Continuity

One of the things I like least about using WordPress is that you need to update it periodically.  I ALWAYS fail the first time round.  Always.  This time I tried the automatic update feature, because it seemed as if it would be simpler.  Ahem.  Not in my capable hands it wasn’t!  “An Automated WordPress update has failed to complete – please attempt the update again now.”

Swiss Chard and Foot

Swiss Chard and Foot

The trouble now is that when it failed, and I watched it fail, I decided to go ahead and do the update manually.  That worked, a little time consuming, but it worked.  Now all I have to do is figure out how to let my installation of WordPress in on the update, because it hasn’t figured out that the whole event is over, over and done with.

We are having a beautiful day!  Our robins are chirping happily in the trees just over the railings of the deck.  I call them our robins because they were born here, under the deck flooring.  The deck extends from the second story of the house, so it is high and dry and a perfect spot for nesting.  All spring we watched the robins build the nest and proceed to lay and hatch the eggs.  The three chicks grew very quickly and have now flown into the forest beside the deck; which is home sweet home to them.  One our robins is very precocious, hopping across the deck and attempting to pluck my geranium buds before they could bloom.  I gave him a loud round of applause, which he did not appreciate one bit.  He flew away in a huff.

Bits of work are filtering in, thank goodness.  I am beginning to forget how to do large segments of the job, because my work assignments are brief and very spread out. Thank goodness I made the time to write notes!

My sleeping patterns have been disrupted lately, for some mysterious reason.  I drop off into a sound sleep without any trouble, but come 4:00 a.m. I’m wide awake and raring to go.  There is no place to go at 4:00 a.m..  Sometimes, if I have a short afternoon nap I can break this unpleasant pattern.  Here I am though, wide awake and typing like there is no tomorrow!

Terra is almost finished her course, and has sent some beautiful graduation photos.  She has a look in her eyes that I haven’t seen before, and wonderful it is to see.  That sense of accomplishment that one derives from achieving a goal, a difficult goal, shines bright in her face.  Luna had that same look about her when she gave birth to the twins.  Different daughters, different dreams, different strengths… all wonderful.

This afternoon Terra called to say that she has been offered a position at the placement facility where she has been training, and will begin work right after graduation. Well done Terra!

Luna brought her camera to the family gathering (four generations attended) that we held early in May.  Luna takes wonderful pictures.  Today, with Janus home to help with the kids, Luna found time to upload some of those pictures to our family web site.  I created a web site for our family to share information, news and photos.  We have pictures of six generations of our family.  I’ve known and loved five of those generations.  My Mom has known and loved all six of those generations.  We are all sharing pictures that we have, so that it doesn’t really matter who has possession of the originals, we all get to enjoy them.

Worldly Distractions

Quote
“I’m not sure I want popular opinion on my side — I’ve noticed those with the most opinions often have the fewest facts.”
Bethania McKenstry (whoever she is!)

Weather
26 °C
Condition:Sunny
Pressure:101.6 kPa
Visibility:16 km
Temperature:26.0°C
Dewpoint:11.6°C
Humidity:40 %
Wind:SSW 24 km/h

Contemplating Change

The summer season is not yet in full swing, as far a seasonal residents are concerned. Although there is talk in the media of an economic recovery in Canada, all we can see from our little perch is that the wealthy continue to build monuments to their own comfort, and there is a LOT of activity in that sector of the economy, while everyone else cuts back trying to survive the times.

Ontario Wetland

Ontario Wetland

The corporation where I am on six-day-a-week call, is busy cutting positions and hours.  This creates tension in the work force.  I am really noticing it, being at the very bottom of the pecking order.  A call came in on Tuesday afternoon, asking me to work for 3 hours on Wednesday morning.  I accepted.  My fellow worker spent the first two hours trying to persuade me to find another job, within the corporation of course.  Then she went for lunch.  All this pressure was exerted under the guise of “looking out for me”.  Transparent.  No one looks out for anyone but themselves, in the culture this organization has created.

