The Web

The network of human interaction has been altered. It has been altered by the species itself.

There was a day, not so long ago, when humans formed healthy communities, communities that sustained all but a few.

Technology is fast altering human connections to other humans. We are teaching our babies and children to talk to machines that mimic human responses. Our species has successfully anthropomorphized devices.

It has yet to be seen how this will affect the future of the species.

I miss shelling garden peas and talking with my Granny on the porch.



Date: 6:45 AM EST Wednesday 9 January 2019
Condition: Light Rain and Snow
Pressure: 100.1 kPa
Tendency: Rising
Temperature: 0.8°C
Dew point: 0.8°C
Humidity: 100%
Wind: WNW 12 km/h
Visibility: 13 km


“Walking is man’s best medicine.”
460 BC – 377 BC


Monday, January 7, 2019

It was cold last night with a -23C wind chill. I didn’t notice, for which I am truly grateful. I did add an extra comforter on the the bed though, and spent the night quite comfortably; it was needed, or I would have been too hot. Tomorrow we are expecting rain. Weather has a logic of its own.

Attila worked in the garage until bedtime last night. Now that his projects are not dominated by a deadline, he enthusiastically works away until the goal is reached. He finished his new workbench, using only wood that had been collected free of charge, or purchased at incredibly low prices when he worked in the lumber industry. The new work bench has a lot of storage, so once he organizes his tools and such, I should be able to find anything I need to tackle the small projects that interest me. What I will notice most though, is how bare the basement will feel when he moves his tools and building supplies out into the garage!

Tuesday, January 8, 2019

It is much warmer today. Freezing rain fell over the course of the night and collected in a thick sheet over all, but melted quickly so that the roads were passable by morning. The sky is cloudy and grey, grey, grey, so very grey!

Today I am thinking about my least favourite things. Here are three, prioritized. I think everyone’s list will be different, and I think mine is a fairly lucky list!

1. Mean spirited expression of any kind. I feel either disgusted or ill, or both, when I have to witness this. I think most people have these thoughts or feelings from time to time, and acting on them is optional, a choice. Our species is capable of toilet training, so restraint is something we are capable of, there is precedent.

2. Medical Treatment Involving anything injected of ingested, as per my anaphylaxis. A constant threat.

3. Colonoscopy Preparation. What misery. I have had many different preparations for a colonoscopy. The one below has been the best so far, directly quoted. Because the test only comes up every five years, and I won’t be able to find the instruction sheet five years from now, I just know it, I am putting this in my journal so I can find it when I REALLY need it! I will get new instructions of course, but I’ve tried a lot of different preps, and this one did not hospitalize me, cause back spasms, or result in severe dehydration. It is hands down the best successful colonoscopy prep procuedure I’ve tried. Some preps are easier on the body than others, this one is the most humane I’ve tried.

Skip the next bit if it is too much detail.


Because the colonoscopy preparation has been such an ordeal for my body, I decided to try a special diet for the week before the examination. This was hugely beneficial for me, but might not be for someone else. I stuck to:

White bread, pasta, and rice.

Well-cooked vegetables without skin.

Fruit without skin or seeds.

Lean meat, chicken, or fish.


Peanut Butter.


“Bowel Preparation:

1 box PICO-SALAX: the box contains 2 packets. you will need to take both of them as instructed below. Do NOT follow the instructions on the PICO-SALAX insert.
[Note: I used PURG-ODAN, an identical product for half the price. 2 sachets each containing 16.1 g of powder with three active ingredients: sodium picosulfate 10 mg, magnesium oxide 3.5 g, and citric acid 12 g. Also each sachet contains non-medicinal ingredients: orange flavour, potassium bicarbonate, and sodium saccharin.]

Bowel Preparation Instructions:

A. Three days and Two Days before the Examination:
– at 5:00 p.m. take 2 DULCOLAX tablets (5 mg. each) with water, each evening.

B. On the day before the Examination:
– Diet for this day is restricted to CLEAR LIQUIDS ONLY for the ENTIRE DAY. No solids to be taken. Clear liquids can include Apple Juice, jell-o, chicken broth, Gatorade/Powerade (clear), Popsicles, water, ice, black tea or coffee, decaffeinated pop, etc. NO MILK PRODUCTS or other liquid that you cannot see through.
[Note: no red, pink, or purple coloured liquids.]

Again, do not follow the instructions on the PICO-SALAX insert. Instead:

At 11:00 a.m.: take the 1st packet of PICO-SALAX. Mix it in a 5 ounce (150 ml) mug of cold water. Stir while drinking to ensure all of the laxative has dissolved. Drink at least one glass of water each hour over the next three hours. Take extra clear fluids if desired. The laxative will produce 2-6 watery bowel movements.
[Note: I found this to be accurate, three, the first one hour after drinking the potion. This is important because from this point forward one must be steps away from the throne, time is of the essence. I drank one extra cup of water and 590 ml Gatorade.]

