Summer is here —

Monday, June 20, 2016 — 25˚C / 77˚F — sunny & muggy @4:30 pm in Atlantic Canada — I think I remember hearing somebody say that Summer arrives shortly after 7 pm Atlantic Time —

- "Walking" Jassper at 9:15 pm. Jassper has arthritis. We're supposed to be taking him for a walk for at least 20 minutes every day. Here, he made it about halfway up the slight hill on our street before he had to plunk down and rest from his pain. Happy walks and sniffing every squar millimeter in his neighbourhood aren't quite as much fun as they used to be, but if we can keep this up he probably will get better at it again.
– “Walking” Jassper at 9:15 pm. Jassper has arthritis. We’re supposed to be taking him for a walk for at least 20 minutes every day. Here, he made it about halfway up the slight hill on our street before he had to plunk down and rest from his pain. His happy walks and sniffing every square millimeter of his neighbourhood aren’t quite as much fun as they used to be, but if we can keep this up he probably will get better at it again.

I watched the Canadian dollar [ the ‘Looney’ ] rise a little, fall a little then rise again today – It ended last Friday at 0.7753 U$ dollars, then began this morning @ .07808 and rose to .7819 and fell back down to .7807 — Global News [ the Canadian television network ] reported that it finished the day @ .7807 – & CBC business news online said it was at .7815 at around 9 pm.  — So I guess you can reasonably assume that today wasn’t overwhelmingly interesting if I’m writing something like that here.

I did manage to finish screwing the plywood roof over the frame & beneath the heavy duty tarp [ the tarp that our neighbour gave us after I mentioned that we’d probably have to go out and buy one to protect the bare wood from the elements over the winter – one day this wonderful heavy duty tarp showed up beside the tool shed. 🙂 ] And I came through that with a thick layer of sweat weighing me down about ten pounds heavier than I started out. So I took a shower and sat near the air conditioner and watched last night’s brutal battle between Ramsay Bolton’s forces and Jon Snow & the Wildlings over again – then conked out and slept until something like 4:30 pm.

But at least I accomplished one impossible thing today. Finished the plywood roof all by myself without killing myself in the process.

And we had a nice talk with our neighbour, Connie Pond, when we were starting out to give our enthusiastic Jassper his adventure up and down the street. Apparently – the chipmunks that inhabit our stone wall have been planting oat seeds above their little caves – maybe they brought the oats home and thought they’d save them for a rainy day – then forgot where they left them? Connie is impressed.

— enough blogging for today?

~~~~~ Jim


St Mary’s Powwow

Sunday, June 19, 2016 — +31˚C / +87˚F & Oppresively hot out there at 4:38 pm in Atlantic Canada —

We finally got to one of the Powwows that St Mary’s First Nation holds every year around Father’s Day. We should have brought a lot more money with us. I was impressed with the dancers, especially the happy youngsters.
I'm not sure whether the videographer was with any of the local media outlets or there on his own, but he looked like he knew what he was doing and This photo gives me an opportunity so show a wide shot of the field and the dancers.
I’m not sure whether the videographer was with any of the local media outlets or there on his own, but he looked like he knew what he was doing and This photo gives me an opportunity so show a wide shot of the field and the dancers.
Another photo of the dancers in the field. The drums were amplified through a sound system and filled the area with their infnectious beat. Nobody was complaining about that.
Another photo of the dancers in the field. The drums were amplified through a sound system and filled the area with their infectious beat. Nobody was complaining about that.

Connecting the new Cell phone to this computer was aggravating and extremely counter intuitive. I had to give up on following directions and after I thought about pitching the computer out the nearest window something ‘fell into place’ – and actually worked. I could then up or download the photos into iPhoto ( not the latest and most aggravating Mac ) – only after I quit out of iPhoto and started it up again. That reminded me of the jerk in a commercial for dishwashing snar who swears up and down the woman will never get her pot clean if she doesn’t scrub it first, then claims that he’d told her that her pot would come out perfectly clean and shiny without scrubbing – Give up – think about shooting a computer and of course it snaps to attention and completes the recently impossible task, and tries to smile at you and claim, “See – all you had to do was follow my directions and you would have no problem at all – ”  [ grrrrrrr……. ]

And the first photo I took with my new Cell phone was of Cathi trying to get out of the parking lot with a bunch of drivers lost in their own day dreams and visions of getting home in time for dinner.
And the first photo I took with my new Cell phone was of Cathi trying to get out of the parking lot with a bunch of drivers lost in their own day dreams and visions of getting home in time for dinner. Full sized the picture is so detailed you can see each raindrop that fell on the driver’s door within the last six months.


— Yum —

~~~~~ Jim

Monday – Bring the Cat to the Hairdresser’s Day –

Monday, May 9th, 2016 — Colder than usual — 7˚C/ 44˚F @ 6:21 pm on a day that’s been on and off sunny and dark and splashed half a dozen rain drops on the windshield every now and then in Atlantic Canada — on uncle by marriage – Ed Conroy’s Birthday.

