It’s springtime in Canada…

 

Currently, it’s 55F (13C), going down to 43 (8C) tonight. Ugh!

Since I returned from the South (where it is 79F today) we’ve only had one day of spring-like temperatures. It’s so depressing you’d think the government had gotten ahold of the weather.

However, when it does decide to warm up, it will probably be as hot as hell.

My game leg is slowly healing so that I can now get around quite comfortably. However, depending on how I sleep, it tends to ache at night. This is a bit annoying because I do love my sleep.

I also managed to get my books in order for Canada Revenue and income tax. It took me three or four days because I kept discovering things that I had missed. It’s quite incredible the amount of work we do (gratis) for the government, just for the privilege of giving them more money.

With this miserably cold and wet weather, I have only spent one afternoon in the gazebo. Otherwise, I have been housebound on the inside looking out … Not that the conditions have been all that inspiring, anyhow.

About the only one to benefit from these cool and damp conditions is the thieving hydro company, because the electric furnace is still burning up dollars in the basement.

I am getting lots of writing done, though, and I am beginning to think ahead to the next novel.

More the next time.

Don’t forget my other book, Nor All Thy Tears: Journey to Big Sky – available in paperback, Kindle and Nook formats. See Amazon or Barnes and Noble for details.

Where do I start with the ‘good’ news…?

 

I’m hobbling around with a twice game leg.

I fell yesterday, at my favourite Thai restaurant, and the lovely Thai couple who own it always go out of their way to accommodate me. This time they thought I was going to sit on my walker, so, unbeknownst to me, they removed the chair.

To explain, I generally back up to the chair before I sit down, but this time there was no chair on which to sit. The result was, I ended up on the my back on floors, and in the process I very painfully twisted my knee.

Fortunately, I have discovered that I can ‘walk it off,’ but I have to start about five minutes before I go out the door. Where there is a will there is a way, however.

We had a nice spring this year. It lasted for a day-and-a-half, and for the next week, the forecast is for rain and barely 60 degrees (15C).

It has always been my opinion that we should not have left this time of year to some fickle tart by the name of “Spring.” I’d swear that she has something going with old man winter, or is still tanning her ass in Kingsland, GA, (where the temperature is 81F)!

I’ve spent most of the week getting my papers ready for income tax. Have you ever stopped to think how much time we spend working for the government (and not being paid for it)? To add insult to injury, the government then turns around and gives the money … OUR money, to a bunch of corporate welfare bums. It’s disgusting.

Meanwhile, the furnace is going and I’m wearing a winter jacket.

More next time.

Getting ready for St. Patrick’s Day

Another airline adventure…

No matter how many times I fly, it always turns out to be an adventure.

Last year it took my four days to get home from Belize because of mechanical problems, storms over Miami and missed connections.

Wednesday, I arrived at Jacksonville International Airport at 9:30 AM for a flight aboard Air Canada at 2:00 PM. That’s when I discovered Air Canada doesn’t actually have a terminal – or a sign – so after trapesing the length of the terminal twice (with walker and luggage), I discovered that I was really flying United.

I hadn’t stopped for breakfast at the hotel because it was too expensive for what I wanted (a coffee and a muffin), so after clearing security I had a coffee and a bowl of chicken noodle soup – which would prove to be the only meal I ate all day.

Then I settled down to await the 2 o’clock flight.

Meanwhile, I hadn’t noticed that they had put up at sign reading “Now 3:30,” Apparently, there were crosswinds at Newark, and from being able to handle 50 planes per hour it declined to about 38 with incoming planes from all over the USA and the world wanting to land there.

To make matters worse, amidst all this chaos we got shoved back to 6 PM, with my connecting flight leaving from Newark to Toronto at 6:45.

The flight captain, a very layback guy and helpful, put the pedal to the medal and got us to Newark by 8:00 PM, but knowing that I would probably have to go through security again (even though I was still on a United Airlines flight – the same one I had been cleared through in Jacksonville) because this was now an Air Canada flight in a UA plane -confusing isn’t it? – I was starting to worry that I wouldn’t make my 9:35 connection.

Fortunately, or unfortunately, as the case may be, the 9:35 flight was delayed to 10:35, which then raised questions about whether my ground transportation shuttle would still be there when I arrived.

