Archive forDecember, 2008

December 18 – 31, 2008

So…

Morning came with the sun shining, but still looking quite cold. The fire was indeed still burning, obviously not as big as last night, but still burning. After breakfast, Brian and Peter go out to check on it, which is their excuse to go out and play with it. Watching them was quite amusing. Like two kids (which men really are) poking at it here and there, moving the wood around while performing some kind of ritual dance, trying to look like they knew what they were doing. Louise and I, however, KNEW better, and the proof was that they damn near killed the fire several times. The only way to get them to leave it alone (once we saw it flare up again) was to call them in to eat lunch, which, other than beer, was our only weapon.

Quiet, relaxing day otherwise. Brian took Peter back to Edmonton, and stopped in to see Stewart, who is doing better all the time. He should be out of ICU in a day or two…J

Fire was still  burning some when we went to bed.

  

Tuesday and the weather is getting a bit better. The worst is over, well at least for now. The fire was still smoldering, and of course, Brian HAD to play check on it. Oh well, it kept him amused while I did a quick load of laundry and packed up.

After lunch, we headed for Calgary. Had a great time at the farm. Thanks Louise and Terry.  The roads were good, and the traffic wasn’t bad either.  Arrived without incident at Mandy and Dave’s.

It was sooooo good to see them. Nolan is just as adorable as ever (spoken as a true Nana). While Brian was showing Mandy (Dave was playing hockey) a few pics on the computer, I got to give Nolan his bath. I’m not sure who had the most fun, Nolan or me, but we both got wet, and ended up in our pajamas. Ok wait…Not WET in our pajamas… and only one of us was wearing a diaper.

Zzzzzz.

  

Well Brian and I had an interesting night on an air mattress. It’s not what you’re thinking…Althoughhhh…..Ah, never mind.  It started when I climbed onto it first. I guess ‘climbed” is inaccurate, considering it’s on the floor. Anyway, if you’ve ever slept on one, you’ll know how it’s kind of like a water bed only with air, so when you get on, you roll until you find the right spot and then you lay really still or your right spot becomes a wrong spot. So I’m in my right spot, and Brian, whom I can only guess at the time has forgotten this was not a regular mattress, PLUNKS himself down next to me, at which time I am immediately LAUNCHED into the air (albeit gracefully) and onto Mandy’s craft table (not so graceful) where I was assaulted by various crafting utensils…..I KNOW…I’ve still got a color marker tattoo of a happy face on my butt. So anyway, after much wiggling and giggling we both found our right spots and managed to get some sleep. In the morning I tried to explain to Mandy and Dave what all the noise was about, but they just covered their ears, and kept repeating “Too much information” over and over.

 In the afternoon went to visit Kim (Brian’s Daughter) Josh (her husband), Olivia and Penelope (their kids). Those girls are also as cute as ever…J  Christmas Eve evening was spent at Mandy’s. Great food as always, and then Brian and I beat them at a 90’s trivia game. Not Trivial Pursuit, which usually takes 6 hrs and 14 minutes to get through (5 hrs if you’re team has at least one person with a Masters Degree in stupid questions), but an easier game that, if you’re lucky you can free jump your way ahead. I say it was our SKILL at rolling the dice that kept us free jumping, but Dave used another word that….well….I’d have to use soap just putting it in print. It was a fun evening, for sure. Then off for another round of mattress pong.

 

 MERRY CHRISTMAS!  Up to fresh coffee, and a big breakfast. Lordy, we haven’t stopped eating since we reached Alberta a week ago, but then we all know that Christmas season food is calorie free….It’s true, Santa told me…J  It was Nolan’s first Christmas, and I so enjoyed watching him tear away the paper, which was really the most fun part as far as he was concerned. It took them an hour to get a picture of him with his first hockey stick because every time Dave put it in front of him, Nolan would just chuck it aside. Dave is obviously hoping to raise a future Calgary Flames hockey player. Ah, good luck with that Dave.

We also spent some pleasant time with my niece Belinda and her husband Richard, before heading over to BJ and Ricks for dinner and a sleep over. My mother (Betty) lives in PEI, and I don’t get to see her much, so I was thrilled that she was in Calgary for Christmas. Plus, she finally got to meet Brian. I’m happy to say that after passing both a written and oral exam, by the end of the evening, she gave him a big two thumbs up. It was nice to see everyone who was there too.

