Firewood Tops The List


Snow squalls are on their way apparently. This morning it is snowing and the wind roars occasionally, which means serious gusts. Driving visibility, the weather network warns, could be nil at times by this afternoon. I will be home by then, I hope. Hopefully Attila will make the short journey home at the end of the day without incident. I rather hope he does, not least because he is the provider of firewood, therefore the provider of heat. Mist and I insist on and appreciate his presence. Of course I have many other reasons for desiring his company, but today firewood tops the list.


As promised, snow squalls have arrived. Attila will be busy most of this evening with snow removal and wood splitting. The road conditions are deplorable, and worsening as the day progresses.

Fish for dinner. Usually Attila does the cooking, but I am the designated fish fryer. We buy frozen fillets, which I thaw, pat dry, dredge in peppered flour and fry in olive oil with chopped garlic. It has become a favorite meal.

I notice WordPress has another software update that I’ll have to manually install on the server. Not today though. I’m kind of tuckered out after a busy start to the week, our trip and then working full time for two days. Guess I’ll just go sit in the easy chair, with my feet up and my Kobo in my hand.

Worldly Distractions


-9 °C
Condition: Snow
Pressure: 101.2 kPa
Visibility: 1 km
Temperature: -9.0°C
Dewpoint: -9.9°C
Humidity: 93 %
Wind: W 11 km/h
Wind Chill: -14


“I always find it more difficult to say the things I mean than the things I don’t.”
W. Somerset Maugham
1874 – 1965


Still here. Attila and I spent Sunday in Toronto. Most of our time was spent walking about, poking around my old neighbourhood, making note of changes and browsing book stores. Then it was down to the Free Times Cafe, another old stomping ground, to hear Steve Paul Simms and friends perform. Old familiar tunes, new tunes, old friends and new friends; we had a wonderful time.

We left the cafe to walk through gentle snowfall and the quiet streets to our car. There was nothing gentle though about the drive home. The snow, so benign when traveling on foot or at low speeds in downtown Toronto, became blinding as we travelled north on the highway. The roads became increasing snow covered, and in some locations slippery. We did pass one recent accident where a car heading south had done “donuts” and then taken out the guardrail; flashing police lights were heading south towards the scene. There was little traffic save for odd lone transport truck.

We arrived home at 1:30 a.m. Attila then stayed up to build and burn a fire in the masonry heater, and split the wood for the next morning’s burning. I headed to bed, so I don’t know how late he stayed up. Attila didn’t get much sleep.

Last night we turned in at nine, and here I am this morning at five. Attila and I both feel much better today.

Yesterday I worked all day. Unusual. Wonderful. Today I work all day again. Tomorrow I return to part time hours for the rest of the week. Next week I am only working three hours. Feast or Famine.

My quote for the day is a statement shares the same same sentiment that inspired my poem Noble Cause.

Worldly Distractions


-19 °C
Condition: Cloudy
Pressure: 101.3 kPa
Visibility: 16 km
Temperature: -19.0°C
Dewpoint: -21.2°C
Humidity: 83 %
Wind: NNW 13 km/h
Wind Chill: -27


“He who would do good to another must do it in Minute Particulars:
General Good is the plea of the scoundrel, hypocrite and flatterer.”
William Blake

Damn The Torpedoes

Yesterday there was nothing about work I could have complained about, I just didn’t want to be there and the experience felt jarringly discordant all day long. I maintained my smile throughout. Sometimes the corporate straight jacket fits a little too tight; the abrasions are still chaffing this morning.

Attila and I made a trip into the village yesterday evening, to do some much overdue banking and pick up supplies. The savings on groceries when we shop in the village is enough to pay for the fuel to make the trip there and back; and there are more allergen-free food choices in the village.

Store bought soda biscuits are usually made with palm oil, or other saturated oils that aren’t all that good for you. President’s Choice has a new product, Olive Oil & Rosemary soda crackers, made with…. olive oil. After some experimentation the following conclusion was reached; these crackers are not great with peanut butter, not great with strawberry jam, lovely with cheese and best plain. You heard it here first.