This is Moe – the 25 pound ‘Cat and a half’ – after his trip to the hair dresser’s. He’s checking out his cat treats, or maybe looking for fragments of cat treats he might have missed – and looks like a beast from a science fiction novel I read once.
Moe Hair.
No, this is not what’s left after you put a cat through a shredder – this is a small portion of Moe’s hair on the groomer’s floor.
Moe checkind his bowl of cat food.
– A little dark, I should have told the flash to do its thing, but this is one more angle of our newly trimmed ‘trouble is his middle name’ orange cat, Moe, as he’s looking at his dry cat food and trying to decide whether to shred us in our sleep for putting him through the indignity of having his matted hair shaved or let us live another day, possibly because we come through with some decent cat treats now and then.

— The round flower pot to the right and almost even with Moe’s nose is catnip that Cathi planted. We have more than once found Moe passed out cold with his arms around that flower pot and his nose deep in the leaves. We have had to hold our breath a couple times and pray that he was still breathing. Yup – he’s still alive.

— & Game Of Thrones Stuff —

— Should our Game Of Thrones Banner feature an orange cat wearing a purple cape?

— And – Regarding The Game Of Thrones last night, might be the quote of the week: When asked if he was still himself after having appeared very dead after being murdered by possibly well meaning ‘brothers’ of the Night’s Watch – Jon Snow replied, “I think so, don’t burn my body just yet.”

— & in the Game of Thrones speculation department – Bran and the Three Eyed Raven guy were watching an unven battle in which two Targaryen swordsmen { especially one knight – after his companion was pierced rather soundly – } nearly killed off something like eight Northmen, including Eddart Stark. Howland Reed, who we all thought was struck down, stabbed the Targaryen Knight (Ser Arthur Dayne?) in the back when it looked like Eddart Stark was about to lose his life – Then we heard a woman scream in a tower behind where this lopsided fight took place – and the Three Eyed Raven guy would not let Bran follow Eddart up into the tower ( not yet ? ) telling him that if he lingered too long in his visions he might never get back to his body — I’m wondering if that scream was Lyanna ( Eddart’s [ ‘Ned’s ] sister ) giving birth to Jon Snow – or both Jon and Meera? You wouldn’t believe the speculation going on around that one.

— & Yes, I agree – There may be way too much to cover for HBO to finish off the entire story in seven seasons.

— & I have too much to say, but I’m aching and tired and need to rest – So – “Au plaisir -”

~~~~~ Jim

Early Morning – April 21, 2016 – Is The Sun In Taurus?

Thursday, April 21, 2016  — // +5˚C / 41˚F @ 8:19 am on a bright sunny morning with clear air and clear blue skies in Atlantic Canada —

Puffy purple clouds just before sunrise.
We had a few puffy clouds before sunrise, this was at 6:24 am Atlantic Time here.
Deer Hill before the deer arrived today.
This is a different shot of the ‘Deer Hill’. Taken while leaning just over the dog’s fence – with a bit of the house showing on the extreme right.
Several deer grazing on the 'DeerHill'.
Committee Breakfast – 7:25 am. The white deer reflected so much light I had to darken the exposure slightly using the limited tools available in the Preview App.

— There are bits of the white deer’s hair visible to the right of the three or four deer clustered near the center of the photo. I am hoping this wasn’t the result of a deer fight – They’ve had a few kicking sessions, fighting over who gets to eat first. The older deer seem to kick the young ones gently enough – as if they think of that as a ‘gentle reminder’. ‘Whitey’ gets chased away a lot – he or she seems not to be very high on their social scale. Sometimes ‘Whitey’ comes around with one other guy, who looks pretty scruffy – we wonder if these are the ‘outcastes’ or low deer on their totem pole.

— I measured the distance from the corner of the porch to the top of the hill there. At a point that’s just about the edge of the shaggy grass near the right edge of the mini ‘cliff’ in this photo – that point is 12 feet from the corner of the porch. The deer might be another three to six feet from that edge. Fifteen to eighteen feet from the window?

— Sigh. We’re still feeling the effects of knowing that my mother is adjusting to her life in ‘the next world’. Best reports from those I trust to know what that’s like ( I can’t remember, myself – ) report that it can take from a couple weeks to six months before new arrivals ‘on the other side’ go through their orientation and feel comfortable enough to try to get messages through to us over here. Latest explanations are along the lines of “First they relive every pain they ever felt, then they are helped to see and feel every pain they ever caused any other living being.” Um – I won’t be able to verify that for you until after I’ve been through it (again?) And then you’d probably have to be in the same world, same dimension I’ll be in if you’d want to be able to understand what I was trying to tell you. { Go play “The Seeker” by The Who. }

— Enough for today? — Hope I didn’t bring you down completely.

