Saturday, October 24, 2009

goodbye New Brunswick

I have been cleaning off this laptop before I turn it into the office tomorrow. I shall be at least a week without a computer unless I go to a community access. So it is good bye to New Brunswick. I've enjoyed my time here. I had driven through many times, but had never got to know it. This is definitely not a drive-through province.
I begin a new position in Nova Scotia next week.
So no laptop means that the blogs will stop for a while, and I shall miss you all.
Disclosure number five: I am lost without a computer - going into withdrawal. I can feel it coming on.

climate action

In the rain, on the boardwalk, in Saint John, the action was hosted by the Council of Canadians who were having their Annual General Meeting in a nearby hotel. So we were addressed by Maude Barlow, their president, but I was most impressed by the representative from the CAW (the Canadian autoworkers union). She had just returned from a worldwide convention of industrial workers and reiterated about how they wanted jobs, but green sustainable jobs. And I met an old acquaintenace who had taken the ferry across the Bay to join the action. We went for coffee after the demonstration and reconnected.

I'm in one of the pictures. It's sort of like finding Waldo.

So disclosure number four: My first demonstration was during the Civil Rights Movement, when they were marching in Selma, we were demonstrating outside the American Consulate in Montreal. I returned home from college on the bus later than usual - "So what were you doing" greeted me. I explained, and my grandfather exploded. Demonstrating was not something we did in our family. Well things change, I'm proud when I know one of my sons has been out stomping for a cause.

Friday, October 23, 2009

What are you doing Saturday?

packing up again

Enough said about this moving disaster

Self disclosure number 3: I broke the sexist bar at the Montreal Gazette. I was their first female carrier. I was in grade seven. Up at five thirty, over top the drop off point, loading up my bag and then house to house. I got good tips. And later when the carriers used to come around to collect and punch the cards, I always gave them a good tip. They don't do that anymore

Revisiting yesterday's art: See the comment left for yesterday. Here is a blow up of the other picture: an English Jesus in a bedsheet, in an English garden, with three adorable English children. If you double click it and blow it up you can see the fighter plane in the boy's hand.  I could write a thesis on the militarism, imperialism and racism wrapped up in a sweet religious dressing displayed in this picture.

In the interest of racial equality and animal rights (the singing panda), here is a Christian Science offering which I found on: 

Perhaps I now need to redeem myself by leaving you with something with, in my view, more substance. I think this is really quite moving:

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Jesus in a bedsheet

I've finishing clearing out my office and have taken out pictures that I had hidden in the closet. So here they are back on the wall.. Have you ever thought about this good shepherd - wandering in the back country wrapped in a white bed sheet? There are two rams in flock - a flock only needs one ram, The flock consists of females - ewes - in the spring they drop their lambs. Half of the lambs would be males - which means that they are slaughtered. Shepherds eat lamb chops. Jesus was not a vegetarian. And he could not have been the paleface in the picture. So disclosure number two. I cannot abide religious sentimentality. I smile sweetly and think about how precious it all is. "Precious" is the word I substitute for "Who gives a sh.../fu...".  I love reading Geez Magazine:

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Day for Climate Change

I'll be in the crowd on Saint John's Boardwalk. Where will you be? 

Here's from It looks like the International Day of Climate Action this Saturday October 24th will be the single most widespread day of political action the planet has ever seen--we're closing in on 170 nations, and more than 4000 rallies and events.
There will be climate events from the bottom of the Great Barrier Reef to the summit of Mount Everest.  At each event -- at rallies and parties and deep-sea dives -- people will take a big photo that somehow depicts the number 350.  Our crew at will be taking these thousands of photos, projecting them on the giant screens in New York's Times Square, and delivering them directly to hundreds of world leaders and politicians in the coming weeks.

There's almost certainly an event happening near you--if you're not sure what, this link will let you find out quickly and easily:

People in all those cities and towns all around the world will be saying the same thing: science tells us that we can't have more than 350 parts per million CO2 in the atmosphere if we want a planet like the one we were born onto. That sounds complicated, but it isn't--350 is the bottom line for the earth.

the coat not taken

I'm on my way back out, I reach for the coat, which I had tossed on the chair only a short while before. I meet resistance. I open the closet door and take another coat. I like to think that I am in charge. I'm not. I'm humble.

Which leads to Debra's challenge that came with the Kreativ "Award" - to disclose 7 things that people don't know about me. This is difficult because my sons and sisters read this blog, and I really like to keep up appearances. So the really interesting stuff shall remain unsaid. And that said: # 1 fact: I, like many others, adore Chantal Hebert, the political columnist. Does she have a fan club?

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

coffee shop

When I was in Northern Ontario there were seven Tim Horton's but not one place where one could relax in a comfy chair with a cappuccino. Tim Horton's is a fast food doughnut franchise. Then a couple of months before I left there Christopher's opened with soft lighting and comfy chairs and good coffee. So I came to New Brunswick to a two Tim Horton's town. And now two weeks before I leave this place a good coffee shop opens with fairly traded coffee, comfy chairs, a fireplace and relaxing decor. And now I have had to cut out caffeine - so here is my pot of herbal tea, but still the company and the surroundings are fabulous.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Maine day 4 - part 3 - notable stops along the way

 We drove on past blueberry fields in their fall splendour. This was the sublime part of the day. The ridiculous was further on. Because we stopped for everything, we stopped at this Blueberry Emporium.


