What I have in common with trees.

View from the kitchen this morning.

View from the kitchen this morning.

The sun was supposed to shine this morning, but it hasn’t shown up; there are hints in the distance that those shafts from heaven may strike us yet. White horizontal lines underlined in black mediate the the thick determined tree trunks, as they reach out in hope towards the return of light. Their luck is ours; we have a lot in common with trees.

This morning Attila and I are tidying the place. The dishes are almost done, the laundry drying on the racks in the living room overnight has been neatly folded and placed in drawers and hung on hangers; soon we will enjoy a quick breakfast before moving on to bread baking, income tax preparations and wood chopping. A day of quiet domestic occupations, in a world hushed behind a veil of white.

The imagination and costumes are a great way inspire enthusiasm. So I’ve found a “bread baking cape” which isn’t a cape at all, but an apron. I am more inspired by a cape than an apron though, so in my mind it has become a cape. Its my fantasy and I’ll do what I want to. Colour is good, in this black and white world of March, so today I’ll don my “bread baking cape” as I set out to mix and knead and bake.

Bread Baking Cape: to be worn backwards

Worldly Distractions

Weather

-10 °C
Condition: Mainly Sunny
Pressure: 102.4 kPa
Visibility: 16 km
Temperature: -10.0°C
Dewpoint: -11.9°C
Humidity: 86 %
Wind: N 13 km/h
Wind Chill: -1

Quote 

The Cape
Songwriters: Clark, Susanna; Janosky, Jim; Clark, Guy;

Eight years old with flour sack cape
Tied all around his neck
He climbed up on the garage
Figurin’ what the heck
He screwed his courage up so tight
The whole thing come unwound
He got a runnin’ start and bless his heart
He headed for the ground

He’s one of those who knows that life
Is just a leap of faith
Spread your arms and hold you breath
Always trust your cape

All grown up with a flour sack cape
Tied all around his dream
He’s full of piss and vinegar
He’s bustin’ at the seams
He licked his finger and checked the wind
It’s gonna be do or die
He wasn’t scared of nothin’, Boys
He was pretty sure he could fly

Old and grey with a flour sack cape
Tied all around his head
He’s still jumpin’ off the garage
And will be till he’s dead
All these years the people said
He’s actin’ like a kid
He did not know he could not fly
So he did

Happy Endless Winter

Caitrìona arrived home from Florida on Thursday afternoon about 4:30 p.m. She left Florida on Wednesday morning, drove all the way to southern Ontario by herself. She arrived home, did a few little things and headed out the door to play bridge. What a gal!

Snow since this morning.

Snow since this morning.

The roads here have been bad the last few days. I worked this morning and at one point on the drive, the car was sliding sideways off the road. Managed to keep it true though, and soldiered on. By the time I headed for home the roads were wet, but not slippery. Since arriving home we have received around two inches of snow. It is sticking to everything!

The Internet connection conked out last night, and still wasn’t working this morning. A quick call to Rogers and the fellow did something mystical and it was suddenly working. I suspect that since we have been viewing Netflix our usage has increased significantly, and that they throttled the account, requiring a call in to get it “fixed”. Could be wrong though, maybe it was just all our lovely snow that brought the Internet down. I’ll never know.

If winter won’t go away, then we will just have to start the whole thing over again. So, Attila prepared a full course turkey dinner to mark the endless winter. Turkey, dressing, mashed potatoes, peas, squash and sweet potato. Then there are the leftovers. Happy endless winter!

It was laundry day today, and the racks of drying clothes are adding much needed humidity. The bills are paid (and we caught up!). The filing is done. The bit of legal paperwork on my desk has been brought up to date and awaits signatures before it is submitted.

And it is still snowing.

Worldly Distractions

Weather

-1 °C
Condition: Snow
Pressure: 101.4 kPa
Visibility: 1 km
Temperature: -0.5°C
Dewpoint: -0.6°C
Humidity: 99 %
Wind: NNE 13 km/h
Wind Chill: -5

Quote 

“I’m not afraid of facts, I welcome facts but a congeries of facts is not equivalent to an idea. This is the essential fallacy of the so-called “scientific” mind. People who mistake facts for ideas are incomplete thinkers; they are gossips.”
Cynthia Ozick
1928-

Go Away Winter

Go away winter.

Never mind the ink not flowing in the pens this morning, my fingers won’t move. I have to type everything in at least twice because my numb old fingers can’t find the right keys. Will this winter ever end! Homeless people are going to heaven for surviving this without any kind of shelter. God help them.

I’m warming my cloths by the fireplace this morning, they should reach the toasty temperature of 14C beside the heater, if I’m lucky, before I have to put them on. I wanted to take a shower this morning, but it is just too cold in here to contemplate disrobing entirely and becoming wet. Today things are supposed to warm up out there, and by tonight the house may be warmer and more comfortable. I’ll have my shower tomorrow morning regardless of the indoor temperature, by that time getting clean again won’t really be optional if I want to go to work presentably.

This week is due to be very cold, it will be a week to put behind us with pleasure.

