Sunday, August 30, 2015


I got home yesterday, it was a good trip, but the longest stretch was from Banff to Rocky not sure why. I did make good time got in around 6 or so. I went to Tim and Courtney's for visit. Tim was not home but Courtney gave me tea and we had a very nice talk.  Then back to T, G and J's house. The bed was very comfortable, I really like the job you did decorating the room, the head board is great.  Next day I carried on to Edmonton and Henry and Ally's new house. It is very nice. Henry was out fishing so Ally and I got caught up , it was a very nice visit. I took a couple of pictures I will try and add to the post. Then Ally made me breakfast then off on my last leg of the journey, got home about 4 and Wilf had just got in we spent the night trading stories of our travels. He had a good visit to Montreal, said it was great to see the fellows again. Sounds like they might do it next year in Halifax. I think that would be fun.
I have put a lot of kms on the car this year but they were all worthwhile kms including the most recent 3199.3.  

Saturday, August 29, 2015

Stormy Tofino

It was rainy all over the island today which I am sure is a relief for all the residents since it has been so dry. Maybe not so great for visitors but it's hard to resent it when it is so needed.
We had an uneventful trip here from the port, although the back seat was a bit crowded. We stopped at our apartment on the way in as it is a bit outside town. Very nice place and well equipped. They even provide beach towels and chairs.
Will was there to greet us and we finally got to meet Ally, who is every bit as nice as Grace said. Out for supper, then we here slept in on Friday. Anne and Del went kayaking in the afternoon and the rest of us went to the beach as we saw that rain was in the forecast for the weekend. On Friday we went out whale watching and to the hotsprings which you find at the end of a half hour walk through the rain forest after being dropped off at the dock. It was a beautiful walk along a good boardwalk. I love the rainforest. The hot springs themselves were great. They are natural, coming out of the rocks and flowing down other rocks into the sea. There are a series of pools that get cooler as they descend. It was so much fun. Will and Ally thoughtfully packed w lunch for us - they even brought ice cream in a thermos. On the boat we saw four or five orcas playing, some sea otters and sea lions.
Stephanie and Anne's friend Valerie and her husband arrived on Friday to see Anne since Tofiino is the only place she will be on Canada this trip. There was not room on our boat tour for them but they took another one that some hotsprings time overlapping with ours.
The rain started last night. Geoff and I drove into Nanaimo to visit John and Dick and Jo. John is not doing well, he doesn't eat. He is in the hospital in a regular room. He was in palliative care for a while but they took him out and put him back in a regular room because his death "isn't imminent." But he is not going to get well so he should be as supported and comfortable as possible. It comes down to money I suppose.
On the way back we saw a black bear run right across the road in front of us.
Picture below is at hot springs.

Thursday, August 27, 2015

Am home

Drive home went fine, though we were all tired. The shuttle did not show up, Laura called, went to voice mail, Mom looked like she would collapse, so we took a cab. However, the hotel paid for cab ride! we were supposed to be picked up at 1030, shuttle company called at 1 pm, and left message saying it wasn't their fault as ship came in early. then I guess they shoulda told us they would pick us up early, shouldn't they? Anyway, we were happy to get home (at least Mom and me, Laura still en route home), and sleep in own bed!
Mom and I still have cold-sneezle. But mine, just head cold.
Had such a great time on cruise! sent in my review and commended our crew.
So smoky here from fires in washington. Today was better,but last night, couldn't see mountains. And there is new fire on mountain near us and I can see big plume of smoke. When I saw it, I thought, my cruise with 78 gallons/mile, adds to global warming. sigh.
Though I did look up working conditions for Holland America, and it seems that they treat people well.

