July 1, 2000

The Kindness of Strangers & The Comfort of Home



Here are a few of my favorite online haunts:
[This is the site I visit to fantasize about living in Toronto again, which is almost every single day during the winter]

Jonathan Cainer's Zodiac Forecasts
[This is where I visit in the morning, when I need a positive spin on things past, present and future.]

Living Local
[This is where I go to see what Canadians are up to, sometimes I even buy things from the businesses listed there.]

Environment Canada Weather
[This is the site I visit every morning, and before every road trip during the winter]

We have had a blessedly quiet day today. The weather was, in a word, lovely. Sunny skies and warm breezes prevailed. Several years ago Attila and friend installed aluminium eves troughs around the perimeter of our roof. They looked magnificent. We were thrilled with the amount of money we saved and quality of the work that was done.

Then it rained. Drip. Drip, drip. Drip, drip drip... The caulking that Attila had used for the job was past its prime. Since that time each rainfall has provided us with an interesting variations on a leaking eves trough. Heavy rain results in projectile streams emerging as suddenly as dessert floods from seam points along the roof. Soft rain produces slow, perfectly timed drips that splash lazily on the flower gardens below.

All of that changed today. Attila spent a day on the roof, cleaning gutters and sealing seams. That may be the end of the matter. I will be watching with interest when the skies open with showers. We may need a plan B.

I have been puttering in the gardens, removing spent flower heads and clearing overgrowth from around the basil plants. Attila and I enjoyed a break together on the back deck, our glasses of cranberry juice icy and dripping with condensation.

Indoors I have been busy preparing archives for transfer to CDs. Many years ago, I used an Apple IIc for my professional writing. The computer had no hard drive and the files were all stored on large floppy disks. Then the Macintosh came into my life and I never looked back.

I recently donated my Apple IIc to a users group with the assistance of one of the members, a fine individual indeed. While he was carrying the computer to his car, we struck up a conversation and I learned that he had the hardware to move the files on my old large floppies to the smaller floppies. I was overjoyed. Off he went with my boxes of disks and a promise to move the files.

A month or so later I received the new disks in the mail. He did much more than just copy the files, he translated the file format as well. It was not until I began to translate these files into their final file type that I became aware of the monumental amount of work it must have taken to create these disks. This sort of generosity is uncommon. I always feel that some sort of magic is going on when I meet these special people.

I have been translating files for approximately a week, to give you an idea of how much work must have gone into this project at his end. Today I finally translated the last of the files and am preparing to burn them onto a CD. My task was somewhat lengthier than needed; I kept stopping to read the files. I was quite surprised at what I found. The databases and papers contained on those disks were irreplaceable, at least to me.

Synchronicity at work once again.

I have been literally obsessed with a novel I have been reading: "Fall On Your Knees" by Ann-Marie MacDonald. This woman can tell a story as few others can. The writing is superb and the plot defies easy description. Not only are the talents of this writer striking, the subject matter reflects the true nature of growing up female in a rational world.

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Dogwood by Maggie Turner


Page by Page: A Woman's Journal
by Maggie Turner

Canadian Maggie Turner writes and publishes poetry, photography, and a personal journal online. Her work reflects the current way of life in Canada, embracing Canada's past, present, and future in a unique portrayal of everyday life. Maggie's voice is one of the many that actively depict the rich diversity of Canadian culture.

Photography: "a term which comes from the Greek words photos (light) and graphos (drawing). A photograph is made with a camera by exposing film to light in order to create a negative. The negative is then used in the darkroom to print a photograph (positive) onto light-sensitive paper.
Source: University of Arizona Glossary

Poetry: "a form of speech or writing that harmonizes the music of its language with its subject. To read a great poem is to bring out the perfect marriage of its sound and thought in a silent or voiced performance. At least from the time of Aristotle's Poetics, drama was conceived of as a species of poetry."
Source: Creative Studios

Journal: " "Though a journal may be many things - a treasury, a storehouse, a jewelry box, a laboratory, a drafting board, a collector's cabinet, a snapshot album, a history, a travelogue..., a letter to oneself - it has some definable characteristics. It is a record, an entry-book, kept regularly, though not necessarily daily.... Some (entries) will be nearly illegible, written in the dark in the middle of the night.... Not only is it a record for oneself, but of oneself. Every memorable journal, any successful journal, is honest. Nothing sham, phony, false...." (Dorothy Lambert from Ken Macrorie's book, Writing to be Read )
A journal is a way to keep track of your thoughts about what you read... as well as what you did on any given day."
Source: Journal Writing

A Blog is an online journal created by server side software, often hosted by a commercial interest.

"The term "weblog" was coined by Jorn Barger[4] on 17 December 1997. The short form, "blog," was coined by Peter Merholz, who jokingly broke the word weblog into the phrase we blog in the sidebar of his blog in April or May 1999.[5][6][7] Shortly thereafter, Evan Williams at Pyra Labs used "blog" as both a noun and verb ("to blog," meaning "to edit one's weblog or to post to one's weblog") and devised the term "blogger" in connection with Pyra Labs' Blogger product, leading to the popularization of the terms."

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