And to all a Good Night.

 

On Boxing Day, BJ and I went to visit my cousin Bob in the hospital (He’s doing well for any family out there who may be wondering), while Rick gave Brian his test for his Pleasure Craft Operators License (In ’09 it’s mandatory, so I got mine in the spring). Did he pass? Yes, but he drained out his savings account. Hope you enjoy your new big screen Rick.

 Later we went over to Kim’s to spend the evening and once again have a sleep over. As you can see, we didn’t lack accommodations while in Alberta. Olivia kept us busy (Three year olds have too much energy…I’m just saying). I learned how to play Guitar Hero, which for anyone who doesn’t know, is when you have this fake guitar and you hook up the program to the TV screen, where it shows you as part of a band, and you have to follow along to the song being played by pressing what’s supposed to be guitar strings, but are buttons (kind of) and you get cheers from the fake audience, and points (if you’re any good), or booed and kicked off (if you’re no good). You can also choose to play the drums or sing along as well (the singing part should only be done if EVERYONE playing has consumed large amounts of alcohol… which we had not). Now it might not be so hard to do if the music and lyrics were recognizable to me. I admit I don’t keep up on what the “young” people are into. Anybody with me on that? Hmmm. So….four adults… strumming… drumming…and singing… with fake instruments…to a fake audience. Yaaaaa,  I know. You damn near need a drink just to picture it. Ok, in case anyone thinks I’m being negative here, I’d like to clarify that we really DID have a fun time. I just like to poke fun because….well, because I can. It’s all part of being a Raconteur (After hearing that word on the radio, we looked up the meaning, and Brian says it’s me, so go ahead, Google is your friend…or just use the dictionary). 

 After visiting with our families over the next couple of days, Brian and I were ready to go home to the RV in the rain forest. I got to give Nolan his bath once more, and after a final night on the carnival mattress, we left Monday for BC. We spent the night in Winfield (near Kelowna) at Lisa’s house (Mike’s girlfriend), and then headed off again Tuesday morning.

 The closer we got to Errock Lake, the more snow there was. As we turned into the entrance of the park, we were met with white, white and more white, as in snow, snow and more fricking snow. Here, there and every-#*#@*!-where. The rain forest was now a Snow forest. We had left with 8 inches on the ground (which was bad enough) and came back to 3ft. 2 inches (I swear) of WET snow, which sucks trying to trudge through.  And remember the tarp issue? We WILL conquer it one day…or die trying…arrgh. Anyway, the parking area at the office was plowed out as well as the way to trailers with residents, but as we had been away, ours was not. The manager then offered to plow the way, including a bit of a driveway at the rear of the RV…BUT…Oh yes, there is a but here….Brian says No Thank You….I KNOW!…   Why you ask? Well your choices are:           

            a) He’s a man and therefore thinks what he thinks is valid and correct.

            b) “It’s not that bad, and it’ll rain in a day or two and wash it all away”

             c) He’s out of his mind

Pics to follow. Anyway, at this point, I’m just happy to be home, so after parking the car at the office, I let HIM make a path to the door of the RV (no shovel) and we eventually get all our stuff inside. I’m happy to say that, other than bear paw prints on the floor and in the butter dish, dirty dishes in the sink, a broken sofa and a rumpled bed, all was as we’d left it. Ah yes, there’s no place like home…J

 hpim1415

Well New Years Eve started with a noisy furnace. Actually the noisy furnace started during the night, but as it was still blowing heat, we ignored it until morning, at which point, it could be ignored no more. Sooooo…Mr. Fix It removes it from its compartment, and after turning off the gas, proceeds to take it apart. A short period of time later we put   Plan B (electric heaters) into play. Not as cozy as the furnace heat, but better than nothing. Anyway, by 3 pm the RV looks like a workshop (albeit a very small workshop) with tools, furnace pieces, and accompanying screws for said pieces, in the shower, on the counter, table, floor, and sofa. He spared the bed, but only by threat of bodily harm.  To his credit, he did diagnose the problem. The motor needs to be replaced. Unfortunately, we can’t get a replacement for at least 2 or 3 days. That’s 2 or 3 more days watching where we step, and where we sit, as well as cooking without any counter space whatsoever, and no pizza delivery service…sigh.

