Sunday, August 19, 2007

Home Again and travels with Google Earth

It's been an out-of-this-world week. D. and I went up to the family trailer on Tuesday and returned on Friday. While were in "the Bruce" the weather was fair and we did a little exploring. We went to see the Saugeen Falls and discovered that the river was so low that people were walking across and sliding down parts of the falls. Of course there are signs warning of slippery rocks but no one was reading them except older folk, like us. We also drove to Owen Sound, which is across the peninsula on the Georgian Bay side and walked the path beside the channel. It wasn't the part of the path that had been gentrified by the city,somehow we failed to locate that area, but there was a cool breeze and sunshine to enjoy.

On Thursday, we found a hidden treasure, at least that's how I've come to regard it. On the way back to Southampton we saw a small sign that said Amphitheatre and 'all welcome'. There wasn't much to see from the road, only a parking lot next to an old United Church and the location was just inside the Saugeen First Nations land. In any event, we stopped and parked because D. knew the river was close by. We found the amphitheatre and a lovely series of gardens in tiers with stone paths that led to a beautiful river outlook, there was also a nature walk which we followed until it became too steep for me. The whole place was peaceful and unspoiled by anything commercial. I assume that members of the Saugeen band tend the site and they don't ask for any donations. At the time we were both in that state of relaxation known to the family as 'camp head' and our visit to the gardens added to our spaciness. No man-made sounds disturbed our meditative state and we stayed until late afternoon.

There was food of course, and more food. Fresh picked local corn, new potatoes and strawberries from the best fruit and vegetable stand , a lemon meringue pie that somehow slipped into our cart when we were in the grocery store to pick up bottled water, milk, chicken and steaks for the BBQ. Excellent halibut fish and chips at a restaurant in Southampton. And, candied almonds D. had the foresight to bring in case we needed a snack, or two, or three.

D, had a grand time using his new digital camera and took at least 60 pictures. So we'll have green memories to enjoy when it's white and cold outside.

On the weekend we relaxed some more. I found Little Miss Sunshine on the Express DVD shelf at the library and we watched that and laughed ourselves into hiccups at the ending. I'd told D. that I'd like to visit the family cemetery which is located just outside of Highgate Ontario so he decided to see if we could find it using Google's Earth program. D. has a brand-new fast sophisticated computer and we found the area then zoomed in and zoomed in some more and then, after the fourth zoom. Poof! The computer cut out and rebooted. He tried again and the same thing happened. So I'm never going to download that program. We are reasonably certain of where the cemetery is since I have a map drawn by my mother, but it does not show up on Google earth, perhaps it is more heavenly than Earth-ly. Sometime in September we'll find out if my mother's map is correct.

Right now though, I have to begin de-relaxing (my new made-up word). It is, as D. says, time to do things.


Monday, August 06, 2007

Idol - atry Free

I was reading a blog on the CBC website titled - Stuff we’ve missed
The complete guide to missing out on major cultural phenomena. It mentions books and television shows like American/Canadian Idol. Summer television here in the one-channel universe makes me want to moan, stop, please stop. It isn't just a little 'pitchy' the Idol genre is bad verging on horrid. But lest you think I'm a complete highbrow snob, I'll admit I like watching So You Think You Can Dance; that is, I like watching the actual dance segments, but I could do without the other parts of the program.

I probably missed out on lots of major cultural phenomena since I didn't have a television for a number of years and there are lots of 'must read' books that I haven't read yet and may never get around to reading. Then there are books I started and never finished. I've also never attended a live rock concert that featured a major star, never been to a major league baseball game, or visited a major amusement park, but I have no desire to do any of those things.

Did you know that Gilligan's Island is now out on DVD as a 'classic' television series? My grandsons find it very funny. I don't. As for me, I'd buy a DVD of Dark Shadows, if I could find one -vampire soap opera, now that's classic TV. Okay, so it's not, but that Jonathan had charisma from his toes to his fangs. As for what will be a television classic, I vote for Corner Gas. Thank goodness CTV sticks reruns of CG on in prime time when it has a spare half hour between the endless Idol programs.

Now, I'm going to watch The Lavender Hill Mob on DVD, it's a classic movie that stands the test of time, and it has no bad singing in it.

Wednesday, August 01, 2007

Feelin' Hot, Hot, Hot - Or, How 93 Became 34

The weather forecast for today reminded me of that old Arrow song. Environment Canada's Website says it will be 34 degrees today, and when I press the convert to Fahrenheit key, 34 becomes 93 degrees. Maybe when Canada went metric it wasn't done to put us in synch with the rest of the world; instead, it was an 'evil plot' to make us think our weather is reasonable. We all know our weather is reasonable for only very short periods of time. I'd blame it on the Conservatives, but I'm not sure if they were in power then.

In the plans-gang-aft-agley department, I had planned to stay in Toronto for a couple of days this week. A friend invited me, then had to cancel when some of her family had to move in with her due to renovation problems. While I'd love to see her, I'm happy to wait for a more convenient time, and better weather.

O.V. finally replied to my query about an old story. So, now I know that both my contest entry and the old story need to be revised and sent out again. There are other writing projects to work on as well, but I've been lazy.My only recent accomplishment is the book review that's now up on My friend D. says I'm simply taking a short sabbatical. Thanks, D. I'll buy that.