’s subscription was $2.00. The proposition was simple: a newspaper needs its community to “share the burden of this enterprise”; to support its own news source.

The premise still stands: we need you, readers, subscribers, and advertisers, and we need more of you. Recommend the Swarthmorean to neighbors. Give a subscription to your college kid or an emigrated friend. Shop with our advertisers, and look to us for your own classified and display advertising needs.

And the offer still stands, though the decimal places may have shifted: if we can get to 2,500 subscribers, we’ll knock the price of a subscription to your “home paper” down by 25%.

Editorial: April 30, 1915

On May 1, 1914, the new managers of the “Swarthmore News” entered upon their duties, with faith in the future success of their home paper and interested enough to make an effort to support such an important community enterprise as the local paper…

Now we ask the community to help us to increase the circulation so we can reduce the subscription price to $1.50 per year.

If each subscriber were to secure one new subscriber it would be possible to do this. Surely if we are using in this work, valuable time which could be converted into more money in other business, it is not too much to ask each member of the community to share the burden of this enterprise to the extent of subscribing for a friend, or trying to secure one new subscriber, so that on our next anniversary we may celebrate a reduction in the subscription price of the paper. The work of getting out this little sheet is just as great as if the circulation were forty times as large.

The support of a local paper in a town of this size, and class, will always be a problem; co-operation on the part of each and every member of the community is needed in order to make it a success.

We thank all those who have supported us so loyally in our effort to preserve the paper to the community, and trust that the coming year may see the size of the paper as well as the circulation materially enlarged, and that its influence may be a power for good.

To quote from our editorial of a year ago, “It is our aim to keep up the standard of the paper, as well as to put it upon a paying basis. If a mistake occurs — as it undoubtedly will at some time or other — kindly remember that it was not intentional and bring it to our notice at once. We will greatly appreciate any suggestions that will help to make this paper what it ought to be.”

We want it to be an uplift, and fairly representative of our intellectual community; this necessitates co-operation; we are ever ready to serve as our motto expresses it, “In the Interest of All” that is for community betterment.

— Julia R. Hazard
Editor-in-Chief

Statistically Significant: Will Fairley Named an ASA Fellow

Will Fairley receives the fellowship award from American Statistical Association President Barry Nussbaum during last week’s ASA convention. Photo courtesy of the American Statistical Association.

It’s a fact: Dr. Will Farley of Swarthmore is one of 52 statisticians among the 18,000 members of the American Statistical Association who were named fellows of the organization at ASA’s Joint Statistical Meetings last week. Fellowship recognizes “contributions to the theory and practice of statistics in law, innovative curricular contributions, leadership in statistical consulting, and service” to the ASA.

Fellowship is permanent; there is no money involved, just the honor of being numbered among the most distinguished members of the ASA. Fellows have been named for more than a century, and are limited to one-third of one per cent (.0033333…) of membership per year.

Will co-founded Analysis & Inference in 1979 in Boston, moving with the company to Swarthmore when he married. The firm, now based in Victoria Mills in Wallingford, consults with law firms, companies, government entities, nonprofits and others, providing data analysis and conclusions based on statistics and probability. Dr. Fairley is joined at Analysis & Inference by director of client services Mares Stellfox, researcher John Livezey, database expert Anteneh Tesfaye, and data scientist consultant Bill Huber.

“Analysis & Inference is a fact finder,” Dr. Fairley said recently. “We ‘work on behalf of’ clients, we don’t work for them. We go in as consultants, not witnesses, and we go where the facts lead us. If you get a reputation for being on one side, you lose credibility.” For instance, he said, the firm consults on behalf of both defense and plaintiffs in the legal matters that make up about half its work.

In a polarized society where propaganda battles increasingly deploy “alternative facts,” such impartiality has become elusive. “It’s a tough environment for facts,” Dr. Fairley said, but no matter the complexity of the data analysis, he said, “We try to present facts as simply as possible.” The essential truths held within data, analyzed honestly, can help bring about agreement and progress rather than discord, with benefits to public policy as well as private citizens and companies.

Dr. Fairley’s contributions to the field include work which has brought about fairer solutions in federal compliance control of state social services, state insurance rate regulations, model criminal procedures, and nuclear power plant safety analysis. His body of work, complementing more than 40 peer reviewed papers and book chapters, made his selection as a Fellow of the ASA highly probable.

Briefly Noted…

Phil Morrison of Swarthmore celebrated his 88th birthday with his family at The Inn at Swarthmore last Wednesday, August 2. Attending were his partner, Carol Seymour, five sons (Peter (Arizona), Ben (Spring City, Pa.), Phil III (Elkton, Md.), Chris (Swarthmore) and Kurt (Rutledge), and daughter, Elizabeth (Swarthmore), who all graduated from Swarthmore High School. Phil tells us, “My Morrison grandparents moved to Swarthmore in 1905. Their new home was electrified, and my then six-year-old Uncle Bayard delighted in throwing the electric switches to prove it.” Phil, a scientist who has remained active in researching Climate Change, is the proud grandfather of 15 grandchildren and three great-grandchildren. Seated (l. to r.) around the table are Phil, Peter, Carol, Ben, Phil III, Elizabeth, Chris, and Kurt.

