Wednesday, 28 June 2017

The deed's been done

This morning started like many others with my being awake and reading while my wife was in the washroom. The phone chirped and I grabbed it. It was my Doctors office calling about today's appointment. My first thought was that it wasn't going to happen but it turned out I was wrong, the time had been moved from one PM to eleven AM. I thanked the lady and told my wife, then it was time to make myself a little more human. 

We left for the hospital at ten thirty for the ten minute ride When we reached the highway it was stopped so plan B came into play. After a few minutes on a secondary it to became stopped so it was on to plan C. One thing that was constant, every red light we came to was red and every car or truck that was out there was doing less than the speed limit. We did make the hospital but we were late by a few minutes. The short ten minute drive took thirty five. 

Of course when I went in I went to the out patient area where I thought I was supposed to be. It turned out that after standing in line I was directed to the right location but I had made it so all was good. 

I quickly went through the in routine and presented my health card to the receptionist and was told it was not being recognised and I needed a new one. The interim measure was that they would let me take the procedure and i would go get a new health card then call them with the information. 

I finished getting pocked and prodded then it was off to the OR. Next thing I knew I was in recovery. The nurse welcomed me back to the land of the living and showed me the fragments they had taken out of my system. 

While I do have to make one more visit this should be it for the kidney stone shards. As for the rest of the day I'm going to take it easy and let the meds wear off. So until the morrow, bye-bye.  

Tuesday, 27 June 2017

The flyboys are in town

Today was a quiet day after a restless night. I managed to get some work done in the basement but I wasn't pushing it. It seemed that every time I bent over to pick something up or move something my little kidney stone friends would poke me with their very sharp pointed sticks. Well my little friend's days are numbered. This time tomorrow I should be without the kidney stones. 

Snowbirds on the flight line
CF-18 Hornet solo aircraft
This evening after a supper of pulled pork sandwiches I convinced my wife that we should go out for a coffee. We drove down to the puddle jumper airport where there's this nice little restaurant and grabbed a couple of cups of java. While we were there I took a few pics of our national aerobatic team the Snowbirds and the solo demonstration CF-18. These guys will be preforming over the waterfront of the semi big city tomorrow while I recover from my laser experience. While I'm a little bummed out about not being able to see the show, I would rather the pain of staying home verses the pain of seeing these guys in action and still having the kidney stones. 

Snowbird lead
While we were sitting having our coffee I noticed a truck parked near the flight line. It was an MP pickup truck. As I was watching a Meathead got out, looked around and went for a quick stroll. Made me laugh, call the guy what ever you want from cop to Military Police or whatever he was doing the job of a eleven dollar an hour rent-a-cop. His bosses couldn't even see to give him a comfortable vehicle, just an old pickup. I wonder what he did to piss them off.

Well that's about all from me for now. Depending on how I feel tomorrow I may or may not post anything. Bye for now.

Monday, 26 June 2017

Weather or not here it comes...

Here it is the middle of the afternoon. I was doing a few chores and getting the stuff to the trailer. I had figured that around three I would shove off and do the dump run. Then there was the sound of thunder from the west so I hoofed it to the end of the driveway and saw this...
Something wicked this way comes

The picture of this boiling mass led me to return to my warm and safe home where I turned on the personal confuser to see how bad it will get.

Looks like the weathertainers think there may be an issue with the clouds bearing a bit of active precipitation. So next I took a look at the map...

Seems that there may be a few issues this afternoon. As for the dump run, needless to say that's a tomorrow gig now. My wife had a couple of larger plants so I took the time an secured them but who knows.

The driving rain has started but not to worry, I'm snug as a bug in a rug. It's a good thing that I didn't leave a little earlier, I would have been out it this yuk.

Well I have to go. Until the morrow see ya...

Wasn't that a party - part two

Saturday night and there we were sitting having some coffee relaxing and looking around at the refuse left over from the party. We were contemplating starting to do the after action clean up when the phone rang. It was an old friend, C, who had been at the party and had we seen or found a cell phone. 

C was utterly convinced that the phone must be here because the last place she remembered having it was at the party. So outside we went with big flashlights looking... no luck. 

Sunday came and after coffee there we were outside in daylight looking for the phone and picking up stuff at the same time, no luck. I even went under the deck with a rake thinking if the phone was on the rail and was knocked off... but once again no luck. Out to look where they got into their car also with the rake. The thought being if it fell on the grass she would not have heard it fall. Still no joy on our finding the phone. 

We looked again just before lunch but the search time was limited. The weathertainers had issued a severe thunderstorm warning for are area and the sky had started to turn ugly. 

Weathertainers were right for a change. The downpour
started within ten minutes of the prediction.

I took a look at my weather app on the phone and the prediction was for the storm to start around twelve thirty. A short time later the skies opened up with torrential rain and hail. Curious, I looked at my watch. The time was twelve thirty eight. While not a perfect call the weathertainers were in the ten ring as it were, so score one for the weathertainers. 

After the rain we had another look but had given up any hope of finding the cell phone. That evening C called and my wife told her about the lack of progress. So our friend decided that she would come out and take a look today, this morning in fact. 

I was up early today and managed to get all the recyclables and the remains of Mr. Arnold Ziffel all wrapped up to the curb. Then after getting coffee on and the other must do morning chores out of the way I resumed picking up. The phone rang and it was our friend C. I asked her for some good news and sure enough the phone had been found so we were off the hook. 

