Good News…

..the snow is melting! Or at least it is in those parts of our little town that are subject to the recent appearance of..SUNSHINE!

However, on our side of the road, among the houses that are nestled into the tall fir trees on the side of the hill, we’re in constant shade at this time of the year. That’s because at our latitude the sun doesn’t rise high enough to clear the tops of the trees.  But it’s getting there; this morning I noticed sun on the roof of the house & breaking in through the skylights. Soon, in a couple of weeks, we’ll have sufficient sun to sit on the deck out back. Until then, though, we have to go across the road to sit in the sun. From our living room window we can see the snow on everyone else’s roofs rapidly melt. p1030047


Family Stuff

So I’m working on the family tree. Not that I have a large direct family – just one son – but the years pass & one reflects upon such matters as memories pile up. But my mother was one of ten children, & my father was the second youngest of five, so there are quite a few cousins, & their offspring.

Most are in the UK & Australia. As far as I can tell, I’m the only North American representative.

What I have spent a fair bit of time on is compiling the tree, using, initially, a lovely hand compiled chart covering the family as it was in about 1990. The world & human nature being what it is, there are lots more since, & I’m finding it both harder & easier to keep up. Easier because family can send in email format, pictures of gatherings such as Christmas dinners & birthdays, but harder because unless I’m very conscientious in writing down the names as described in the accompanying email, I risk forgetting or even deleting in error the explanatory notes & photos. prt207

So I’ve bought a genealogy program. A “deluxe” version of a free one. I think it was just $30, so not very dear. And am working on filling in the details. Beyond just listing who begot whom, there is provision for anecdotes about the people listed, for photos of course & the ability to create “trees”. So far I’ve got about 160 people, not going back too far though – nothing earlier than the early 1800s, which probably means that there was nothing special about “my” family.

The picture above was taken, I think, shortly after the war – my mother is the rather coy young woman in the front row, looking very attractive.

Worst Winter.. Ever!

When I say “ever” I mean that Pat & I have ever experienced since we came to BC. It may also be one of the worst winters that residents of Vancouver Island can recall. There’s talk of comparing it to others over the past 100 years & 2016/17 seems to lead the pack.

Of course, there is really no comparison to the amount of snow I used to get at the farm in Meaford, where it was often too deep to easily walk through without snowshoes or skis. Nor can our temperatures be compared to those suffered by Pat when she lived in Calgary – this past week has seen daytime temps of around -30C there,  whereas we moan terribly if we don’t exceed the freezing point. Still, minus 2 is not exactly T-shirt weather, although I was down to mine yesterday as I cleared the snow for the 6th time this season from our steep driveway. p1030029

We are also lucky in that we get very little wind so the biting chill that comes off Georgian Bay is absent.

But also beginning to be noticeable due to their absence are fruits & vegetables! Today the shelves were rather empty in our local supermarket! Upon enquiry, we learnt that the road conditions were hampering delivery. One of the few drawbacks of living on Vancouver Island is that roads are not as available as in eastern Canada – for example there is only one road leading north out of Victoria – the rather oddly named Trans Canada Highway – odd because it stops, obviously, at the sea. So there is just one road traversing the Island & as stuff comes in from either Nanaimo or Victoria, it is subject to weather as it goes over the Malahat mountain range, where accidents are common. And that obstacle must be affecting deliveries all over the island!

Winter Weather

You’d never guess what we woke up to this morning! No, of course you can’t ‘cos you don’t know enough about where we live,’s the “vista”…yuk!

Of course, this is BC, the Island, so it’s not like we’re in Ontario, where the snow would be both deeper & colder, but still! It’s not supposed to snow much on the West Coast.



Getting To Know You




So what I’m thinking is that this WordPress thing is not so bad, after all! I’ve been playing with the controls a bit, choosing themes, finding out about menus & how to formulate text, & guess what? It’s not so unfriendly, after all! It’s me, not you them!

I may not have mentioned to you, my faithful readers, that I now live in a little town in BC called Chemainus. Nor, as far as I can tell, have I shown you all a photo of the place. So here goes:

The top photo is of the dock in Chemainus, from where the ferry shown crosses to the Gulf Islands of Thetis & Penalikut (which, sigh, used to be called Kuper ..sihh). On Thetis people can buy houses & cottages – there’s a population of about 120 or so, but the other island is just for the natives, & you apparently can only go there if invited by someone on the reservation.!

Making a few changes…

pat…with this blog.

Thought I’d give WordPress another chance to entice me to use it, seeing as after all, it’s more popular than Blogger.

So I signed up for the daily training course that is offered by WordPress. Each day, apparently, it sends you a task to perform, thereby, I hope, teaching you how to run a blog. Not that I want to have a blog for financial reasons, but still, got to satisfy my lust for learning, somehow.

And I know, I’ve used this photo before, but I like it…OK?


Yep, possibly both of those things. But this web log has been lying dormant for some six years not just because I’ve been otherwise occupied with getting married, selling our houses, moving across the country, renting & then buying, renovating & so many other activities that comprise simply getting on with life, it’s also because I’m not sure about WordPress as a blog hosting site.

Of course, another factor may well be because I also have 2 other blogs…..

both of which have received slightly more attention over the years than this one.

but it’s also more than that, I must confess. For whatever reason(s) I find BLOGGER a more  friendly site than WordPress, meaning, of course, that it is easier for an old coot like me to use, update, personalise & generally play around with beyond just simply typing the idle ramblings of my mind,

I must admit that I like pretty things. I know, we sneer at the word “pretty” when instead anyone wishing to sound the slightest bit discerning or sophisticated would choose a term like “visually attractive” or “pleasingly designed”. But I like “pretty”. It says it all for me.

And on Blogger it’s much easier to, say, format the text for size & colour, for example. It also seems to me to be more flexible with the layout & appearance aspect of your labour. I’m sure WordPress is more powerful, & ultimately more malleable to one’s wishes, but not to a fairly casual writer like me, who has no intent of using my blog to generate income.