~~~~~ Jim

After The Rain — The River Is High

Wednesday, April 13th, 2016 — // +8˚C / +46˚F — Sunny & bright with clear air and mostly blue skies in Atlantic Canada @ 6:19 pm —

Sparkling sunlight reflections on a river.
Sunlight sparkling reflections on the St John River at the Fredericton North Side Boat Launch (Carleton Park?) @ 4:41 pm today, Wednesday, 13 April, 2016 – We’re at a minor flood stage, those are trees out there in the sparkly stuff.

— We got out to go get a couple things today, and to check out the “Re-Store” – The Habitat for Humanity store on the North Side, which is now in the store front that used to be Sears – Where we bought our snow blower the first winter we were here. We stopped by the boat launch after the Giant Tiger store, and got a couple decent photographs of the river in a not-very-threatening minor flood stage this afternoon.

Soggy park grass in the foregroung, slightly flooded river with walking bridge in the background. High school women taking selfies at the water's edge.
This is looking more to the south, with the walking bridge in the distance. I had taken several steps ‘inland’ and tried to get a shot that shows the bigger trees out in the water looking that way as Cathi was heading back for the van. The high school aged women at the water’s edge were taking selfies with a selfie stick. It almost looks like they’re out in the water here.
St John River at Fredericton in a minor flood stage, April 13, 2016.
This is looking more to the North and West from about the spot I was standing when I took the top photo in this article.The Westmorland Street Bridge is back there in the distance. You can see a large branch that has floated down stream and been stopped from coming ashore by the trees out there.
Wide shot of the river, Fredericton South and Cathi for scale.
And this is looking down the bit of road that is an extension of Gibson Street. We’re looking at the South side of Fredericton on the other side of the river. There is quite a bit of parking lot and boat launch ramp under water beyond Cathi’s silhouette out there. We’re looking a little bit south of directly west, This was at 4:39 pm today. You can see the snagged branch on the right. The bicycles belong to the young women who were out at the water’s edge taking selfies, and then scaring a bunch of seagulls into the air to use them as a background for another selfie. We are surrounded by artistic, creative people here. 🙂

