Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Pond scum

Look up Tony Merchant in the dictionary and there should be a picture of a rat or some kind of virus. What a slime bucket. Maple Leaf has gone so far beyond what was required of them or even what would be reasonably expected of them and now here comes the king of sleaze with a class action law suit. If he had one ounce gram of human decency he would be suing CFIA. Not that they have done anything wrong either but if Maple Leaf has done 2 or 300% of what is required by CFIA then surely it is them that is at fault, not the company.

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Same old for the past couple of weeks

Not much excitement in our lives lately unless you count a trip to Nipawin or a thunderstorm. We've been hanging out in Regina, working and occasionally doing some cleanup in Mom & Dad's old apartment. Yesterday was a big day at the apartment. Mother & father came over and went through the last of the closets and drawers. Now we have a plan in place to distribute the remaining furniture to family. The remaining clothing will go to charity along with some of the food. I think it was a hard day for mother saying goodbye to possessions, as it was for us too but everybody just put their heads down and got on with the task at hand. Broadway Terrace management has come up with a new tenant for the apartment starting October 1 so now there is a deadline on getting the remaining stuff out of the place.

We're leaving here next Friday to start working our way west to Vancouver so we need to get as much done this week as possible. I'm not 100% sure we'll get the place completely empty before we leave but we should be able to get close and we'll be back in Regina before the end of September anyway. It should look a lot different by Wednesday night - Marlan & Michael are coming on Monday to pick up some furniture and then on Wednesday Mary is coming for the kitchen table and the deep freeze. Right now the place still looks full because there is furniture scattered randomly around every room but it will look a lot different once the big stuff is out of the living room and bedroom.

Last week we made a quick trip to Nipawin. We picked up the mail that Quint has been collecting for us but weren't able to go into the post office to pick up the mail while we were there. Some kids apparently set the garbage cans at the back of the post office on fire the same day that we arrived in Nipawin. Radio Norm commented that it was pretty short sighted of them to light a fire at the post office since that is where their family welfare cheques arrive. You tell 'em Norm!

The yard was a mess but not nearly as bad as we had expected. Our lawnmower man failed us completely so we had hired another guy to mow the yard in mid-July but it hadn't been attended to since then. The ditch didn't actually look that bad. There were a few alfalfa plants that were pretty big but the rest of it was acceptable. The back of the yard where it hadn't been mowed since late May was pretty wild and the "garden" was its usual joke self. Its been so dry there that the raspberries hadn't amounted to anything. It was probably pretty optimistic to expect anything off them this year anyway. They got hit hard by the May frost last year. There's some pretty decent canes there now for next year but we won't likely own them by then so it won't matter. We did get some cherries though. They were pretty tart but would make excellent pie cherries. They were edible raw and there weren't anywhere near enough to make a pie but there is hope for next year. I think that's four years now since I put the little sticks in the ground for the ones that are bearing.

This coming Friday we're going to pull up stakes here and move to Climax, to Gail & Al Balfour's yard. We'll stay there a couple of days while I deliver some FCC reports in the southwest and then we'll start working our way west across the south route. Many years ago before we discovered Mara we spent some time with the kids in the Kootenay region. We had a lot of fun there and our memory of the area is that it hadn't suffered the runaway development that the Okanagan Valley has. We want to check out the current situation to see if that is still true. We really liked Kaslo and New Denver so we will definitely check out both of those communities. Our plan is to go right across the south route to Vancouver and then come back through the middle - probably up the Okanagan to Vernon and then across through Lumby, Needles, Nakusp and New Denver to Kaslo. Depending on available time maybe we'll go out through the middle.

We've got a reservation at Capilano RV park which is right downtown in North Van. Kerry's wedding is on the 13th and it sounds like a bunch of the family is going to congregate starting about the 11th so we will get there in time for all that and hang out until everybody leaves. It feels like we got our summer in BC cut short so we are looking forward to getting back out there for the end of summer. I think I'm looking forward to the trip through the interior just as much. There's some really neat communities in there that date back to the silver rush in the late 1800's. We're not sure where we're going to settle but it might very well be one of those communities.

