Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Girls Days

Yes, yes, yes I do still keep this blog although you might not think so by the lapse in updating. I see that I haven't posted for over two weeks but it certainly isn't for lack of information...it's been a busy spot here lately.

Going back to catch you up I have to begin with the girls day we planned to the local island in our harbour. We arranged for the prodigal son to take us over in the mossing punt aka tour boat and started out with a warm, calm day as you can see here on the left as we are starting out in front of the house. It was a great trip with lots of hiking, laughing and good food. The western end of the island seen here on the right is a bit rougher and we were glad to have covered that in the morning while the sun was still shining. We experienced many different weather conditions in our day there as we had sun, showers, cloud and fog. We saw lots of sheep (of course) a few deer and evidence of rabbits but we were the only humans there all day. Here on the left we are enjoying our lunch buffet of pork sandwiches - homemade bread, mayo, lettuce, tomatoes - wine, fruit, yogurt, cookies and tea. Yum. Needed sustenance for all that trekking. And as you can see on the right the weather closed in as we made our way around the other end of the island and it was foggy and cool when the boy came looking for us at the agreed upon time. We weren't able to make it back to the beach as the tide had risen making two islands and he had to steer by compass to find our way home. We were all glad for a warm shower, supper and bed when we got home and glad it was a day trip and not the originally contemplated camping adventure we'd talked of. In thinking of all things island...I am pasting this link to a blog about another offshore island in our area:


The next evening saw us all invited out to a friend's for a farewell to some summer neighbours BBQ. Great to have someone else cook for you especially when it's planked sea trout and salmon, yummy salads and more. Ahhhh. Helped ease the pain of heading in early the next morning for the first of three 12 hour day shifts and they turned out to be humdingers to boot.

One day off and then two long nights. In between all these shifts somewhere one of the neighbours passed away and I was asked to do the eulogy for him. This required a few hours sleep in the morning, a trip to the funeral home for visitation to do some research, a stop by the grocery store to pick up my donation for the Fireman's Breakfast and some ingredients for supper and home in time to entertain one of our summer neighbours. It was a sad anniversary as it had been one year ago that her husband passed away - a toast in his honor was in order. Had a simple supper of barbecued hamburgers and corn with purchased cake and brownies she brought. The wine with supper caused me to nod off in my chair about 9 p.m. but other than that the evening went well. Up early to make sandwiches for the funeral reception, walk the dog and write the eulogy. Over to the funeral home in Florida like heat and the funeral home was packed with people standing in other rooms. The eulogy was well received and several of my coworkers who attended advised I'm nominated as the professional eulogy speaker from now on - we used to have a local woman who attended funerals for everyone to the point that a former coworker said she knew there'd be at least two people at her funeral her husband and Clarice. I told them just to call me Clarice now as they were making my head swell as in the following quote:
Delusions of grandeur make me feel a lot better about myself. Jane Wagner

There were a large group of truckers who attended the service for their fellow truck driver and they did a parade of trucks after the service which was quite moving as a farewell. The reception at the hall was wall to wall and so was the food. The temperatures were still 30+ when we left for home at 5 p.m. in time for me to get ready for work. Needless to say the night was a struggle after the events of the day.

I have enjoyed my day and a half off and the tropical weather that we have been enjoying with the temperatures only dipping to 18 c at night even. And speaking of tropical, we have had a few days of rough surf from Hurricane Danielle and are now awaiting Hurricane Earl which (at this time) is forecast to make landfall here on Friday night/Saturday morning. This has caused the shore captain to state that he'll be up all night chasing boats so doing a night shift as well as myself when Earl arrives.

I received an email from Amazon making it look like my Kindle has been shipped so in anticipation I downloaded the instruction manual and at 165 pages I have to say that it is not for the faint of heart....or my husband as he is more in tune with the 3 pages of the Kobo on how to get started. No sign of it in my mailbox yet but I'm getting pumped.

We also received an email from western friends who have managed (after a couple of years) to sell their place here. With the real estate and economy the way it is locally this was no small feat. Congrats!

I've spent some of my days off time getting my application in for the Rural Nursing Program which is a distance program beginning in January. This requires an application, cover letter, resume, copies of licenses etc. and a reference from the employer. Would be a nice certification to have if I do decide to run away from home for other parts.

