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Monday, 5 October 2015

And in questionable sports news

Today I walked so far around downtown that:

  • I needed to buy two of those mega-size Rogers caramel-cream chocolates just to keep up my energy
  • I gave money to the same sidewalk guy twice  (he actually told me I had done that...luckily I was out of change by then)
  •  I counted 40 coffee shops and one Sobey's before I gave up counting
  •  my phone ran down before I did
  • I stopped at my fave bar and discovered a new shrimp dish (which I could have done if I'd taken the bus, I guess)
  • Once I got home,

    I had to sit on the chair in the hallway, deep-breathing, before I could take my shoes off. 

Sunday, 4 October 2015

Sort of anti-Thoreau

All my life I have thought of myself as a non-nature person.  Not that I hate nature.  I accept it as it seems to have accepted me, but I always saw myself as somewhat detached from it.

That thought makes me wonder why I have an amber glass duck lamp on my desk, why there are about 40 different representations of cats in glass, stone, wood and leather strung around our 900 square feet and why we are growing 10 plants in the front window.  And there's a stained glass heron lamp in the living room and a 2 foot wooden one glued to the floor in the hall with that awful blue stuff that never comes off.  
Just today I hung 5 different-coloured fish in the bathroom, making my silver and turquoise design completely redundant (looking pretty good with the mermaid outfit though).

And to add to my confusion, as I was writing this post I noticed that I've chosen a tree-of-life pattern for my new bracelet.

Is there some sort of scientific name for someone who suddenly adopts the natural in place of the regular shallow stuff she's craved all her life?   Is there a withdrawal program for DavidSuzukiness?

Saturday, 3 October 2015

A change of seasons.....

sometimes I just feel like saying hello!
a couple of weeks ago at my cousin's place.  I'm wearing my trans support bracelet, which mostly looks blue in this photo,
and the pride bracelet I have since lost.

Wednesday, 30 September 2015

I use the word "siblings"!

Thanksgiving is going to be a bit different this year.  We usually get together all our Ottawa family, Emily cooks a wonderful traditional meal, we host it so that everyone is incredibly squishy at the table and near the end of dinner, Dave will ask us to think of the things we're thankful for---especially our friends and family.  That always brings me close to tears.

This Thanksgiving, Dave, my brother Pat and I are leaving the Ottawa family behind and driving to Barrie where our sisters Mary and Kathy (and her lovely guy Bob) will be visiting, and where our brothers Sean and Doug live.  It will be the first time since our mother's funeral that we will be all together, and I'm crying just anticipating it.  Please don't tell any of them.  Although, they might figure it out on their own, given my reputation for copious tears.

I can't access photos of my brothers and sisters today because I'm still trying out this Chromebook (which has too sensitive a keyboard for someone whose hands shake, and we will be sending it back, I think) but I intend to pull rank on my younger siblings and get lots of photos next week.

Tuesday, 29 September 2015

Dave drops me at the door

Aaaaarrrrrggggghhhh!!!!! Is there any action more frustrating than going to Costco?   Why, you ask....

A few reasons:

  • even in the middle of the week, the walk from car through giant warehouse and back to car is miles!  and you have to push a giant cart, or try balancing your goods in your left hand so that your right can find your membership card
  • most Costco stores are dangerously close to A & W ( I know I need say nothing more)
  • the speed with which you're carried along once you get accepted as legitimate means that unless you're totally in the moment you zip past the place where you intended to return something and find yourself in the aisle with the giant bags of chocolate.  Today the dark-chocolate covered figs grabbed my attention and I'd eaten 3 before I noticed that each one is 170 calories (on the upside no one looks at you in a chastising way when you hand over the already-opened bag of anything to the cashier)
  • the gargantuan tables where they rest the books are gloriously, colourfully and evilly chock full of things you want for yourself, your spouse and all your family and acquaintances
  • everything that looks delicious or desirable is packaged so that it's too big to fit in your condo (chocolates, books and socks are fine)
  • the speed with which you leave the building after having given in to your vanity or greed too many times means that you don't even see the place where you should be returning something you shouldn't  have taken into the warehouse in the first place.
I should remember what it used to feel like when I wasn't earning enough money to get a Costco membership, and stop being cranky.

Saturday, 26 September 2015

About laptops, clothing and dogs

Well, I am trying out a Chromebook as my laptop went entirely squirrelly, after months of somewhat squirrelly.   \in  many ways, \i really like it, but you might notice that \i have difficulties finding the"shift" button, and there is no delete feature that \i can locate, and I can<t use the canadian multilingual keyboard \I'm used to. Wah!!