She didn’t give up until I grumbled about my lack of hours and stated that I was looking for something else.  She wants me out of there because there aren’t enough hours for both of us, well, there aren’t even enough hours for one of us.  I blame the corporation and the union, but I don’t blame her.  The employees at the corporation are being squeezed, and they react.  I react.

This morning it is quite cool and the sun is shining.  We have had a lot of rain lately, so our little winged friends are numerous and hungry.  The weather report predicts a high of 27C today.  Hot weather diminishes the mosquito population.  Relief.

The house needs a good dusting and straightening, which it will get today. I’ve made a good start this morning and will divide my time between the keyboard and the chores.

The scent of change is in the air.  The thing about change is that you never really know where it will take you.  I’m not sure what it is I’m detecting, on an organic level, but it does seem positive.  Of course, I find all change frightening, exhilarating and exhausting.  Whatever it is though, there is nothing for it but to follow my nose and hope for the best.

Worldly Distractions

Quote
“We hang the petty thieves and appoint the great ones to public office.”
Aesop
(620 BC – 560 BC)

Weather
16 °C
Condition:Sunny
Pressure:101.8 kPa
Visibility:16 km
Temperature:16.0°C
Dewpoint:11.0°C
Humidity:72 %
Wind:NNW 21 km/h

Time

This morning I had to take the car in for a regularly scheduled maintenance appointment. It is a one hour drive there and a one hour drive back. My mind tends to take off on tangents when I’m driving for any length of time; today the tangent was all about time.

Two Feet and a Geranium

Two Feet and a Geranium

I was thinking that all life really consists of is: what was, what is, and what will be. All of these aspects of time are subject to perception, perspective and interpretation. However, the only aspect that we can influence is “what is”, the present, the fleeting moment of consciousness that we experience as the now.

Sometimes my “what is” is saturated with “what was”. There are moments that come to me from the past, rich in emotion. These moments can capture me completely, so much so that I long to return to that place and time, to wrap myself in its warmth and certainty.

At other times the “what will be” will crowd out the present, sometimes with uncertainty, sometimes with anticipation.

Only the present moment offers the opportunity for redemption. It is often difficult to remain loyal to the “what is”, with all its terrors and treasures. It is the most difficult aspect of time to subjugate, susceptible to the vagaries of chaos. One can write/rewrite history. One can predict the future. But the moment of “what is” cannot be gathered into words and power so easily, it slips into what “has been” before we can fully grasp its meaning or wield its power.

The world around me focuses primarily on the writing and rewriting of the “what was”, with what seems like the sole purpose of dictating the “what will be”, to a vested interest. Perhaps the world needs a little more of the “what is”.

Worldly Distractions

Quote
“One must be poor to know the luxury of giving.”
George Eliot (1819 – 1880)

Weather
24 °C
Condition:Mainly Sunny
Pressure:102.0 kPa
Visibility:16 km
Temperature:24.0°C
Dewpoint:1.2°C
Humidity:22 %
Wind:SE 5 km/h

Curious George

9:00 a.m.

Learning something new is always of interest to an information pack-rat, which might describe me.  I’m off this morning to the first (and probably final) session of training on my own time and at my own expense.  I will confess that the primary reason I’ve not called them to cancel is that I wonder what the job entails.  Always intrigued by new learning opportunities, I just have to find out what it is all about.  I don’t trust assumptions, so I’ll suspend disbelief for the morning and see what I find.

And thinking of exploration, Attila and I have decided to go on a road tour late in the autumn. We will pack a tent and some sleeping bags, load up our cooler and our propane stove and head out.  I’ll take a break from waiting for calls to work, and Attila will take a break from his six day a week grind.  This is the plan.  Now that we have a plan we can safely assume that fate will step in to show us who is in charge of the universe; not us I think.

Attila finished the under-the-stair-landing project, so the closet contents can be returned to their proper place.  Yesterday Attila also painted one quarter of the soffit and fascia. Rather than climb to the top of a ladder to the top of the second story of the house, Attila bought an extension pole and created two attachments in addition to the roller attachment that came with the pole.  One attachment was made from a roller attachment, a BBQ scraper and duct tape; this he used to remove the flaking paint before priming.  The other attachment Attila created was made from a roller attachment, a paint brush and duct tape; he used this to paint the small spaces that could not be reached with a roller attachment.  Very ingenious and it worked very well indeed.