It turns out that when she arrived home upon getting out of her truck she had placed the phone on the roof of the vehicle. grabbed her stuff and went inside then couldn't find the phone. The next day after going out when she returned home with her very tall husband they got out of the car and he noticed the phone and gave it to her. 

I'm glad that everything turned out OK, in her business the cellphone is a indispensable tool. As for me I'm happy, happy for her that she found the phone and happy for me in a selfish way. This whole time during all the searching in the back of my mine I kept wondering if I had missed something or if I had looked everywhere. All's well that ends well as they say.

Speaking of ends well, until the morrow goodbye my friends. 

Sunday, 25 June 2017

Wasn't that a party

All the running around over the past few days came to fruition yesterday. We had a few friends over to celebrate my wife's thirtieth anniversary of her thirtieth birthday. That's why the Costco run on Thursday and all the cleanup around the house and all the frustrations with the power washer. Meh, in the end it all turned out fine. 

Did I mention that it was a pig roast? I went out around ten thirty and picked up Mr. Arnold Ziffel AKA the pig and all the other accouterments that goes with him. Once back home I managed to get the BBQ going and at eleven my lovely wife gave me a hand to get Mr. Arnold Ziffel was on. 
Mr. Arnold Ziffel
The first guests showed up a little before two and we put them to work helping to set up. It's OK they were cousins and had previously said they would be early to help. The party began in earnest as the guests trickled in. All the while I had a sinking feeling that a lot would be no shows. In the end I was wrong, while there were a few we had others who I didn't expect to see. One person who I missed seeing was my wife's uncle who was also her Godfather. He had an excuse, the silly guy had a tumble the other day and busted a foot.

Around three thirty I checked Mr. Arnold Ziffel and he was ready. My bro-in-law and I got him off the grill to let him sit for an hour.
Mr. Arnold Ziffel... Done!
The sit time was to give Mr. Arnold Ziffe a chance to cool. At four thirty my bro-in-law and I set to work and by five we had the pig picked clean and dinner was served.

The party went on until around sunset with all of us gabbing and catching up. I did have a few games out with the hit being our giant jenga game. It was funny I would be talking to some friends on the other side of the house and suddenly there would be this loud crash. The first time this happened the person I was talking to look around in surprise and said "what the hell was that?" I'd laugh and say jenga and off they would go to watch.

In all it was a good day with good old friends, some good fun and good food. I did over do it a bit and things got a little painful near the end but it was all worth it. 

That's about all from me, please resume having fun while I start doing the cleanup. Bye-bye.


Friday, 23 June 2017

The good, the bad, but mostly the good.

Yesterday was one of those days with good things happening and not so good things happening. In the morning I made a run down to the semi big city for a visit to Costco to pick up a few sundries. The weathertainers had predicted rain through the day and when I was up in the morning the skies were perfectly clear. So I figured the prognostications were as right as they normally are and went inside the store. I came out around forty five minutes later to a torrential downpour and of course the truck is a million miles (maybe 500 yards) away. I got soaked getting to my truck and packing the stuff and when I got home the skies were just overcast and a light overcast at that. 

That afternoon we had visitors in the form of my Bro-in-law, Sis-in-law and our three year old niece. The adults were off to an adults only thing and they had trusted us enough to babysit their little Miss Adorable. It's hard to entertain the notion that a three year old can be as outspoken and as grammatically correct as this little bundle. We had a lot of fun and a few times I laughed so hard I though I'd have an accident. My Bro and Sis-in-laws got a taste of what I went through in the morning, just before they pulled up to our place the skies opened up and around ten minutes after they left with miss Adorable the rain stopped.

Well that's about all the goings on in the realm of my little life. I'm just marking time until Wednesday when the glass shards kidney stone chunks will be zapped. Not, no blog until Monday. Have as good a weekend as you can. 

Wednesday, 21 June 2017

Once more unto the breach

I was up at a respectable hour today and after some nourishment and a cup of java I was hard at work on the deck. I managed to finish two sides including the railings in about an hour and a bit the I came in for a break. 

Back deck, done.

After some water I went outside and prepared to do battle again yet again. I got the power washer humming, hit the nozzle trigger and... nothing. I was a good boy and didn't start cursing the Chinese hunk of crap I simply figured that there was an obstruction in the nozzle. Under the deck I went and I turned off the water. Then, with my wife's help I took off the nozzle and went to the other hose which was still on and commenced to back flushing. My assistant, AKA my wife, somehow managed not to get wet at all and I only had a bit of water on me. 

A little friend, Mr. Frog, hiding
under the deck.
As it turns out the issue wasn't a blockage, it was a faulty nozzle. The options are to go get a replacement or simply mop the deck. Since I don't want to be at this all day I'm going to resort to plan B, mopping. 

Lucky for me the front deck is shielded from the sun and doesn't need too much work. As for the kitchen side... it is what it is. 

Last one to do
After I put this puppy to bed as it were I will be heading out to move all the obstacles out of the way and mop the front and kitchen side decks. It shouldn't take too long but there's a lot of items to move.  

That about raps it up for me. So until tomorrow bye-bye.

