Arlesheim, Basel-Landschaft (BL), Schweiz/Suisse/Svizzera/Switzerland

[1984 Nikon FE2 SLR 35-mm roll film camera, s/n 1816483, with Nikkor AI 50-mm f/1.8 lens, s/n 2336591, and 52-mm polarizing filter;
Kodak Ektar 125 (Kodak 5101 | Ektar 125-1) 36-exposure colour negative film]

© Copyright photograph by Stephan Alexander Scharnberg, November 1991

Thursday, March 5, 2015

Obituary for Uwe Kündrunar Scharnberg

Uwe with his millionth seedling sometime in 1964.

Uwe Kündrunar Scharnberg, the first-born of his siblings, came into this world in the Schwedenschanze, a thatched hut near the village of Höhbeck-Brünkendorf, Lüchow-Dannenberg, Lower Saxony, Germany on March 10, 1929 at 23:40 and crossed the threshold in Ladner, B.C., Canada on February 19, 2015 at 04:10.

Later this hut was rebuilt and enlarged, operating for many years as a café-restaurant, until it was renovated and again enlarged to become a boutique hotel in about 2007 or 2008.

Predeceased by daughter Anya Maureen (Jim Compton), sisters Raphaela (John Bicknell) and Michaela (John McHugh); our calm, quiet, and humble father leaves behind wife Doris Scharnberg; sons Stephan Alexander Scharnberg (Elizabeth) and Felix Hayo Scharnberg (Leila), daughter Alison Oona (Chris Rachel); grandchildren Cohen Isaac Scharnberg, Serena Bell, Julia Scharnberg, Christopher Compton, Simone Compton, Christian Rachel, Fiona Rachel, and Malcolm Rachel; and sisters Frohlinde (Klaus Paasche) and Arnhild (Richard Schmidt) in Germany.

Uwe’s parents, Moritz Johann Heinrich Scharnberg and Othilie Rott, were part of the original hippy movement, Germany’s “Wandering Birds” (Wandervögel) of the 1920s and 1930s. He did not have a happy childhood, shuffled between divorced parents and off to distant relatives. His father was a vegetarian and a Theosophist, his mother an early Anthroposophist, hence his parents’ split.

My father lived with his mother in a number of locations, “all over the place” as he recently told me—Niedersachsen, Riebnitz in Mecklenburg near the Baltic coast, and later in Hamburg. As a result, it was difficult for him to make and keep friends. This and his quiet, shy, and humble Piscean nature were a challenge to friendships throughout his life.

At three years old, Uwe was sent by train from Riebnitz to Oberberbach, south of Darmstadt, via Frankfurt am Main, alone with a sign hanging on his neck directing other passengers and the conductors to escort him to his next train. In Darmstadt he was met by his Uncle Hans, husband of his first godmother, Cläre Dähke. The Dähke’s were involved in The Christian Community congregations in Frankfurt am Main and Darmstadt. Also, Uwe went on a trip with his mother to East Prussia. He commenced school at age seven, only completing seven years plus one year Berufsschule (apprenticeship school), as a result of the Second World War. In those days the school year started at Easter. Uwe was not often with his father. His mother was nicknamed “Schimmel” by her friends. She was born in Barmen in the Wuppertal.

Uwe lived from 1937 to 1945 in Hamburg, with his mother until 1944: Alsterdorf, the next neighbourhood north of Winterhude, in 1937; Eppendorfer Landstraße 70, Eppendorf in 1938; at Rote(?) in 1939; with Prahl at Dammtorstraße 40III, burned out in the devastating bombing raids of Operation Sodom & Gomorah, from 1939 to 1943; and with Oberlandesgerichtsrat (Judge) Rittmayer on the Süllberg, Blankenese in 1943 and 1944.

The Jugenddienstpflicht (youth mandatory service) reaffirmed the conscription of all German youth into the HJ (Hitler Jugend) in March 1939. So, at age eleven, father had to join the Deutsches Jungvolk, the junior branch of the Hitler Youth, staying with them until war’s end. 

His mother was indirectly connected and involved with the plot on Hitler’s life in the famous attempt by Colonel Claus Schenk Graf von Stauffenberg on July 20, 1944, that saw him and over two hundred others (mostly officers of the German Army) implicated and killed by firing squad and hanging. She was also a serious Anthroposophist, a dangerous thing to be during the twelve years of the Nazi regime, as Anthroposophy and its adherents were deemed the most strident enemy and spiritual foe of and by the Nazis. She was told to disappear. She went south in the fall of 1944 to Seelbach, Kreis Lahr, Baden, to live with her friend Edith Kelber, Uwe’s godmother, until the war ended. 

