Sunday, 25 January 2015

Another day in Paradise

Time for a quick post, before my cousin-in-law G arrives to pick me up at 4 p.m.  I've been invited to join them and uncle G for dinner this evening.  I guess my purple hair didn't disturb him too much!

Did I tell you that story?  If I did, skip to the next paragraph....  My cousin B's son J was visiting a few years ago shortly after J had gotten another piercing (eyebrow, lip, I'm not sure where other than it was visible).  He and his mom went to visit his Grandpa and when they left, he said to B, "Grandpa didn't say anything about my piercing", and his mom said, "yeah, and did he invite you out for dinner?".  Sometimes things are said best when nothing is said at all.

I'm glad I didn't suffer the same fate!

I woke to sunshine this morning ...thought OMG I've slept in again, but I hadn't really as it was only 7:45 a.m.  Since I didn't walk yesterday I doubled my walk today.  I'm obviously walking faster though as I did it in less than double the time.  The beach was busy this morning with walkers and their dogs!

This lovely German Shepherd (Max I think he was called) was having a wonderful time chasing and fetching a large stick from the water.  I so wish I'd gotten a picture of him shaking the water off.

The tides were starting to recede and the gulls were busily arguing over their spot on the piece of land that appears out of the water.

They are such noisy birds!








While the sun was shining on this side of the coast, across the strait the island was still shrouded in clouds.

I like the pattern of the clouds, they almost look at mountains.

It was actually so warm I removed my jacket as I walked.








I believe this is an Arbutus (pronounced R bu tus) tree.  I'm told they look as though the bark has been skinned away from the tree.  It is certainly well represented as there a number of streets and areas named Arbutus!


Perhaps the tree doesn't like it, but I love the way the ivy has twined itself into the tree.

And of course, I love the green!




Just a bit more green before I head out.

This little primrose is blooming in my landlady's side yard.  It doesn't get much sun but it obviously doesn't mind.

Oh, how I'll miss the color when I get home!


Have a great day everyone!










Saturday, 24 January 2015

Progress

It's late in the day on Saturday and I'm finally getting around to posting.  Oops!

I had a late start to the day when I slept in until 9 a.m.  Not sure why as I was in bed by 10:30 p.m. last night and don't recall being awake much in the night.  I guess I needed it.

I had a lazy day yesterday; I did some more housework (washed floors), finished one of my knitting projects, and about the time I had decided I'd go for a walk, the landlady M knocked on the door to invite me upstairs for a glass of wine.  I decided that sounded like a fine idea (I really was feeling lazy!)

There were five of us, M (landlady), her current roommate, an old school friend, her local friend who is a real estate agent, and myself.  We sat and chatted and I especially enjoyed the view out the windows. As I've mentioned I have no view from my suite as it is in the lower level of the house.  But OMG the views from upstairs.  I said to M, I don't know how you get anything done - I think I'd sit and watch the view all day.

Last night it rained so I woke to overcast skies but it had stopped raining (and hasn't started again) when I left for my walk at 10:30 this morning.  At first I thought I was almost alone but as I walked further along more and more people were out walking.  There are a bazillion dogs (really, I've counted them....no not really :))it seems almost every one walking has one, so I almost feel naked just walking with my camera.  Most of the walkers keep their dogs on a leash but one or two let them run...so far I haven't seen any incidents.

I stopped by the grocery store to pick up a few items to get me through the rest of the week.  As I walking to the store I noticed these mushrooms growing under an evergreen tree near the post office. The one mushroom in the center of the picture actually has another plant growing through it so it was split in pieces.

No fairies though!





Once I was back at the house, I grabbed a quick lunch and then went up to the knitting group at the library.  I'm pleased to say I've finished one of my socks, and the sweater for my cousin's grandchild.  The second sock is on the needles and I've started a third project.


It's a mesh bag and I'd been working on it while I was in Victoria but I didn't like the way it looked so I ripped it all back and have started it again!


That's the fun of knitting - if you don't like something you can always start again.  When I sewed that was the part I didn't like because if I messed something up I was pretty stuck with it unless I had lots of extra material.