It was fun. Then we took a small detour to Jonesport where we found:

 Important lesson learned: when they catch it, it's a herring, but in the can, it's a sardine:

Note the Fuzzy Wuzzy cat food on the bottom shelf. This is the last of our adventure until we find some time to go further down Route One, and I've found a great place to stay once we've reached Key West - sometime - some year

And now for those who like sheep and dogs: (I loved this.) From Wales: "Extreme Sheep herding" with thanks to Shelagh:

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Maine day 4 - part 2 - Cobscook Bay

The rains had stopped, and we had vowed to walk on many, if not most, of the walking trails between Maine and Florida. So we wheeled into the State Park - seniors are admitted free - and went for a walk in the lush greenness.But as the park shut down for the season the next day, I expect that many will not be available. That really irks me. It is as if the world stopped, no walking, for much of the year. There were so many stops along the way that we only reached Ellsworth before we had to turn north to retrieve the car we had parked in Dexter. We'll get on the next leg when some days off next turn up.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

why I was late

Why I was late for the Church Bazaar: I was getting a stove put in my Nova Scotia house - heat at last! I had the appointment for a couple of months. Yes, the wait is that long. Thursday I packed up the car to make the trip after work when I saw that the left front tyre is low, not flat, but low. So I drove to the nearest tyre place and the guy found a nail and patched the tyre. So I'm late to the office, but I drive home to Nova Scotia later that afternoon. Friday morning my beautiful stove arrived: joy and rapture unconfined. I spent the rest of the day lighting little fires to cure it and to build up the ash layer.

But the church bazaar and luncheon was today. So at 5:00 a.m. I started back to New Brunswick. Less than halfway on a major highway I passed over an expansion plate on a bridge and the patched tyre blew. Kaboom! Two holes and the smell of burning rubber.

I should have had the presence of mind to have taken the picture when the tyre was still on the car. This being Saturday, once the tyre was changed and the little doughnut put on, there was not a tyre my car's size in the nearest town. But someone had had their tyres changed the day before and they found an approximate tyre in the discards behind the garage. So at least an hour and a half later I was on my way again with an odd tyre and a missing hub cap. I already have an appointment on Monday to have my winter tyres put on.

Then it was to the apartment to change and get the axle grease of my hands. I arrived just as everything was being cleared up. They rummaged in the kitchen to find me lunch - a lovely lunch. And then the go around to see how they were doing. The "Ladies' Boutique" was just clearing up - but no one had bought the wedding dress. I do wonder why. I remarked upon it. The dress was handed to me, with tiara - and now for the occasion! They threw in two gold evening bags for good measure. My days do have their highs and lows.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Maine day 4 - part 1 - Perry

Dawn at Robbinston, looking from Maine over to New Brunswick.

And then my travel partner cannot possibly go by a beach with building an inukshuk and skipping stones.

And then our first stop on this leg of the journey was Latitude 45, Perry, Maine. Someday I deserve a bigger place for my name sake - but on the other hand being halfway between the North Pole and the Equator is not half bad.

And then on our first sunny day we travelled on ....

Today I have to travel home to Nova Scotia to put in a wood stove to keep the house warm and cozy this coming winter. There will be a day's hiatus.

So a video for music lovers and stair walkers:

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Maine day 3 - Mile Zero

 We started out at Mile Zero in Fort Kent, stopping to see the blockhouse, before leaving town and beginning our rather wet road trip. The blockhouse is a remnant of the Aroostock War, a bit of saber rattling over boundary issues. 

Down the road I thought that I saw a potato on a pole, being as it was on the edge of potato fields, but it was round and looked remarkably like Jupiter. Then we realized that we were in the middle of the Maine Solar System and subsequently found Uranus, Neptune and Venus - but none of the others. A look on the web site later showed us why: The pictures came from this site as the rain was pouring down.
Here is an Eric Idle selection which seems appropriate:

It had stopped by the time we reached heaven, Hub Cap Heaven:  

Perhaps a more inspiring view is that of Grand Lake: 

And on we went, stopping at last at Robbinston, with Strawberry Daiquiris to celebrate our first leg of the journey.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Maine day 2 - the woods

The first day, rather wet, we had a leisurely diner breakfast at The Bear's Den. The conversation at the counter was interesting so we lingered and enjoyed. Then headed north through the Maine Woods. These are some pictures when we stopped on the way and when the rained abated for a spell. Here is a video proposing that it be made into a National Park: 

Our goal was Mile One on Route One. We found a motel right on the spot so we purchased these bumper stickers. (I'll wash the little car before putting them on.) Then we went out to celebrate.

Only 2,390 miles until we reach Key West. Life is a road trip, so make it in good company.

Monday, October 12, 2009

road trip #1

I'm back from a Canadian Thanksgiving weekend road trip.Sitting here having a cup of tea and the ubiquitous coconut cream pie that every diner serves in the Maritimes.

The trip started before the frost - so here are some pots and boxes, which I saw on my way to a rendez-vous in Maine. The frost arrived in a couple of days, so this would have been their last haurrah - except for the chrysanthemum and cabbage, which are cold hardy.

We began our trip down US 1, begiining in Fort Kent, Maine and ending in Key West, Florida, but with only a long weekend, we completed the first leg of the journey - From Fort Kent to Ellsworth, Maine. We met in Dexter so the first day was spent going north to Mile Zero.

And thanks to Debra at who sent me a Kreativ Blogger Award.