Tuesday, 20 June 2017


This morning I was up and at 'em at quarter to eight. After some sustenance, excluding coffee because I didn't want to wake my wife, I was hard at it with the power washer. Around ten I hung it up because the pain in my side had spiked. Since my wife was awake I got the coffee on and relaxed for a bit. I finally broke down and took some pain killers around noon.

A little after one in the PM found me at the hospital for an x-ray then it was off the the pee-pee Doc. Once there I relaxed as best I could but between this guy sitting next to me yapping about a business deal and the pain in my side it was a loosing battle. 

Once inside the inner sanctum I calmly waited for the arrival of Dr O. While sitting there looking around at all the diagrams of various parts of the male and female anatomy I noticed a mounted fish on the wall. 

The fur bearing trout fish
Looking at the "fur bearing trout" brought me back from the very dark place my mood was taking me. As I was laughing at the "trout" Dr. O walked in and we had a chat. The long and the short of it is that next week, God willing and it the creek don't rise, I'm of for a day surgery to get rid of the pesky shards. The six by nine millimeter stone had broken up into six very jagged pieces plainly visible in the X-Ray. He also pointed out another stone and said that while he was in there he would take care of that one too. 
Well progress is being made on the deck front and the kidney stone front so all things considered today hasn't been to bad a day. Tomorrow I'm gonna have another go at the deck. Hopefully I will have that done by noon or I will (figuratively speaking) die trying. 
That's it from me so until tomorrow TTFN (ta-ta for now). 


Monday, 19 June 2017

Just another monday

The day dawned bright and I was up early, well at least early by my standards. Today I was going to continue with the chores with the one at the top of the hit parade being the deck.

On the weekend I managed to get a little work done. One of the tasks I wanted finished was the Giant Jenga game.  

I turned around to see this, a down pour of epic proportions.
I had trimmed and squared the blocks of wood the other day and now it was time to trim then to length and sand them down. While the task was easy with the use of a stop block on the chop saw it was repetitive. With the ear defenders on and my back to the door I didn't realize that a monsoon had started outside.

While it took a while I did manage to get the job done. The set looks better now and works better as well.
All done
Today I've been trying to get the deck done but the Gods have decided to be against me. I was going to power wash the deck but the power washer has displayed it's Chinese, Canadian Tire heritage buy refusing to start. I changed the fuel for fresh, check the plug and the connections but it's no go. So I have been doing things the old fashioned way with a mop. I've had to take five to let the sun move so there isn't direct light before I use the deck bright. I figure I'll have to cool my jets until around three thirty or four local time. The it will be once again unto the breach for me.   

I'm looking forward to tomorrow when I get to see the Doc and find out what the next plan of attack is. One thing that has been a constant today was the pain I've been feeling. It's OK pain is just weakness leaving the body. I just didn't know that I had so much weakness. 

That's it for now, I'll be back tomorrow so until then have as much fun as you can. 


After fighting with the deck for a couple of hours I came to the conclusion it was a lost cause with the stuff I had i.e. a scrub brush, soap and water. I went into town and picked up a few things including four stroke oil and a spark plug.

When I got home I gapped the plug and installed it in the pressure washer and I did a quick oil change. After priming the motor I gave it a hell of a pull and it flashed right up. Now I'm cooking with gas. I got around half on one of the sides done and after a short pause I'll be at it again. So until tomorrow, bye-bye. 

Saturday, 17 June 2017

The conundrum

I've been up since around ten to five on this lovely morning. Meh, I figure a little over four hours and a bit of sleep is all a guy needs anyway. I know you're wondering what the heck was he doing up so early? 

Well let me tell you...

I'm on the horns of a conundrum. I have a bucket of things that need to get done sooner rather than later but much of that work involves lifting and hauling. The problem is that inside my urinary tract there are glass like shards which have already sliced me open the last time I did some heavy work. So I have to figure out a way to work smarter and not harder to get these tasks done.

As a guy in his sixties the work smarter, not harder thing is something I should have figured out a while ago. The only feeble excuse I've got is that before this I haven't needed to. I'm looking forward to seeing the Doc this week so a plan of action can be created but deep down inside I have a bad feeling about all of this. We are already almost at the end of June and I'm praying to whatever God will listen that I don't loose another summer. I'm old and only have so many good summers left. 

Blogging resumes on Monday. Until this bye-bye.

Thursday, 15 June 2017

Playing catch up

I just realized that I didn't post anything yesterday, my bad. Don't worry all is good, I haven't managed to do myself anymore hurt.

Yesterday was for me a putter around the house kinda day. Mostly all I did was read my book, drink water and pee. I did do a little work in the shop but nothing to strenuous.

Puttering around in the workshop
A while back I built a Giant Jenga game and I've never been very happy with the results. So I ran the wood pieces through the table saw and squared them up. The next step is to shorten them  so they, when assembled, are a square. 

This morning I was off to the big city for lunch with my friend R. He had acquired a new/old  camera and needed a battery for it. Of course the manufacturer had them at eighty bucks (yes $80) plus shipping. R told me about the dilemma so I went on line, found one at a very reasonable price ($11, shipping included) and ordered it. In return I made him buy me lunch. 

When I got home I found that a new shiny I had ordered had arrived. A few days ago it was stinking hot. So hot I even commented about it, hot. I was looking around the web and came across a portable air conditioner. Not one of those that sit in the window kind but one that sits on the floor with the exhaust going to the window. 