Speaking of travels I've booked my airfare for the western jaunt next month and am listening to the Beach Boys sing Kokomo with the fan whirring to get into the mood. And no, we're not heading out in two days for England, Scotland and Wales as friends of ours are but that sure would be nice! As I prepare to head in for a day shift tomorrow and it's getting late so I must hit the sack - I'm going to remember the quote of the day to gird my loins.

I didn't say it was your fault. I said I was going to blame you.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Of Africans and Meteor Showers

Home in time from work to walk the fur daughter in a gorgeous sunset and am now enjoying a strawberry banana frozen treat which the life partner has pronounced "too healthy" although I notice he didn't hand his back to me.

Am thinking it's going to be an early night this p.m. as I stayed up late to try to catch the meteor shower last night. I actually saw about five or six of them when I eventually put on my glasses. At first I thought 'wow look at that one!' but when I got the specs I realized 'oh, it was an aircraft - best to get the bifocals'. It has been cooling off at night lately in the way August evenings do in these parts so I wrapped myself in what the kids used to call "the african" as in "Mom, Mom she's got the african and I'm cold and I want to watch Mr. Dressup now" a knitted blanket which others know as an afghan - and sat on the front doorsteps. This because the shore captain told me that "to the northeast is looking up the driveway". There were crickets singing, a few cheeps in the woods and the very occasional vehicle going by on the road making it very still and beautiful. Ahhh.

I found the link to a blog from someone who HAS already retired - having achieved the golden handshake apparently. It's good writing and interesting reading but the only question I have for the blogger is....if you're retired, how come you're only posting once a month eh?


Well, since I'm an older gal without as much time between now and the alarm I'm off to settle in with a few pages of my library book. Speaking of books and writing, the oldest daughter sent along a link which analyzes your writing style called I Write Like


And just for the record....I write like Arthur C. Clarke - you know of Space Odyssey 2001 fame.

Friday, August 13, 2010

Retirement four days at a time

I was reminded by the new bride that it's been a while since I updated the blog so time to get to it. Especially as I am headed back to work tomorrow for four shifts. The weather has been glorious so I have been pretending I'm retired each set of days off - the denial works until the alarm goes off tomorrow at 5:20 a.m.

Following the first LD of my set last week I crawled into bed after rubbing peppermint foot cream on my aching tootsies so enough said about those 12 hours. In between my days and nights there was a community BBQ at the local fire hall which was a good chance to get caught up on the local news. Speaking of news, as I was being walked by the dog my summer neighbour called out to tell me that she had a new granddaughter in California - one that she is going out to visit in a few weeks. One of our year round neighbours has taken up photography again (digitally this time) and dropped a lovely photo of our house taken from the end of the point in our mailbox. I wasn't long scrapbooking that into the final page of the house construction album, which is a splendid way to spend a few hours of a day off.

I have been dreaming of a getaway for this winter and trying to decide whether I'd like to get a new agent or try to pitch myself to the cruise lines on my own. Decisions, decisions. Since getting vacation time is often the struggle I'm going to ask for three weeks off in February and then try to fit something in. The three weeks I've requested for October for the western trip and the additional in the winter are not as greedy as they sound because I will still have another week of vacation which I will have to be paid out following that unless there is some real creativity in the recruitment process and quickly.

Last evening the life partner and myself were invited to the summer neighbours for supper and it was wonderful. Lasanga, bread, garden salad, and fruit cobbler ahhh. It was great not having to drive anywhere after enjoying the wine, good company and conversation and just wobble next door.

A nice way to finish up my days off was to spend the final one in a social venture. Headed over to my sister's this afternoon to assist in celebrating her 50th birthday. I made the required visit at the Dollar Store for helium balloons proclaiming Happy 50th birthday and Over the Hill, a Happy Birthday tiara and a fridge magnet to put in her card which said "I'm not 50 I'm 18 with 32 years experience". It was a beautiful warm summer afternoon and the shore captain even managed to fit in a break between activities to drop in (dressed for crawling in the engine room but one cannot be picky) for a visit and a yarn with his brother-in-law and niece's husband. My sisters three childhood friends arrived with a lovely collage they'd created of the four of them and it was just the same as if they were hanging out in our old house on the corner about 40 years ago. Her two daughters with the four grandchildren they have given her were present and I got to meet Grant Charles for the first time. He is a real snuggler and doing really well as he's past his birth weight at two weeks as you can see to the right.