— And, this is probably enough for today, I haven’t had a lot to say since my mother went exploring life on the other side of the veil last Friday morning. It’s good to get out and have interesting things to look at and photograph –

~~~~~ Jim

April 8th, 2016 – Heaven Has A New Angel

tall guy with his arm around his mother's shoulders on a bridge with a river with waterfalls as backdrop.
Photo of me (Jim) and Mom (Gramma Dot) taken by Cathi Harris -probably in the summer of 2004 – at or very near the old Fergus Market, in Fergus, Ontario.

{{ April 8, 2016 — // +4˚C / 38˚F Dark, Damp and mostly cloudy in Atlantic Canada @ 11:59 pm — // Vicki (née Joyce)’s Birthday – 55th anniversary of the day Mom told me our baby sister, Nancy, was on her way – and 55th anniversary of our house catching on fire from a short-circuit upstairs on Huntington Road in Stratford, Connecticut. — }}

— She wrote her class song – was either the salutorian or runner-up to the salutorian at her high school graduation in 1941 – She told me when I was in high school that she was amazed that any of the ‘popular kids’ in her school would remember her being there, but that some had actually claimed to have been her friend in high school.

— She endured too many years of brutal brow beating and constant enraged verbal abuse during her 47 years of marriage to a 6 foot three-inch 250 to 300+ pound bully of a man. She put up with more from my father, her husband, than anybody could reasonably be expected to- and still stuck with him until his end, in 1995 – from his second heart attack, which came about after twenty years of disability and asthma due to work related hazards and not so bright life style choices. [ Stupid me – I had been out and happy for years and came back home when he got on the phone and said he needed my help – and I got sucked in, couldn’t buy a job for a couple years, then developed my own PTSD complications and couldn’t have held a job if I could buy one. So I spent the last two years of my father’s life as one of those unpaid home health workers you hear a lot about these days. After he died I gradually recovered to the point where I began by doing volunteer work at a local Community Based Radio Station – WPKN 89.5 FM in Bridgeport, Connecticut – and video production at the local public access video studio in Bridgeport. and then Part time work, painting houses and doing web work and clerk work for a Yoga Center in Hamden, Connecticut. ] — Mom aged at least fifteen years in front of me in those last couple years – My father was nothing like an ideal patient. I was afraid she was going to leave us before he did. But when he did go, even though we had twenty years of knowing he could go any time, any day – it tore us both inside out. I went to sleep the night he died listening to Mom’s breathing through a baby monitor and as I fell between wakefulness and sleep I could swear I heard a voice saying, in time to her breaths – “Dot Lives! Dot lives-” I dreamed that night that I came down stairs from meditating in what looked like a converted store front apartment with more rooms upstairs. My sister Sharon was there, smiling and Mom was half asleep in a wooden rocking chair, aware enough to smile at me and wearing what had to be her favorite blue bathrobe and warm slippers. I thought that meant that Mom would live in some kind of arrangement with Sharon and me being there, maybe I had an apartment upstairs? As it turned out, Mom went to Alaska and lived with Sharon for a couple years after Dad died, came back east when Sharon’s second husband, Gary had a job offer that brought them to Maine. The job turned out to be something that couldn’t actually support the family of the guy who owned the company, and Gary, Sharon and four boys would have starved if they tried to make that go – They went back to Alaska, And Mom went with them – Volunteered as a ‘Foster Grandparent’ at a grammar school where Sharon was a Teacher’s Aide – She told them she could only do this temporarily and as soon as she could afford to – she would be going back home to Connecticut. – The Principal called her into his office on her birthday – Told her to sit down, he had to go over some issues with her performance – tried to look stern and scary – then sighed and smiled and said, “All I can say is – you’re perfect for this kind of work – and we wish we knew what we could say or do to keep you here-” Then said he was going to walk her back to class – When he led her into the hallway, Every child in the school was there sitting in a half circle and they all called out at once, “Happy Birthday, Gramma Dot!” and all came up and handed her their hand-made birthday cards and got a special hug. Mom went home with Sharon and cried happy tears reading all the cards and the next day at school announced, “Well – ya got me – How can I leave after this?” and spent some of the happiest years of her life making a real difference in the lives of young students who needed her help and who loved her, while she loved them back and kept telling me stories about her favorite kids and every one of them was her favorite. She told us then, that she’d always wanted to be a teacher, but when she’d grown up and gotten married, everybody told her she couldn’t do both, she could either be a wife and a mother or a teacher. She opted for the wife and mother path.

— Everybody knows this life is too short. Everybody knows it has to end some time. I keep screaming that our pets should be immortal. Our loved ones should be bullet proof and immortal. But we all know the end has to come some time. This universe often seems to have been ingeniously designed to prove to us that we would much rather be in heaven.