The new shiny
It took a little finagling but I managed to get it set up. Then there was the twenty minutes spent lopping up the cardboard container it came in. The game plan now is when it gets hot out we will cool the bedroom down an hour or so before bedtime. Hopefully this will give us a fighting chance at some rest. 

Well that's about all I have for now so bye-bye till the morrow.   

Tuesday, 13 June 2017

Things that go boom in the night..

Today was one of those that started early with a little shake rattle and roll. Early this morning the hot humid temps we had been dealing with were broken as a line of thunder boomers went through. Not only were they loud, the thunder storms were dish rattling loud. I did manage a few hours zzz after that but last night wasn't a happy night for sleeping, it was just too damn hot.

Up, showered and presentable, or as presentable as a guy can be with several days growth of hair on his face, I met the day. Later it was off to the semi big city with my wife. She had an appointment and I needed a few things at Lowe's. I needed some parts to fix my elderly BBQ and while there I figured on grabbing a quartet of salt bags for the softener. 

While I was looking around Lowe's I noticed they had BBQ's on sale. I've wanted a new one for a while now since my Chinese hunk of scrap has started to fail. The only problem is cost. For me price isn't a big issue but I am cheap. While I can still make the BBQ at home work with a few bucks worth of parts I'll be damned if I'm going to blow a grand on a new unit. 

If I stay still nobody
will notice me.
Checkout done I was off to pick up my wife. Just before I entered the medical building where my wife was, I had this feeling of being watched. I tend to take these feeling seriously so I stopped, looked around then slowly looked up. There he was, a little black squirrel staring intently at me. I looked at him and wondered about how an animal could get into such a position, then I went inside for my wife. 

After we got home I had a nap attack and got woke by a call from the hospital. Yesterday they had called with an appointment for an ultrasound and the date/time was a no go so I asked for another appointment. They had a new appointment for me that, while it's at a later date, works. 

Since I was up and at 'em I figured I might as well work on the BBQ. The parts I had to replace were the heat defusers, all four of them. It didn't take that long and now the Q will work a lot better. I noticed when the unit was apart that I may get another season out of it but that's about all. There are a couple of areas where the body has rusted through. I could go get some aluminum and cover the gaps but to what end? It will only rot out at other locations. So when the time comes I shall take the Q to the dump an replace it but not before I have to. 

Well that's it for now, bye-bye.

Monday, 12 June 2017

Crotch Pot Cooking...

I managed to survive the weekend. Yesterday I did a little work around the old rancho, managing to get the water issue for my wife's flowers solved though not to my satisfaction. Right now I figure it's better than it was so that's an improvement. The game plan for the water is to connect the tap to copper pipe and run that pipe to the area where I need the water then put a valve at the end to turn it off or on. 

During the course of the day on Sunday we got all the stuff out for the deck. My wife went into town and got the hanging baskets plus the vegetables for the garden. Now we are in summer mode.
Not a great pic but
this is our home at night.
Last night I muled the trash out. It was such a warm lovely evening I stayed outside for a while, savouring the stars and life in general. It was so nice I even tried to take a pic of our home in the dark. 

Today I must get a few things done regardless of the heat or other issues. Heat... yes I know, I whined about the cold last winter and now I'm whining that it's too hot. It's so hot there's a heat warning in effect. Add to this a bit of humidity and we have what the late Robin Williams once called crotch pot cooking. 

I wouldn't be too surprised to see some pop up thunder boomers later. Anyway I've got to get going. That's it for now unless something worth writing about pops up or, I hope, out.

Saturday, 10 June 2017

Living with the Sword of Damocles

Yesterday was on of those days. After a late lunch and the short blog post I worked at getting things ready for cocktails with the neighbours. While my wife went out I got the lawn cut, deck sorted out and the fire pit area taken care of including trimming back some trees, yes we were ready. 

The only thing missing was the guests and the beer.
I went inside around five thirty for some supper and more water. I stopped for a visit to the little boy's room and that's when I noticed a slight problem, my urine was a deep red wine colour. I told my wife about it and she instantly went into full mother mode. While she insisted we need to go to the hospital I went and had more water because (a) I knew the hospital would want a urine sample and (b) I didn't know how much blood I was leaking internally and I wanted the fluids.  

After sending out a few texts telling people cocktail night was off we were off to the hospital. When we got there my wife showed again that she loves me even when she's angry with me because she came to a complete stop at emerge to let me off before parking the car. There would be no tuck and roll for me this evening. My wife was a little angry with me because while I've been in pain I have been playing down the amount in a feeble attempt to not worry her. 

Once past triage and into the hospital system it didn't take long to be seen by a doctor. Urine sample given, x-rays taken the Doc and I had a little chat. He could not find the stone in the kidney. It looks like the stone may have broken up after all into little glass like shards and one of them cut me while I was working. So for now the game plan is to drink lots and lots and lots of water and hopefully pass the shards. Until this happens I'm living under the sword of Damocles. I'm afraid if I get into any serious work that one of these little bastards shards is going to start slicing and dicing again. 

Anyway... please resume your weekend fun, I'll post again on Monday.

Friday, 9 June 2017

Mad dogs and Englishmen

The say that it's only mad dogs and Englishmen that go out in the noonday sun. I guess I must fall into the category of an Englishman because I just spent the last hour and a half outside in the noonday sun. I would have had my tasks done earlier when it was cooler, it's 30 deg C (86 F) with the humidex, but I slept in.   

