Friday, November 18, 2011

Bears? Really??

You may not know this about me, but sometimes I need to learn things the hard way.

Alright, alright!  I admit it, I USUALLY need to learn things the hard way.  This week’s “key learnings” have been no different – and quite interesting.

At about 2:00 am Wednesday morning Jasmine woke me up by barking – there was some scuffling and banging outside, but I figured it was just kids messing around, told Jasmine to shut up, and went back to sleep.

When I took her out for her morning “constitutional” walk, there was nothing out of the ordinary (that I could see at 6am, in the dark) when we came back home. This in mind, we went inside and I got ready for work & exited the house… Wednesday is garbage day, so I went to get my garbage can and IT WAS MISSING! 

Those Damn Kids stole my garbage can!!!  Mumble mumble, curse curse,

A small side note? I *might* also be turning into a Grumpy Old Person.

I turned to get into my car and there it was, wedged between the car and one of the upright posts holding the overhang up… jammed in between actually… I walked around the car and saw the lid was off and the can was completely empty – the garbage bag vanished.

Hm.  Maybe it was not kids after all?

I picked up the can (which is plastic) and then the lid and THE LID HAS HOLES POKED IN IT – I MEAN HOLY CRAP – ARE THOSE TEETH HOLES???  F-ME – ARE THOSE BEAR TEETH HOLES???????

Wednesday was a Good Day – and around 10 in the morning, one of the ladies told me that it is “snowing like a bugger” out in Cumberland (where I live)


I do have to say it though, there was bloody HORRIBLE weather in Courtenay, all day – rain and wind and fricken cold… I sat in my office, hoping the snow would stick around until at least I got home and could let my dog outside to freak out in it and run around…

5:00 PM rolled around, and I headed home… driving along the connector highway I noted that lights were off – and an intersection light was out as well.


Closer to home, yup, more lights were out…


I pulled into Cumberland and ALL of the lights around were out.


I have a land line (thank God) – that (and the cell phone) is the only thing that will work when the power goes out.  I called Hydro and the power was hopeful to be back on around 6… apparently there had been an horrific car accident at about 10 in the morning that took out power to about 10 000 homes and businesses…

The power came on at about 20 minutes to 6:00, and the furnace a minute or two after that.

Key learnings from Wednesday?
  • Garbage can – MUST keep it in the house until garbage day – there really ARE bears out here and they really DO attack garbage cans for stuff. 
  • I need to learn how to put the chains on the tires of my car (you know, just in case)
  • I had to change “top priority” items on my “to do” list – the top item now is to have the chimney repaired & make certain the flue is in good shape and then get a wood stove (and a couple of cords of wood) because when the power goes out I have NO heat source in the house.
  • Candles won’t cut it when the power goes out – I also need some safety lights and maybe a Coleman stove (or something like that) that run on battery and “mini” propane tank power…
  • I have no salt – I NEED to get some salt. ASAP. For my driveway. It’s a sheet of fricken ice out there right now and I used the last of my old Sifto table salt to make the path to my car a little safer to walk on…

With love across the waters,

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Playing Catch-Up Post Head Cold

Ah yes, the dreaded head cold. It starts with a feeling that not everything is right with the world – sort of fuzzy in the brain with a side order of tired.

A week ago this past Friday it started – and I knew something was up when I realized, on the way to work, that I had completely zoned out while driving and ran a red light - lucky for me, my guardian angels were looking after me and there was no-one on the road to be put at risk by my lack of attention.

I left work around noon that same day and only finally made it back into the office yesterday – the following Saturday.  This head cold ran the short gamut from slightly sore throat to full-on laryngitis, clogged sinuses, coughing and sneezing – sometimes even accompanied by a bleeding nose from the aforementioned sneezing and coughing.


I’m feeling better – no longer contagious – but still stuffy and coughing and wearing out WAY too quickly to be considered normal.  I managed about 30 minutes of outside activity today – mostly chopping up already cut-down branches and then dragging them to the ever growing pile of yard waste that is waiting to be hauled away (once I am feeling better enough to participate in said activity)

So taking advantage of the restricted indoors time this week, I caught completely up on paperwork and filing that has been sitting in my top desk drawer since mid September.  I also re-arranged the office and sorted through some more items to try and get the office-come-spare-room into a more liveable space.

Wallpaper was ignored.

OK – wallpaper was sort of ignored.  I thought, finally, on Thursday, that I might have enough energy to maybe rent a steamer and have a go at removal of some of it in order to start seeing what might still be underneath – and also to allow me the chance to see just how much patching, mudding and sanding work might be required before I look to painting the space I live in with colours that might be more palatable to me.

Why Thursday? I went into town to the walk-in clinic to make certain I wasn’t carrying anything terrifically contagious (like the strep throat that has been cavorting around the Comox Valley) but by the time I finished a the walk in clinic (about an hour and a half after I got there – which was RIGHT at opening time – I was too wiped out to think about going to the tool place and renting the steamer.

I have some lovely, light, colours picked out for paint for the house. Two of the colours are ones I had and used in my house in Ontario – pale earth tones and yellow/golds. What I am thinking I will do is pick up some “tester” sized amounts of the paints I am thinking to use so that I can be sure that the colours I have picked will work for me for the spaces.

My highest priority space will still be the bathroom – have I mentioned the grey that is in there? Agh.  Just so you can see what I have to work with, here are some “before” pictures.

I had the light fixture replaced about a week and a half ago – just before I got sick – and the difference that just the lighting makes is pretty amazing. I got a little bored and did peel some of the wallpaper off – so it looks really grotty right now – I *may* just rent the steamer and get that particular space wallpaper-free sooner rather than later… primer and paint coats could be done in the evenings and the results would certainly be lighter and better than what it looks like…

Here are a couple with the new light – I’m not photographing well today – I can’t seem to do it justice, but trust me, three 100 watt bulbs shed WAY more light than one 38 watt bulb did!

Maybe, if I feel up to it tomorrow, I will rent a steamer for the day and tackle taking off that wallpaper…

With love across the waters,