At 3:00 p.m.: take the 2nd packet of PICO-SALAX. Mix in a 5 ounce (150 ml) mug of cold water, again stirring while drinking. Continue to drink at least a glass of water each over the next three hours. Take extra clear fluids if desires. There be further watery bowel movements.
[Note: The last statement is an understatement. This is where the real show begins! 30 minutes after drinking, things got going, and continued with some frequency, 12 times in my case, spanning six hours. Drinking the directed amount of water is essential, but extra will result in more frequent and violent episodes, I drank approximately two extra cup of water and 300 ml Gatorade.]

After midnight: take nothing by mouth. DO NOT EAT OR DRINK AFTER MIDNIGHT.

DAY OF THE TEST: Important Information.

No breakfast. No solids or liquids: 2 – 4 ounces of water only is desired. Take medication only as directed by physician.

EXAMINATION: …After the examination, drink lots of fluids and resume your normal diet.
[Note: the medical person advised easing back into a normal diet, slowly, particularly with greasy foods.]

Addendum: Why isn’t there a Joe’s Gentle Enema Service near every hospital!



Date: 10:00 AM EST Monday 7 January 2019
Condition: Not observed
Pressure: 103.5 kPa
Tendency: Falling
Temperature: -11.6°C
Dew point: -16.0°C
Humidity: 70%
Wind: ENE 18 km/h
Wind Chill: -1

Date: 1:00 PM EST Tuesday 8 January 2019
Condition: Mostly Cloudy
Pressure: 100.7 kPa
Tendency: Falling
Temperature: 3.1°C
Dew point: 2.5°C
Humidity: 96%
Wind: SSE 16 km/h
Visibility: 19 km


“I don’t think anyone can DO anything that would make him worthy of love. Love is a gift and cannot be earned. It can only be given.”
Gordon Atkinson

Cold Season

The headache I have is not just from landing face first and skidding across the concrete floor on my face. I have a head cold. Misery loves company. Where my mind goes with this juxtaposition of complaints, is that I might as well have both at the same time, get it over quicker. And in spite of it all, I can still keep motoring along doing what I usually do, just not quite as comfortably.

I am now sporting a real “shiner” of a black eye.

Yesterday the weather was mild and dreary. Most of the snow has melted from our yard. Today is sunny, and the damp cold wind is takes your breath away. Attila and I did our weekly shopping this morning, and found walking from the vehicle to the store, and then back, a chilling experience.

Where we shop for food is a discount store. It used to share a parking lot only with a few small stores, and a beer store. The parking lot had vehicle-eating potholes, which we learned to recognize, even under newly fallen snow. Then a fitness centre and another discount store moved into the complex. The parking lot was repaired, repaved, and repainted. Now the formerly sparsely used parking lot is teaming with activity, every day of the week. It used to only be busy the day after the government cheques were issued. Things are always changing.

After the shopping excursion I did my share of the putting-things-away, then poured myself a cold beverage and sat down on my easy chair to rest a bit. That is when this entry got started.

Attila is working away in the dry garage. After finishing the wiring, he has dismantled the work bench, that was in the garage when we bought Mist Cottage, and is rebuilding it to his specifications, adding storage shelves below. Since this project has no deadline, he is enjoying himself.

I am enjoying an uneventful, peaceful day!



Date: 1:00 PM EST Sunday 6 January 2019
Condition: Mostly Cloudy
Pressure: 102.1 kPa
Tendency: Rising
Temperature: -2.2°C
Dew point: -8.7°C
Humidity: 62%
Wind: NNW 20 gust 37 km/h
Wind Chill: -8
Visibility: 24 km


“They sicken of the calm, who knew the storm.””
Dorothy Parker
1893 – 1967

I find I read this differently at this point in my life.
I previously thought of the calm as a healthy peace, as it can be. But I have since learned, through my experience with rigid social engineers, that the calm is not always healthy. The calm can be enforced, blunting thought and passion. This is a new understanding of calm for me, one I had not seriously considered in my youthful inexperience.
I previously thought of the storm as a single, disruptive, and sometimes dangerous, event. In my mature years I see the storm as part of a system, not a single event. Knowing the storm involves knowing all the components of the storm, including the before and after, the short-term and long-term consequences, and necessity of the release of energy too long confined.
Ms. Parker’s phrase has become fluid and active for me.

A Little Rumpled But Fine

I am a little rumpled from my fall yesterday. My eye is swollen, a bit black and blue, and the cuts have prominent scabs, but I can still see properly. I have some stiffness in my neck, left wrist, and back, but I am getting around without pain. I have a headache, but no fatigue, blurred vision, nausea, vomiting, or any other alarming symptom. I certainly have not lost my appetite. I continue to watch myself carefully though, and will for a week or two, just to make sure all is well.