As of Sunday afternoon, August 6, the winners of the Swarthmore Swim Club 2017 1,000-lap shirt are: 62.) Colleen Riviello, 63.) Stephen Scharschan, 64.) Emily Reilly, 65.) Hugh Haney, 66.) John Reilly, 67.) Anne Reilly, 68.) Kim Scott, 69.) Laura Mutz, 70.) Rick Valelly, 71.) Bruce Dorsey, 72.) Susan Larson, 73.) Richard Shimko, 74.) Barbara Whitaker-Shimko, 75.) Tom Runiewicz, 76.) Beth Resweber, and 77.) Mark Kuperberg.

Swarthmore Swim Club swimmers Gavin Shifflett (left), Ella Shifflett (middle) and Anna Karpyn of Wallingford (right) represented the Suburban Swim League (SSL) at the Daily Times Elite Meet, held on Tuesday, August 1, at Prospect Park Swim Club. The meet, sponsored by the Times and the Taylor Community Foundation, brings together the top swimmers from the Suburban, Delco, and Intra-County summer swimming leagues. Swimming in the Girls Eight and Under events, Anna finished first in the 25 Meter Backstroke, third in the 25 Meter Freestyle, and swam the opening leg of the SSL’s win in the Eight and Under 100 Meter Medley Relay. Gavin finished third in the Boys 9-10 25 Meter Backstroke, fourth in the Boys 9-10 25 Meter Butterfly, and was a part of the league’s win in the Boys 9-10 100 Meter Medley Relay. Ella finished second in Girls 11-12 100 Meter Individual Medley, fourth in the Girls 11-12 50 Meter Backstroke and teamed up to grab second for the SSL in the Girls 11-12 100 Meter Medley Relay. Photo by Michael Karpyn

Notice to Readers & Advertisers

The Swarthmorean offices will be closed from Friday, August 18, until Monday, August 28. There will be no issue published on Friday, August 25.

What to do? What to know!

Party in the Park

The Swarthmore Environmental Advisory Board is hoping for continued perfect weather at Party in the Park at Little Crum Creek (located just off Swarthmore Avenue on Cresson Lane) on Thursday, August 17, from 5 p.m. to 8:30 pm.

The Board welcomes volunteers for light weeding and encourages play in the park including splashing around in the refreshing creek.

Bring supplies for weeding, a picnic dinner (The Hogface BBQ food truck will be in attendance), s’mores and other park fun. No charge for attending, of course.

Blood Drive

As summer wanes, so does the national blood supply, according to the American Red Cross. The Red Cross is in particular need of donors during the last weeks of August, and plans several donation opportunities nearby. Make advance appointments at redcrossblood.org or at (800) 733-2767. Those who give between now and August 31 will be e-mailed a $5 Target eGiftCard.

Blood donations will be taken on Tuesday, August 15, from 1 p.m. to 6 p.m. at Rose Tree Place, 500 Sandy Bank Road, Media; on Thursday, August 17, from 2 p.m. to 7 p.m. at Our Lady of Perpetual Help, 2130 Franklin Avenue, Morton; and on Saturday, August 19, from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Dunkin’ Donuts, 100 Baltimore Pike in Springfield, and 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Media Municipal Building, 301 N. Jackson Street.

Richard Dowling Interprets Joplin in CAC Debut

In the centennial year of Scott Joplin’s death, classically trained pianist Richard Dowling comes to Wallingford to demonstrate his Joplin chops in the Tri State Jazz Society’s concert at the Community Arts Center next Sunday, August 20, at 2 p.m.

An acknowledged master of the works of this great American composer, Dowling is in the midst of more than 60 all-Joplin recitals across the nation this year and next, featuring rags, waltzes, marches, and other piano works.

The TSJ recital offers general admission of $20 at the door, with half-price tickets available for first-time attendees and TJS members, and free admission for children and full-time students with ID. CAC is at 414 Plush Mill Road in Wallingford. Info: tristatejazz.org or (856) 720-0232.

Night and Day Kids Programs at Tyler Arboretum

This Saturday, August 12, families with kids age 5 and up are invited to join in “Firefly Frenzy” in the twilight at Tyler Arboretum.

Explore the evening from 7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. in a catch and release hunt for fireflies, moths, and other darkness loving insects. Kids can create their own glowing firefly crafts. Admission cost for this event is $10 for members and $15 for nonmembers.

On Tuesday, August 15, kids age 4 through 6 can bring their parents to explore the journey of a butterfly, from egg to caterpillar to beautiful flier, and craft their own butterflies. This program offers free admission for a parent with each child at $10 (members) or $15 (nonmembers). Preregistration is advised for each event at tylerarboretum.org.