When we were looking at laptops online, I noticed "Chromebook" but knew nothing about them. \More searches and we found the description of the usual Chromebook user, and \i fit it entirely.  So we have 14 days to send this back if \I don\' t live up to their expectations.

I had intended to write about my fashion accidents, which have been hounding me this summer.  Two relatively serious falls, both affecting my knees.  The first, (and it seems I might be writing about them after all) was at my sister's where \i was running around the backyard in sandals which have a funny little lip in the front---very attractive but not appropriate for running up against little strips of wood separating grass from asphalt.  
I seriously flew about 6 feet forward landing next to a Bar-bq on my palms and knees, sliding forever and scaring my niece to death by yelling out a popular but verboten word, about 7 times.  Damage to palms, knees and favourite pants, and of course to my dignity.   

\||||||||||||I lost even more dignity in Kitchener where I was looking very cool and flowy in wide-legged pants, tripped up a curb and fell into a grassy strip surrounding the parking lot of a smallish mall.  Falling was bad enough, but I caused some strange activity in the car ahead of me which I prefer not to dwell on, and worse, discovered that I had fallen on my bag of chips.   That left me giggly and I walked over to the bus, weaving, laughing and slurping potato dust and had a whole 3 seats to myself.

When I told Dave about it, he was quick to remind me that at my age I should be wearing clothing and shoes that would not present a challenge to walking, but I have no intention of changing the way \i dress, so I guess, if you really can't teach an old dog new tricks, I<ll be looking for a new laptop in a few days, and walking carefully with an eye to irregularities in the path.

Tuesday, 22 September 2015

A 10-day snapshot

I've been away from home for 10 or so days, house and pet-sitting for friends in Kitchener.  It was a very different way to spend my days but not an unpleasant one.  I walked an awful lot and found that Kitchener is a very pleasant park-filled greenish city.  My friends have a lovely garden, both front and back of the house, and each is blessed with a place where you can sit in the sun and observe nothing and everything.  I did that a lot.

Lois and Lorna
I also spent a lot of very pleasant time with a cousin I don't often see, and we discovered we have some bad habits and secret obsessions in common.  Family is important.

I was very lonely in Kitchener when I was alone, which was a fair amount of the time.  This kind of surprised me.  I wanted to see and touch my grandchildren; I wanted to talk with Dave and my kids; I even missed this piece of crap laptop.  Just goes to show you that you never know what you've lost till it's gone.  Luckily, that whole experience was captured in a short frame.

Thursday, 3 September 2015

No words

I've written here when I was bereaved, lost, bored, amused, angry and probably with every emotion I could possibly draw on.  Today, I know how I feel, but I don't know how to describe what I feel.

I can't get the picture of  Aylan Kurdi out of my head, I can't stop thinking about what the Kurdi family is going through, I can't stop feeling ashamed of myself for "supporting" the idea of a kinder immigration policy in Canada but not actually doing anything.

I often have black days for which there is only a neurological or emotional reason, but this black day is one I have to make up for.  I don't know exactly what I'll do but I will take action, even if it's only providing money to the group best suited to making a difference.  But really, that's not enough.

If you're aware of something local (Ottawa, Ontario, Canada) that I can become an active part of, please let me know.

Saturday, 22 August 2015

Seek MORE and....

Challenged to finish the story that wasn't really a story about Iris Apfel of the huge glasses and elegant jewellery,  I went back and looked at captions on some of the photos, and found that the reason Iris's photo was in images reached by a search for empty-headed woman, is that she gave fair warning to someone interviewing her that she was not just an empty-headed fashion designer....

There is a message in there.  Eons ago, I was interviewed by the Ottawa Citizen about a grant program I was working for.  It was a provincial program spilling money out to the community for cultural, sports and multicultural initiatives, and I was one of the consultants making recommendations on proposals from community-based groups.  It was a popular but sometimes rambunctious process and many groups not receiving money were distressed and vocal about it.  I thought I tap-danced my way through that quite well, explaining the criteria and the community benefits and of course, the total transparency of the program and got ready to head home.  "One more question?", from the reporter.  "Sure!"  said I, and rattled off a 7 digit figure in response to " How much money does this area have access to?"

Next day, the community page has a picture of me, looking calm and reserved, very little story content and a huge caption: She's the Six Million Dollar Woman!

It took ages before my colleagues stopped laughing.

Wednesday, 19 August 2015

Seek and ye shall find

I decided to look for an image to express the way I'm feeling today, so I googled "empty-headed".
Photos of this woman, whose style and energy are inspiring to me, were all over the page.

Now, I'm not feeling empty-headed, just angry.