Steffie Ding Dong is on the TV right now claiming that he doesn't feel an election call is necessary right now. Wanna bet that Steven gets him backed into a corner and he caves (again) while the Conservatives continue to implement their agenda? You all remember that this is the idealogical government that was too rigid to last two months as a minority when they got elected.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Are we really that stupid?

Steffie Ding Dong says we need economic growth with environmental sustainability. Let's pretend for a minute that he actually has a clue what that means and that it's not just a friendly sounding Lib election slogan. Does he not know that the history of development tells us that the best environmental security comes from development? Look at North America, look at western Europe, then look at China, India, eastern Europe. The fact is that developing economies are hard on the environment and developed economies protect the environment. The best security for the environment is therefore economic development. So what have you got in mind Steffie? What great economic platform have you got that will catapult us to the next level of economic development and in the process give us the surplus resources to protect the environment? Hot air and mangled words won't do it. Or will they?

"Green" used to mean inexperienced, unknowing, lacking knowledge. Perhaps the current "green" population fits the earlier definition better than they would like to admit. Perhaps Steffie's nice sounding hot air is all they really need. And all they can really understand.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Who the hell cares?

The media is all abuzz about Canada's dismal showing so far at the orgy of greed that the "modern" Olympics have degenerated to. Personally I think the less medals we win the better. If medal count is indicative of money spent (and it clearly is) then less medals means less money wasted. I mean - who really cares which country has the fastest bicyclist? We've got cars, busses, trains - its nice that someone likes to ride their bicycle but what difference does it really make who can do it the fastest? And beach volleyball - there's a concrete indicator of a country's international standing. Wouldn't everybody rather have the world champion beach volleyball team than - oh, I don't know - maybe a growing GDP or strong balance of payments or low interest rate or .....

And how about that hippy freak draft dodging SOB that is going to get deported next month? Three years he has been in this country SINCE THE DEPORTATION ORDER WAS ISSUED!!! He's been sponging off the taxpayer and manipulating the legal system to dodge his responsibility in the US for lord knows how long but at least three years since an immigration court said he should go back to the US. Just imagine how long somebody who really was at risk in his home country could manipulate the system. No wonder this country is a shining beacon for every lowlife from every corner of the globe.

Some days I really wonder about our priorities.

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Back in Regina

Well we left Whispering Pines Tuesday morning and drove through to Maple Creek that night. RJ was at a ball game in Vauxhall and Marlan was having a shower when we tried to phone him so we didn't stop in Medicine Hat other than to pick up the micro-truck. RJ had taken it when he left Monday afternoon. It was hard to leave Mara but we will be back there next summer, probably for longer so we have that consolation.

We had a pretty busy last week at the lake. RJ arrived on the bus the day after the beheading but fortunately still had his head when he arrived. He wanted to spend as much time on the water as possible and that was no hardship for us. The weather wasn't great on Friday but it was glorious through the weekend. Sometime shortly after he arrived he picked up Jessica in the campground so we had her along in the boat most of the time. She was a real pleasure to have around and a quick wakeboard learner. By Monday she was ripping like an old pro. RJ bossed the boat around on the end of the rope like he always does. I'm always amazed by the difference in feel depending on who I am pulling. No doubt some of the difference is simply size but its more than that. His technique is aggressive and assertive and I can feel that in the way he pulls the boat around.

On Monday Dan & Marilyn and Bryan & Dean showed up for a late lunch and then we took them on the water for the afternoon. RJ, Jessica and I had been out most of the morning so that was a busy water day for me. RJ left right after lunch and it sounds like he had a pretty hairy trip out, including seeing the gas station at Revelstoke burn down. I haven't seen any news footage for that fire but it sounds like it more or less started in front of his eyes as he drove into town. There's no evidence of firetrucks in the pictures he took so he must have been there pretty well from the beginning. He said there was a mad scramble as the cars in the station parking lot tried to get out once the fire started.

Now we're settled into Buffalo Lookout, east of Regina on the Trans Canada highway. Mom & Dad's big move is scheduled for Monday. We're paid here until the 1st week in September. After that we'll see. Our current plan is to take the bus to Vancouver for Carrie's wedding in the middle of September and do some property scouting in the Kootenay region either on the trip out or on the return but right now everything is pretty fluid.