Natalia was my work travel companion for two weekends in June. First we went to
Saskatoon for Natalia's sister Lulu's dance recital and then to Kelowna for a
relaxation weekend to celebrate Natalia finishing her report cards.

Saskatoon


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While Nati, her sister, and mom went to Erin's bridal shower, Nati's dad and I took a hike in
Beaver Creek conservation area. We found a great looking cottage that might look good in Manitou...


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Here is Carl showing off the siding of the 'cottage'.


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Carl thought his wife would approve of the door. It turns out that this is used as a canoe
storage shed, but it could easily be repurposed for something else.


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Beaver Creek is actually a really pretty area south of Saskatoon, along the south Saskatchewan River.
Carl and I explored the river bed and saw our share of wildflowers and riverbanks which were sliding.
This is Carl checking out a bank that had slid.


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Carl had the presence of mind to pack both a hat and some water for our jaunt.


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Here is the canoe storage shed along with two beautiful canoes.


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Here is Carl along the Beaver Creek, looking back at the interpretive centre.


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So, it turns out that it was a good weekend to buy an outdoor fire pit. Carl and I assembled this
for his backyard and Sarah's dog decided to check it out. Hot dog, anyone??

Kelowna, BC


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I had some business in BC so Natalia flew in to meet me. We toured around the waterfront and walked the
boardwalk on Saturday morning and found this vessel flying the pirate flag, which I thought was awesome.


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Here is Natalia wearing a beautiful sundress along the banks of Lake Okanagan.


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We took most of Saturday for a winery tour (after a stop at the local bakery and at the farmer's market-
where I found Carl Piro some awesome hot sauce called Habby Jacks). We took our lunch at the Hillside
Estates Winery, and this is where Natalia is, enjoying their lush landscaping. She is under a cherry
tree that she eventually sampled, although she did feel compelled to ask permission.


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Here's Natalia sampling wine at Hillside Estates. For whatever reason, she didn't want to smile here.


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Hillside Estates is definitely the place to have lunch if you're touring the Naramata Bench wine region
north east of Penticton. Here we are on the upper patio, looking out on a gorgeous view. That's a pinot
gris in Natalia's hand.


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Natalia with a dorky smile, but enjoying her tuna melt sandwich.


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Natalia with some beautiful grape vines.


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A close-up of the vines and my lovely wife of not quite one year. The grapes were not quite in
blossom yet.


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Although the cherries definitely were! They were almost ready to pick, so Natalia wanted to taste them.


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The farthest vineyard we went to was Lang. At the time I took this photo, we were the only ones
visiting the winery. A far cry from Mission Hill, that's for sure! Lang had a really nice Riesling.


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This is at the Red Rooster winery and I took the photo of a mermaid for Natalia's sister Maria.
Before we stopped here, we stopped at Laughing Stock.


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Natalia still makes me laugh as she's one of the few adults I know who loves Tiger Tiger icecream.


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I tried to take a photo from our hotel room (the Delta Grand Okanagan Lodge) at night after a wonderful
dinner at the Quail's Gate Winery.


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On Sunday, after massages, Natalia and I went for a tandem bike ride around Kelowna. Here she is on the
back of the bike - where she's happiest.


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Another point and click moment.


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It turns out that our timing was impeccable as we ran into a classic car show along the lake while on
our tandem bike ride. Here, Natalia poses with a Karmann Ghia.


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This is a very expensive classic Porsche Speedster.


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I took the photo of the new 'Vette for Danielle's boyfriend Dalen.


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So, it turns out that my wife likes convertibles.


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A not ugly car, although when guys drive around in these cars in Italy, the ladies shake their
pinky finger at them, insinuating that they're compensating for something. It's still a good-looking
Ferrari though.


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Here's a trike for my dad.


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A dragster for Carl Piro.


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A GORGEOUS mullet! I did my typical, "Hey Natalia, will you pose for a photo for me?" and then I snap
a picture over her shoulder. This one is something special.


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We had lunch along the lake as well, right by our hotel on another rooftop patio. We live a pretty
good life, all things considered.

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