Uwe lived at the Jugendwohnheim Holzdamm (Holzdamm Youth Hostel) and on the Alster in 1944 and 1945. He did a kitchen apprenticeship in the famous Hotel Atlantik in Hamburg during the last year of the war, from April 1944 until early May 1945, the end of World War II. He also lived in Hamburg-Harburg, across the Elbe on the south shore, and in a WE-Lager (Wehr Ertüchtigungs Lager) (HJ indoctrination and training centre) in 1945. There were not enough guns for each Hitler Youth, only one gun shared by every two boys, guarding railway bridges. These were either the small-calibre Czech rifles, of high quality, or the inferior small-calibre Italian rifles. On one of his outings during free time, Uwe crossed to Hamburg, hiding the gun he and his friend shared, under a stairwell in some back street or alley as he did not want to be caught with a weapon once the hostilities ended. The boys lived in a Kaserne (barracks) of the Hitler Youth in Harburg, only two kilometres from the battle front and close to being sent into the fighting in a last desperate attempt by their commanders. The boys all knew when the British army was advancing to occupy the area. In the night of May 5, 1945 (the laying down of arms and the end of the war), Uwe and his friend were rounded up and put in the back of a British army lorry (truck) and driven north of Hamburg into the Schleswig Holstein countryside. They awoke in the crisp morning air, finding themselves laying in cow dung in a muddy field. Uwe and his friend hiked about forty kilometres to Ratzeburg where his friend’s mother lived, caring for four siblings while their father worked at the Blohm+Voss shipyards on the Hamburg docks. The British soldiers told them to make themselves scarce and left them with a large tin of biscuits which the boys brought to the mother.

Some addresses and locations I found, printed in neat hand in my father’s maps and notebooks, are: Grünmannsweg Tanzbär; Rothenbaumchaussee 39 (street running south from Eppendorf through Harvestehude to Rothenbaum); Dammtorstraße 40 III with Prahl; Esplanade 40 with “Oweh” (Otto Westphal, father of two of his sisters, Raphaela and Michaela).

He lived through the terrible bombings of Operation Sodom & Gomorrah in Hamburg during WW II. 

After the end of the war and a short time in a DP (displaced persons) camp, Uwe travelled south to his mother in Waldenbuch between Stuttgart and Tübingen in Baden-Württemberg. 

Uwe did an apprenticeship as Gärtnerlehrling (garden apprentice) in Vaihingen a/d Enz, Baden-Württemberg from August 1945 to August 1948 and then worked at Karl Hirsch’s Biodynamic Vineyard (Biodynamischer Weinbau) in Alsheim, Rheinhessen for two years.

He then learned English while he lived, worked, and studied as a garden apprentice and an anthroposophical student at Camphill Newton Dee, near Aberdeen, Scotland from February 1951 to February 1954, sharing in the community life with Children and Adults in Need of Special Care and co-workers including Karl König and Thomas J. Weihs. He was surprised he got into the UK with his temporary passport, but Camphill had a lot of pull with the authorities.

Uwe then worked at Suchodolsky Landscaping Nursery in Stuttgart for one year before he emigrated to Canada through the Assisted Passage Program in May 1955 by ship to Montreal and by train to the West Coast, arriving in Vancouver with $8.00 in his pocket. 

He first lived on Manor Street, between Willingdon Avenue and Douglas Road, in direct sight of B.C.’s Lower Mainland freeway section of Highway 401 (now Trans-Canada Highway 1) then under construction, in Burnaby for one year. He worked in Forsel’s greenhouses at the foot of Royal Oak Avenue in the Burnaby Bend area.

Uwe then started work as a tree planter for BCFP in the Nitinat area of Vancouver Island on April 2, 1956 and at Harris Creek Camp in Port Renfrew, Vancouver Island, B.C. on February 11, 1959. For a short time, father lived at 1362 Comox St., Vancouver in January 1959 on a seasonal lay-off due to winter weather conditions. He eventually became foreman of the Caycuse and later Koksilah crews.

Uwe planted the valleys, plateaus, and steep slopes of Port Renfrew, Jordan River, China Creek, Sooke, Nitinat, Caycuse, Mesachie Lake, Youbou, Koksilah, Englishman River, Kennedy Lake, Ucluelet, Tofino, and Knight Inlet. Bosses included Web Binion, Rod “Pinetree” Panczyszyn, Gerry Burch, Lloyd Kiss, Bob McMillen, and Art Walker; crew included Sven Clausen, Frank White, Eldon Werk, many of European descent, a number of local First Nations people including Seymour Charlie, and hippies and the first women in the late 1960s and the early 1970s. He always got on well with the Cowichan natives. Uwe was strict but fair as a diligent, conscientious worker and foreman.

Father’s forestry crew vehicles were known as “Crummies”. Over the years I remember a yellow Fargo van, a yellow VW Kombi, a Ford crewcab pickup with one in yellow and later one in the company’s white-orange-green colour scheme of the 1970s and 1980s, and a white Toyota Land Cruiser.

He worked on a forest fire in the late 1960s in the Alberni area. Possibly it was the Taylor River “Tay” Fire from August 16 to September 1, 1967. It had started while blasting was done to remove rock in the improvement project of Highway 4 between Port Alberni and the Tofino–Ucluelet junction. A total of 2,535 hectares burned for two weeks until extinguished by heavy rain.

He retired in autumn 1983 with the unofficial world record for most trees planted by one person, over 2.5 million trees in twenty-seven years, already reaching a milestone of one million trees in 1964!

Uwe only returned to Germany four times: to meet his future bride and visit his mother in Ostendplatz, Stuttgart in early 1961; the family road trip through the Netherlands, West Germany, and Switzerland from late July to early September 1968 and scrambling home in fear of the Czech revolution; to see his mother in December 1974; and to see his father, 100 years old!, in October 1996.

