Dispatches from the Field: A tale of Californias in Canada.

The Okanagan Valley of British Columbia is frequently compared to Napa Valley. My experience was more complex.

The southern part reminded me of Highway 101 coming north toward San Jose about 50 years ago. Busy, two lane, pleasant but windy road, lined with vineyards and orchards, and fruit and produce stands everywhere.

As we approached the central part of the valley near Kelowna, however, smoke from a series of forest fires cast a pallor of smokey, brown pallidness over the sky, the fields, even the normally beautiful lake. Visibility was limited, and what you could see reminded me of nothing so much as the San Fernando Valley on a smoggy day. I am not including any photos from our first two days here (just google “Van Nuys smoggy day photos” and you’ll get the idea).

We were planning to leave yesterday, but the dawn broke clear and blue and I arranged to stay another day. And it was a spectacular day.

The Okanagan is famous for its wines, and the view from Cedar Creek Winery showed why the comparison to Napa Valley was fitting. That is, if Napa had a lake the size of Tahoe next to it:

winery

We spent the afternoon people-watching at a coffee house downtown and walking around Kelowna’s downtown waterfront area where, in the evening, I came upon a free outdoor jazz concert:

waterfront jazz

A continuing series: What is art? Is this art?

dolphin sculpture

Today, the winds have changed, the smoke is back, it feels like Fresno, and we are out-a-here.

2 thoughts on “Dispatches from the Field: A tale of Californias in Canada.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s