I digress...so what else is new?

This afternoon I'm watching the Manitoba women's curling.  I may...depending on when the game finishes walk to the arena for the hockey tonight.  Since I missed my walk yesterday, and I didn't walk much while I was in Victoria I'm behind in my goal of walking at least an hour a day.  I bought a reflective vest when we were Nanaimo at the Value Village (second hand store) so I won't be worried walking home in the dark.

Today marks the beginning of my final week here in Parksville. That makes me a little sad but I realize it also brings me closer to the time when I can return permanently.  At the end of next week, I'll have 51 marbles and counting!

I'll leave you with this photo of a duck (?) I noticed on my way down to the beach.

Funny guy!  Since there is no smoke there appears to be no fire, but there must be some residual warmth.  (Even though it was 8C today)

Have a great rest of the weekend everyone!

Friday, 23 January 2015

Friday Funny


More rain today and my computer connection keeps cutting out.  Great day to sit and knit (indoors)!

Thursday, 22 January 2015

Home again!

No, I'm not back in Regina...I'm back in Parksville...and it feels like home.  I do miss the cats though and occasionally even my kids.  I miss a few people at work, but I sure don't miss the job.  If I could figure out a way to retire tomorrow, I would.

K and I had a great visit last week.  The first she was here we walked up to Rathtrevor Beach.

Rathtrevor Beach lays claim to the warmest waters in Canada and is very popular in the summer months.  It looked cold that day so I didn't test the claim!


As we walked along the beach we heard a shrill bird call.  I looked to see if I could figure out where it was coming from and spotted these two bald eagles.

I need a better lens for my camera as this was the best I could zoom in.



And of course, there were the ubiquitous gulls.  There are the fattest gulls I've ever seen.

We walked along the beach and then veered off to take the woodland path up to the highway.







The path through the woods was well-maintained and I imagine would be a lovely spot to cool down in the summer.

There was some interesting flora as well.  If anyone knows what this is, let me know.  It was new to me and K too!




We walked close to 10 kilometers that day.  I, for one, was exhausted but it was a lovely day.  The following we stayed closer to town and walked the beach.  This was the day that we actually got to see some blue sky!

The sun shone off and on throughout the day and we had no rain.

 K and I met a real estate at a condo unit just up the hill from my rental.  It's a two bedroom, one bath in an older building but has been recently fully renovated.

The unit is currently rented, which should I decide to consider purchasing would be a benefit as the rent would cover the majority of the costs.  It's a consideration though I've got more research to do...and a talk with my banker to arrange.



Later that evening, we went to the MacMillan Arts Centre to see the Erika Phillips jazz Quartet.  They are local group out of Nanaimo, very talented and it was an enjoyable way to spend an evening.  Well worth the price of admission!

Saturday, K left to return to Regina.  B and I drove her up to Comox to catch her flight.  She had a great trip back, even arriving a little early so she was able to attend the symphony that evening.  In the meantime I had returned to Parksville to pack for my trip to Victoria.

My landlady M said she had an appointment at 1 p.m. so offered me a ride to the bus depot.  At 12:30 I saw her leave and realized she'd forgotten about me, so I walked instead.  It was raining so I was a little damp but I made it there by shortly after 1 p.m.  Good thing as the depot closes at 1:30 for lunch and the bus went out at 1:45.  He was definitely on time!

We switched buses in Nanaimo to a small van and made good time to Victoria arriving just around 4 p.m.  My godmom G, and her friend P were there to meet me.  G and I had a great visit that evening, but I was ready for bed early as I'd been up since 5:30 a.m.  On Sunday we went to church and in the evening P and her roommate L came for dinner.

G turned 90 last November and I certainly noticed the difference in her.  She's slowed down considerably and has to use a wheeled walker for any major distance.

 She insisted we go for a walk on both Monday and Tuesday.  The first day, we took a cab to the top of a lookout and walked home from there stopping at her favorite deli for a drink.

Spring has arrived in Victoria! The camellias are blooming in G's yard. She says this is about a month early.