Uwe and Doris had already exchanged some letters from 1959 to 1961. This matchmaking was concocted by a mutual friend, Eve Marie (von Rüschen). As they already knew much of one another through this exchange, it was soon established that they would marry. 

Mother was born in Geisweid (Siegen), (Siegerland), Hessen, Germany on October 22, 1936. Her parents were Fritz Spillecke and Ottilie Martha Papke.

Doris did a garden apprenticeship in Siegen from 1952 to 1955, continued at a Rudolf Steiner home for special needs youth and adults in Bussigny, near Lausanne, Vaud, Switzerland from April 1955 to autumn 1956, and returned to West Germany to work as a gardener at the first Waldorf school, Hausmannstrasse 44, Stuttgart, Baden-Würtemberg until 1961. 

Mother emigrated to Canada in August 1961, starting her voyage on the ocean liner SS Homeric on July 24, 1961. She crossed the Great White North by train, arriving late at night in Kamloops, B.C. where she was relieved to be met by father, as promised. Let us not forget: here was a young immigrant, in a new, completely foreign country thousands of miles from home, going on the trust and the word of her husband-to-be. The black rail porters asked her, “Are you sure you will be met in Kamloops?” Father’s word was always good.

Mother asked the day off from work at a nursery on the outskirts of Victoria, in the direction of Saanich, and father was on his annual seasonal winter lay-off from tree planting. Father and mother married in a civil ceremony at the Parliament buildings, B.C. Legislature in Victoria on October 27, 1961, witnessed by father’s boss and wife, Rod and Val Panczyszyn. This was followed by father’s sister Michaela and John McHugh marrying fifteen minutes later. They all celebrated at a wonderful Swiss restaurant in nearby Esquimalt. It was the only decent restaurant in the Greater Victoria area at the time.

They drove down the US west coast on their honeymoon trip in a teal blue 1961 Volkswagen Beetle, through Washington, Oregon, California, and Arizona, to northern Mexico, for four weeks in January 1962, visiting the states of Sonora and Sinaloa.

Uwe and Doris first lived on Pandora Street in Victoria, then rented a former bunkhouse on Neva Rd. in Lake Cowichan from October 1961 to early 1964, followed by a rented flatroof house on March Rd. in Honeymoon Bay until April 1966. Here they were befriended by Alan and Claire Corrigal, local pioneer farmers Charles and Alison March, and already in Lake Cowichan, Trevor and Yvonne Greene, and Hildegard Wood and her husband and two daughters. We moved to Duncan, residing in a 1938 wood bungalow at 5237 Koksilah Rd., just south of Duncan, later known as the City of Totems, in the sunny Cowichan Valley from April 2, 1966 to July 2007 when Uwe and Doris reluctantly gave up the dream and moved to Ladner, B.C.

Many wonderful years and many memories were created in Duncan, even if finances were seasonally tight. I think I speak for all of us siblings and our parents when I say that we cherish the years lived on those 3.3 acres of woodland and garden. Ironically, our parents once owned a parcel of land in the Ladner area in the 1960s, but sold it to finance the family trip to Holland, West Germany, and Switzerland in summer 1968. And our maternal grandmother, Ottilie Dapprich, visited us in the mid 1970s and then emigrated to Canada, almost 70 years old, in summer 1976. We picked her up from the cross-Canada train in Kamloops, B.C.

Uwe took his growing family went on many road trips throughout Vancouver Island, B.C. and beyond, “roughing it” with VW Beetle and later VW Bus and a large tent, including four road trips into northern Mexico: with co-worker and friend Neil Bagot in winter 1959, January 1962, December 1973 to January 1974, and December 1978 to January 1979.

Father was well read in English and German literature, held a wide interest and understanding of history, politics, and current events. He enjoyed classical music and opera, but also some contemporary music. Favourites included Dame Kiri Te Kanawa, Billie Holiday, and Buffy Sainte-Marie. He enjoyed one daily unfiltered Philip Morris virginia tobacco cigarette (homeopathic prescription) for most of his working life, the occasional beer, and less occasionally a scotch whisky.

A favourite piece of advice from him was: “Measure twice and cut once.”

Uwe suffered increasingly from Parkinson’s for almost 35 years. After many years of devoted care by his wife, Doris, he was well cared for in the last several years in his nursing home nearby, where Doris still visited him virtually every day.

Cremation by First Memorial Funeral Services, Aldergrove, B.C. “The Act of the Consecration of Man” at The Christian Community, 5050 Hastings Street, Burnaby, B.C. on Saturday, April 11, 2015 at 11:00 am. Rev. Susan Locey officiating. Followed by a lunch and the sharing of memories, downstairs. Flowers accepted, or contributions made to The Christian Community. The family wish to thank his doctors in Duncan and Ladner, and the nurses and care attendants at West Shore Laylum Residential Care Home in Ladner.

Uwe at home in Ladner, B.C.

