Saturday, October 30, 2010

Quintus Update and Prince George

Last night, in some half-awake/half-asleep moment, I saw a dark movement run across the sheet by my arm. In a panic, I began flailing at the dark spot and jumped right out of bed. Blinded by darkness and pore eyesight, I fumbled for my glasses and my headlamp (always close by so I can read at night). By this time, I had calmed down a bit, and a trace of hope surged through me that this dark spot may be the long sought after Quintus. However, one flash of the lamp, and I felt rather sheepish, because sitting on my sheet was a menacing piece of yarn, a scrap left over from knitting. Oh Quintus! The mystery remains. He is still MIA. When I expressed concern about the little guy living all alone somewhere in the world with only five legs, D responded, "Why? He's got more legs than you."

Last week, I was in Prince George for a few days, while D did some more training. One of these days, I went from little store to little store, meeting all sorts of quirky and friendly store owners. One store is in the smallest space I have ever seen. The lady sells vintage clothing and you have to squeeze through rows and climb over suitcases to look around, while a cheesy soap opera plays on a tv, hidden behind a hanging rack of more clothes. She dreams of moving to Paris someday soon, to open a store there. In her early sixties, she says she has left Prince George multiple times, but always ends up coming back. "Never say you're not coming back," she warned another customer, a college student who had tried to leave to Vancouver once. When I didn't buy anything, she tried hard to convince me to get something. "All that work of climbing around through here, and you're not even going to get anything?!"

My next stop was Long and McQuade. Not a local store, but still a fun one. It brought back memories of all the times we went to Long and McQuade in Calgary and jammed on all the different instruments in the store. But I wasn't looking for a guitar this time. After buying a faulty jaw harp at the Calgary Heritage Park, I was after the real deal. Which I found. I tried to make the shop clerk play it for me, so I could see if I was doing it right. An older gentleman saw us, and we soon had a little jam session going, trying to play "Yankee Doodle." He reminisced about playing his back in the 70s with his coworkers, while one of them danced a jig on the hood of his truck. I wonder if he'll bring his out now and start playing again. As I left he called out, "Now you'll be able to serenade all those boys up in the Fort." Check this out.

At the end of the day, I came home with an odd assortment of items: A screen printing kit, an invisible zipper foot, a jaw harp, a jar that glows with fireflies, plaid fabric, and two L.M. Montgomery books from the library.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Mt. Pope

It's been awhile since we have done a Saturday hike and Mt. Pope is a bit ambitious of a hike to get back in the game with. It's 12.6km of trail to the summit and back, and while it is not as steep as many other hikes we have done, I am feeling pretty exhausted and sore at the end. I blame this partly on Jillian's 30-Day Shred (which I am attempting to do and leaves me sore but powerful-feeling every day) and partly on the fact that I am a leeettle out of shape. Just a bit.
Anyways, after a few hours we made it to the top to take in the stunning view.... oh, it was too cloudy to see much. But the clouds had a neat effect. It looked like the view from an airplane window (if you're lucky enough not to sit by the wing which seems to be my fate more often than not).
Here are the photos. Enjoy. (p.s. Click on some of the cloud pictures to get a larger view. They are more spectacular up close!)

D at the summit in the flying Gazebo!

I think we really are on top of the world!First of all, I am exhausted in this picture. Second of all, there is snow on the ground. Bleh.

Notice the can of bear spray strapped to my hip in these pictures. I never had to use it. And it gave me a sense of security. I think I only shrieked once when a bird startled me. (More heart attacks for D).Beautiful forest. It really looked silvery-green in life.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Marathon Driving, Caffeine, and Me

This Friday, we made the loooooong trip down to Kelowna for Thanksgiving. It's an 11 hour trip and we started at 4:30pm. D was not feeling well, so I promised to do the bulk of the driving. I had also gotten up at 6:30 that morning, and with no nap, I was feeling pretty tired. This is where the caffeine came in. I bought a couple of energy drinks to keep me awake on the drive. Now, I don't really drink a lot of caffeine. Maybe every few weeks or so I will have a caffeinated beverage, so I am pretty sensitive. After a couple of sips, I was bouncing along the road singing Christmas carols and laughing at private jokes between myself.
One unfortunate thing about our car is that we have no cd player and the radio works intermittently, so the driver (when bored with conservation) gets to wear headphones and listen to the ipod while the passenger has to listen to the driver sing. (Ok, D wants me to clarify that it is only I who sings out loud). Mercifully, D fell asleep pretty quickly once this started, wearing an inflatable neck pillow that makes him look like he has had a spinal cord injury. While he slept in blissful ignorance, I learned that it is dangerous to drive and listen to Cotton-Eyed Joe at the same time. (Don't judge my music. That song is on my play list because it brings back fond memories of line dancing in grade 7 gym class.)
Anyways, 856 km later, we arrived at 2am to my childhood home where we enjoyed a wonderful Thanksgiving (more on that later). And we made it one piece.