With good luck it still was, so I got to my house at 2:30 AM (an 18-hour day!)

The bright side is that it was shorter than the four days it took to get home from Belize.

__________________________

The weather is typically Canadian: Dark, dreary, wet and cold. When I left, the heat index was 104. When I arrived it was 46F. Today it is 51 and raining, and Environment Canada is has issued a flood warning.

And just to make sure I wouldn’t miss a snowfall, it arranged for wet snow tomorrow and Sunday. *sigh*

More after I dig myself out.

Available in paperback and Kindle formats.

I just got finished booking a “one-step” hotel room…

I started at around 11:00 AM, it is no 2:18 PM and I think I’m finished.

The first attempt worked well, but when I got the confirmation it was for the wrong day and 2 people.

“No problem,” said their propaganda, just do this, this, and this, which I did … Except that the second this was no place to be found. Therefore, the third this wouldn’t work.

“Okay,” says I, “I’ll phone the hotel (at a $4.00 per minute roaming charge) and speak directly to them.” Which I did, except that they couldn’t change it because the reservation had been made through Expedia. “But you can call them,” suggested the desk clerk.

Another telephone call (at $4.00 per minute) connected me to a gal in Pakistan with an unintelligible accent, and her understanding of English was not much better. However, by now it had cost me something like $40 in telephone charges, so I was ready to accept anything just to be done with it.

Bottom line: I think I bought the hotel!!

It’s 90F (feels like 104) today, but I’ll be going home to 48F! Ulp.

More next time.

Don’t forget my other book, Nor All Thy Tears: Journey to Big Sku – available in paperback, Kindle and Nook formats. See Amazon or Barnes and Noble for details.

 

Just had a look at the weather in Canada (Ulp!)…

Meanwhile, it’s 93F here, feeling like 106!

The weather is perverse, or maybe it’s just my luck. Here in Georgia, we’ve been praying for rain with litttle result – for the Okefenokee fire as well as the farmland – but for the two days I will be travelling we are forecast to get thunderstorms and downpours.

A group of firefighters moved into the hotel yesterday, so dinner is a bit more scenic. Nice fellows, though; Quiet and respectful, and no ‘caveman’ parties. Not that I’ve heard, anyhow.

The prediction about the fire is that it could burn for six months. The problem is that – because of the dry conditions – it goes underground in the peat, and can break out again almost anywhere.

I wrote about a similar situation in Two Irish Lads, and when I was young, the bush on our farm – along with several others – burned for nearly a month.

The Canadian dollar continues to loose ground to the ‘greenback.’ This morning it is barely above $0.73, so between “Maleficent” Wynne and “Twinkle Toes” Trudeau, I am getting poorer every day. My investments are going nowhere, as well, so it’s a double whammy of bad news!

More next time.

Coming of Age on the Trail book cover

Lots of smoke around this morning…

Okefenokee fire.
Pogo – from the long-running comic strip by the same name.

My beloved Okefenokee swamp, home to Pogo Possum and the gang, is burning.

Ever since I discovered Walt Kelly’s zany comic strip I was hooked on Okefenokee lore – Okay, the name Okefenokee caught my fancy, too.

But, now it is burning, and officials say it could burn for six months. I hope all the critters that call it home are okay.

The final countdown has started, so I am doing all the last minute things – especially those the involve someone or something else. For example, I discovered that the local ATM won’t accept my debit card for some reason or other, and I will need cash to get from here to Jacksonville.

Fortunately it does accept my Visa, but it is these sort of setbacks that I try to avoid at the last minute.

It has gotten noticeably cooler since we had a bit of rain (not enough to do any good to the ground or wildfire – but it is forecast to warm-up toward the end of the week.

More next time.

 

 

Time is ticking away…

 

You can’t hold back the hands of time, so they say, and as a corollary I can add that only the good things pass quickly.

Southern Georgia has become my adopted home away from home, and if it weren’t for governments involvement – American and Canadian – I’d be staying right here.

Of course, I’d miss my friends back home, but it’s easier for them to come to 80-degree temps than it is for me to get around in the snow … And that’s just the beginning.