© Copyright photograph by British Columbia Forest Service, 1964
© Copyright photograph by Doris Scharnberg, July 2007

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Vacation in Kelowna, B.C., Canada

Part of downtown Kelowna, Highway 97’s five-lane William R. Bennett Bridge crossing the lake to West Kelowna, and a southerly view of Okanagan Lake from Knox Mountain Park on Monday, July 22, 2013 at 12:14 PDT.

Evening glow after sunset from the balcony of our vacation apartment at 4058 Lakeshore Road in Kelowna on Monday, July 22, 2013 at 20:57 PDT.

Morning view from same balcony on Tuesday, July 23, 2013 at 08:26 PDT.

Lala and I are enjoying a vacation in Kelowna, B.C., Canada from Sunday, July 21 to Thursday, August 1, 2013. So far, we have visited Knox Mountain Park for a small hike, the panoramic views, and snacking on semi-dry Saskatoons straight from their bushes, tiny dark purple-blue berries, a staple of First Nations people here and in the prairies, particularly the Cree and Blackfoot; a day trip to Summerland, Penticton, and Naramata with the weekly farmer’s market in Summerland (picnic of mennonite farmer’s sausage, Swiss rye bread, and apricots in the nearby park) and cherries, apricots, and peaches from an orchard in Naramata; and downtown Kelowna. I take a quick morning dip in the lake before breakfast and we swim in the lake several times a day; and enjoy good food, red and white wine, beer, coolers, tequila cocktails, coffee, and plenty of water.

Saskatoon is derived from the Blackfoot, misaskatomina or from the Cree, misaskquahtoomina. Other common names are serviceberry, juneberry, or in French, amelanchier. The bushes grow in slightly dry or open forest areas, preferring some soil drainage and sun, and can withstand a bit colder temperatures in sub-alpine regions. Saskatoons have a drier, slightly earthier, yet still fruity taste than blueberries.

[Nikon D3100 14.2 megapixel DX-format DSLR Nikon F-mount camera; Nikon AF-S DX Zoom-Nikkor 18–55 mm f/3.5–5.6G VR lens with 52-mm UV(C) filter; Nikon AF-S DX Zoom-Nikkor 55–200 mm f/4–5.6G VR IF-ED lens with 52-mm UV(C) filter]

© Copyright photographs by Stephan Alexander Scharnberg, July 2013

Thursday, June 20, 2013

New Camera

After many months of research (product descriptions, specifications, reviews, and forums), and watching prices and sales at Kerrisdale Cameras, Broadway Camera, London Drugs, Costco, Best Buy, Future Shop, Black’s, Lens & Shutter, Staples, and The Source), I have purchased a new camera. I always knew it would be a Nikon, having previously used a Nikon FE2 for many problem-free years.

I now have a new tool in my stable, a 2010 Nikon D3100 14.2 megapixel DX-format DSLR Nikon F-mount camera, s/n 5119118; Nikon AF-S DX Zoom-Nikkor 18–55 mm f/3.5–5.6G VR lens, s/n 53867376, with 52-mm UV(C) filter; and Nikon AF-S DX Zoom-Nikkor 55–200 mm f/4–5.6G VR IF-ED lens, s/n 4081625, with 52-mm UV(C) filter. I found a great deal for $589.99 plus taxes = $681.39 at Broadway Camera in Lawnsdowne Mall, Richmond, B.C., Canada on Saturday morning, June 1, 2013. The package included lens hood, EN-EL 14 rechargeable Lithium-ion battery, MH-24 battery charger, DK-5 eyepiece cap, DK-20 rubber eyecap, BS-1 accessory shoe cover, BF-18 body cap, AN-DC3 camera strap, two smaller and two bigger Ferrite cores, ViewNX 2 CD, Quick Start Guide, User’s Manual, Reference CD, and Warranty; plus added extras of one LowePro Apex 140 AW soft camera bag and two 52-mm UV(C) filters worth about another $100.00 in total. The young Chinese university student was friendly, well-mannered, and knowledgeable. In addition, I purchased a 16 G SDHC memory card and an extra EN-EL 14 rechargeable Lithium-ion battery. From the Nikon FE2, I transferred a package of Kodak lens cleaning paper, a lens pen, and a blue vintage Nikon cloth.

Cameras I have retired are:
  • the camera I first learned the basics of classic photography, and still in working condition, a 1959 Kodak Retina IIIS (Type 027) rangefinder 35-mm roll film camera, s/n 86125, with Schneider-Kreuznach Retina-Xenon 50-mm f/1.9 Synchro Compur lens, s/n 6841319
  • long lost, a Rolleiflex 4x4 Baby Rolleiflex “Sport”, Model 4RF 430, TLR 127 roll film camera with Zeiss Jena Tessar 60-mm f/2.8 taking lens and Heidoscop Anastigmat 60-mm f/2.8 finder lens
  • long lost, a 1971 Agfa Agfamatic 100 sensor viewfinder 126 cartridge film camera, 42.1-mm f/11 lens
  • still in working condition, my ever-reliable 1984 Nikon FE2 SLR 35-mm roll film F-mount camera, s/n 1816483, with Nikkor AI 50-mm f/1.8 lens, s/n 2336591, and 52-mm polarizing filter, thoroughly cleaned a couple of times since new in July 1985, but never an issue until summer 2012 when the “A” mode no longer functioned but still usable in manual mode; with the cost of film and processing these days, plus a possibly expensive repair bill, and the need for a compatible zoom lens as I no longer have the one I had in the 1980s, I reluctantly (at first) decided to move into the realm of digital SLRs
  • in recent years I used a Casio Exilim EX-Z20 point-and-shoot 8.1 MP digital camera, 38–114-mm f/3.1–5.9 lens, s/n 31002061A, until it was stolen
  • then, a Nikon Coolpix L20 point-and-shoot 10 MP digital camera, Nikkor 38–136-mm f/3.1–6.7 lens, s/n 51002451, not as good as the Casio

On my two blogs, WORDS & ROADS and WORDS & WINGS, I will start to post assorted new photographs, along with more photographs from the previous cameras in my stable.