One of the joys of living in a log home is dealing with pests that want to convert said log home into log wood chips. In our area there is a serious problem with carpenter ants and each spring we get the place sprayed. I would do it myself but the good folks who run our nanny state think I'm incompetent. I am not permitted to take care of my property from these pests under law. 

This morning at the ungodly hour of eight the pest control guys arrived and banged on the door waking me from a sound sleep. I guess retirement has mellowed me because I simply got up and answered the door and didn't kill them. After they left I went back to bed figuring on getting up "in a few minutes." Next thing I know I opened an eye to see my cat an inch away meowing in my face. I looked at the clock and it was noon. 

I went through the morning... er... afternoon routine and then I went out to clean up the yard. I have a rather large area to cut to it took a while and during that time I was like the Englishman baking under the noonday sun.  All I have to say is thank God for hats or I would have fried my brains.

I'm not done yet, there is still the matter of bringing out the fire pit and getting that set up. Tonight it's cocktails with the neighbors and I'm changing things up, I'm going to have a fire to sit around. 

Unless something real special comes up, posting to the blog will resume on Monday, have a good weekend and bye-bye for now.

Wednesday, 7 June 2017

A day off at my wife's request

This morning found me awake a little before nine and playing with the cat. After getting cleaned up I dove into the daily news over coffee and a little sustenance. While scanning the doom watch and having a little fun at the expense of others on Twitter my wife asked me what my plans for the day were. I started thinking furiously about things I could get done but before I could answer she said I should take the day off and go to the range. Before she could second guess herself I was getting the gear together. Once everything was packed I hit the road for the range. 

The trip to the range was nice what with the warm temps and the bright sunny blue sky. I figured that there would be a few others at the club when I got there but no, I was all alone. 

I set up all the paraphernalia (range warning flags and signs) when I arrived then set up my targets and my gear. All I had with me on this wonderful day was my .22 Ruger 1022 rifle. For the next two and a half hours I put lead down range. 

There's just so
much stuff
Doing the
Mozambique Drill
After a while I noticed the little rifle wasn't hitting in a consistent spot. The point of aim was wandering as I pulled the trigger. Out came the Leatherman and off came the scope. I found that the scope hadn't been mounted properly, my bad. So for the next two hours I went stone age with iron sights. It really didn't make that much of a distance the target was only twenty five yards away. 

I got board with simply sitting, aiming and squeezing the trigger so I started going through some speed drills. I started with a simple snap where the rifle is down then raised fast and when the sight is on target the trigger is pulled. Then I went on to the rifle version of the Mozambique Drill. This is good for eye hand coordination but one has to remember that with speed one always looses accuracy. Well after two and a half hours of fun it was time to head for the barn. After cleaning up my mess (spent brass, used targets) I took down the flags, signed out, locked up the gate and headed for home.  

Until next time, bye for now. 


Tuesday, 6 June 2017

You ever have that feeling?

This morning started early, zero dark six thirty early to be precise. What woke me up at that ungodly hour was the phone. Some idiot tried to fax something and entered the wrong number, my number. I don't know how this person was but I will say one thing about them, who ever the person was did this I wish upon this person the pox and any other pestilence that may care to visit him or her.

Watch cat
I went down stairs in a bathrobe and had a little sustenance and when I went to put my dishes away I had that feeling, the one in the back of the head that says you're being watched. I slowly turned and sure enough there was our cat intently watching me. Then it was back to the personal confuser to catch up on the news.

Here it is almost noon and I'm still at the personal confuser. The only thing I have managed so far on this dreary day was to adjust the drain on the bathroom sink. Once this is done I'm going out for a while. I want to visit a plumbing supply store in town and get the parts so I can run a line from the outside tap to the deck where it will be more easy to turn off.

Later folks, got to run.

Monday, 5 June 2017

I made a new friend

Last Friday after the ladies had left and our friend S arrived we saddled up and headed out. Destination Leamington, in the heart of Canada's banana belt. The drive down was a long one not only distance wise but traffic wise.  I was lucky my wife had insisted on doing the lions share of the driving so I got to nap and watch as the world sometimes raced past, sometimes crawled past.

This is Boris
When we got to our sunny destination our hosts P&J met us with hugs and handshakes, then we met Boris.

Let me explain a little about Boris, he is a puppy. A rather large... puppy at eleven months and a little over eighty pounds of playful enthusiasm. Boris is a Black Russian Terrier who, at eleven months, is the size of a small pony.  In the months to come Boris will fill out at a hundred plus pounds.

That evening we went out for an incredible  meal at this hole in the wall sized restaurant  and then it was back to our digs and Boris.  We caught up with each other's lives over  the course of the evening and played with  the puppy. 

Boris trying to take chew toy from P
Next day P and I took Boris for a walk. It  was  interesting to see the reactions of  people and other dogs to Boris. There was  one little incident where a couple had a small dog on a leash and were not paying attention. The little dog rushed at Boris, all teeth and barking, while Boris was held in check by P. At the last second the little dogs owner realized something was wrong, turned and stopped the charge with his leash control. Then this idiot had the nerve to yell at P who had Boris under control. P have him a warning and we moved on. 

