Sunday, July 22, 2007

Wet weekends are fun part 2 - Saturday

Saturday I got up early and assembled things for the Summer Dreams Literary Arts Festival. It's an annual event put on by Pandora's Collective, a very cool organization that does tons of good work with poets and poetry in Vancouver.

When I said good-bye to the day for Fi, I wished her a successful "friends" birthday party. She and her best bud Shannon were preparing a day of laser tag, bouncy castle and other fun at their combined birthday party at Shannon's house later in the day, followed by a sleepover. I knew I wouldn't see her until Sunday.

On the way to the festival, I picked up our copy of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows at the mall. We got the "adult cover" edition, with a more sophisticated dust jacket, which I think is funny. It's so people can read it on the bus without having to let on right away that they're reading a kids' book. I just figured fewer people would have this version so that's the one I chose. I packed it up safely for later-on reading.

I arrived about 11am at Lumberman's Arch in Stanley park, and unloaded 200 water bottles and a couple of camping jugs for refilling water bottles. Last year it was so hot that someone had to make a run for more water. This year it was cool and rainy, so that water was not in such high demand. It was great to see that some people filled their own bottles or refilled their store-bought bottles when they were empty. The festival began at noon. I enjoyed sitting at the Poetry House table for part of the day, enjoying the poetry performances and panel discussion for part of the day, chatting with poetry friends and participating in Steve Duncan's chapbook workshop. Even with the rain, the audience tent was brimming with happy people. This year there was a kids' stage too, with musical performances, and a face-painting station and a mock protest against Harry Potter in favour of wonderful adventures in Canadian books. By 6pm I was full up with words and ideas and visiting, and ready to come home. It was wet all day but not cold. Still, I wanted to spend a bit of time with Andy and Alex before it got too late, so I came home for a late supper and movie.

Reflecting on this year' Summer Dreams, I think I appreciate it more each time I participate. Bonnie Nish and Sita Carboni, the organizers, have a way of bringing people together to celebrate their art and each other's company that is truly remarkable. I'm grateful for what they do. The new venue at Lumberman's Arch is lovely. I can't wait to enjoy it on a "sit on the ground with a picnic" sort of day. Reading series' and writing groups from around Vancouver were highlighted throughout the day. That's remarkable too - the number of groups and events and the number people who participate in writing and reading around our town. I'm glad that Pandora's Collective has a festival about it every year.

I made it home around 7. And yes, we did crack open the Harry Potter. I read the first 3 chapters to Alex just before bed. After a lovely damp outdoor day it was good to be warm and cozy indoors with my family. I think it was just about a perfect day.

question: did something ever turn out different from how you expected it, but still good?

mompoet - different is usually good by definition

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