 We ventured off to the dock and Mike’s boat to ring in the New Year. People filtered through during the evening, and at midnight, we set off flares (stations were notified, so no one thought these were distress signals). Some flares went higher than others, and, if …that’s if….they were shot off over the river, they’d land in the water and glow for a bit before dying off. My flares, however, didn’t take direction well, and although I tried to shoot them so as to land in the river, they deliberately went astray, and landed … well… on land. I would like to take a moment to thank the local Fire Department for their quick response.

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December 17-21

 

OK, everybody sing along…

 

     Sleigh Bells ring, are you listening?

     In the rain forest, snow is glistening.

     It came down through the night,

     Our car is nowhere in sight,

     Woke up to a Winter Wonderland.

 

Well it’s a damn good thing we got the tarp back up and the skirting done.  We could hardly believe it, when we woke up and looked out the window to see at least 4 or 5 inches of snow.  What’s with that!?  I was told that a skiff of snow once in a while was normal, and is usually followed by rain, which washes it away.  But this….well this is no skiff of snow, or even wet snow. It’s dry, put on your gloves, toque, long johns, get out the shovel,  and a bottle of rum, kind of snow. You know…..Alberta snow.   

 We were supposed to go to Richmond to check on the boat and then into Vancouver to see Michael, but the whole area had heavy snow fall and poor road conditions. Now we’re used to driving on winter roads, but west coast people don’t have a clue…really (no offense to west coasters), and their cars don’t have the proper tires. We had just put ice tires on the car in preparation for our drive back to Alberta for Christmas, so…whew.

Mike was concerned about his boat and the ice that was building up on the river, so we did venture in to see him. I didn’t expect to see the dock snowed in and ice covering a large part of the river. The local Ferry was even shut down.  We just hope when we get back from Alberta, we’ll find our boat safe and sound and still tied to the dock.

 The temperature dropped throughout the evening and the wind started to blow. Brian decided, as we were leaving tomorrow, that now would a good time to use the left over plastic and seal the windows on the RV. “It won’t take long”, he said. Haaaaaaaaa….Maybe not if there weren’t blinds, and other typical RV,  screwed to the wall and upper cabinets, window cosmetic kind of stuff,  to work around.  Needless to say,  by 12:30 am, only half of the windows were done, and so was the rum…. I’m tired,  we have to be up in a little over 4 hours, the alarm is set for 5:00am as we have a 14 hr trip to the farm,  and he asks “Are you sure you don’t want to do the back (big) window now?”.  My first thought is, “You’re out of your fricking mind”, but what I say , while giving him THE LOOK, is  “Uh…..No”.

 Bed it is… J

 

 All together now….

      Just hear those winds a blowin’, yes they’re still blowin’, it’s true.

     The tarp has busted lose on one side, and we’re crying boo hoo.

     Ropes are missing, and tears will need more than good glue.

     I just want to get this finished, and head to Alberta, with you.

 

YUP….Up at 5, and after a night of listening to the, not so happy, winds, Brian bundled up and headed out to make sure the car would start (once he located it) and check on the tarp, only to find (go figure) that 4 tie downs were no longer tied down, and some of the grommets were torn right off….arrrrrgh!  Wasting no time, we packed up the car. Then, with flashlight in hand, and bundled up like we were going on an arctic expedition, we headed out into the vast unknown, survival packs strapped to our backs, flare guns in our pockets (should we be find ourselves separated even though we were tied together with rope), and very high tech tools (hammer & knife). After what seemed like 2 hours, but was actually about 10 minutes, we had successfully completed our task. Whether this holds together while we’re away, is yet to be determined. Update on our return.