A gorgeous sunset while the dog and I strolled was an excellent after supper activity....except for the mosquitoes. The bush trimmer had been in our area today it seems and riled up the biting insects. Apparently the meteor showers which have been on display the last two nights are expected to continue this evening but as the shore captain said "oh are they starting at 11 p.m. again? well we could set the alarm I guess" as we have yet to be awake when they streak across the sky. He has hit the sack but I am considering starting my library book - which my friend so kindly picked up for me in town - Late Nights on Air by Elizabeth Hay, which has been on my 'to read' list for some time so I may just see a few of them.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Strawberry muffins and showers

The weekend was taken up by two rather eventful and busy night shifts which are now behind me and I've earned my days off. The preceptor student brought in a feast of wrap sandwiches from a local spot complete with salads and fruit for her final shift. We did manage to eat and the sandwiches were a good choice as you can eat those with one hand while moving. Sunday I woke after my partial day nap to find it was sunny and warm so nice to get out and make the most of it. We have been having the most beautiful weather here this summer and it's been a few years since we have been, so thoroughly enjoying the gift.

Monday was a carbon copy of sun, gentle breeze and blue skies. Had a phone chat with the western friend we will be visiting in October and glad to provide a diversion to her drywall crack sanding. The other couple updated us that he did so well with his aortic valve replacement / coronary bypass that he was discharged home from hospital in four days. No reason to leave the paradise except to visit one of the summer neighbours next door. The dog and I headed over for a girls visit in the afternoon to check out her new skylight windows and have a little chat in her screened in veranda - which is incidentally a wonderful place to enjoy peach tea while enjoying the view. When the shore captain rumbled down our driveway in the ton truck loaded with grey insulated wharf boxes it was easy to call out that I'd be home for supper shortly but it certainly disorientated the fur daughter to hear his voice from afar. I was very relieved that the only son did return that evening with the catfood and kitty treats as requested because I would have been afraid to close my eyes that night if not.

There wasn't much closing of eyes for the night as it unrolled mind you. Here is the schedule:

Crawled into bed at midnight
Awoken at 10 to 4 by shore captain yelling at son to get up as he'd overslept for going fishing
Listened to the scrambling of the son taking 25 seconds to leave the house
Asked shore captain if he was going to call captain to say crewmember was late?
He declined.
Awoken again at 5 after 4 by captain looking for crewmember
Gave phone to shore captain (did not beat him over the head as I wanted to)
Crawled out on sofa at 4:10 to get some sleep - the insomniac bedmate was restless
Awoken at 5:30 by shore captain getting up to unload fish so crawled back into bed
Awoken at 5:45 by phone as work attempting to convince me I should come in for a LD
Declined due to an appointment and course and fell back to sleep until the 7:30 alarm

So I was up and off for an appointment, stopping at a farm market on the return and returning in time to putter for the afternoon as I paid bills online (yes that is something I can actually do now that I've joined the 21st century high speed internet wise) updated the Kobo e-book reader for the shore captain - and yes if you are wondering I have already ordered one of the new Kindle wi-fi for myself as that seemed like the best use of the bonus the preceptor program provides. I finished the day off by doing the First Responders CPR/AED recertification at the local hall. Much enjoy that to volunteering for bingo. The cleaning lady is an MFR and when I asked her for Friday this week (as I try to coordinate her visits with my work schedule) she agreed and then said "is one of your cats not there? the little black fellow always used to sleep in the basket" So I assured her he was well and a resident of New Brunswick now as last week was her fist visit since his departure.

Today I slept in and awoke to the sound of rain washing the windows, what a great way to spend a day off I thought. After I remembered that the shore captain had likely put Gary out before the deluge and resecued one very large, damp, irate cat off the back doorstep I felt less guilty. The sheets of rain were dumping down so hard the dog didn't bother to peek her nose out of her doghouse. I made strawberry muffins and enjoyed two with a cup of tea and am now contemplating heading out to the local museum to do some genealogy research - don't want to waste a sunny summer day on inside activities and they are only open until the end of the month.