I’ve been busy with the transition of this site to a WordPress format.  I’ll leave it in its present state for now, see how it works before putting any more time into it.

6:00 p.m.

The training session confirmed that the corporation is not willing to provide adequate recompense for the work they want done, at least in my opinion.  Too bad, because I really enjoyed the work today, and really liked the woman I would have been working with.  If I didn’t need to pay bills and support myself, if I only needed to while away my hours, I definitely would have enjoyed spending time at this job.  I turned it down.

I received a letter about the resume I dropped off the other day.  They are going to call me to setup an interview in the next few weeks.  Maybe this interview is just another learning experience, or maybe it will offer more, we shall see.

We are having a quick spaghetti supper before Attila gets out his extension pole and paint brush again.  The soffit and fascia already look better and the job is only partially completed!

Worldly Distractions

Quote

“I have you and even if we never meet or ever see each other, we have left our thumbprints in the thick, moist clay of each other’s lives.”
Hugh Elliott

Weather
20C
Mostly Cloudy
Pressure: 101.6 kPa
Visibility:16 km
Temperature:20°C
Dewpoint:11.8°C
Humidity:59%
Wind:N 13  km/h

A Good Day

Here I am again.  This new venue is easier to post from and more difficult to post from.

Attila working under the stair landing.

Attila under the stairs.

It is easier to post from because the coding is already there, all I have to do is type and then click on Publish and the deed is done.

It is more difficult because it feels different, more distant, less my own.  That is because I have less control over this type of digital interface than I did with the hand-coded web site.  I don’t entirely trust this way of doing things, not in the long term.  That is because I have no intention of becoming a server software power user or a database/php guru.  If problems arise with those functions, I’ll be helpless to fix them myself.  My entries might be lost to me, forever.  I don’t trust database backups, because I don’t know how to restore the backup to its original glory.

This morning Attila and I sat over our morning coffee and discussed our game plan for the day.  I made a list of odd jobs I could accomplish, and suggested that he finish the job he started last week.  I wouldn’t normally press Attila on finishing a project, but this one involved emptying out a closet onto the family room floor.  I won’t be able to tolerate that mess for very long and it is in a high traffic area so it cannot remain “out of sight, out of mind”.  Nothing for it but to get the job done.

After a quick breakfast Attila and I tackled emptying the last shelf in the closet, so that he could crawl into the small space under the stair landing.  It is damp in there, and it smells musty.

The day I took possession of this house I found multiple mouse traps and dead mice in that little space under the landing.  The smell was intolerable.  We cleaned that out and haven’t looked at it since.  The mice are long gone, the bad smell a memory, but the mustiness remains.  Attila is adjusting the vapour barrier, the insulation and putting wallboard over the studs this morning.  He has already installed a grate in the stair riser so that fresh air will circulate and damp can escape.

Our 25 year old dehumidifier expired of old age a few weeks ago.  I bought a new one last week, one of the two left at the store.  It is doing its magic downstairs, removing the dampness from underneath the stair landing, slowly but surely.

We plan on packing up our Swede Saw and heading over to Caitrìona’s property later today. There is maple sapling, a very stubborn maple sapling, growing up under the side porch. Attila will crawl under the porch and remove the stump and most of the root.  We will also fetch water, as it is spring fed and makes excellent drinking water.

The sky is overcast this morning, but with any luck the sun will break through by this afternoon, making it a pleasant day for a drive.

Yesterday Harriet and I chatted over Skype.  Skype is not perfect, but it is so much more satisfying than email, chat, texting or telephone contact.  The biggest problem with Skype is that Harriet couldn’t share her dessert with me, and it did look good!

Worldly Distractions

Quote

“Man is so made that he can only find relaxation from one kind of labor by taking up another.”
Anatole France
(1844 – 1924)

Weather

16C
Cloudy
Pressure:101.5 kPa
Visibility:16 km
Temperature:16.0°C
Dewpoint:12.8°C
Humidity:81 %
Wind:NE 5 km/h