Friday, April 19, 2013

Burrard Inlet, B.C., Canada in late May 1989

Crossing the Burrard Inlet by SeaBus between downtown Vancouver and Lonsdale Quay, North Vancouver, B.C., Canada in late May 1989. Looking back at Canada Place, Coal Harbour, and Stanley Park.

The ship assist/harbour tugs Charles H. Cates I (Z-Peller, built in 1986) and Charles H. Cates II (Z-Peller, built in 1983) at Cates Towing (C.H. Cates and Sons Limited), immediately adjacent to and east of Lonsdale Quay, North Vancouver, B.C., Canada

In the late afternoon glow

A SeaBus returning to downtown Vancouver

The ship assist/harbour tugs Charles H. Cates X (Z-Peller, built in 1987), Charles H. Cates I, and Charles H. Cates II 

The ship assist/harbour tugs Charles H. Cates VIII (Twin Screw, built in 1980), Charles H. Cates XVIII (Twin Screw, built in 1972), Charles H. Cates VII (Twin Screw, built in 1977), and Charles H. Cates X, with North Vancouver Ferry No. 5 in background, serving many years as the Seven Seas Restaurant until scrapped in 2002

[1984 Nikon FE2 SLR 35-mm roll film camera, s/n 1816483, with Nikkor AI 50-mm f/1.8 lens, s/n 2336591, and 52-mm polarizing filter; Fujifilm Fujichrome 100 (RD-113) 36-exposure colour slide film]

© Copyright photographs by Stephan Alexander Scharnberg, May 1989

Stephan Alexander Scharnberg in May 1963

Stephan Alexander Scharnberg at home in Lake Cowichan, Vancouver Island, B.C., Canada in May 1963

Father planted me a birth tree, a Douglas fir (Pseudotsuga menziesii), in the front yard of our converted bunkhouse on Neva Road. It is still standing to this day at over 60 feet tall.

There are not too many photographs of me smiling. I was usually a serious child.

In summer 1965, we moved to March Road in Honeymoon Bay, a few houses from what is now the Gordon Bay Provincial Park gate. We moved to Duncan in April 1966, by which time I had a brother, Felix Hayo Scharnberg, and a sister, Anya Maureen Scharnberg.

[1959 Kodak Retina IIIS (Type 027) rangefinder 35-mm roll film camera, s/n 86125, with Schneider-Kreuznach Retina-Xenon 50-mm f/1.9 Synchro Compur lens, s/n 6841319; Kodak Plus-X Pan (ISO 125/22°) 36-exposure black & white negative film]

© Copyright photographs by Uwe Kündrunar Scharnberg, May 1963 / Stephan Alexander Scharnberg, June 2011

Thursday, April 18, 2013

CPR’s Pier B and Pier C, Burrard Inlet, Vancouver, B.C., Canada sometime in the late 1950s

CPR’s Pier B and Pier C, Burrard Inlet, Vancouver, B.C., Canada sometime in the late 1950s. This is now the site of Canada Place with its iconic sails, including the East Building, Vancouver Convention Centre, the Pan Pacific Hotel Vancouver, Vancouver’s World Trade Centre, and the cruise ship terminal. The East Building, Vancouver Convention Centre was previously known as the Vancouver Convention and Exhibition Centre.

CPR’s Pier B and Pier C were built in 1927 for the CP Steamships fleet, and other passenger and freight ships. The piers were replaced with the construction of Canada Place in March 1983, using some of the Pier B and Pier C pilings, and served as the Canada Pavilion for Expo 86.

© Copyright photograph by Uwe Kündrunar Scharnberg, 1958 / Stephan Alexander Scharnberg, March 2011 

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Coal Harbour, Burrard Inlet, Vancouver, B.C., Canada in late May 1989

Northwest view of Coal Harbour, Burrard Inlet, Vancouver, B.C., Canada in late May 1989 with Stanley Park and the North Shore Mountains in the background. On the right are the black steel arches at Pier A3 where the CP Ships train ferries docked. The CP Rail yard is no more, built over, and the Coal Harbour area built up with condo towers, small businesses, restaurants, pubs, and hotels, and along the shoreline Harbour Green Park and a public seawall leading to Stanley Park. This is now the site of the West Building, Vancouver Convention Centre including Vancouver Harbour Flight Centre, Unit #1 Burrard Landing, 1055 Canada Place, Vancouver Harbour Water Airport (CXH/CYHC) with its seaplane docks.  

