Day Six: Cloud and Rain and Wind

Thursday, September 14, 2017

Crazy! On my way out the door this evening, as Attila and I were heading out to visit the grocery store, I noticed a hole in the soffit of the house. The hole is where the Grackles have been trying to get in, and I did hear the attempts to get back into the roof overhang, all summer long. But, get this, it wasn’t a Grackle that made the hole in our soffit, it was a small black and white woodpecker!

Tonight Attila got out his very tall ladder and took some spray insulation to spray into the hole. As he climbed and approached the opening out flew the black and white woodpecker. The spray insulation is not going to keep that bird out of our roof, oh no. It is time for another metal patch. That corner of the house attracts house hunters of all kinds!

Eventually we would like to put metal siding, roofing, soffit, and facia on the this little house. It has the original siding, soffit and facia, which are deteriorating rapidly now due to old age and past incursions from wildlife. Mist Cottage is livable, even comfortable, but we are still fighting off the local wildlife for control of the building!

Attila caught two mice in traps in the garage, in the last two days. They are coming in now, looking for a place to winter. We will have to keep a close eye on Grace The Trailer and Iris The Trailer, to catch any incursions.

Attila and I were just discussing our grocery bill. Our recent food bills average at $105 a week. Attila loves numbers and arithmetic, and if I follow along with my calculator, everything he calculates in his brain, he is always correct in his calculations. So I leave all calculations to him, he enjoys it, I don’t have to enter the numbers myself, he is always right, and he is a lot nicer to look at than a calculator. So when Attila says we spend $105 a week on food, on average, I know the number is reliable.

After announcing that we spend about $105 a week on food, I got to thinking about people who buy coffee every morning, for about $2.50 a cup, at the drive through. Lets see, that would be $5.00 every morning if Attila and I each had a coffee from the coffee shop. That would be seven days a week, at $5.00 a day, which would add up to $35 a week for coffee. Just one coffee each per day though, no second cups involved. A coffee each would cost a third of our food budget. It boggles my mind that people spend so much of their hard earned money on things like coffee shop coffee. We have had a Tim Horton’s gift card worth $10 sitting on the shelf for the last three years, and have yet to buy a cup of coffee with it.

Thursday, September 7, 2017

Sometimes the weather in early September is warm and sunny. Not this year. It was sunny the first day of the vacation, last Saturday, a perfect day. The rain clouds blew in overnight, and the sun has not made an appearance for more than a few hours ever since. However, late into the night, on several nights, the sky has been perfectly clear and the moonlight bright as day. We are sleeping at that time, but one night the moonlight was so bright shining down on me through the window that it woke me up. Again last night Attila said that when he went outside to use the facilities, the sky was clear, and the moonlight was as bright as day. The sun even shone for about an hour this morning, there was high hope that at last a bright sunny day would grace our vacation. But alas, by mid morning the wind began to roar, the rain to pelt down in sheets, and the thunder to pound loudly around the Camp. The awning was in danger again, so out we went into the storm to take it down and secure it to the side of Grace The Trailer.

So far during the vacation we have had one sunny day, two days of continuous rain, and three days of heavy cloud cover. Is this related to Hurricane Harvey, one has to wonder.

The visit to the Middleville Museum the other day was interesting. My time there was spent with the resident genealogist, who was very helpful. Attila spent his time at the museum viewing all the displays, which were very impressive. One of the things we were given was a pamphlet created for the 150th anniversary of Canada’s Confederation, listing all the families that were in and around the village in the year 1867. My ancestors are listed on their respective farms. Since the visit I have undertaken to transcribe the contents of the pamphlet, all 19 pages of it. I am enjoying finding out what families comprised the community where my ancestors spent their lives. In 1867 communities were more firmly based on contiguity, and survival. People who lived near each other not only knew each other, they depended on each other in ways we do not in this urbanized society we presently exist in. Social skills were much more developed than they are today.