However, as it is I can only be here 183 days, and away from Canada for 183 says, so it’s homeward bound (if I don’t get bumped from an overbooked flight).

Today, it is 84 with a slight breeze. We do need rain, but there is none in the forecast until Sunday, and I am not going to hurry the days along any faster than they already are.

I continue to play foreign exchange roulette with the Canadian dollar. Monday morning it stood at $o.755/USD, so I made a payment on my USD credit card at about $0.752. Just now, it stands at $0.74. So much for Twinkle Toes’ management of the economy. *sigh*

Of course, there is always a downside to everything, and presently there are a bunch of brats in the pool – girls, who can’t seem to do anything without screaming. Drama queens in the making.

More next time.

“Two Irish Lads: Second Edition” – Available in Nook and Kindle formats.

 

Happy Easter…

Sorry to read that it is raining on the home ground, but April showers bring May flowers … So long as they’re not Snow Drops.

It’s another beautiful day in Peach Country – 81 with a slight breeze. I think I can say with confidence that the cool weather if finished until next fall. In fact, there are a couple of 90-degree days in the coming week.

However, as I have mentioned before, I’m on the west side of the building so I don’t feel the heat until late afternoon. Then, I shut the drapes and turn on the fan.

I’ve already been up the hill for breakfast. Surprisingly, there weren’t that many people around for a Sunday. I guess they’re with the kids or at church. I really wasn’t looking forward to a bunch of screaming brats, anyway.

Looking at some of the old pictures of people in their finest, and of the Easter Parade in New York, reminds me that Easters aren’t the same as they once were.

Hope you enjoy it just the same.

Available in paperback from Amazon and Barnes and Noble, and in Kindle from Amazon.

 

An (unexpected) early start…

Crowing Rooster in Farmyard

I got a nice early start to the day, although unexpected. When the time changed to daylight saving, I left the clock on standard time – to remind me of the hour that government stole from me.

That was fine until the housekeeper unknowingly changed it to DS. I noticed it last night, just as I was going to bed, but through the night I became uncertain, so I followed my routine of adding an hour to whatever the clock showed. Ergo, I showed up at breakfast an hour early.

It was a pleasant experience, though, because there are few things as pretty as a Georgia morning. It is already in the 70s by then, and birds singing everywhere.

I exchanged some correspondence with the water and sewer admin this week. I am supposed to be on their e-billing system that notifies me by email when a payment is due, but I have yet to receiving a notice.

I also questioned the amount ($70.35) when I haven’t been there or used any water since November 3rd.

Of course, it is never their fault, so I got absolutely nowhere.

I ordered my ‘going home’ shoes yesterday. I always buy new shoes when I’m travelling because you have to remove your shoes going through security, and I must say the experience was positive. It cost me $5.48 for shipping, but I would have paid that much in taxi fare going to Walmart – not knowing whether my style of shoes were in stock.

Spring break will hopefully be over by the weekend. To me, with all the brats running around, it`s like mosquito season.

I will be in touch to wish you a Happy Easter.

Don’t forget my other book, Nor All Thy Tears: Journey to Big Sku – available in paperback, Kindle and Nook formats. See Amazon or Barnes and Noble for details.

Laundry day…

Even in paradise, the mundane things must be done. Therefore, I spent a few minutes washing the limited things in my wardrobe.

After years of practice, I have developed a method that works. When packing, I pack two and wear one. Moreover, they are all cotton or nylon, as well a colour coordinated, so they are interchangeable and can be easily washed out in the sink.

When you are hadicapped, and everything must fit into two carry-on bags, the rule is that it is cheaper to buy clothes then haul them around. Nontheless, when I pack my computers and all the paraphenalia that goes along with them, I am usually hard pressed to fasten zippers, etc.

The temperature has climbed into the 80s again, and so I think we have seen that last of the cool days before next fall. That suits me fine. I can always find cool, but not always warm.

The days are ticking away. Regretfully. I really don’t want to return to what Trudeau and Wynne are doing to our country. It is the equivalent of an evil sort of Loony-Tunes. Nonetheless, their governments have it rigged so that I can’t leave without paying even more of my limited resources toward their support. A catch 22.

It is good to see some positive temperature on the home front, though.

More next time.

Available in paperback and Kindle formats.