CP Ships ro-ro train/trailer ferry, Carrier Princess, at Pier A3. These days she serves with Seaspan Ferries Corporation, still carrying her name.

CP Ships ro-ro train/trailer ferry, Trailer Princess, at Pier A1 and Canada Place with its iconic sails, including the Vancouver Convention and Exhibition Centre, the Pan Pacific Hotel Vancouver, Vancouver’s World Trade Centre, and the cruise ship terminal, the former site of CPR’s Pier B and Pier C. Where the ferry wharves, Pier A, were located is now the east side of the West Building, Vancouver Convention Centre. The Vancouver Convention and Exhibition Centre is now known as the East Building, Vancouver Convention Centre.

Every Saturday for two years, 1976 and 1977, I awoke at 4:00 am, dressed quickly and gathered my backpack, ate a breakfast of overnight oven-heated multi-grain or oatmeal porridge, and then father or mother would drive me to downtown Nanaimo for the six o’clock CP Ships ro-ro train/trailer ferry, either the Princess of Vancouver or the Carrier Princessarriving at the dock and ramp with the black steel arches at Pier A3, situated right about where today sits the West Building, Vancouver Convention Centre and the seaplane docks of Vancouver Harbour Flight Centre, Vancouver Harbour Water Airport (CXH/CYHC). I walked up the Burrard Street overpass to West Hastings, turned left and continued to Granville Street for one of the beloved, classic CC&F T-48A Brill trolley buses on the 14 Hastings route, stepping down near Woodland Drive, usually at Commercial, for the few blocks south and west to The Christian Community’s house on Frances Street.

Here we participated in our Confirmation classes, led with warmth and intelligence by Rev. Werner Hegg. The others in the group were Marius Krack, Andrew Rachel, Anna Driehuyzen, Celina Gold, Florette Snijders, and a Shields’ daughter. I alone would be invited for lunch prepared with love by Alsten Hegg, many of the in-season vegetables from their small garden plot behind the early-1900s three floor house—my favourite the swiss chard in a bechamel sauce. Sometimes I stayed overnight for the Sunday service, and on these occasions at times even riding the bus back to White Rock with Marius, to return with the Krack’s the following morning.

On the more frequent occasions that I returned home the same day, I would often stop at Famous Foods on East Hastings for one or more items that mother needed, or further along at Woodward’s with its famous red neon sign, the rotating W. I then continued on a trolley for the Greyhound bus depot occupying the full block bound by Georgia, Dunsmuir, Beatty, and Hamilton. From here I rode a coach to a late afternoon or early evening BC Ferry sailing, Horseshoe Bay–Departure Bay. The route was code-shared between PSL (Pacific Stage Lines) and VICL (Vancouver Island Coach Lines). Father or mother would wait for me at the bus depot in downtown Nanaimo, close by the CP Rail ferry dock.

[1984 Nikon FE2 SLR 35-mm roll film camera, s/n 1816483, with Nikkor AI 50-mm f/1.8 lens, s/n 2336591, and 52-mm polarizing filter; Fujifilm Fujichrome 100 (RD-113) 36-exposure colour slide film]

© Copyright photographs by Stephan Alexander Scharnberg, May 1989

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

1968 VW Type 2 (T2a) Model 238 Westfalia and my son

1968 Volkswagen Type 2 (T2a) Model 238 Westfalia, Sophia, B.C. licence plate HAE-162 in the parking lot at South Terminal, Vancouver International Airport (YVR/CYVR), Sea Island, Richmond, B.C., Canada in autumn 1994, likely late November



My son, Cohen Isaac Scharnberg (O’Connor)

Burkeville, a small community adjacent to YVR




1968 VW Type 2 (T2a) Model 238 Westfalia, VIN 238031515, Sophia, B.C. licence plate HAE-162
  • early 1968 VW Type 2 (T2a, “Early Bay”), second-generation, bay window camper
  • powered by a 1971 60-hp 1584-cc (1600) four-cylinder, horizontally-opposed, dual-port air-cooled piston engine, engine coded AE and followed by seven digits (codes from AE-0-000-001 to AE-0-529-815)
  • Solex 34 PICT-3 carburetor
  • 4-speed manual transmission
  • sliding side door right side, left hand drive
  • seats five, sleeps four
  • exterior body colour scheme in L567 (46) ivory
  • upholstery in 45 medium grey 68
  • 14-inch wheels, double CV-joints
  • low front turn signals mounted below headlights just above front bumper
  • original Model SO-68/2 Westfalia interior: rear bench seat that pulls out to become a ¾-wide bed, rear deck mattress, storage locker under rear bench seat, clothes closet with vanity mirror and hanging rod and shelves aft of sliding door, adjoining linen closet, rear ceiling shelf cabinet, ceiling and walls insulated and wood-panelled in baltic birch, yellow vinyl seat coverings, vinyl-tiled floor, hinged folding dinette table, front rear-facing bench seat with storage area immediately aft of driver bucket seat and walk-through divider, 1.6-cubic foot cabinet with ice box and drain, white plastic sink with drainage and venting system and hinged lid/counter surface, 7.5-gallon water tank and manually operated faucet pump, catch-all shelf unit, front lid mosquito net pop-up roof with canvas tent, rear wall with zippered flaps and zippered screen openings, cot bed inside pop-up roof, rear luggage rack, removable children’s hammock for over front seats, two ceiling lamps (one each over sink and dinette table) of three 10-watt bulbs each, small ceiling light in centre of compartment, transistorized 12-volt 110–125 volt electrical receptacle with double outlet, 15-ampere AC cord for plugging into campsite receptacles, original bay window privacy curtain, original yellow and brown checkered curtains for all windows, and fully-functional louvered side windows with removable screens

She was purchased new from the official VW dealer somewhere in or near downtown San Diego, California, USA. I still have her original sales receipt, owner’s manual, and service manual—regularly serviced and stamped. She appeared to be based in Indio, Coachella Valley, California, USA.