After a cloudy start to the morning, the sun is intermittently breaking through the clouds. Attila is working this morning, I am not. Our plans for the afternoon are modest. Attila will split wood and build fires. I will putter.

Our experiment with NetFlix continues, and when the next high-speed bill comes in the total cost can be tallied. Streaming videos is a great way to watch movies and television programs, pausing whenever and resuming whenever one feels the need. The selection outranks our satellite service by leaps and bounds. But the cost, the cost will be the determining factor.

I’m gearing up to write poetry again, it has been some time since I’ve written anything acceptable, acceptable to me I mean, I’ve only published one poem, so publication is not my criteria for acceptable. Time to get out the pen and paper. There is no intrinsic or material reward for writing poetry. Poets seldom become affluent as a result of their writing. And as one disdainful person wrote about poetry readings, “The poetry was still torture, though”. It hardly inspires one to write. Damn the torpedoes.

Worldly Distractions


-8 °C
Condition: Cloudy
Pressure: 100.8 kPa
Visibility: 16 km
Temperature: -8.0°C
Dewpoint: -12.7°C
Humidity: 69 %
Wind: SSE 8 km/h
Wind Chill: -12


“No bird soars too high, if he soars with his own wings.”
William Blake


Friday Morning

I’m writing in installments just in the case the day goes haywire and I don’t make it back to my computer. I’m working in two locations today, with about 20 minutes for lunch in between. Busy day. It is feast or famine when it comes to work.

It is milder now, and much warmer indoors. Of course I’ll spend my day today in a well heated building, where at times I will feel overheated and uncomfortable depending on my level of activity, so the lower temperatures at home will be a welcome change at the end of the day.

It is snowing again this morning, so I’ll be heading out to the car ten minutes early to clear the snow and scrape off any ice before heading down the road.

Hopefully more to come this evening, or if that fails, tomorrow.

Worldly Distractions


-8 °C
Condition: Snow
Pressure: 101.6 kPa
Visibility: 16 km
Temperature: -8.0°C
Dewpoint: -11.7°C
Humidity: 75 %
Wind: SW 17 gust 33 km/
Wind Chill: -15


“There is something fascinating about science. One gets such wholesale returns of conjecture out of such a trifling investment of fact.”
Mark Twain
1835 – 1910

No Mutual Touching

Storm warnings in effect here for today, and sure enough it is snowing to beat the band and the wind is huffing and puffing to strip the heat out of the house. Attila couldn’t get into the driveway when he came home from lunch, the snow plow had been by and left a mountain of snow across the end of the driveway. Attila cleared it before he went back to work, so he can get the car into the driveway when he gets home tonight.

It is February, January has flown, and in seven weeks the Spring Equinox will arrive and thoughts of spring can be safely entertained.

The last few days have been a lot of fun, talking about music with a friend, talking with family via Skype and telephone. FaceBook, well I intrinsically hate the essence of the technology, object to it on so many levels, but what can you do when the world has decided to replace face-to-face contact with a digital images. I still prefer human contact, always will. This kind of distance communication puts me in mind of the ca 1821 letter my GGG Grandfather in Canada wrote home to his sister in Scotland. The likelihood of their seeing one another again was small, but the contact was real and warm, the page and ink touched by both hands, read by both eyes. Digital communication isn’t quite so concrete, no mutual touching at all. However, there are images and the interaction can be ongoing in real time, so perhaps that compensates for the lack of concrete sharing.

This fellow, Ron Sexsmith, is a wonder to watch live. I was addicted to this song for a few months, love it.

Worldly Distractions


-12 °C
Condition: Snow
Pressure: 101.2 kPa
Visibility: 1 km
Temperature: -12.0°C
Dewpoint: -13.5°C
Humidity: 89 %
Wind: ENE 17 gust 31 km/h
Wind Chill: -20


“Life is a battle in which we fall from wounds we receive in running away.”
William L. Sullivan

“Never ask a cactus for a helping hand!”
By Bobbe L. Sommer