Yesterday, another cloudy day here at the Rideau Camp, Attila and I headed into one of the local villages for a few supplies. Our water supply is almost depleted, there are no public water taps near the Camp to refill them, so we purchased a big container of water at the grocery store. It is a nice little store, and the staff are genuinely friendly and helpful even though we were clearly not living in the village. This basic friendliness is very refreshing to encounter, and will mean that in future we will do most of our local purchasing at the little store. The prices there, although a little higher than the in the grocery store near Mist Cottage, are quite reasonable.

In contrast, we will be avoiding the local “market” which sells artisanal foods, all relatively local, and very, very, very expensive. That is where I bought a 1 kg bag of flour for $8.00, not a price the average Canadian can afford. Thank goodness we have “local” beans, tomatoes, and garlic from our own garden at Mist Cottage, and that I buy things like flour in bulk directly from the mill!

Later in the afternoon today, well towards the end of the day, the sun emerged from behind the clouds. What a welcome sight! I will admit that the constant grey of the sky, and the relentless showers, were getting me down a bit.

It is interesting that the mosquitoes are quite bad right now. They are a small variety of mosquito, silent and effective. We have both been bitten numerous times, despite our precautions, always on the face or hands. I don’t react, and to be honest, if it weren’t for West Nile Disease I wouldn’t give them a thought. But they are dangerous, and so their presence is intrusive. Mosquitoes are not usually so prolific this late in the summer, but this is a very wet year, so I guess they are expanding their predations accordingly.

Attila is progressing with his project, to spread the crushed stone across the area where we intend to place Grace The Trailer. He is enjoying himself, and part of the reason is that the transformation of the clearing is so obvious, every deposit of of crushed stone expands our easy walking area. It is now very easy to drive Tank right into the clearing and to turn Tank around to drive out again.

The neighbour is very loud this morning, chopping own trees, probably for firewood.

Worldly Distractions


Thursday, September 7, 2017

This morning began with blue skies and sunshine, then suddenly deteriorated into high winds, pelting rain, a big drop in temperature, and thunder. At noon, the sky was a solid sheet of steel grey, the wind died, and it had stopped raining, at least for the moment. Late in the afternoon the clouds cleared and the sun shone, as it sank below the horizon. The temperature is dropping, it is going to be a cold night.

Date: 6:00 PM EDT Thursday 14 September 2017
Condition: Partly Cloudy
Pressure: 101.1 kPa
Tendency: Falling
Temperature: 22.1°C
Dew point: 16.9°C
Humidity: 72%
Wind: S 10 km/h
Humidex: 27
Visibility: 24 km


“The only way not to think about money is to have a great deal of it.”
Edith Wharton
1862 – 1937

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Bex Crowell

I think Edith Wharton is spot on. When we “have” money, I never think about it. When we don’t, it’s always on my mind. Funny things, we humans are.

Money, the love of which is the root of all evil, but the having of which is so essential!

And, as Floridians are finding out and finally acknowledging, it’s no fun living there when the air-conditioning goes off. All the newsies are commenting on it on the telly… how HOT it is. Well, duh! I went to Florida once to help my mother when she got cancer, and when I stepped out the front doors of the Fort Myers Airport, into the Florida sun, I could not believe my senses! My aunt, who had picked me up there, drove me to my Mom’s house, and I just looked at her at that moment and said “Who can live in this sauna bath?” She said “Oh, we love it.” —- I wonder how she’s loving it right now with no power and no AC? That is one place I will never (I hope) ever visit again! Give me crazy old New England any day!


Oh ugh, with the grackles and woodpeckers. I hope that they won’t cause you anymore problems. Was Mist Cottage abandoned for a time when you and Attila bought it? The wildlife certainly seems to think it’s theirs. 🙁

Regarding food, I noticed about a week ago that will now be selling food in Canada at (supposedly) competitive prices and with quick shipping. Since you have Amazon Prime, that might be to your benefit when it comes to things like special flours.