 On the road by 06:00 am. Stopped in Hope and got a muffin and Gingerbread coffee (yummy). The roads were poor to fair, with fair most of the way. Some areas actually had dry roads. At one point, there was a van ahead of us that started to swerve back and forth, and sure enough we watched him spin around and into the ditch. The scary part was that there was a double tanker truck right next to him. I’m glad Brian pays good attention to what goes on around us and is a good driver. We passed another poor schmuck whose truck was in the ditch, and he was standing on the roadside looking rather bemused at his cell phone, expecting phone service I guess, but there wasn’t any.  All in all, the traffic was quite low. Leaving on Thursday worked in our favor.

 After stopping in Spruce Grove for milk and apple juice, we arrived safely at the farm around 8:45 pm. How do you know it wasn’t milk and juice?  Fine, fine,  it was wine and beer…Sheesh.  A warm welcome by Brian’s family and a nice fire in the fireplace.

 Friday found us waking up to the sound of the smoke detectors beeping. FIRE!!  Relax, there wasn’t any fire… well there was, but it was in the fireplace. The power went off a few times until it decided to stay off…for two hours. Minus 30 and not looking like it was going to get any warmer. Brian headed into Edmonton to register the boat, and even though it was -30c, I decided to get some fresh air and headed outdoors for a walk. Well 10 minutes down the way, I decided that fresh air wasn’t really THAT necessary, and walked back…brrr.  Other than that, it was a very relaxed day and evening.

 Saturday was another cold day (-25c and dropping). Brian and I went into Edmonton and met up with my nephew  Robert…aka Slobert…aka Blobert…aka Bobair (Don’t ask, it’s not that interesting), and his girlfriend Tara. After a while Brian left me with them, which was really cruel if any of you know Robert (just kidding Bobert..another aka), and went to the hospital to visit Stewart, who I’m happy to say is doing well (considering). He’s apparently out of the coma, recognizes his family and has movement in his limbs…J

After Brian picked up his brother Peter and came back to Roberts for a visit (pics soon) we headed back to the farm. Warm fire, good company, and good food including Louise’s lemon meringue pie….oh yaaaaa.

 

Happy Solstice!

Sunday morning I started my breakfast with?:

a)     Cereal

b)    Fruit

c)     Lemon meringue pie

d)    Bacon and eggs

Hey, it was made with real lemons and real eggs. Tasted damn good too.hpim1411

 Well, as the saying goes, It’s still colder than a polar bears pajamas on the shady side of an iceberg. Now that I think of it, where does a polar bear get pajamas, and what the hell is he wearing them for? Aaand, when they need washing, where does he wash them and is he using planet friendly detergent, and then where does he dry them…Hmmmm? Inquiring minds want to know!

 Anyway, Brian and I decided to get some fresh air (I thought I’d give it another go) and a little exercise, so we went out back to chop firewood….Yes with real axes. No 7-eleven wood bundles for this bunch…No siree.  Boy, after swinging it for a while (the axe, not the wood), and throwing it at Brian to stack (the wood, not the axe) I wasn’t feeling the cold anymore, but I was certainly feeling muscles I’d forgotten I had. An afternoon nap, followed by a soak in the Jacuzzi tub (ahhhhh) and I was feeling good and ready to enjoy the annual solstice bonfire (about 14 ft high).  It took awhile to get it going, but once it was ablaze, it was great, and Terry (Brians dad) said it will still burn throughout tomorrow too. The sky was clear and the stars shone brightly. I even learned how to recognize a few of them. Then time for bed.

 HEY, where the hell are my pajamas?

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December 15-16, 2008

Monday was pretty uneventful. The Hunter/Gatherer (that’s not me, if you were wondering) went hunting and gathering and brought back…..Rocks… I know, how clever of him indeed. He’s a keeper for sure. Actually the rocks are for holding down the skirting we intend to put around the bottom of the RV. That is if the wind ever dies down enough to venture out without having to wear a safety harness.

After supper, I mistakenly challenged Brian to a game of Scrabble. Now, I have beaten him a few times, but I must say (Yes I actually have to say it, because he questioned if I would tell my faithful readers), that he beat me at this game…Oh, by how many points? Well… ummm…let’s just say it was somewhere between 1 and 133. :p

When we woke up Tuesday, it took us a few minutes to take in the fact that the RV wasn’t spinning around, we were still in the park, there weren’t any objects of unknown origin stuck to the window, and it was quiet. WooHoo!

