March 27, 2007

Close Encounters



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]

Months after visiting my doctor and carrying away my laboratory form for a blood test, I have managed to find transportation, good weather, good roads and time to travel to the lab. This morning I made the fifty-minute drive to the laboratory. I am now sporting a black bruise the size of a quarter on the inside of my left elbow. It is not very pretty, but it looks much worse than it felt and I was quite surprised to see it when I removed the gauze.

While in town I took the opportunity to purchase a few groceries and checked the end-of-winter sales at the Mark's Work Wearhouse. I found three tee shirts and a pair of sleeping sweats for Attila, as well as two pairs of pants for myself, all for a total of $50.00. The significant thing about purchasing clothing from Mark's Work Wearhouse at a reasonable price is the quality. These items of clothing will wear like cast iron and I will not have to repeatedly mend them in order to keep them going. This clothing wears well until the fabric gives out.

I have taken to wearing hospital scrubs when at home. They are comfortable, inexpensive, easy care, well fitted and incredibly cool in the summer. I suppose I am a fashion criminal, but being uncomfortable has become less acceptable as I have aged. When I want to "dress up", why, then I take out my overalls!

The drive in to town this morning kept me on my toes. The warm temperature, about ten degrees Celsius, combined with the snow cover to produce a dense fog. Visibility was limited to the taillights of the car in front of me. I navigated my way along the highway without event to arrive safely at the lab. The fog had dissipated for the most part by the time I climbed back into the car to head home.

The drive back was a lot more exciting. There is a section of the road sporting warning signs that it is a dear* (see right column) wintering area. For the first time in my travels on that road, I rounded a tight corner and came upon a deer slowly crossing the road. I braked hard, but not so hard as to loose control of the little car, and watched carefully to see what action the deer would take. She kept steady on her course, and I swerved hard to the right to avoid her, then hard to the left to avoid the ditch and the rock cut. She and I were lucky this morning; we both escaped our encounter without injury or bother.

As if that were not enough, shortly thereafter a large, new pickup truck suddenly came up from behind me and sat inches from my rear bumper for a kilometer or so. I was driving over the speed limit. Then, with an oncoming car approaching, just a few hundred yards ahead of us, he pulled out to pass me. I had to slam on the brakes to let him back in before he hit the oncoming car head on. Luckily the vehicle behind him had left adequate space to slow down to avoid rear-ending my little car. I laughed out loud and shook my head,when a few hundred yards further down the road the pickup turned right off the highway onto a side road and sped merrily away. He risked our lives for that!

This afternoon domestic chores have claimed my attention. On his lunch break, Attila brought the 25-pound bag of sunflower seeds up from the basement storage area and left it on the counter where I could easily reach it. That done, my list of ingredients for seed bread was complete. The dough is rising as I write. Soon I will perform the second knead, set the formed loaf on the mantle for the second rise, and then into the oven it goes.

There are a few odds n' ends sitting on my desk in need of attention. A membership I have maintained for years, but can no longer afford due to doubled fees, must be cancelled. I also must arrange to transfer my teeny tiny pension fund from the investment firm used by my former employer to my bank. All this involves telephone calls, forms to fill in/mail out and a bit of patience on my part.

Attila has been quite busy tearing apart the deck that was sheared from the side of the house by the snow this spring. The deck was very old and constructed of cedar (not pressure treated). Last night he burned the stairs and railing, the sparks flew fifty feet into the air and the smoke smelled heavenly. It is relatively safe to do this at the moment, as the snow cover provides a natural fire retardant and is available to be shoveled onto the fire should it show any signs of getting out of control.

Tonight Attila will begin to dismantle the deck platform for eventual burning. Now that the time has changed, it is light much later into the evening. This allows Attila to putter about more effectively, as he can get a run on his projects before it gets dark.

The weather forecast predicts sunshine tomorrow. How wonderful!

Top of Page

Worldly Distractions

Sunflower Seeds in Bulk
Twenty-five pounds of seeds.

By the Easy Chair
That Old Ace in the Hole
by Annie Proulx

Temp 8°C
Pres 102.1 kPa
Visibility 11 km
Humidity 100 %
Dewpoint 8°C
Wind WNW 11 km/h

* My unconscious mispelling of the word deer amuses me no end. The word dear certainly does describe how I feel about the animals, a delightful use of homophones.

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 Peterme.com 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."
Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_blogging

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