Thursday, August 13, 2015

Enough live music for a while

I have heard lots of good music over the past couple of weeks but as I commented to Grace at folkfest, after a while you need to step back from it for a bit.
We saw John Fogerty in Red Deer. He's pretty energetic for a 50-year-old, never mind that he is actually 70. It was a good concert even though Geoff had to tell people in front of us to sit down so we could see. Tim went too and he said that he has seen lots of concerts, but this one was the best he has been to. There was a real mix of ages in the audience.
Then there was folkfest. It has been many years since I was able to be at the whole thing from start to finish. The weather forecast was not very good but the forecast was wrong because it was warm and sunny the whole time. Maybe too hot in the afternoons. When the lineup was announced in June there were not many names I recognized so a lot of artists were new to me. But now I have some new favourites. There was this one band from Mongolia, Hanggai, who were amazing. I would have missed them if my friend Linda hadn't recommended them.
Geoff only came a couple of days so we (meaning Laura and Grace) sold the tickets for the days he didn't come. It was really good to see Laura, Grace and Dallyn for the weekend, it was a good time to visit. I am sure Dallyn and Grace were glad to come home to an empty house on Wednesday after work. We sure appreciated their hospitality.
Grace was off work on Monday so we went to Fort Edmonton Park for the afternoon. It was great, although hot again. We met Jude, Allison, Grace, Sam, Henry and Aly for supper that night and a had a good time visiting with all of them. Forgot to say that we went to see Auntie Kay and Uncle George on Friday, always good to see them.
Geoff had a CT scan in Red Deer on Tuesday so we drove down for that, then back to Edmonton so I could go see Mumford & Sons with Jude, Grace and Dallyn. That was a wonderful concert even with the talkers around us. It was so good I even stood up for part of it, along with everyone else so I did not block anyone's view.
This Saturday is the Crimson Lake Trail Run. Gail who I used to work with decided not to head the run up this year and we thought it might have to be cancelled but a couple stepped up to take charge. I am still involved and this year have a few more responsibilities, which is fine as I also have more time. It's a good event, we get runners from all over. Geoff and Jude are volunteering as well.
Then a couple of days to pack and it's north to Alaska!
Off now to cook lots of fresh vegetables for supper.

Saturday, August 08, 2015

Last day

Baseball game was fun, so am glad I made myself go. 2 guys were in front of me, I would like to say that they were of Polish descent. A woman sat beside me, who was a broad and kept yelling while drinking beer and eating peanuts. On the other side was a family, they had recently moved to Chicago from California. He asked what part of Canada I was from, I said near Vancouver, he said is that near Toronto? He also said he wanted to move to Canada because of rob Ford and Drake. Ah, I said, yes we are pretty wild. I also got id'ed and the beer guy said, oh its cause you're from Canada, my sister lives there. Says to his fellow beer seller, which part of Canada is my sister from? Right, Ontario. The Cubs won, so crowd was happy.
On subway ride home were many drunk people, including one guy standing near me who was almost gonna lose his shorts and he wasn't wearing underwear and he kept saying, I'm from Canada. I did not align myself with him.
Went on architecture boat tour yesterday which was great. I didn't know buildings were so interesting.
Went to art institute today, but did not feel great, as I slept terrible last night. I think I am catching something maybe. Kinda achy and sweaty. So walking about art gallery not as enjoyable.
I have to leave here at 430 am, ug, as plane leaves at 7, but will be home by 230, which is nice.
Ate at a diner last night which is on start of route 66. I did not know it started in Chicago!

Thursday, August 06, 2015

Chicago day 4

I felt like I'd rather stay in the hotel room. But did book a ticket for the ball game despite my first inclination .
I knew if it was booked I'd force myself to go.
Why is it that though I like traveling, I have to make myself do stuff as when I get somewhere I think, I could just watch tv, get room service, and not bother with the fuss of doing things.
Last night I went out for Chicago hot dog and walked around downtown.
At hot dog place one woman got really crabby at another woman and said in an irritated tone, 'l am off at 9 and if you'd just do your job I wouldn't need to tell you what to do' I smiled sympathetically and felt relieved she was not mad at me.
I am going to do architecture tour tomorrow, what company did you guys use Theresa?
Switched hotels as did hotwire for $100/night cheaper. Same loop area. Slightly less nice hotel but still pretty good. I don't look over Marshall Fields either.
Review was ok but I felt like I questioned things too much and annoyed others. Truly I don't think switching to this exam is good as compared to Canadian one. Has a big focus on medical issues but not on things important to me as a nurse. Like social justice, questioning taken for granted practice, cultural safety, and holistic patient care. It's really biomedical. Though those who are inclined to physiological stuff might like it. It does make me wonder thought if Americans hiring like Canadian nurses so much, maybe there is something right about our focus.
Dress was business casual and 1 guy wore some kind of gym/casual pants that had elasticized cuffs? With a sportsjacket and dress shirt? Are the cuffs the casual part? I was interested in his mindset.