As the weather was cooperating, we decided it was a good time to re-tarp and skirt the RV. Do you know what I learned from THIS? Damn, but you guys are quick learners. Re-tarping was first on this list, and went quite smoothly this time around. Skirting came next. So the object of this game is to take a roll….a very long roll… of heavy plastic, and a roll of tape (no, not scotch tape…sheesh) and tape the said plastic to the entire bottom area of the RV. Now I don’t mind working with wide rolls of tape, but if it bunches up or sticks to itself for whatever reason, I’m not someone who takes the time to un-stick it. I just cut it, and start with a new piece, placing the new piece over the other piece if necessary. This is NOT art we’re doing here, at least not as I see it. BUT, there is someone here who does, and did indeed un-stuck pieces of tape…I KNOW. Don’t get me wrong. I am in no way knocking him. I should have that kind of patience, but…well I don’t. As such, it’s a good thing I wasn’t in charge of taping, or ONE of us would still be taped, along with the plastic, to the RV. Anyway, skirting is on, rocks are doing their job (pics will be posted later), and we still have enough plastic and tape to skirt the car.hpim1402

Note: We played Scrabble again, and even though, at one point, Brian was well ahead of me in points, I snuck up slowly, word by word, point by point, and beat him. Take that! Hey, I’ll gloat while I can.

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December 8-15, 2008

So Monday was a quiet day for the most part. While we had a break in the rain, we went out and put a white tarp over the RV, and staked it down. What did I learn from this, you ask? Well, I learned how to put a tarp over an RV, and stake it down… What…you were expecting more?  Let’s see….hmmmm…..mummm…Nope, that’s it.

But there was a kitten that decided we were to be it’s new friends. I decided to call it Critter. Anyway, he was constantly underfoot trying to get attention. Cute as cute is, and THEN (uh huh) Brian did a cat dance with him, and being the dancer Brian is .. jk 😉 ..  he stepped on the poor thing, and sent him scurrying under a tree. Well PETA showed up within minutes, and beat Brian with a spiked dog collar, while I went to see if Critter needed medical attention. Eventually I coaxed him (the cat, not Brian) to come to me, and I’m happy to report that he’s fine, and Brian (not the cat) starts dance lessons next week.

 Later in the day, we went into Maple Ridge to meet up the people (Bill & Beth) who were selling the boat. Brian handed them a bank draft for the remainder of the price, and TaDaaaa, he is now the proud owner of a 36ft power boat, that goes by the name Absolut. No, I didn’t forget the e on the end. There isn’t one. No, I don’t know why.

 Well I had a rude awakening the other night. Simply put, I wet the bed. You did indeed, read that right, but let me clarify. You see, we always have a cup of water on the bedside table. Now remember that this is an RV, and so everything is pretty much bumped up against the next thing (this CAN be fun…wink wink). Anyway, during the night I rolled over and as I reached for the cup I actually knocked it over….on to the bed…where I lay …..That would be DIRECTLY where I lay. Oh yes, I was fully awake in a split second (is that even possible…to split a second? Oh, I was guess it is), and my gentle outcry awakened Brian, who upon realizing what had happened, had the nerve to just laugh… not offer assistance… or even his side of the bed, just laugh…I KNOW! Humph!

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On a somber note, Wednesday morning started with a phone call saying that Brian’s ex-wife’s son, Stewart, was involved in a serious accident, and that he is in critical condition in Edmonton. As a parent, I can only imagine what that family is going through. And having dealt with that carnage throughout my career, it always brings home the reality that we need to keep in touch with loved ones, and not take them or this one life we have for granted.

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 Now let’s see….Well, other than cooler weather, with the rain and sun playing tag, not much else has happened.  Thursday night, Mike beat me again at Cribbage. It seems the less I drink and the more he does, the better he plays and worse I do. Coincidence? I think not. Hmmmm.

  

Friday can be wrapped up like this…..

 MEN!…..aaaack (as I bump my head against the wall).

 Enough said.

  

During the night we had really strong winds (that would be outside the RV).  The tarp rattled, the RV shook, and by 06:00 am Brian was outside taking off the rest of tarp that the wind hadn’t already removed (I offered to help…really…but he insisted… reallythat I stay in bed). Guess what we’ll be doing…again…with more rope.