My scratched glasses can’t be repaired without cost, they were purchased at Costco, who only cover the coating. So I am going to try and purchase my next pair from a business that has a warranty on the glasses, lens, frame, and coating. I dug out my old pair of glasses and they will do me until I am eligible for a new pair of glasses. My prescription hasn’t changed for over 15 years.

The documents that I forgot yesterday were obtained, and this morning another visit to the office got the job done. No one seemed to notice my face looking a little battered. That might have been good manners, I always appreciate good manners.

Another cloudy day out there, but the temperature is above freezing. Any remnants of snow on the driveway have melted away. The stiff breeze is helping to melt the snow off the roof of the house and garage. On days like this is nice to be dry and warm in Mist Cottage.

In the spirit of taking it easy, I had a lovely long nap this afternoon. Naps are a charming pastime, and the opportunity to take naps is a wonderful luxury. Attila likes to nap after arriving home from work, segwaying smoothly into the peace and comfort of home. I usually begin dinner preparations after he goes to lie down, and the Instant Pot usually has dinner ready by the time he wakes up.

So, just another day in the life here at Mist Cottage. I am grateful for every peaceful day that comes my way!



Date: 12:00 PM EST Friday 4 January 2019
Condition: Mostly Cloudy
Pressure: 100.8 kPa
Tendency: Falling
Temperature: 3.1°C
Dew point: 0.7°C
Humidity: 84%
Wind: SW 26 gust 36 km/h
Visibility: 19 km


“In politics, absurdity is not a handicap.”
Napoleon Bonaparte
1769 – 1821

Sometimes I think every toddler should be taught this, so it will be a given in life, so that there will be no moral outrage when the the man behind the curtain is exposed.

Slow Motion

It snowed last night. When Attila left for work this morning, only a few inches of snow covered the end of the driveway. When I attempted to get out of the driveway, a few hours later, the plow had gone by and there was a two foot high, packed, snow bank at the end of the driveway.

It took me forty five minutes to clean the snow off Tank, and to shovel the driveway. I didn’t feel particularly tired, as I had not rushed through it, having only half loaded the snow shovel before lifting it to throw the snow to the side of the drive.

I got Tank out and did my errand. The errand did not go well, I had forgotten documents that were needed. I will say the clerk was amazing, patient, and she managed to find workarounds for some of the stuff, so that I didn’t have to go home again to look for documents. I will have to return again to complete the process though, with the proper documents.

When I arrived back home I decided to clear the snow off Iris the trailer, and shovel the rest of the driveway. That took another forty five minutes, lots of shoveling around tires and fiddly bits.

Back in the house, it was time to consider food. I decided on squash for dinner, and so needed to fetch some from the freezer in the basement. After getting down the stairs, my right foot dragged and caught a small rug on the floor. Down I went.

I experienced this fall in slow motion, falling to my bad knee before falling further, and skidding along the concrete floor on my face. My glasses took part of the impact, they went flying. I thought the fall was complete when I hit my knee, and was extremely surprised that my body just kept going, and was almost amused, but not quite, that I slid along on my face.

For a few moments I stayed down, taking in what had happened. Then I attempted to get up. After trying to brush the hair out of my eyes with my left hand, I reached for balance on the cooler, full of winter squash, that sat near me. My hand slid. My first thought was that the squash were going bad and were slimy. When I got to my feet something was dripping from my face, I was bleeding, my left hand was covered with blood.

I retrieved my glasses, put them on, walked over the freezer, leaving a trail of bloody drips, fetched my squash, and headed up the stairs.

After setting the squash on the counter, I got a paper towel from the rack and staunched the wound on my face. I am pretty scratched up just above my right eye and down a bit on the right side of my face. I put ice on it, and am hoping it doesn’t swell. It looks like it might go black and blue.

The right lens of my glasses are badly scratched, but I can still see out of them. It is another year before the health plan will fund a new pair of glasses, so I will be reminded of this fall for a while!

My knee is badly bruised, and “skinned”. At this point the only pain is from the “skinned” area of the knee. It seems to be functioning just fine.

I have applied hydrogen peroxide to all open wounds, and a bandage to my knee.

I guess I was more physically tired after snow shoveling than I realized.

This getting old stuff takes a little getting used to. If I don’t pay attention to it, it will pay attention to me.

I won’t be taking a nap today.



Date: 12:00 PM EST Thursday 3 January 2019
Condition: Mostly Cloudy
Pressure: 101.4 kPa
Tendency: Falling
Temperature: -2.2°C
Dew point: -4.6°C
Humidity: 84%
Wind: WSW 9 km/h
Wind Chill: -6
Visibility: 24 km


“The pride of youth is in strength and beauty, the pride of old age is in discretion.”
460 BC – 370 BC