— Skype – Mom was delighted by the ability to see and talk to her children and friends on Skype. My baby sister, Nancy, a recently retired Physical Therapist – let us know on Monday that she’d talked to Sharon and Mom wasn’t doing so well. Nancy jumped on a plane and flew to Alaska to be there. I got on Facebook and tried to tell everybody I knew what was happening with Mom. [ Turns out one message to one cousin never actually got sent, whether I missed when I clicked the ‘send’ or ‘post’ button or whatever happened it was sitting there asking me if I really wanted to leave that page when I shut the browser down a couple hours ago so I could write this – and as it faded into the ozone I realized the reason it tried to warn me that maybe I shouldn’t leave that page, was because it hadn’t been sent, whether I had been absolutely sure it had been or not. ] — But, anyway – Nancy got there, and Mom rallied – They asked me if I wanted to Skype and yes, of course I did. Mom was there, looking tired, but responsive and aware and giving me hugs and sign language “I Love You”-s and she’s had a problem speaking for the last year or so, atrophied tongue or something. She couldn’t swallow all that well either. When she tried to say something and my sisters thought they knew what she was saying I asked if she needed to write something down and she nodded, yes – she did – they found her some paper and a pen or pencil and she wrote down, “I don’t feel good.” And I told her to go rest, do what she needs to do, we will be all right – and she gave me another hug and another sign language “I Love You”. And they ended the Skype session.

— The next day, Thursday, Nancy sent me Instant Messages that Mom had a bad night, she couldn’t sleep, couldn’t hardly breathe, kept using a machine to get liquid gunk out of her lungs. And then wouldn’t eat her last two meals.

— When Nancy got up to check on her at 2 something am this morning, Alaska Time – she was gone. Nancy said she’s at peace. One of my cousins can’t stand the phrase, “Rest In Peace” but in this case, that just might apply. Of course we face some stupid b.s. as money grabbers try to convince us that we need to give them money in order to comply with b.s. laws they pushed for and then spend extra money because we don’t want to just let them do what they want to do and then send us the astronomical bill for it. Believe me, when these guys want to get to Heaven they will face a huge mob of angry people with spiritual clubs and hammers and slings and arrows that even Shakespeare couldn’t imagine.

— But –

— Our usually hyper insistent and needy pets have been amazingly quiet and supportive today. Like they know what happened.

— And. — There has been an amazing outpouring of Love and Sympathy in social media and email. Zuckerberg’s spy machine really is good for something positive. It’s amazing how much love and good feelings can come through the stupid freakin internet.

— And I should try very hard to end this on a positive note. Yes I am weird and yes I have had dream-contact with relatives who have passed before and I am looking forward to happy conversations with my mother, who will probably look like a twenty year old next time I see her – Angel wings or not- I’ve already been talking to her – telling her that if there’s anything I can do to help her adjust to her new level of existence, just ask –

— The following photos were uploaded to facebook by our Cousin, Mike Toronto :

Mom on a swing in 1943
Mom on a swing, in black and white – from 1943 – Photo uploaded to facebook by cousin Mike Toronto.

— heart – heart – heart – heart – heart —

Bev - Grace? - Mom
Left to right: Aunt Bev [Beverly Borden Toronto], Aunt Grace? [I thought it looked more like Aunt Carol – and Mom , posing on the carpet at what has to be their old family home at 1856 Main Street in Stratford. The house was converted into a multi apartment structure after Grandpa and Gramma Borden sold it to buy a Motel and restaurant in Vermont in 1964. U can’t tell what year this was. { Thanks to Cousin Mike Toronto Again }
Debi, Mom, Uncle Bob & Reggie in the living room at 1856 Main Street in Stratford.
Mom holding cousin Debi Borden ( now Debi Borden-Miller ) with Uncle Bob and Aunt Reggie, probably in 1958. But – Robert C Wellington III – (our brother) was born on July 20th of 1958, Debi was born in March of 1958. Mom does not look several months pregnant in this photo.

Me Dad Sharon Mom Ricky.
Left to right: Me, Dad, Sharon, Mom & Cousin Ricky [ Patrick Conroy ] Most likely in the living room at 1856 Main Street again. Best guess might be 1956 or 57?
Dad, Me, Mom, Sharon -Christmas Tree.
Left to right : Dad, Me [ Jim ], Mom & Sharon at Christmas time [can’t guess the year] in what looks like Aunt Bev & Uncle Larry’s Living room on Laurel Street in the Lordship section of Stratford. Bev and Larry Toronto were Sharon’s & my God Parents and Mike’s parents.
Gramma Carol, Mom & Grace apres or avant cruise.
Grandma [ Dorothy Brooks Borden ], Aunt Carol [ Carol Borden Davidson ] Mom [ Dorothy Eleanor Borden Wellington ], & Aunt Grace [ Grace Borden Conroy ] on the pier in New York City – I believe this would be them returning from a cruise to Bermuda – in the 1980’s? – Another photo from Mike, { Thank You Mike! }
Mom and dad dancing.
Dad [ Robert Carlson Wellington Jr ] Dancing with Mom [ you can only see her back here ] at Bev & Larry Toronto’s 25th Wedding Anniversary party. I can’t remember what year this was.
— I have to thank Cousin Mike Toronto for these last seven photos – some of which I don’t think I’ve ever seen before. ( A couple I might have tried hard to forget? 😉 )

— Thank You Mike! —

{{ 4:44 pm Atlantic Time on Saturday, April 9th, 2016 — Notably absent – so far – are photos with our sisters Diane and Nancy – and our brother ‘Nob’ [ Robert Carlson Wellington III ] – If anybody has some photos of them – especially with Mom – please let me have them so I can add them here – }}

Bob & Mom.
Bob sent me this one : “This was from a race in Niantic. I was amazed that she stood outside for 30 minutes waiting for me to finish, and of course didn’t complain about a thing.”
Sent from his iPhone

— Bob took up running for his health and it looks like Mom went to see him finish a race in Niantic, Connecticut the last time she was ‘back East’. Bob sent me this photo on Sunday after I sent him an emailed version of this article with the plea for photos from those who hadn’t been represented here yet. Cathi said, “That’s a wonderful photo!”

