Thursday, March 26, 2009


I have no idea where the picture went and I am running out of time on the slot machine computer that is beside the bar in this arcade in Cadiz. I feel totally inadequate and computer dumb. And as soon as I get out of here (the arcade)I shall go back to having a wonderful time. Maybe I should get something from the bar as it is after 11 am and then I´ll feel better about it all.

Monday, March 23, 2009


Land at last after seven glorious days at sea! Using the internet on the boat costs hundreds of dollars - so here I am at a government station availing myself of the Portuguese services - somewhat handicapped as these are my first hours in Portuguese and I haven´t caught on as of yet. So what is it like? Like heaven with the usual little streets, flowers everywhere, tiled homes and cobbled streets with fantastic shops. I am in Madeira. The ship is great and the crossing was smooth. And see, I am still here. Everyone was dispairing of ever hearing from me again, I know, well, I hope.

Friday, March 13, 2009

breakfast conversation

We were having this conversation over breakfast and my grandson asked me if I was going to put it on the blog. So here it is. What do you call this piece of furniture? It appears that "chesterfield" is an only-in-Canada word. Who knew ..and wait for it. The anagram of my name is "the jury drip" while their father is, "asexual coy nerd". And I am like the dog with freckled hands (paws) and brown eyes. Conversations with nine and seven year olds are filled with surprises.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

first stop

First stop is Halifax to drop off the cats so they can spend their vacation with Lola. I was taking a picture of the luggage when Lola ingratiated herself into the picture. The cats are hiding.
I was packing yesterday; putting stuff into my deceased dad's thirty year old suit case and the back pack that has made its way to Indonesia, Vietnam, Ghana and darkest Colorado. I began to think that they would not make the grade. So I extravagrantly went and bought a new case: plaid so I could recognize it easily on the luggage carousel. So here it is with my back pack on top, packed and on the road.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

last day

Escape - I'm going away: first night: Halifax, second night: Montreal, third night: at sea. Of course I am often at sea, but this will be on the briny deep. If and when I find a computer I'll check in.

This is a window at the church where I work.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

last suppers

Wherever you go in, almost any church, there is Da Vinci's painting, not the original, of the Last Supper. They are all lined up on one side of a very long table in a renaissance dining room for their photo op. Never mind that they would have reclined around a simple rug. Perhaps showing them lying down wouldn't have been dignified enough. And then we have the frame - note the detail. This version is hanging in the chapel here. Who gives these things to churches, and who says that they have to be there forever? I once had a church that had a paint-by-number last supper glued to the front of their communion table. There is one in the Anglican cathedral in Montreal. It was the only thing rescued when the previous church burnt down. And what about the one painted on black velvet? - okay, that one was in Mexico.

Monday, March 9, 2009

daylily revisited

I have hope

March 5 displayed one of my favourite daylilies. Here is what it looked like this past Saturday. One of my daylilies is called "My Hope". And here it what it looks like. There is always hope.

Sunday, March 8, 2009

parlour revisited

So this is what awaited me when I returned home last Thursday. This is the pressure tank in the parlour before the door went on. It was to be all finished and tidied up by the end of Saturday, but I had to leave in the morning.
I am going abroad for a few weeks. When I return spring will be truly here. I will have a delightful house awaiting me. If winter comes, can spring be far behind? Yes.

Saturday, March 7, 2009

ice trees

On Thursday, driving to Nova Scotia, on a glorious sunny day, I passed through the evidence of an ice storm. So beautiful, but then there were places where the power had been out for three days, so dangerous. Leaving the snows of New Brunswick, over the pass, the grass was showing, the snow was melting and spring was happening. Winter crept in again on Friday, but this morning was glorious. If I could have lingered at home, I think that I would have had my cup of coffee on the front deck. Now I am back in the snow fields of New Brunswick.

Thursday, March 5, 2009


This is "Cisty", and somewhere in the frozen earth, under the eternal snow, in my daylily field, she is waiting for the summer. Meanwhile I am making a quick trip home across the Bay to check up on Eddie, the carpenter. He is building door frames and hanging the old doors and other stuff. We'll see what has happened so far. I'll be back in a couple of says.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009


It's funny how purple sometimes looks like blue. In some languages blue and purple are the same word.

A while back, way back, I was having lunch with three Catholic priests. It was the day before Shrove Tuesday. The conversation turned to what they were all going to give up for Lent. Then they turned and asked me.
"You can't give up something you don't like."
"I love snow."
"How are you going to give up snow?"
"Tomorrow evening I'm flying to Mexico for a month."
And I did. I flew to Mexico City and very early the next morning I made my way to the bus station to catch a bus north. As we drove out of the city valley snow began to fall. Children, delirious with joy, were running in it by the side of the road. Snow was unheard of. The bus tyres were bald and the wipers were marginal. Snow was accumulating in large flakes. I was wearing sandals and it was snowing on Ash Wednesday. I never told the Catholic priests. I didn't want to give them smug satisfaction. It would not be good for their souls.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

spring portents

I used to look for snow drops, winter aconite and crocus to herald spring. From the looks of things they 'll be a long time coming. In recent years I have settled for three signs: The onions in the bag start to sprout. This has already happened. Dead skunks appear as road kill. I have neither seen nor smelled one this year. Must be too early. And ... Tim Horton's "Roll Up the Rim". And it's here! So now I forego filling my own mug, or getting a ceramic mug, and I ungreenly play the game with a cardboard cup. I have yet to win this year.

Monday, March 2, 2009

dirty day

Sleet, freezing rain, snow: I understand that it has hit the whole eastern seaboard from Georgia on up. So I walked inside the post office and took this picture. I must be getting desperate.

Sunday, March 1, 2009

ski hill

I was invited to lunch at the ski hill last Thursday. It was the kind of lovely day that you almost forgive it being winter. But it is winter and now another storm is brewing.