Once at home we had a little sustenance then headed out to visit a few wineries. While we were out I did pick up a few bottles and did a fair bit of sampling. It was a good thing that P doesn't drink. Normally I'm the guy who gets to watch as the others try out the various wines. Then it was back home and P made us an great dinner. It would have been five star but the butter was hard. 😀 A little explanation, P wanted to warm the butter in the microwave and we laughed at him, saying the place had been five star until "the butter incident." In reality if there was a star rating the weekend would have been a five star plus. After dinner we sat around and chatted over drinks and played with the puppy until eyelids refused to stay open then it was off to bed.

Sunday saw us homeward bound. We did make decent time but with the traffic, my wife's back issues and my kidney issues it wasn't a pleasant drive. 

Down there the wind blows and this is being harnessed
We were home around four and were so warn out we decided to stay home. I was so tired I didn't even want to go fetch a pizza, my wife called, made the order and it was delivered. I felt bad because one of the neighbors was having a party that evening and we had said we would go and didn't. I was sacked out around seven thirty and I didn't see the light of day until nine. I guess I'm not the traveler that I used to be.

Well that's it for me, now it's time to get out and see what mischief I can get into. Until tomorrow, bye-bye. 


Friday, 2 June 2017

Sun's up and the world looks OK

The sun's up, sky is blue and the world looks OK from our front porch. Today's blog entry is going to be a short one. We are heading off to a friends place down in the banana belt of south Ontario and I got to get packed. Needless to write, say, whatever, there will be no more posts until Monday. I hope you have as good a weekend as we hope to. So to keep you happy until my next entry here is a picture of my cat who simply could not let me sleep in today. 


Thursday, 1 June 2017

Making square pegs fit round holes

After my last post I figured the heck with it and went out to do the lawn. Once again the dark clouds rolled in so I changed tack, I went to the workshop and carried on making dowels. 

My new & improved dowel jig
I worked at changing the square lengths of wood into round dowels for around an hour before I got frustrated. The system works fine but the operator's a klutz. The issue is the length I'm working with tends to wobble when turned and wobbles cause breakage. In the end I was busting one dowel for every two I made. Some of them were salvageable but not a lot. 

Wood in the chuck ready to go
One of the things I did to reduce the wobble was level the wood when I chucked it in the drill. This helped but not as much as I would have liked. 

Turning square lengths
of wood into dowels
I even mounted a length of copper pipe for the wood to go into. The thought being I'd hold the top portion with a gloved hand and the pipe would steady the lower half. This worked but not as well as I would have liked. I've ended up with around twenty dowels that will be two feet long. The length is OK but the number is too few. I need another twelve. The problem is just about every strip of wood I have left has knots in it and the wood tends to break at those knots.

After I cleaned up my mess and had a coffee I relaxed for a bit and continued my cat and mouse game with the rain clouds. Finally the beak came just after dinner. My wife went out to her club thing and I got the lawn tractor fueled. For the next hour it was round and round and round we go but finally the lawn was done. All the while I was spit on by the clouds with their ever present threat of a downpour. 

Today I'm going to build the base and mount the screen. Later I'm going to visit Toys R Us and pick up a bag of balls. While I'm out I'll pick up some wood plant stakes to make up the balance of the wood I need. Then it's a little paint and we are off to the races.

More later, bye for now. 

Wednesday, 31 May 2017

Cat & Mouse

For the last while I've been contemplating going outside and doing the lawn. This time of year the lawn gets a lot of growth because of the rain and sun we've had. It was in such dire need that when I cut the lawn the other day it started to rain I kept cutting, hey once you are wet you are wet. Well the lawn needs a cut once again.

The dandelion horde are threatening to take the yard over and must be dealt a swift blow. The big problem is rain or the threat thereof. So far today I have gotten motivated several time to go out and do battle with the lawn. Every time I have gotten up to march outside the dark ominous clouds have moved it so I have postponed it. I'm not a real happy camper right now because of this perpetual cat and mouse game with the weather. The weathertainers are not helping, looking at the weather app there's nothing on there about rain. Oh screw it, I'm off to cut the lawn, getting soaked or not.

Tuesday, 30 May 2017

Some links for you

Not a lot going on in my little hunk of paradise. I just spent the last couple of hours in the workshop. I managed to make a little over a dozen dowels for the game but the two  batteries for the drill died so, after looking around and started to rearrange a few things and clean up. 

One of the stumbling blocks I face out there is a lack of space. The workshop is a tiny eight by twelve foot place which is good enough for my projects. One of the issues is some of the space that I need to store tools is being taken up with my wife's hanging plant pots etc. With the thought that this stuff is going to be relocated in the near future I'm seeing storm clouds on the horizon. Lucky for me the workshop is big enough that, with a little relocating, a cot can go there. 😄  

I know it's been a while but here are a few links for you...

What a great time to be alive in Ontario Canada. The minimum wage is being jacked up to $15 an hour and in some places you don't even have to work to get paid. One thing nobody's talking about is what happens to the minimum wage gobs when the owner can't afford the raise?

Out in British Columbia The just finishes a very tight election with the Liberal dynasty being dethroned. While on the surface this isn't a bad thing the group that has joined forces are the NDP (very socialists) and the Green Party (very socialist/eco-activist). Together this means "No pipeline for you Alberta" so the rest of the country will pay dearly for the actions of a few.

On the weekend the Conservative Party crowned a new leader. The front runner, a Libertarian, lost but the slimmest of margins to a guy named Andrew Scheer. Now the media hit pieces have already started.  