Here is someone I hadn’t heard of, but for the last episode of Northern Exposure. Once I had heard this song I had to find out more about it.

Worldly Distractions

Weather

-26 °C
Condition: Sunny
Pressure: 103.9 kPa
Visibility: 16 km
Temperature: -26.0°C
Dewpoint: -28.5°C
Humidity: 80 %
Wind: calm

Quote

“Adversities such as being homeless and going to prison has made many people stronger.”
Philip Emeagwali

(If you want a glimpse into what academic infighting can involve, read this http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Talk:Philip_Emeagwali . I admit I didn’t read through the whole thing, couldn’t make myself do it. “Fiddling while Rome burns” comes to mind, buy hey, who am I.)

Indecisive Lion

Morning Installment

Another working morning, thank goodness. This afternoon’s schedule includes a visit to the doctor for a prescription renewal and a wee bit of shopping; driving an hour there and an hour back at highways speeds.

This morning I awoke to the roar of high winds, then it started to snow. The mercury is dropping and will bottom out at -21 tonight, or so they say. I believe it. Then it heads back up to above freezing by Friday. March is definitely coming in like a lion, quite an indecisive lion.

Second Installment

The visit to the doctor proceeded as expected, a few blood tests and good news all round. I’ve managed to reduce the dosage of both my medications and to maintain the level of benefit from them, not bad at all. My goal is to eventually eliminate the medications and maintain the level of benefit; a worthy goal, we shall see.

It is cold out there tonight. Attila burned a fire in the little wood stove downstairs to keep the pipes from freezing tonight. This is one of those nights when warm in our bed, we will sleep deeply and sweetly.

A recent musical discovery on my part, I didn’t know what I was missing,

Worldly Distractions

Weather

-10 °C
Condition: Snow
Pressure: 102.0 kPa
Visibility: 2 km
Temperature: -10.0°C
Dewpoint: -12.5°C
Humidity: 82 %
Wind: NNW 42 gust 54 km/h
Wind Chill: -21

Quote 

“People demand freedom of speech as a compensation for the freedom of thought which they seldom use.”
Soren Kierkegaard
1813 – 1855

March by Installment

Morning Installment

The distant sky is pink with first light. Attila is making a lot of noise outside, with the snowblower, for which i am very grateful. Last night he removed the snow from my car, before we retired to our bed, so that this morning’s preparations for work will be minimized.

It is the first day of March, we made it through the dark days of winter. At -19C this morning, winter is not over yet, but we can dream of spring now, it won’t be more than a matter of weeks before the snow will begin to retreat. Tomorrow night the temperature is to fall to -23C. This week will be one of struggling to maintain a reasonable temperature in the house. This morning it is 14C in the warmest part of the house, temperature falling quickly as one moves away from the masonry heater. We look forward to warmer days.

I am heading out the door early this morning, because when it is this cold it takes time for the frost on the interior of the windows to melt/evaporate/sublimate or whatever is happening there, to allow one to see through the glass. Attila and I will arrive home for lunch at approximately the same time. Coming home for lunch is a luxury. When I lived on a farm we always came home for lunch when working, it was a short walk up the lane from the fields. Progress has changed all that; there is usually quite a schism between home and work.

Second Installment

Where I work there is seldom good news. Today another piece of unpleasantness came down the pipes. I took the job that was offered with their promise of “opportunity for advancement”, only to find that other’s had worked for up to fifteen years before being offered part time hours, that is 18 hours a week or less. They ask me to remain on six day a week call, offer me no regularly scheduled hours, no benefits, no pension, no mileage when asked to work miles and miles away…

Those with part time and full time jobs at the corporation have always been less than sympathetic, they said, “we went through it now its your turn”. Well they were wrong. It is not my turn, and it never will be my turn. The corporation is changing the deal for the on call people, on call people won’t make the same wages as the people they fill in for, their wages have been slashed… I should say my wages have been slashed. Same job, same responsibilities, less security, no benefits… So, all that working hard and giving it my all has only resulted in slashed wages, not really the “opportunity for advancement” the corporation advertised. Of course the current full time and part time staff are still well looked after, but their numbers will eventually diminish to nothing as their privileged positions die off by attrition.

Well, that is enough about that. I can’t change it, so I’m going to ignore it as long as I can.

Attila and I are still enjoying Netflix. Because we don’t go out to movies, or have movie channels on television, we haven’t viewed current movies for several decades. So all those old movies, well, they are brand spanking new to us. We have seen some excellent films, including Elizabeth, The Last Emperor, Elling, Evelyn, Slumdog Millionaire and more. We have yet to receive a high speed Internet billing since we began the service though, that bill might just taint the experience. We will have to wait and see.

Worldly Distractions

Weather

-19 °C
Condition: Clear
Pressure: 102.6 kPa
Visibility: 16 km
Temperature: -19.0°C
Dewpoint: -20.5°C
Humidity: 88 %
Wind: SE 4 km/h
Wind Chill: -22

Quote 

“Those who speak most of progress measure it by quantity and not by quality.”
George Santayana
1863 – 1952