While in my possession she still sported an AAA (The Automobile Club of Southern California) decal in bottom right corner of the windshield. She was a member of some surf club based in San Clemente, California, USA.

Imported to Victoria, Vancouver Island, B.C., Canada in the early 1980s.

Legend has it, this camper drove to the famous 1969 Woodstock Festival in Bethel, New York, USA and back to the West Coast. And that John Muir, VW mechanic extraordinaire and writer of the famous manual, How To Keep Your Volkswagen Alive: A Manual Of Step By Step Procedures for the Compleat Idiot, once serviced and tuned my baby’s 1600-cc engine.

I took Sophia camping many times: southern Vancouver Island, Saltspring Island, Hornby Island, Alice Lake near Brackendale up past Squamish, Hicks Lake near Harrison Hot Springs and Harrison Lake, Manning Park, and including a road trip to Grande Prairie, Alberta in August 1994, travelling up the Coquihalla Highway and Summit from Hope, then Merritt, Kamloops, Blue River, Valemount, Jasper, from Hinton through Grande Cache to Grande Prairie on Highway 40 (at the time still known as “the Highway to Hell”, the last year it was sand and gravel surface strewn with the debris of blown tires, pieces of wood, and branches, before receiving an asphalt surface the following year) to Grande Prairie, Alberta, then back by way of Dawson Creek, Prince George, Quesnel, Lac La Hache, 100 Mile House, Clinton, Cache Creek, Ashcroft, Spences Bridge, Lytton, down the Fraser Canyon, Hope, and back to New Westminster, B.C.

Alas, after owning her from 1992 t0 2000, I sadly sold her to a VW enthusiast-restorer-collector in Coquitlam, B.C., Canada, wanting to give her one more good life. At the time I was broke. I couldn’t afford the $10,000.00 or $15,000.00 restoration she needed and deserved.

I miss the camper. I would purchase another fine bay window model.

[1984 Nikon FE2 SLR 35-mm roll film camera, s/n 1816483, with Nikkor AI 50-mm f/1.8 lens, s/n 2336591, and 52-mm polarizing filter]

© Copyright photographs by Stephan Alexander Scharnberg, November 1994

Monday, October 29, 2012

One Million Trees Planted in 1964!

Uwe Kündrunar Scharnberg planting his millionth seedling somewhere on Vancouver Island, B.C., Canada sometime in 1964

This was a publicity photograph for British Columbia Forest Service. My father started his career as a tree planter for BCFP (British Columbia Forest Products Limited) in the Nitinat area on Vancouver Island, B.C. on April 2, 1956, for a short time resided at 1362 Comox St. in Vancouver, B.C. in January 1959 during a seasonal lay-off due to winter weather conditions, and then was based at the Harris Creek Logging Camp near Port Renfrew, Vancouver Island, B.C., Canada on February 11, 1959. In the 1960s, 1970s, and early 1980s Uwe and his crew planted in the areas of Nitinat, Port Renfrew, Jordan River, China Creek, Koksilah, Kennedy Lake, Ucluelet, Tofino, Englishman River near Parksville, Caycuse, Mesachie Lake, Cowichan Lake, and Knight Inlet, while we lived first in Lake Cowichan and then Honeymoon Bay and later in Koksilah just south of Duncan, all on Vancouver Island. Unofficially, father holds the world record for the most trees planted by one person, over 2.5 million trees in twenty-seven years (Guinness Book of World Records), but Guinness did not have a category or the space for this, was apparently their written response to a query by BCFP. Uwe retired from the company in the fall of 1983.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

“Le Quercioline”

Agriturismo “Le Quercioline”, Strada di Marcialla 4/G, Tavarnelle Val di Pesa, Firenze, Toscana, Italia. Looking west-southwest, having just arrived at our vacation home of four weeks holidays from Friday, June 29 to Friday, July 27, 2012. Evening glow on Saturday, June 30, 2012 at 20:40 CEST (Central European Summer Time).