This is the view down into G's back garden from the main floor of her house.  She continues to work on the yard though does get help with the heavy stuff.

She's an amazing woman, especially at 90.  Hopefully she is around for many years to come.



On Wednesday, B and her husband G arrived around 11 a.m. to pick me up.  They brought along their dogs Chip and Dale, pictured here.

We took the long way home, heading off the highway to visit Shawnigan Lake, Chemainous, and Ladysmith.

I am glad to be "home" in Parksville.  I've got housework to catch up on today but am looking forward to another walk on the beach this afternoon.

This evening I'll try to catch up on all the blog postings I've missed out on these past few days. Have a great day everyone!

Saturday, 17 January 2015

The wheels on the bus

I'm off to Comox this morning to drop K at the airport, then it's back to Parksville for a couple of hours before I board the bus to Victoria for a few days.  My godmother G lives there; she turned 90 in November, so I'll visit with her for a few days.

I expect she won't have internet access so I'll be leaving the laptop behind.  I may try to post something from my phone but probably not...since I'm near useless with the silly thing.  Texting takes all my concentration!

G&B are planning to pick me up on Wednesday and we'll do more exploring on the way home.  Expect a lonnnnnng post next Thursday when I try to catch you up on all that's been going on.

In the meantime, here is a couple of pictures from earlier yesterday.


We woke to sunshine!  It got as high as 10C (50F)...and absolutely beautiful day!











I`m living in a postcard.  With the clear skies and sunshine, it`s the first real view I`ve had of Mount Arrowsmith.

Have a great weekend everyone!

Thursday, 15 January 2015

Thankful Thursday - Those who wait

K arrived from Regina on Wednesday.  My cousin's husband G and I left for Comox around 10 a.m. and drove up the coastal highway to meet her.   The drive took about 1 hour and 30 minutes with a couple of stops along the way.  That gave us plenty of time as her fight was scheduled to arrive at 11;55 a.m.

We stopped in Fanny Bay to see these guys.
We could hear them from the highway as they called back and forth to one another.










 I couldn't believe how vocal they were, and yet many of them seemed to be fast asleep.  I guess they are used to the noise!

When we arrived at the airport, we checked the arrival board and found that the flight had been delayed until 1 p.m.

So we headed back into Comox for lunch.  G got a call from B, who had heard from K (thank goodness she had my phone and it was still charged) that Vancouver airport was heavily fogged in.  She had been told there was a flight coming in from Williams Lake, if it was able to land they would be able to fly out to Comox.
G and I decided to go find some lunch in town, then drove back to the airport.  This time it showed the flight was delayed to 2:35 p.m.  G is not a person to sit still so we headed out again.  This time we drove to Goose Spit Bay.  I didn't see any geese but I did see this bird.



It is a blue heron - I would have liked to have gotten a picture of him flying but I missed him as I was looking out at the ocean.

We headed back to the airport, and saw that the board had not changed and it was now 2:20 p.m. so we thought we'd have a short wait.  We wandered down to the regional air carrier check-in desk to see if we could get more information.  While we were waiting there, K phoned again to say she was in a line-up to see if she could make a change to a flight coming into Nanaimo.  To give you some perspective, Comox is 60 kilometers north of Parksville, Nanaimo airport is about 60 kilometers south of Parksville.

We decided to start driving south as we knew, if K was able to change flights she'd arrive in Nanaimo ahead of us, but if she were still to come into Comox, we wouldn't be far away and could turn around.  About 15 minutes later we got the call that she was successful and would see us in Nanaimo.

We stopped at Parksville, picked up cousin B and headed for the airport.  Finally about 4 hours after she was due to arrive. she was finally on the island.  Thank goodness for G and B, they are the island's best ambassadors (and taxi drivers)!  Plus, now looking back I'm so glad I forgot my cellphone at home because K does not carry a mobile.  She likely could have had asked Vancouver to call Comox to pass on a message but chances are G and I would not have gotten it, as we didn't stay at the airport for any period of time.

It was a long day, especially for K but I'm so glad she made it safely.  More on our adventures tomorrow (or maybe Saturday...we're busy!)