 Saturday was also my birthday. I turned 54….I KNOW!  I don’t look a day over 40…Hey, we all have our fantasies…But seriously, numbers don’t mean a thing. It’s all in the attitude. I seriously told Brian I didn’t want anything other a big piece of black forest cake (my favorite), but he took me shopping and bought me a great pair of hiking/ water resistant boots for our walks and while on the boat. They’re awesome. He had ordered a black forest cake, and we picked it up and went to Mikes. We took his boat back to Kanaka Landing, and I got to be at the helm and steer it through the channel, learning more as I went along. As it was a quite cool in the wind prior to leaving, I thought it would be quite cold and we’d use the steering on the inside of the boat, but I’ve now learned that if you’re going in the same direction as the wind, you don’t feel it at all, and so it was quite a comfortable trip.

Mike continued to host us that evening, and a few others from the dock and elsewhere, stopped by his boat for cake, and I did indeed have a BIG piece. Now everyone knows that birthday cake doesn’t have calories. Well it didn’t take long before we had a party in progress. We danced, listened to some funny boating stories, ate a lot of good food, and consumed some birthday beverages. Don’t worry, Brian was my DD. The only downer, was that off and on throughout the evening, we had soft landing rain, otherwise known as snow. Yup, my birthday ended with snow…sigh. BUT, it was dry shortly after leaving Maple Ridge.

 The strong winds continued through the night, blowing this and that, plus a few other things, against the RV. At one point, I’m sure I saw Critter flapping like a flag while clinging to the ladder outside our window.  Anyway,  I expected to wake up on Sunday to find us in Burnaby. Surprising enough, we had only been blown as far as the park gate. However, the RV that was next to us, is completely gone, except for their toilet which is still attached to the sewer hose. We also had a skiff of snow, which looks weird in a rain forest of lush ferns. The sun was shining though, which is always welcome. We heard that Alberta got a BIT more snow than we did, and also after hearing that the Vancouver area and the island had received 12in. or more of snow, we didn’t complain. We decided to venture off to Richmond to check on the boat, and once there, we felt the cold … Correction, Fricking cold!  It was the wind at the dock that made it so cold…brrrr.  We needed to re-tarp the boat, which doesn’t sound difficult, and most times wouldn’t have been, but the gusting winds REFUSED to settle down. That, along with no hand rails/ropes on the area of the boat we had to walk along, made it more of a challenge than I bargained for. Thank goodness for my new boots. Brian has put hand rails on his To Do list (Thank you dear). Back at the RV we warmed up with a big helping of hot home made soup…mmm.  The rest of the evening was spent reading our course material. Well at least one of us reread some of it, and that person is actually beginning to make sense of it….whew.

 

Geez, I’m behind in posting as I see this is already another week started.  So here goes…

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December 4-7, 2008

A fairly steady few days, with the usual on/off rain. Brian puttsed around fixing a few things, and during that time, I learned what his “bag of stuff” is. Can any of you women relate to this scenario?

            Him: Have you seen my bag of stuff?

            Me:   What bag of stuff?

            Him: My BAG of STUFF.

            Me:   What would be in it?

            Him: STUFF!

AHA! Thank you ladies, and you men out there, well … :p

He did find his bag and proudly showed it to me so I could marvel at it and remember where it’s stored for future reference. I was expecting a decent size bag, full of amazing things that other men would envy. But, nope… it’s only a 4”x6 “ plastic bag, which holds very little stuff….sheesh.

 

On Saturday, Mike had to move his boat to another dock for a few days, while they dredge the marina. So we all went for a bit of a boat ride first. There was Captain Mike, First Mate Brian, and Crew Simone.  The weather wasn’t all that cold, but it rained (surprise). I need to win the lottery, so I can get my eyes lasered…really. My glasses were constantly covered in rain drops, which can be a fricking nuisance. I really enjoyed the whole thing though. I, once again, got to control the wheel for a few minutes.

Mike gave me a lesson in how to approach and come into dock, and I’m looking forward to being able to do that in the near future. It’s pretty much like parallel parking a car, only it’s a 50’ boat, and it’s in water, and it doesn’t have instant brakes, and it’s cool. I also helped move the fenders (they help you from banging hard against other boats and things) from one side of the boat to the other, prior to docking, and so I got to put my knowledge of knots to use. I’m having so much fun!