Medicine Hat Visit

I got home on Monday from Medicine Hat, it was a lovely visit. Ramona was off work so got lots of visiting in with her. A&E were in swimming lessons at the pool which is only a couple of blocks from home, so I got to see them swim. The pool is an out door one, and the weather was very nice so it was an enjoyable outing. The girls were also in skating lessons, and they look pretty cute in their helmets and skates. They really did well, considering that the first time they were on skates was on Monday. I got to see most of the Robins family, though not Leila and Sam. Christine and I went out for supper one night, which was fun and then that night Raeann came over to F&C's place for a visit. Raeann has a new job, as supervisor of housekeeping at the Medicine Hat Lodge, the hours are much better than working at the mall, and she seems to like it.  We had supper a couple of nights at Rhonda and John's, they have a lovely back yard and one night we had a campfire in it.  Ramona, Fred, Christine, Hannah, Annalise, Evangeline and I also went to a park with a lake and had lots of fun in the water, it was a hot day so the water felt very good.

Fred's shoulder is way better, he even went golfing for the first time in 3 (I think) years and he is pretty happy about that. Christine is adjusting to retirement, she is thinking about doing some volunteer work, but not sure what yet.  Hannah has to get a couple of courses so she can graduate and will be doing that in the fall, she is doing some nannying for the summer. Everyone else is doing well too. One night we went to an outdoor movie in one of the local parks, Cars, which I had never seen before in it's entirety.  There was a huge blow up screen and we had a great view.

On Tuesday T&C had us over for supper to celebrate Kane's actual birthdate. It was lots of fun, Kane picked lasagne for supper and he helped Tim make it. We played Hide and Seek, Tag and other games. Hard to believe he is 4 already. Grady is talking up a storm.

Tuesday, August 04, 2015

Chicago day 2

Left room last night and had pizza sitting at a bar watching baseball and other people furtively. Also walked around. Sadly there seem to be a lot of mentally ill homeless people here. There are also lots in Kelowna too, but not as obviously.
Got 2 free pens and mug at work thingie
Walked around tonight and went for Mexican.
Then went to Nordstrom rack and overheard these 2 women talking about someone's birthday but also referring to party in New York and DC, so I wondered, were they talking about Barack Obama's birthday? It really doesn't make any sense but what else could it be? I didn't buy anything but might go back.
Group of people this time is much more to my liking.  Not so loud and obnoxious.
It is not humid at all, which is super surprising.
Will see if I have courage to go to ball game alone too. I am going to do riverboat architectural tour too.

Happy Birthday Kane

Monday, August 03, 2015

Pics of hotel burnham

Just had glass of sangria for free!

Sunday, August 02, 2015

Dog days of summer

Is hot, hot, hot.
leave for Chicago tomorrow and leave here at 545-I didn't think the airport was even open that early-looking forward to it-am not sure what I'll do when there. I wonder if I can go to baseball game?
Booked a hotel on Hotwire for Thurs-Sun, hoping it is good. On line reviews were good. I played it safe and went for 4 star.
Not much going on, forcing self to work on paper. How easily I can get into habit of not doing it. I reassure myself by saying, at this time next year I will be done this thing.
Mom keeps improving. She went to see GP this week, though, who referred her to surgeon again because very end of incision still not closed up. She thinks the mesh is preventing it, so wants surgeon to look at it. Otherwise she is doing well-doing more stuff every day.
She's coming over for supper tonight, I am making spaghetti.
Really looking forward to cruise!