Endless Days, Boundless Beauty in BC

Sunset near Ucleulet. Photo by Virginia Thompson

Summer Travel
By Virginia Thompson

Canada is celebrating its 150th anniversary of its Confederation this year, so what better year to visit our northern neighbor? Especially when all of the national parks, many in number, well-staffed and well-cared for, are free in 2017!

My husband, Tom Shaffer, and I chose British Columbia as our vacation site. It is truly one of the most beautiful places on the continent, at least during the dry summer months, featuring glistening lakes, streams, beaches, the Pacific Ocean, endless forests of ancient cedar trees — all surrounded by tall snow-capped mountains.

Our weather was picture-perfect, with blue skies and high temps in the upper 70s. We started in Vancouver, where we hiked miles of trails in Stanley Park and biked the 6-mile seawall on the Burrard Inlet. A gondola trip to the top of Grouse Mountain provided spectacular views of mountains (including Mount Rainier) and an outstanding gourmet dinner at sunset. The Capilano Suspension Bridge Park included a long and bouncy pedestrian suspension bridge several hundred feet above a gorgeous mountain stream. Seven other shorter suspension bridges took us among the treetops, and a cliff walk allowed a close-up inspection of the rocks that produce the steep walls.

Vancouver and its environs also host innumerable cultural institutions that provide insight into the Canadian psyche. Among these sites: Granville Island Market, a combination of the Reading Terminal Market and Seattle’s Pike Place Market, with a character and feel unique to Vancouver and a great place to people-watch and buy unique foods and souvenirs.

The University of British Columbia’s Museum of Anthropology holds remarkably large totem poles and house poles (so-called because they tell the history of the house’s inhabitants) and displays hundreds of cases and drawers of specimens that would be stored in back rooms in typical museums. In nearby Whistler Village, we visited the Squamish-Lil’Wat Cultural Center to learn about two local First Nations tribes. The center offered a peek into the people’s connection to the land, sense of community, shared responsibility, and the hard work required for their existence.

The Bill Reid Gallery of Northwestern Art highlights the work of a BC native artist, born of a Haida Tribe mother and an American father, whose impact on Canadian art makes him one of Canada’s greatest artists. He was a goldsmith, carver, sculptor, and writer whose work is on Canadian postage stamps and the $20 bill.

Boats in the harbor on Vancouver Island. Photo by Virginia Thompson

After five days in the Vancouver area, we took a ferry to Vancouver Island, where we first traveled to Ucluelet on the island’s west coast. One of the highlights was a 5-hour wildlife boat tour through the Broken Islands, where many seals and sea lions entertained us by lounging on the sunny rocks. We also saw many bald eagles, some bear and deer, but, alas, no whales, as they are “unpredictable,” per the tour operators. The tour also provided us with the area’s history and a wonderful salmon lunch, accompanied by hummingbirds attracted by the feeders while we were anchored for lunch. Ucluelet was the only place we experienced some rain, but we managed to hike parts of the Wild Pacific Trail with its ancient cedar trees.

Victoria was our last stop, and here we saw Butchart Gardens, a smaller Longwood Gardens with an unbelievable sunken garden in the limestone quarry that previously operated on the site. Craigdarroch Castle, off the beaten path of Victoria, was built by coal baron Robert Dunsmuir, who died before the home’s completion. His wife and children lived there, and its later history as a military hospital, college, school board offices, and music conservatory brought significant changes to the original building, those changes interesting in their own right. Stained glass, woodwork, and Victorian-era furnishings make this a must-see attraction. The castle, a Canadian designated national historical site, is still undergoing renovations. Of course, no trip to Victoria is complete without exploring the walkway around the harbor, taking the tour of the BC legislative buildings, visiting the BC Museum, and shopping for unique items along Government Street.

Every trip leaves you with certain overarching impressions of the people and places you visit. One of our joys, visiting in the last two weeks of July, was the length of the days. The sun rose at about 5:45 a.m., and while it didn’t set until about 9:15 p.m., it stayed light until about 10 p.m. Other general impressions were the friendliness of the people (with the exception of Victoria, which seems to cater to tourists more than the other places), the absolute right-of-way that pedestrians have, and more prohibitions against smoking than we are used to. Biking and hiking trails are everywhere (even on divided four lane highways), and they are well used.

People are outdoorsy and activity-based during the summer months — kayaks, bikes, paddleboards, and other toys for outdoor fun seem to top every vehicle. Because of Vancouver’s moderate year-round climate, there is a significant homeless population in the city. Forest fires in interior BC reduced visibility for us in some areas, including at Whistler. There are no Canadian pennies anymore, and prices are rounded up or down if paying in cash; $1 and $2 coins replace paper, and the lowest denomination of bills is the $5.

Canada’s beauty and abundant activities made our two weeks there a wonderful vacation. It was very hard to leave and return to “normal” life.