 

On Sunday, the three of us went to New Westminster, to take the boat Brian put a deposit on, for a sea trial. That plan was unfortunately kyboshed due to strong winds that refused to settle down. So they did what they called a power test instead. On Monday night, we’re going to meet up with owners and Brian is going to purchase it, and take possession of the keys…..Yay!   That evening, Mike kicked my ass…hard…at a game of cribbage. The sad thing is, that it’s kind of a regular thing…aack. Why DO I play games with these two?  At least I beat Brian from time to time.

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December 1-3, 2008

November ended on a wet note, and December entered on wet note. I DO like to fall asleep to the sound of the rain, and I certainly prefer the rain to shoveling snow. However, a little more sun would be nice too. It peeks through for short periods of time, just to tease us, and then POOF, it goes back into hiding. Oh well,  the resulting foliage makes up for it.

 Mike gave us material for the Canadian Power Squadron Course (we want to take it) which includes (but not limited to) separate books called The Canadian Aids To Navigation System and Maritime Radio Course. Still with me? Good. So last night we each pick up different course material, and start studying. Mine was, yes you guessed it, the Aids To Navigation book (For those of you who need clarification, I’m referring now to water navigation, not land).  I’d like to know who makes the rules for buoys and what each one means, and then I’d like to slap him…. really hard.  There’s (and I’m not making this up) at least 37 different buoys… No, that’s not a misprint. They can also have different colored lights that blink in different sequences (flashing, quick, very quick, long flash, group flashing, group quick flashing + long flash, etc.. aaack.). Some have bells and whistles and stripes and pointed or rounded tops. Colors to tell you to stay Port side or Starboard side, inside or outside or upside down. Still with me? Good. There’s danger ones and anchorage ones, and kiss my ass ones. Now, some are color co-coordinated, which is ok as long as you don’t leave our Region. Should you venture anywhere else in the world, it’s totally opposite… I KNOW! What’s with that?  And if you look at a map, although they have the Regions marked with “A” or “B” (we’re “B”), it’s on WATER.  I’m  thinking…hmmm…where the hell is the line? I mean it’s not like there’s a rope stretched out across these vast spaces of water to say “On this side of the rope you’re in A  and on that side you’re in B. And what if you’re just inches into A and you don’t realize it, and you then misread the buoy…and you end up on the wrong side of it, and come head to head with their Coast Guard, and they arrest you, and you can’t speak their language, and they throw you in jail without a phone call, except maybe you hide your cell phone in your sock, and…..SLAP! ..Well, enough said.

 

NEXT!

 Today (Tuesday), our walk took us out the backyard, and onto an old road. Soon we heard the river water and thought  that it was fairly close, so we headed UP a forestry

road. Now by UP, I mean North, and by North, I mean UP…. and then UP some more. Even the forestry workers didn’t walk up there. They took trucks…trucks MADE to go up there. I swear to god, we got THIS close to the top of the mountain…No, not quite THAT close, but definitely THIS close.  Of course, I wanted to go all the way, but Brian didn’t (Hello dear.. J).  Hey, this is MY  journal, and I get to say what I want. If he wants to dispute any of it, he can write his own. Am I right, or am I right?

Anyway, on the walk down we picked up some litter. Not only did he make a washer (that worked) out of the plastic bottle, but we did our part to save the planet. and (ha) made 30cents on the beer cans.

 

On Wednesday we enjoyed sunlight. Yes, we had sunlight until, well .. dark.

At night we watched a movie/documentary(?) called Zeitgeist. It will get your synapses firing if nothing else. No matter what your belief system is, I suggest you all see it (if you haven’t already). That is unless you don’t like to think outside your comfort zone, in which case you might want to try Winnie The Pooh And The Blustery Day. Hmmm, that reminds me, I need to put popcorn on the grocery list. Oh, and in case you’ve ever wondered, and I’m sure you have, beer and chocolate DO go good together (Hey, don’t knock it ‘til you’ve tried it). Brian thinks I need an intervention… :p 

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