Montreal – July 2019 – Botanical Gardens

The Montreal Botanical Gardens is one of the finest, if not the finest, botanical gardens in North America. It has a large number of specialty gardens, such as a Chinese Gardens (covered in a separate posting), as well as numerous thematic gardens – including one dedicated to poisonous plants!

Overall the gardens are amazingly beautiful, and well kept.


























































Ottawa – July 2019 – Capital Views

As the Capital of Canada, Ottawa has a number of historic government buildings. With their longstanding connection to England, they tend to have a similar look to those in London.

The majority of the buildings are located on Parliament Hill.



The large Central Block (right with clock tower) has just started undergoing a 10 year restoration.




They offer tours of the House of Commons. With the Central Block under construction they enclosed this former courtyard to make it the new meeting chamber.

One interesting fact – the seats are green because the seats in London’s House of Commons is green. Why is England’s green – nobody knows.






A committee room.



Many other buildings in the city have the same look.



The Canadian Supreme Court.


Another government building on Parliament Hill.



The Canadian Mint.





The entrance to the Prime Minister’s Residence.



The Canadian History Museum across the river in Gatineau, Quebec.







The Alexandra Bridge.







The famed Rideau Canal.











The Rideau Falls.



Our day in Ottawa ended with an impressive light and sound show, detailing the patriotic history of Canada.





Toronto – July 2019 – Sunrise at the Palace of Purification

The drive out of Toronto featured a stop along Lake Ontario as the sun rose. Our stop is the ‘Palace of Purification’ – the R C Harris Water Treatment Plant.

The sunrise was fantastic, as are the art deco buildings. All you have to do to get there is take the streetcar to the very end of the line near Scarborough (but we drove!)

























Toronto – July 2019 – For This Collection You Need a Large Garden

In the 1960s Spencer and Rosa Clark started a collection that required a very large garden – they acquired architectural artifacts from large buildings in downtown Toronto that were being torn down and replaced with even larger ones.

This garden is located in suburban Scarborough, in what is now Guild Park and Gardens.



The archway from a long gone building leads you into the park.



What were once decorative pieces on the Toronto Star newspaper building are now giant building blocks.



Remnants from a Music Hall.



Smaller pieces are integrated directly into the gardens.



While others are added together to make a new sculpture.



Toronto’s second fire hall was located at Richmond and Portland Streets. Dating from 1871 it was torn down in 1968. In the background is a brand new events center.



The Greek Theater (also the featured photo for this posting). What was once the Bank of Toronto Building is now a theater in a park.




The grounds are immaculate, with the artifacts well spaced throughout.





The facing from the Quebec Bank Building has porcelain lions.



Additional random artifacts.












Easily the largest collection is from the former Bank of Montreal Building at King and Bay Streets in downtown Toronto. With this many fantastic items, this must have been an amazing building!



















Columbus – July 2019 – Greenlawn Cemetery

Our Saturday continued with a tour of Greenlawn Cemetery. While nowhere close to as impressive as Recoleta Cemetery in Buenos Aires, or even Spring Grove Cemetery in Cincinnati, Greenlawn is the final resting place for numerous famous Ohioans including 5 governors, as well as a number of military sections for the various wars since the mid 1800s, among the 150,000+ people buried here.

























Columbus’s favorite son – famed aviator and more – Eddie Rickenbacker.








Columbus – July 2019 – Bird Walk at Audubon Park

Audubon Park is located just south of downtown Columbus in a reclaimed ‘brown field’, aka – old industrial areas. The transformation to a nature preserve is amazing.



We were there on a Saturday morning for a ‘Beginning Birding Hike’. Our guide Erika was knowledgeable and enthusiastic.



We started out with the easy ones in the feeders.



While ostensibly we were there to check out the birds, the flowers and plants were interesting as well.



Not to mention twin turtles.



The bees were busy…



Of course I was too busy taking photos to pay attention to what type of bird this was!



As always wandering off from the crowd, who came away with more knowledge about birds than I did.



The boardwalk across the wetlands provided more flower and plant photo ops.




More birds..





The small, but passionate group was very focused.



An egret,



And a blue heron.



Despite the heat it was a great way to spend a couple of hours, thanks to the parks and our guide Erika.





Columbus – July 2019 – The Last of Roadside America for This Town

Those who regularly follow this blog know that the website Roadside America is one of my favorite sources for the strange and unusual. A few years ago we visited most of the Roadside America attractions for Columbus and detailed them in this post

https://rdzphotographyblog.com/2017/01/10/columbus-march-2015-roadside-america-attractions/

Today we finished off the last few, starting with a giant boot outside the LL Bean store.



A pet cemetery from the 1930s – 1960s – you can Googles it (I know really bad pun). Supposedly there are a few military dogs there, but it is large and we were unable to locate them.









A very colorful Buddhist temple in an otherwise nondescript housing neighborhood.



Large cowboy #1



And his twin just down the street – large cowboy #2.



And for the grand finale – the Gates of Hell – otherwise known as a large drainage pipe under High Street, complete with urban legends of hauntings.

While we haven’t seen all of America, we have now seen all of Columbus!