~~~~~ Jim

Easter Monday, 7:30 am Grey And Speckled

Snow-Speckled Windshields, ice on the ground.
Lookin’ toward the house on a speckled grey morning. Took me longer to process this morning’s photos than to take them. But that’s always been the case, hasn’t it?

— Easter Monday Morning, March 28th, 2016 — // 0˚C / +30˚F — Grey and quiet @ 7:45 am on this Holiday Morning in Atlantic Canada —

Jassper staring through his fence.
Jassper, surveying his world, looking for something to boof at.

— Last night we binged on the second half of the season’s “You, Me & The Apocalypse” – A British TeeVee production? Wonderfully done, leaves way too many loose ends. Who’s in the box? Do the characters left for dead find a way in? Is the Grandmother really as evil as we think she might be? Do I have to write my own sequel in my head? Should I have the characters jump out of their script and hold the writers and producers hostage until they all get their happiest endings? What would that look like? Hmmmmm —–

Path from the deer hill to the garbage can at the edge of the driveway.
It really is kind of very grey and gloomy this morning. And slippery. And this area’s garbage men don’t get a break. I think they even had to work Christmas and New Years Day. Last week’s ice storm didn’t kill us, but it left a slick surface behind.
Street and Sky looking East.
— Hints of possible colour in the sky above Canada Street. The road really isn’t this flat here, but everything looked warped until I ‘straightened the horizon’ with iPhoto’s editing tools.

— & the love of my life was on the phone with ‘support’ at her tax prep software’s contact help line yesterday, getting frustrated as she realized the depths and levels of insidious corporate fascism. They are constantly trying to make things more difficult in order to con you into abandoning they ‘free’ versions in favour of mortgaging your soul to how many freakin corporations at the same time? If the punishment really fit their crimes, what sort of torture could they look forward to as they attempt to waltz into the happy hunting grounds? Having molten lead or gasoline poured onto their private parts? With the gasoline comes a gauntlet of everybody they so delighted in screwing out of their disposable income during their ‘careers’ down here in this proximity to hell? Grumble grumble grumble.

— & more of yesterday’s not-so-pleasant insights into ‘human nature’ – On Saturday – The Canadian Tire store on the north side here – twice we went in there with a $10.00 deposit bottle to bring back when the $4.99 10 gallon/18.9 litre bottles of spring water were unavailable at our favourite ‘big water’ store. Twice the cute young front line cashiers tried to charge us for that deposit as if we had no bottle to return. This time the cashier turned to a ‘colleague’ for help and when the colleague called in the correction routine, the cash register again tried to charge us for the deposit even when told we had a return bottle that should have taken care of that. After we squawked again the more experienced cashier had to walk over and manually do something on the newer cashier’s register to make the ten dollar charge go away. And on our way out the senior cashier gave us such a dirty look it made me feel like she believed we were cheating her children out of any possibility of eating healthy stuff this week by not letting Canadian Tire cheat us out of ten freakin dollars. Is this a systemic rip off? — Couple that with the fact that Cathi spent what at least felt like two hours on the phone with the ‘support’ guy at the tax preparation software’s help line only to have the guy finally tell her that she screwed up by trying to do both hers and my taxes with the ‘free’ version of their software = which the support guy said will only do one person’s taxes. This is after several years of that free version doing both her and my tax snar with no problem at all. Do you remember the angels briefing you on what life on earth would be like this time around? Do you remember anybody up there telling us that we were here only to give the greedy someone more to fleece? [ Nobody who’s had a Near Death Experience came back believing they should have worked harder, or spent more time and energy accumulating wealth. They always came back feeling like love, nurturing each other, and compassion were the important things to live and learn in this life.

