Top 12 interesting observations on the Ryder Lake Ramble adventure

I am always amazed by what I notice when I actually open my eyes, ears and mind.

Interesting observations from the Ryder Lake Ramble. Three alpacas behind a fence, one is eating grain from a young girls hand.

2023 marks the 23rd year of Ryder Lake Ramble.

The event raises funds for the Ryder Lake Community Hall. Ryder Lake is a hillside suburb southeast of Chilliwack.

We are staying here in Chilliwack, in the Fraser Valley of British Columbia in Canada, for about six weeks, so an event like the Ramble is a great way to get to know the area and meet some people in the community.

Having organised several car rallies as fundraisers when my kids were at school, I love the idea of getting out and about, taking turns you’d normally drive past.

The Ramble was a little different, as it included visiting ten properties where you were invited to come in, meet the owner, and visit the garden or meet their animals.

I am not going to tell you about each of the places or the people, or even the area specifically.

Today, I am going to share twelve interesting observations I made that day.

1. Let us not forget to be kind

The challenges and desires to be a good human are the same today as they were 120 years ago.

And probably 120 years before that…

The Women's Institute Creed from 1904

The Women’s Institute Creed of 1904. Captured by Joy Taylor in the Ryder Lake Community Hall

2. Closed gates are more intriguing

Even though the driveway gate was opened wide to walk through, I wanted to enter this place via the small gate to the side.

A garden gate made from tree branches

A closed gate opens the imagination. Captured by Joy Taylor

3. Strings make me teary

These kids started playing the cello and violin in the garden.

My skin tingled, and my eyes filled with tears.

Memories of my kids’ performing filled my thoughts.

Two youth playing musical instruments. A girl, seated playing the cello and a boy, standing playing the violin, outside in a garden.

Two young people playing their music in the garden, for us to enjoy. Captured by Joy Taylor

4. Mother Nature is bold

All the colours of the rainbow are nothing compared to the colour palette that Mother Nature uses.

Nine different flowers in a grid pattern.

Colours of spring. Captured by Joy Taylor

5. We need to teach kids about value

At two different locations, kids had made cupcakes to sell.

One was selling them for 50 cents to raise money for her sporting activities and donate to charities.

The others were selling theirs for $3-5 to make money for stuff they wanted to buy.

A cupcake, a price sign and sign explaining who made the cupcakes and why. Inset, a plate of cupcakes with a price sign.

Cupcakes for sale. Captured by Joy Taylor

6. One smiling face

Whether walking in a forest or along the street, once I see a smiling face, I cannot help but look up and around for more.

A tree in the forest with eyes, nose and mouth glued on, making a smiling face

A smiling tree. Captured by Joy Taylor

7. Anyone can learn anything

From keeping bees and growing vegetables to raising alpacas and spinning wool.

If you want to learn a new skill, someone who already learned is genuinely excited to teach you.

A lady spinning alpaca wool using a wooden spinning wheel with a dog laying in front of her

Spinning wool on a spinning wheel. Captured by Joy Taylor

8. Creativity appears everywhere

In every facet of life, someone is expressing their creative energy.

It appears in the equipment and accessories that are made, participation in shared activities, creating art, singing songs and telling stories.

Horse wearing a decorative bridle and reins

Creativity shines in the halter and reins. Captured by Joy Taylor

9. Greener on the inside

Even if you live in a place that snows, you can surround yourself with tropical plants if you are willing to create a sanctuary for them.

Pot plants in a glass room

A glass conservatory filled with all types of plants. Captured by Joy Taylor

10. Time is relative

Regardless of whether we change our clocks forward and backward throughout the year, the sun still shines, and the earth still turns the same way at the same speed, day after day.

Metal sundial with roman numerals

Sundials were not designed with daylight savings in mind. Captured by Joy Taylor

11. Vegan gardens are missing out

Gardens that are grown by vegans are missing these three things:

No feathered friends to eat the bugs.

No chicken poop to use as manure.

No eggshells to crush up to prevent slugs from getting to their leafy greens.

Vegetable garden

Vegans love their vegetables, and so do the bugs. Captured by Joy Taylor

12. Not all toads are unwanted

Growing up in Queensland, I learned that toads (cane toads) are bad and frogs (green frogs) are good.

Here, they have built a special tunnel for the toadlets to help them hop from the lake to the forest and encourage locals to take a detour to avoid the roads when the toadlets are crossing.

They have frogs (bullfrogs) on their list of undesirables.

Orange sign saying Tiny Toads on road ahead, detour

Take the detour to avoid the tiny toads on the road. Captured by Joy Taylor

If you have the opportunity to be in Chilliwack in June, I would encourage you to experience the Ryder Lake Ramble and see what observations you make.

Of course, you do not need an organised event to be able to drive around wherever you are and take notice of things you normally drive by, and make some interesting observations of your own!

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Joy Taylor

Joy Taylor

Joy has been working her way around the world with her kids, solo and with her partner for over 20 years. Her motto is ‘travel cheap, travel deep’. She built a green house and tries to live a green life. 36/196


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