Good News

Mid-May I noticed a red patch on my right hand. I thought perhaps it was a bite of some kind, it was about 1/3 inch in diameter. Weeks later I suddenly realized it hadn’t gone away, or gotten any smaller. I didn’t know what it was, and I remembered that “wounds” that do not heal should be investigated, so I took myself into the emergency ward, the ONLY available form of health care near the little house in the city, where I do not have a family doctor. The doctor at the hospital said it didn’t look serious, but decided to take a biopsy nevertheless, just to be certain.

I have been waiting to hear the results of the biopsy since the first week in June, which were to eventually be sent to my GP near the country house. It just so happened that I chose to call about the results when my GP was away on vacation, so I have been waiting for his return. I have been concerned that I would forget to follow up on this, as you never really know if these things are serious, or nothing. Last night the doctor’s office called while we were hanging out in the screened in porch, and left a message because we couldn’t make it up the stairs in time to answer the telephone. The person who called suggested I call the doctor’s office in the morning, and let me know that it was not urgent, which I appreciated very much.

This morning I called the doctor’s office and received official notice that all is well, there is no malignancy. As it turned out the information was never sent to my GP, they had to track it down through the other hospital system. It is grand news however long it took to get here, and even though I expected that there would be no malignancy, I find myself very relieved to hear it.

Our Kenmore front loading washing machine, which we bought from Sears, continues to stink. This is a known issue with this machine, it is poorly designed. I would never buy a front loading washing machine again, and I will never buy another appliance, or anything else, from Sears. Last night I did an empty load using baking powder and vinegar, which reduced the horrid smell, but did not eliminate it. I will continue to do the baking soda/vinegar wash every few days, to try and keep the odour under control. We talked about buying a new washer/dryer set, or even just a new washing machine, but cannot afford it, so we will just keep on battling the smell.

I have gained a new skill. I can now fall asleep at the drop of a hat! This morning I drifted off while typing on the computer, with a partially consumed cup of coffee sitting beside me. I fall asleep while Attila is talking, while reading, while lying on the couch resting my wounded behind, while typing on the computer. I even fell asleep while reading the weather report, before copying and pasting it into this entry. This is new, and so far I am finding it quite pleasurable. It is probably just the Tylenol 3s, so I am enjoying it while I can, as today I will be taking the last of the medication.

Since I returned to the country house Attila has been taking his lunch breaks, rather than working through them. He really does need to do this, to take that break from the frenzied pace of his job. He is so fortunate that he can drive home for lunch, as we live quite near where he works. Sometimes he even has a “power nap” while he is here for lunch. I do enjoy having contact with him during the day. We are not “cell phone” people, in that we do not communicate by cell phone or texting when we are apart, barring emergency situations, so Attila’s lunch breaks are a great way for us to touch base. Also, while I am here for the summer, Attila will not be working at his second part-time job during the evenings, which is great.

I had better get this entry posted before I fall asleep again! 🙂

Worldly Distractions


Date: 8:00 AM EDT Tuesday 7 July 2015
Condition: Mostly Cloudy
Pressure: 101.0 kPa
Visibility: 16 km
Temperature: 19.7°C
Dewpoint: 16.8°C
Humidity: 83%
Wind: SSE 15 km/h


“To resist the frigidity of old age one must combine the body, the mind and the heart – and to keep them in parallel vigour one must exercise, study and love.”
Karl von Bonstetten
1745 – 1832


Tuesday a.m.

This morning I am sitting in sunbeams. I can close my eyes and feel the light; how glorious it is. Having the blinds open comes with a price this morning though, as it is -25C on the other side of the glass and the room is noticeably and quickly cooling. It is worth bundling up for though, to have sunbeams playing on my face. Sunshine is rare this winter, and it comes at a high price, cold snaps.

Attila heard the trees snapping in the deep freeze last night. I had already turned in for the night, and he stayed up to wait for, then dampen, the spent fire.

This winter is either colder than last, or my aging body has reached some sort of threshold. At night my shoulders can get uncomfortably cold, this is new. Also, the back of my head can get cold, again something new. I think I will consider a night cap, and fold down the comforter to double thickness, before I tuck it in around my shoulders at night. It is quite cold in the bedroom, and I sleep near the north wall, so during the coldest of nights, -30C and below, that area gets cold, but is still above freezing. We are experiencing our second, or is it our third, serious cold snap.

Eventually I may consider abandoning the bedrooms in the winter, and setup a sleeping arrangement near the masonry heater; I am not there yet though.

There are electric heaters in the house, but they are extremely expensive to use, and beyond our financial means as a source of heat, except for special occasions, like a few days at Christmas. The cost of hydro has doubled since we moved here, our income is lower.

Were I to design a house for this climate, it would have a central core of plumbing and heating, well away from exterior walls. The exterior doors would not open under the drip line of the roof. “Summer rooms” would surround the periphery of the floor plan, rooms to close down during the winter heating months. There are no houses designed in this way, although there may be a few architect designed seasonal homes that come close, built for the elite who really do not need to concern themselves with the cost of heating. Conventional floor plans, the ones used by builders for almost all of the housing in Canada, fail to adapt to local conditions in significant ways.

I would love to design a home adapted to the climate here!

Attila’s Mom just arrived home from a trip to the Southern USA. What a shock the weather had in store for her, back at home in Northern Michigan. She had a lovely trip by all accounts, visiting with her older sister, nieces, grandnephews and grandnieces. She and her sister both celebrate birthdays in the early part of January, so they were able to celebrate together this year. Terra shares the same birthday as Attila’s Mom, and Terra turned 30! Lares treated her to a weekend away at the same place they spent their honeymoon. Luna and Janus went along to share in the fun. They had a great time, by all accounts.

My winter trips to warmer climes involve moving my chair closer to the masonry heater, LOL!

Terra’s new puppy is called Maci. I can hear her yipping and jumping and playing in the background when we talk on the phone. I even got to see her when Terra and I spoke on Facetime.

Tuesday p.m.

Since the sun was shining and the roads were good today, Attila took three hours off work, left early, picked me up, and drove to the lab for his blood test. We hit the high spots, the grocery store and Home Depot, buying a few supplies and an extension cord. Things are tight right now, because all the Christmas bills are paid, including the extra heating bills, and that has emptied the coffers. We can’t complain about that, but we can’t spend much money either.

Our coffee machine, ordered from Sears using points, finally arrived at the Sears outlet. We picked it up during our excursion to the lab, which saved us an extra trip. Tomorrow morning it will be put the test!

Worldly Distractions


-28°C: Low -32C
Date: 6:00 AM EST Tuesday 21 January 2014
Condition: Mostly Cloudy
Pressure: 102.2 kPa
Visibility: 16 km
Temperature: -28.4°C
Dewpoint: -31.2°C
Humidity: 77%
Wind: NW 4 km/h
Wind Chill: -33 rising to Wind chill -40C


“It is by universal misunderstanding that all agree. For if, by ill luck, people understood each other, they would never agree.”
Charles Baudelaire
1821 – 1867