— Enough of my schnarr for now? –,

~~~~~ Jim

It’s The Saturday Morning After A Not-Quite-Killer-Storm — & We’re Still Alive –

Saturday, March 26th, 2016 — //  -2˚C / +27˚F with very bright sunlight reflecting on very white crust of ice & with very clear air in Atlantic Canada @ 9:14 am. — Had to restart my MacBook, it crashed and didn’t tell me why —

Icy Driveway
This is the kind of thick icy crust we loved as kids because we could walk on top of the snow. But this morning poor Jassper could barely walk around and keep his legs from flying out from under him.

The Morning After A Day In Which The World Did Not End?

— Yesterday, just minutes after I posted a photo and a short blurb about us expecting an all day freezing rain event, like the one that dumped 30 cm of ice on Fergus, Ontario – where my travel trailer lived for the first three years that I was in Canada – Um, Jassper went outside to pee and I started getting him and the orange cat’s breakfast ready – and heard what sounded like a summer downpour that you’d hear through open windows ( taking for granted you had screens in your windows to keep the bugs out and let the breezes in? ) And when I looked out through the porch door, we had a hell of an ice pellet event happening. I went to let Jassper back in, he was standing outside in his ‘dog run’ area, just standing there, looking stunned and perplexed about what was happening. After I clapped my hands and yelled something like, “Don’t you have enough sense to come in out of the sleet?” he turned to me, smiled, said, “Oh yeah, you southerners call this ice pellet stuff ‘sleet’ don’t ya?” – tried to gallop, didn’t quite fall with legs all flailing in different directions, did manage to get to the stairs, did manage to climb up and get back into the house, managed to get to the kitchen, began chomping on his morning ‘crunch crunch’ dry food and absolutely loved having me towel off all the little ice crystals he brought back in with him. The next time I looked the weather had almost become tame, and had become more like tiny ice crystals mixed with small droplets of ‘freeze on contact’ rain. — Not long after that, maybe after Cathi managed to claw one eye open and stumble around in her bathrobe – the weather network had revised its prediction from 20-30 cm of ice pellets and freezing rain down to less than 10 centimeters of mixed precipitation. More than a hundred thousand customers in Ontario lost electricity. Our lights never blinked here. And that’s amazing.

— But my laptop had an anxiety attack while I was busy with something else and right now it’s worrying about a hard drive it says I have to eject or initialize. I clicked, “ignore it you stupid computer routine!” and it said, “okay, we’ll just continue to try to open it for you…. backup usb hard drive? We were just testing you, Are you sure you don’t want us to erase everything you’re storing on that thing? I mean, if we can’t upload it to the NSA – you shouldn’t be able to hang on to it, should you-?” And I grumbled, “Oh Eff Off!” and it said, oops, sorry, wrong routine- we’ll work on this…”

Icy World One
Ice on the branches, Ice on the ground. Looking toward Canada Street at a little bit after 9 am this morning.
Ice World Two - More of the dog run.
And, looking slightly down and to the right of the picture above this one. This is the ice-scape inside the ‘dog run’ where Jassper had to try to navigate around this morning. He kind of hugged the fence and leaned heavily on it as he stepped gingerly along, looking for a safe place to pee without falling and sliding indignantly around on his haunches or his side- He managed to remain upright, but was real happy to see the door open, and then climbed the stairs very carefully and happily came inside, ran to the fridge and wanted a treat. He wasn’t impressed with what I gave him, dropped it on the floor and sighed and stumbled back to lie on the floor in the bedroom. It might be a dog’s life, but that isn’t always the most exciting life in this world….  —jrw—

— Catch ya later? –,

~~~~~ Jim

I Still Don’t Know Why They Ever Called This “Good” Friday.

Deserted deer hill on a grey morning.
9:23 am. First hints of Freezing Rain and Ice Pellets began falling here. It’s quiet, grey and damp outside on this ‘Good Friday” morning.

Nasty Freezing Rain Event Beginning In Atlantic Canada?

— Good Friday, March 25th, 2016 — //  -5˚C / +23˚F —grey and damp and just beginning to unleash our forecast Freezing Rain event here in Atlantic Canada @ 9:23 am.

— The dog threatened to jump up on top of me on the bed if I didn’t get up and let him outside. I did, get up and let him out. The fire was still going in the woodstove. The outside world was grey and still. I opened the door and let the dog out, he ran to his fence and started barking at a dog visiting a neighbour we barely know, down on the corner, across from our good friend next door with all his wood piles-

— I watched the weather network news and saw horror story freezing rain clips from Fergus, Ontario — Very near where we parked my travel trailer when I first came to Canada. They got an inch of freezing rain there yesterday. (30 cm?) and with a lot of branches down and power lines broken – it will be some time before they get their power back up and running. There’s something like 100,000 people without electricity in Ontario right now..