I bet you thought that Stonehenge was cool well look out, here's Manhattanhenge...

You can run but you can't hide because sooner or later the bogyman is coming for you. 

All I have to say is time travelers strictly cash please. 

Speaking of cash, if it were not for the cash involved in getting one of these I would buy one in a heartbeat. My issues is that for $2995 USD ($4,075 Cdn) I can get a real motorcycle and go farther/faster that this electric bike ever could.

It will be interesting if this guy fights the by-law ticket in court. He was charges with "discharging a firearm" the only issue was the "firearm" was a bow

And with that I leave you for today. Bye for now.  

Monday, 29 May 2017

Afternoon in the shop

Looks like the weathertainers snookered me again. After the threat of nasty weather this morning I postponed the deck work. I know, any port in a storm... Sure enough after lunch the afternoon turned out to be very nice. 

My backyard

I went out to the now cleaned up work shop and started work on a project. i am building an outdoor adult sized version of the old Ker Plunk game. One of the things I nee are thirty two sticks that will stop the balls from dropping. The other day I saw a way to make dowels and I figured I'd give it a try. 

The dowel jig
My first dowel
First I made a jig out of a scrap hunk of wood and a saw blade. Next I cut a piece of wood two feet long and a quarter inch by a quarter inch. Next I chucked one end of the wood, put the other end in the jig and started the drill. Much to my surprise it actually worked. Next up was the cutting of three dozen lengths of wood. After that was done I had wasted around an hour and a bit and the clouds had started to move back in so I called it a day. The reason for this was that the cutting stuff I was doing outside my tiny little workshop. 

The great outdoor work area.
It's nice that all my equipment is
all portable.
I got the compressor going and took the easy way out by blowing all the crap off the machines I was using. When I was done there was more sawdust on me than on the floor. Once inside I went to get cleaned up and have some supper. All in all it was a good afternoon. Tomorrow I'm planning on making the game base and turning the wood strips into dowels. That should make for an interesting day unless the weathertainers spoil it of course. 

My itty bitty little workshop.

That's it for now, further updates upon the morrow. Bye-bye...

Don't like the weather, just hold on a few minutes.

We just finished with another pop up thunder shower.Today was supposed to be a nice mild day with only a minor chance of a shower not... poof  crash, bang, build an ark, oh never mind kind of day. 

Damn weathertainers. Yes I'm grouchy, last night there was supposed to be a minor chance of a little rain and my sleep was interrupted by a thunderstorm. This morning we were outside sipping coffee and chatting about this and that when the rumble clouds moved in and we had to scurry inside. To my knowledge none of this events were predicted in the forecasts. Ah weathertainers... to right to be ignored, too wrong to be believed.  I was going to clean the deck today but not anymore the weather's just to dicey. This afternoon I'm going to try something new, I'm going to make dowels from 2x4's in my shop which I cleaned up on the weekend. 

Ah the weekend...

We had some friends over for cocktails on Friday evening. The bugs got a little too ravenous so we went inside and the fun carried on from there. It was a good time and for the first time in a while I even had a few wee drams of the single malt which I paid for upon awakening Saturday morning. Yes, I'm a cheap drunk. Our friend S came over on Saturday and took some weeds plant's back home when she left. I actually managed to get a little work done, I cleaned out my workshop. Speaking (writing?) of the workshop I have to get going. Projects await. 

Until tomorrow bye-bye. 

Friday, 26 May 2017

Everything's going to be fine...

It took a while to fall asleep lat night, the little alien in my kidney kept wanting to poke it's head out and give a rendition of Hello, Ma Baby. This morning I was up to an overcast sky and, after morphing into a human being, I went into town. I had to go to the optometrist about my new/old glasses. 

A few weeks ago I had my eyes tested and like the last time I was in they discovered my vision is getting better. Being the cheap guy I am I had them order lenses for my glasses. I figure why do I need to keep up with the Jones when the frames I have are fine.

I got there around ten and left the old specks with them and went for some sustenance. Breakfast consumed I returned an hour later to the eye doc's office. Fitting done and Danegeld paid it was go home time. One thing I will say, without my specs I'm screwed. It was nice to have them back so I could see what the heck was going on in the world. This "doing the world by braille" thing sucks.

While driving home I passed a lake where I stopped for a bit. Looking around at the calm water and the gray, drizzly filled sky I thought back to the week I had just had and the trip down in the big city where with all the hustle and noise 24/7, I was totally out of my element. I may not be sure about a lot of things these days but one thing I do know,  the best day in a big city can't hold a candle to the worst day in the country. Living here and looking around, I am slowly coming to the realization I am in the right place at the right time and everything will be fine. 

It's Friday and the weekend is almost upon us. This means no blogging for the next two days. I can assure you blogging will resume on Monday. Have as good a weekend as you can and bye for now.

Thursday, 25 May 2017

Living under the sword of Damocles

It's an overcast, rainy day. A grey day that suits my feelings about life perfectly. 

I was hoping to be done with the kidney stone but I guess that was not meant to be. Now I'm slated to see the Doc in a few weeks to figure out what the next step will be. 

My wife may not like it but I'm thinking of simply living with the minor pain and dealing with the stone issue later when it starts to move out of the kidney. While I don't like living under the sword of Damocles, if I have to I will. The down side to this is the traveling we had planned is now up in the air. Going to Europe and having to deal with a kidney stone is not something I really want to think about.

