This morning dawned blue and gold. Freshly fallen snow covered everything in sight. The air was crisp and cold. Within three hours the temperature had climbed six degrees centigrade, but still remained below freezing. The change, however welcome, was not pleasant.
I first noticed the change through the sudden and inexplicable rise in my blood pressure. I suffer from high blood pressure; it is usually well controlled by medication. Not so this morning. Sitting in front of my computer, I noticed my ears were ringing loudly and I began to feel slightly fatigued. The ringing increased in volume, to the point where it was alarming. Measuring my blood pressure revealed that it had risen considerably.
"What have I eaten that I should not have?" I thought.
While I was pondering the pressure of my blood, "The Teenager", who stayed home sick today, rushed into the bathroom. A heavy nosebleed awoke her from a deep sleep. The panic soon subsided and she managed to get the bleeding under control.
We puzzled over our mutual discomfort and did a quick check of the furnace and air cleaning systems, no problems there. We concluded that neither of us tolerates extreme weather changes easily.
My body has alerted me that spring has arrived, but not in the pleasant way to which I so looked forward.
Marjory is slowly working her way into my routine. Marjory is my new computer, a G4. The new operating system is not as stable as the old one, but then I have only been working with it for a few weeks. Like shoes, operating systems need to be broken in.
One of my favorite things, so far, about Marjory is a program that plays MP3s with visual effects. The program is called iTunes. The visual effects are interesting and varied and quite sophisticated enough for my taste in sound generated colors and shapes. The best part though, is that the music continues to play even while Marjory sleeps, the visual effects continue to display and serve as an interesting screen saver.
I converted several CDs to MP3 format so that Marjory would not get bored. I find that converting CDs to MP3 format with iTunes is extremely easy and fast. My old ears can detect no difference between the sound produced by the MP3s and that produced by the original CD. This is most likely a function of the speakers, perhaps of my ears, most probably both. The new little bowling-ball speakers sound terrific to me.
With a change in the season, comes a change in the number of hours Attila must spend at work. In view of Attila's imminent absence, we decided to take advantage of his day off on Saturday and explore a bit of the countryside together. The Pinery Provincial Park is located in the southwestern part of Ontario and so enjoys the vestiges of spring a little earlier than some of the more northerly parks.
Although a day pass for the car is relatively costly, $8.50 Canadian Dollars, walking about in an undeveloped landscape makes for a priceless experience. The day was lovely and the intensity of the blue sky contrasted sharply with the black tree trunks and white expanses of snow. The only passable roads were those that had been ploughed and none of the roads that led to the waterfront were ploughed. We enjoyed a packed lunch on a picnic table surrounded by whispering pines and a brisk breeze. Hot coffee kept us warm as we enjoyed the sun, the breeze, the birds, and the quiet.
Cold though our outdoor picnic was, it seemed like a small adventure compared to the one brave soul camping at the park. We drove past his abode, where a bonfire burned brightly and he was happily engaged in his domestic pursuits.
Soon crowds of people will replace the brisk breezes. Although prohibitive for some, the high cost of entry limits the number of visitors with little appreciation for the landscape. The park, even when filled with people, is a pleasant, peaceful place to visit. There are far more exciting entertainment centers in Ontario for those seek revelry, war games, and all-terrain racing.
We have heard nothing more about the upcoming wedding. I suspect that come June things are going to get frantic. Both of my offspring subscribe to the philosophy, "what you do not do today, you can always squeeze into tomorrow's schedule", or even worse, "don't worry, Mom will do it later." They both quite enjoy last-minute frenzy. I do not. The summer is shaping up to be quite a busy one.
Attila and I also look forward to attending a family reunion this summer. The reunion is on my maternal grandmother's side. These reunions have been held intermittently for many decades. I have not attended one since my preteen years. There are only a few family members that I have personally met. It will be wonderful to meet those with whom I correspond.
Family history is one of my passionate interests. I look forward to meeting people who for years have populated my databases and my imagination. It will be a challenge to ignore the urge to collect data, to focus on enjoying the people. The laptop, a tape-recorder, and a notebook will come with me of course, just in case I fail. Perhaps both can be accomplished, who knows.
|RECIPES :: Cast
March scene at
Pinery Provincial Park
By the Easy Chair
A letter from my Aunt, which includes a picture of my grandmother as a girl with her parents, ca 1920.
An odd mixture of DeBussy, David Bowie and Blink 182; definitely not recommended.
9:00 PM EST
Temp: -1` C
Wind: W 12 mph
Barometric: 30.25 in
Sunrise 6:07 AM EST
Sunset 6:35 PM EST
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