— And the forecast models project Frederticton to Miramichi “being in the bull’s eye” for the worst of today’s ‘Freezing Rain Event’ in the Maritimes. I think we brought plenty of fire wood from the shed to the porch last evening, so we probably won’t freeze to death, but we may be off the grid for a while.

— Healing intentions going out to my good friend Pamm from my old Post Office days.

— & For some reason, I just felt really close to my Brother, Bob. Long Distance Spiritual Hugs going out to everybody. Catch yas on the other end of whatever weather we get today –


~~~~~ Jim

Tuesday, March 22nd, 2016 — Happy Anniversary to Cathi and Me —

Happy Birthday, Cousin Debi in Colorado — & Happy Anniversary Jim And Cathi in New Brunswick

House with shoveled walk to porch. Glowing Deer eyes to the right.
— I didn’t see the glowing green Deer Eyes in the dark (right side behind the porch) until I downloaded this photo from the cell phone camera this morning. I took this photo at 12:42 am. -jrw-

— Tuesday, March 22nd, 2016 — //  -7˚C / +18˚F with brilliant Sunshine and very clear air over very white snow on the ground in Atlantic Canada @ 9:09 am —

Cathi getting into van.
Cathi getting ready to drive to work while sunlight touches the treetops behind her. 7:43 am

— The sunlight touching trees at sunrise has been really spectacular in the last couple weeks. The clean new snow might even add to the ‘clean’ look, and the clear fresh air might help give me the feeling that exciting things are happening below the surface of things.

Dog with glowing yellow-white eyes reflecting flash.
Jassper’s eyes were not glowing like this when I saw the photo through the cell’s window. I pushed the icon – Jassper looked up, the Orphan Annie headlights flashed on and – I suppose that could be scary —

— Jassper took me for a walk up and down the street after midnight this very early morning. Then he was a bit disappointed that he couldn’t help me shovel the ridge left by the over-night plow when I went out to clear the end of the driveway at 6:30 am. ( The photo in the dark at the top of this article was taken after our midnight walk. )

Shoveled driveway at 7:36 am.
— And this was the driveway at 7:36 am ( time stamped cell photo ) I took a couple photos straight on and thought this one, shot on an angle, was more interesting. —jrw—

— At midnight the snow pile at the left of this photo looked more like a mini Matterhorn – & I didn’t realize the pile on the right side of the photo here grew so high so quickly.

different angle at sunrise
& This is an angle I haven’t taken and/or posted here before – The south face of our house caught a bit of reflected sunrise and I caught that in a photo I was in the right place at the right time to shoot at 7:39 am this morning. —jrw—

— The bit of golden glow above the hills to the east and below the slightly darker than it shows up here sky didn’t quite come out the way it looked in ‘real life’.

Moe cuddling with Cathi's slippers.
— & I couldn’t post anything here without including Moe. I may have hinted that he often hugs Cathi’s boots, shoes and slippers as he rests on the porch, but here you can see that for yourself. He’s also taken to trying to cuddle up with the fire wood we bring inside the porch to dry bits of snow and ice and have them handy for burning in the wood stove in the evenings.

— I should also tell you the wind picked up this morning after Cathi went to work, so when the dog went out to pee before his breakfast, which he is quick to remind me every day, should be at 10:00 am sharp – he came back in completely speckled with bits of ice and snow all over his head and back. And, boy, did he look daffy. I think he knew that – and capitalized on the sympathy he thought he might be able to garner from that. — & he does enjoy getting rubbed with a towel.

— And maybe I should mention some of the wild dreams I had that kind of go along with “11-22-63” the television series, where I was contemplating re-setting bits of altered time lines. & Before I fell asleep, I was surprised to visualize very bright light beaming down from the Eastern night sky and lighting up brilliant white light ‘domes’ – kind of geodesic domes that illuminated spots inside my body, like where my spine aches a lot – where, for instance, my T-4 vertebrae is slightly twisted out of line from a weird bit of wrestling with a friend in Vermont – and when Moe jumped up on the bed I glanced his way and he looked like he’d been hit by one of those beams of brilliant white light and was glowing whitely in the dark. And then I had the serial dreams along the theme of correcting messed-with time lines. I’m not sure exactly what the complete message that those dreams brought me or might have been supposed to bring me – was – but I’m not sure that the complete and clear message didn’t sink in below the surface of my ‘conscious’ mind, either.

— shrug — Enough for now? –, It’s 10:32 am – I’ve been distracted by pets and stuff –

~~~~~ Jim