Whine mode off... Bye for now.

Wednesday, 24 May 2017

From city cool to country hick

I managed to make it down to the big city and back with only a few minor problems. The trip down was about the same as it was last time. When we hit the city outskirts traffic volume picked up and speed slowed down. 

On the parking lot, er...

Our check in was another example of why one should pay the couple of bucks and use a travel agent. Upon entering the hotel I strode confidently up to the desk, presented my paperwork and was told there was no booking. So I gave the clerk my credit card and got checked in. Once in the room I found the contact info for the place I had made the booking and gave them a call. It was a good thing they had nice on hold music because I was on hold for around a half hour. 
After discussing the problem with the customer service rep and getting a commitment that she would call back we went out for dinner.  

City center looking like a set
from Blade runner.

It had been a while since I was at the heart of the beast and the change was astounding. The amount of giant video screens with there ever present ads was like something out of a low budget Blade Runner remake. My wife and I found a nice little out of the way restaurant and had dinner. Then we went for a stroll back to the hotel. I found myself laughing at how my reactions to the surroundings must have looked. Once upon a time long ago I lived in the big city and was comfortable, now I was staring and gawking at things like a small town hick.

That night I turned in early because I didn't figure sleep would come early and it didn't. The constant traffic noise accompanied by the ever present sirens of police, fire and ambulances kept waking me up. Then there was the air conditioner... Withing minutes of entering our room it was hot so I flipped on the AC.The unit had a distinct industrial sound that was a little on the loud side.

The view from our room... ah...

Morning came and I was awake before the alarm. I went through the evolution of becoming human, minus a coffee, and it was time to go to the hospital. My wife and I strolled down the block and found our way to the check in area. I shucked clothing and put on a pair of gowns, got another x-ray and did the other little things to get ready, then it was time... 

I went through the procedure with no big issues and afterword I was given food and drink. Once I was able I got dressed and we left. Our checkout was supposed to be no later than twelve noon and we were driving out of the hotel lot at eleven fifty eight. It took a bit of good navigation by my wife but soon we were on the expressway out of the city. 

A few short hours later we were home and my little adventure was over. I went upstairs and had a long nap. As for the procedure to destroy the kidney stone with ultrasonics...  it didn't work.


Tuesday, 23 May 2017


Good morning fellow travelers today's post is going to be a short one. In a few short minutes I will have finished my coffee and it will be time to start packing for I have an appointment with destiny... I'm off to the big city this afternoon and will stay overnight. Then tomorrow I will be in the hospital for round two of getting my kidney stone gone. My wife thinks I'm nuts but with the history of this... fail, I'm not holding too much hope for success. Anyway we shall see what we shall see.

I was up early this morning not because of the trip but because of an encounter with the hospital. The other day I went in for a copy of my last x-ray and was treated to the bureaucratic small city run around. This morning I went in ready for bear and much to my surprise I had no problem getting the CD. After I left the hospital I even remembered to pick up some cream on the way home.

Well time's a wasting and I gotta get packed. This will be my last blog entry until I get home Wednesday afternoon (if I'm up to it) or Thursday morning. I promise to have some photos of this epic adventure.

Bye-bye for now...

Monday, 22 May 2017

Catching up...

This past weekend wasn't too bad. Friday and Saturday were sunny and mild while Sunday was a bit of a washout, rain wise. 

I did manage to fix the railing after a fashion. The twenty minute repair took around forty because of unexpected issues. I had to work around the fact the original builder did a few funky things. For example the screws that held in the railing inserts were put in at an angle because he only had long screws. 
Nothing like making
it harder for the repair guy.
This forced me to use an old fashioned manual (poor baby) screwdriver and to work at an angle. The bottom of the railing was put together so that I couldn't get at the screws to take them out and with that take the inserts out. This forced me to go to a plan B and I hate it when I have to go to plan B.

People ask me why I carry a hunk of string in my pocket...
To get at the area I needed to replace I had to pivot the inserts out of the way and use the hunk of string I carry to tie them off. With this done I was able to cut off the two by four railing and the four by four post. I then measured the replacement pieces, cut them to length and installed them. Of course the new wood hasn't shrunk or weathered so there is a little difference in the size and colour but I can live with that.  

The finished product...

1st Farmer's market
of the year.
On Saturday we went out and about. First stop was to the farmer's market where we picked up a few goodies. It was nice, we saw some old vendors who have become friends and caught up with them. But then stomachs started to growl so it was off for breakfast at out favourite little diner. It had been a while since we were at the diner so over coffee and food we caught up with the owner. You could tell we had not been there for a while. I noticed a "new" jukebox and asked when that had gone in. Turns out it had been a while, the jukebox went in last November. Brunch done we saddled up and went home. 

A couple of hours later we were out and about again, having been invited over to our friend S's place for diner. It was a great combination of good friends and good food. One of the nice things about the visit was that two of her nieces were in town. Yet again we had some catching up to do. It was funny seeing the twins since the last time we had seen them they were a lot younger. Now at seventeen they're all grown up.  

Sunday and S brought the twins out and we met them at Scoops on the Bay, a snack bar/ice cream shop that's just down the road from our place. It was raining but that didn't stop us from having some goodies. 

Well there you have it, the weekend that was. So until tomorrow bye-bye.