Allyson and I have had one of those drowsy weekends where catching up on sleep (and fighting off cold bugs) are at the top of the to do list. She woke this morning with a raspy cough, and I can’t seem to keep my eyes open by one in the afternoon… The time flew by the past few days as we luxuriated in mystery novels, warm spring sunshine, and Allyson’s incredible baking. And the gift of great horned owls just learning to fly, perched on one tree or another within view of our windows for most of this week. Here are a couple of pictures of these amazing, stunning creatures. That’s it for the long weekend. Richard arrived home this evening, a day and a half earlier than expected, so the ball gets rolling tomorrow for the next phase of renos. First up, the electrical upgrade, which means some upheaval in my office where the drywall probably has to come down. And I’m calling telus tomorrow re the phone lines needing repair, because with both Allyson and I online frequently, it’s even more frustrating not to have a reliable connection. It’s going to be a busy week. The owls, sitting on a branch with only the swivel movement of their heads to give themselves away, could school us in patience. Hoo-Hooo.

The Vacation

Here at last are the vacation photos – the four-wheeling part, anyway. Unfortunately the pictures documenting our road trip to and from the annual rock-crawling trail run at the “Hammers”, in the Mohave Desert in southeastern CA, involve more shots of malfunctioning brake components (ouch), and a damaged autobody shop sign (tragic) than they do touristy photos of our afternoon in San Francisco. We saw far too much of a certain parking lot in Fresno that I never want to see again. Exhausting and expensive road trip in the Dodge aside, the portion of our trip from when Richard backed Mechano off the trailer until he loaded it up again was quite a ride. Given the trials I’m having with internet connectivity these last two months, I’m not posting a tonne of pictures, but for those interested, we can share and/or swap the high-res originals when we’re next in Vancouver. I think these capture the day on Wrecking Ball… but I’d love to see the ones others took of me driving Clawhammer the day before… Just don’t e-mail me any unless they’ve been reduced to 225 K or less and sent one at a time! So, here are a few highlights of Richard in (red) Mechano, Matt in (blue) Stubby Toy, Pam driving (yellow) Big Bird (with baby Danaeya asleep in the back), and Gary breaking in his grey Toy early in the day before his impressive finale (which I hope somebody caught on video!)

Going to Town

We’re back – Allyson and I, that is. Richard picked us up from the Greyhound station just before noon Wednesday (the bus was late of course), and we went for lunch and a long visit to a very nice bathroom showroom. The next reno marathon is just around the corner! But not quite yet, because after we ordered the tubs and toilets and shower heads and faucets, we drove Richard to the airport. He is in Salt Lake City until Sunday, and then drives all the way home in a demo “Fire Body” Mog. (The kind of body and equipment used in off-road and municipal fire-fighting.) In the meantime, Allyson and I are settling into a routine but also doing some things I hadn’t taken the time to before. We’ve been going for long walks every morning, fed the llamas and photographed the baby and adult horned owls (magnificent!), and watched a lot of my favourite forensic detective shows. But yesterday we went into town again to find a music store (anybody need an as-new student flute?) and the local bakeries, so Allyson can get an idea of the market for her pastry chef skills in our area. It was nice to take a walk down in the old city centre. She’s got an excellent sense of direction so we were getting the lay of the land quite well. It’s not a big town after all, just sprawling. I dragged Allyson into the gardening department at HD for potting soil, and then down almost every aisle in Costco since I don’t know the store that well yet. It was a long day, and we had to stop one more time on the way home, to add Allyson’s name to our post office box so the mail sorters don’t send Allyson’s boxes back to Ottawa. (They’ve done it before.) When we got home and had unpacked we sat down to read, and I dozed off 19 pages into the mystery novel she brought me. It was an early night. Today it’s time to tackle the business trip laundry, re-pot my house plants, clean house, and get out the white paint. I can’t avoid it any longer, now that we’re going to finish off the rest of the upstairs this summer. I’d rather be demolishing the awful “ensuite” bathroom and the 70′s cedar panelling in the master bedroom, but I suppose we should wait for Richard for that. Lots of other things to do. I still have four-wheeling trip photos to select, reduce, and post, and we have photos of the owls that I just have to show you. So I will attempt to do that this weekend, dismal internet connection or no. Allyson, like Richard’s mom, has noticed how photogenic the long-lashed, long-necked llamas are, so I’m sure we’ll get more pictures of them soon, too. And the garden – new, unfamiliar plants are coming up all the time, and now I have two gardening books, one specializing in BC gardens, … Continue Reading →