Sunday, July 1, 2012 at 09:47 CEST

At 09:48 CEST

These door bells, turned by hand, are still used

The beautiful hand-wrought iron above the main entrance at the ground-level patio

The restored farmhouse has two apartments, the main floor named Chianti Classico, upstairs named Gallo Nero

[Nikon Coolpix L20 point-and-shoot 10 MP digital camera, Nikkor 38–136-mm f/3.1–6.7 lens, s/n 51002451]

© Copyright photographs by Stephan Alexander Scharnberg, June and July 2012

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

5237 Koksilah Road, Duncan, Vancouver Island, B.C., Canada in spring 1969



We played outside spring, summer, autumn, and winter in sun, rain, and snow, seven days a week, usually from breakfast to supper, only coming in for lunch. Fresh air, exercise, creativity, and plenty of imagination was the foundation of our childhood. We lived in a 1938 cedar-shingle roof, cedar-shingle-sided bungalow, brown with white window frames, an earth-floor basement, and in later years the addition of a sundeck covering a garage of tools and the large room my brother and I shared; on 3.3 acres, front and back lawns, two big lower gardens cultivated along the principles of biodynamics, including an apple tree, a walnut tree, a few cherry trees, red and black currants, gooseberries, raspberries, a Japanese plum tree, and a mixed, dense woodland of first and second growth, home to a variety of flora and fauna including a B.C. Dogwood, Trilliums, snow drops, ferns, Big leaf maples (Acer macrophyllum), Western red cedars (Thuja plicata)Hemlocks (Tsuga heterophylla), Douglas firs (Pseudotsuga menziesii), Huckleberries, an Oak, a Ponderosa pine, Thimbleberries, edible and poisonous mushrooms, poisonous bright red berries, owls including a Snowy owl visiting several winters over the years, at least two varieties of woodpeckers, Rufous hummingbirds, black crows, a Raven, American robins, wild rabbits, pheasants, grouse, a full-grown Cougar passing by our basement bedroom window to trample through the gardens late one summer evening in the mid-1970s, a variety of small birds, butterflies and dragonflies, bees, wasps, hornets, many other insects, frogs, ants, garden snakes, Norway rats, Blue rats, house and field mice, over the years a succesion of cats and dogs including a Golden Lab/Retriever cross (Fix), two Chocolate Point Siamese (Rahsuh followed by Puss-Puss), a Dachshund (Douganette), a Dalmatian (Buffy), and more of both after we siblings moved out and away to new horizons, in chronological order, to pursue travels, diplomas, and trades in Switzerland and West Germany/Germany. 

In the background sit the Krack’s dark green 1968 or 1969 Datsun 1000 (Model B10) 2- or 4-door sedan, and the Scharnberg’s grey 1948 Plymouth Special Deluxe 4-door sedan and white & green 1965 Volkswagen Type 2 (T1c) Model 231 Kombi (Split Window Bus). Here are, variously photo by photo, front to back of the lines: Marius Krack, Stephan Alexander Scharnberg, Christina (Nina) Krack, and Anya Maureen Scharnberg / Marius Krack, Stephan Alexander Scharnberg, Felix Hayo Scharnberg, Christina (Nina) Krack, and Anya Maureen Scharnberg / Marius Krack, Felix Hayo Scharnberg, Christina (Nina) Krack, and Stephan Alexander Scharnberg in the front yard of the Scharnberg home at 5237 Koksilah Road, Duncan, Vancouver Island, B.C., Canada in spring 1969.

[1959 Kodak Retina IIIS (Type 027) rangefinder 35-mm roll film camera, s/n 86125, with Schneider-Kreuznach Retina-Xenon 50-mm f/1.9 Synchro Compur lens, s/n 6841319; Kodak Plus-X Pan ISO 125/22° 36-exposure black & white negative film]

© Copyright photographs by Uwe Kündrunar Scharnberg, 1969 / Stephan Alexander Scharnberg, January 2012

Monday, April 30, 2012

Hornby Island, B.C., Canada in summer 1969





On this particular visit Wayne Ngan, family friend and internationally renowned potter and painter, said that one day I would be an architect. I enjoyed many hours playing with pieces and cut ends of lumber such as 2x4s and 2x6s that Wayne used for his firewood, either in the wood stove or in the kiln. I built elaborate houses and castles, and tall towers. I never did become an architect as I had my sights set on becoming a bush pilot on the West Coast but instead later studied, worked, and lived in a Camphill Community in french Switzerland from 1982 to 1987, graduating as a Special Educator with a Diploma in Curative Education. This visit to Wayne and his family, and also to the other family friend, Heinz Laffin, another Hornby Island potter, was one of the first of many by the Scharnbergs in the ensuing 30-plus years, sometimes more than once a year. 


Anya Maureen Scharnberg, either Goya Ngan or Gailan Ngan, daughters of Wayne Ngan and painter Anne Ngan, and Felix Hayo Scharnberg at Wayne’s former home and studio on Hornby Island, B.C., Canada in summer 1969. In the background is the Krack’s bus, in the middleground the Scharnberg’s 1965 Volkswagen Type 2 (T1c) Model 231 Kombi (Split Window), and in the foreground, with passenger door and sliding door open, likely Wayne’s Volkswagen Type 2 Bus (Bay Window).

[1959 Kodak Retina IIIS (Type 027) rangefinder 35-mm roll film camera, s/n 86125, with Schneider-Kreuznach Retina-Xenon 50-mm f/1.9 Synchro Compur lens, s/n 6841319; Kodak Plus-X Pan ISO 125/22° 36-exposure black & white negative film]

© Copyright photographs by Uwe Kündrunar Scharnberg, 1969 / Stephan Alexander Scharnberg, January 2012