Oh, and I saw the batmobile pass me on the highway. Twice.

Thursday, October 7, 2010


A few weeks ago, I was standing in the kitchen, when D pointed out that I had a bug on my shirt. Looking down, I flung off the offending critter in a moment of panic. As it flew through the air, I was immediately filled with regret and remorse as I recognized it was Quintus....
You may be wondering who Quintus is. Well, he is our five legged spider. When we first moved into this apartment, I noticed a spider on the glass door. Normally, spiders get shooed outside in a respectful manner (or caught in a jar if they are particularly big and hideous to scare a friend at a later date). However, on closer inspection of this little guy, I noticed that he only had five legs. Awwwwwww! For some reason this sparked some pity in my soul for this little guy. I thought: he must have had a hard life and now he deserves all the comforts he can get. (I told this to a freind today and she thinks that I need to get a real pet). Anyways, from that day onward, I have noticed Quintus in different parts of the apartment, doin' his own thing, like a good little spider and I respect his space, until he got too close to me. Now back to the story.
...Quintus landed on the stove and fell through the element, and down into the nowhere land between the oven and the stove. You know, that area that only gets cleaned out once a year (if it's lucky) or when we leave a place (whichever comes first). Well, I was beside myself and ran to get my headlamp, to make sure I could get Quintus out before something tragic happened, like cooking spaghetti. Well, luckily our little hero managed to escape that wasteland and I spotted him a few days later on the book shelf.
And now dear friends, it has been several weeks since I last saw Quintus and I am worried. It's just not like him to go so long between visits. Has he found another family that he likes better? Has he met some horrible death under our feet? I am torn with anxiety over him. Poor little guy, he's not ready for the real world, he's only got five legs. gulp.

Ok, I guess I really need a kitten or something.

Monday, October 4, 2010

The Medieval Movie

In elementary school, my closest friends and I started a theatre company called "Suite Theatre." We wrote, acted, and directed our own plays (always based on twin sisters and mystery) to a captive audience consisting of our families (whom we charged money to watch). These plays eventually gave way to technology, and soon we were in the movie making business. And we had a new theme to our movies, the Middle Ages. I think our love for all-things-medieval spurred from the movie "A Kid in King Arthur's Court."
We soon got to work on writing a script and scouting locations. Actually, I am impressed with the skills that we needed to make our movie. We learned to sew costumes, make props, paint back drops. We set up rehearsal schedules, we directed, acted, filmed. We manipulated and coerced some boys to act in our film. So much work went into this movie.....and we never finished it. We came close though.
At risk of embarrassing myself and my friends involved in this elaborate production, I am posting a clip that contains some of the scenes (in no particular order) of this would-be blockbuster. The music and sound effects were added later (We didn't have access to any fancy editing equipment then and my editing skills are not so good even now).
So, as we would introduce every suite theatre performance: Sit back, relax, and.....GET READY!

p.s. We never did come up with a title for the movie. Did we?
p.p.s. all the nuns were evil in this movie. Why? I have no idea.
p.p.p.s. we are all a lot younger than we look in this movie.


Sooooo, I am now a volunteer at the Humane Society here in FSJ. I've been cleaning litter boxes and cuddling kitties at the shelter once a week. Do I ever miss cats! When we first moved into our little house in Kamloops, we started fostering cats through the SPCA. The first little guy (actually, not so little!) would hide under the bed all day and only come out at night. I would wake up to find him sleeping on my chest and crushing the air out of my lungs! After taking care of sick adult cats for awhile, I got my first litter of kittens to take care of. I fell in love. How could you not?

In hindsight, our house might have been a little too small for 5 kittens and an adult cat.
Oh well, I can hardly wait until we have a house here so I can foster again!

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