Monday, 29 November 2010

A busy week

I'm on holidays this week, which is lovely. Except for the weather, which is rather stormy at the moment. What the computer said this morning (~1 cm of snow) and what the radio said (~4 cms of snow) were a bit at odds with each other.

I'm not certain how much of the white stuff has come down today. There has been some, although not great quantities like last week. But the wind has been making sure every last flake gets packed into drifts across my yard.

I've been out shovelling again because of that. If I could just convince my neighbour to plant a very large evergreen tree in the middle of his back yard, it would fill that gap where the north wind comes whistling in, bringing all that snow, which then runs smack dab into my house and falls to the ground. None of this planting of a seedling and waiting 20 years for it to get big... I'd like a 15 footer stuck in the ground right away, thank you very much. That would probably do the trick quite nicely.

Tomorrow, I am off to the barn to clamber up onto some horse (the one I wanted to ride has been sold, unfortunately) to toodle about and see how my back does. I've been seeing a new chiropractor and we've established the goal of getting me to be able to ride (which includes loping about [for you non-riders, that means like a slow gallop]) for about 15 minutes and not need to fall off in pain while doing so. This will be a test. And a good one, because the chiropractor will be there at the barn as well! He does horses and dogs, as well as people. Should be interesting!! And a very good excuse to get a good visit in with my friends and get my horsey fix at the same time.

The remainder of the week will be spent constructing a dress. My work's Christmas party is on Saturday and I don't own a dress. So I went shopping today. I tried on dresses in about 6 different stores. The selection just wasn't very good (probably because I can't afford to go to the high-end shops elsewhere in the city) and the styles just are not designed for anyone larger than, say, a pair of bagels. So despite the remainder of the dress fitting fine, the bodice part on all of them did nothing to contain the girls. That's a very trashy look... and I soooo don't do trashy!

So I decided I would have to construct one instead. It's been a while since I've sewn anything for myself, but in the past, I have made everything from bathing suits to bridal gowns, with lots of other stuff in between. I think I can handle this project.

However, I still need to buy shoes... I don't have shoes. Sandals just won't do in the middle of winter! I think I will do that on Thursday. And jewellery... I'll also have to dust off my jewellery box and see what I've got in there. I do have stocking though... I know that!

It is entirely possible (but not a given yet) that LHB will be in town to accompany me to said party. He wants to be, anyway, and will do his best to get into town for the event. That would be absolutely lovely! I do realize he can't guarantee his presence, but I also know he will do his damnedest to be here.

Saturday, 27 November 2010

Joined the ranks

It would appear that LHB has decided that becoming a member of the Blogosphere would be a fun thing, so he's gone ahead and set up his own blog.

Check him out here at Trucking in Wheel Life!

He's popped around to a few on my reading list and found Scarlet Blue's list of requirements for a perfect man. Since he'd rather have a perfect woman, he's made his own list. I think I quite like this post. *blushes furiously*

Friday, 26 November 2010

Quick update

I've zipped about and caught up on reading the blogs on my reading list, but have not really posted many comments. Simply because time has been an issue. Things have been busy, okay?

Well, alright, I'll fess up. It hasn't been all work and no play!

There has been work involved. There has even been overtime involved. A bit, anyway. Always nice to get a pay cheque that has some overtime and a stat on it!!! Especially this close to Christmas.

Last weekend was spent shoveling a lot of that white stuff around... both Saturday and Sunday. Because it snowed Friday and Saturday nights. I just get things all cleaned up on Saturday, only to awake on Sunday to even more of the damn stuff clogging up the areas I had already cleared!

The nerve!

My back was not at all appreciative of the workout it got. In fact, it complained rather loudly on Monday. I had to quiet things down with some (legal) drugs. And a trip to the chiropractor on Tuesday.

Especially since the shoveling was compounded with vacuuming and washing floors. Sunday is housework day in my little hovel, whether I like it or not. It's the one day I am guaranteed off, so for some reason I tend to save all the housework for that day. I always pay for it too. You'd think I would have learned by now to break things up into little bits spread out over a few day, but no...

Monday saw the arrival of LHB (yay!) back in to town from the West Coast. He'd wandered up to northern BC, then back to the Vancouver area, waited around for a load, stashed that on his truck and then blasted back here. The stuff is heading south of the border... way south... but doesn't need to be delivered until the 29th, so he took a few days to hang out in the city with me.

I left work on Monday and met him for a drink at a bar close to home. We then wandered over to the grocery store and picked up supplies for dinner. He made us chicken curry over basmati and wild rice. Very yummy! Gotta love a man who cooks! And cooks well, at that. :-)

I did have to work again on Tuesday but came home to the smell of beef stroganoff being prepared. Nothing like a warm hug and a cold drink to greet you when you get home from work! We even had a lovely fruit salad with squirty cream to finish the meal! Watched a movie... talked... snuggled... and really enjoyed each other's company. ;-)

Wednesday I had the day off. The weather was crap, though, with lots of wind and snow... yet again. *sigh* We drove around to do some shopping, only to have his car start to clunk and lurch. Not a good sign! So it was back to my house, a call to his mechanic, and take both vehicles so his can be dropped off. They get it for a couple weeks to work on at their leisure, providing it's done by the time he gets back into town. We then continued our outing around town in my vehicle and headed back home in time to say forget it to cooking and order a pizza for dinner.

I spent part of the evening trying to solve a computer issue he's been having. Have worked on it a bit but won't know the outcome until he can get online again and let me know how things are working. (Which can be tough to do when you are in the middle of Nowhere, Canada stuck in a snow storm just north of the Great Lakes waiting for the highway to reopen so you can continue your run down south.)

He had to be back on the road again on Thursday, so it was a very early (like, 5:00 a.m.) morning so I could get him to his truck (and he very kindly shoveled the snow from everywhere while I walked the dog at about 5:45), say our goodbyes (insert sad face here) and get to work on time in the snow with horrible driving conditions. I pulled into my parking spot right at 7:30, which is when I am supposed to be starting work. Needless to say, I wasn't the only one who was a few minutes late! The roads were atrocious!! Lots of cars and pickups spun out and ended up in the ditches.

So the whole gist of things is we are both very fond of each other. Things are going smashingly, to borrow a British term. Of course, his being on the road again makes things somewhat difficult, but we are dealing with that as best we can. He's a lovely guy and I'm very much liking the exploration. :-)

Sunday, 21 November 2010


I had cleared all the snow yesterday.... *sigh* Guess what I will be doing again today? I think we got another 10 cms but it's lighter and fluffier than the stuff than fell on Friday/Saturday.

This is the cats' eye view of the deck. The 'hill' is what I piled up yesterday so the meter reader can get to the electrical meter whenever he/she comes around. Yesterday, you could see the deck. Today you can't.

Lila is quite fascinated by all those flakes floating from the sky!

Given the chance, she would catch them. But she never tries to get outside. She's been a house cat her entire life and doesn't seem interested, even when the door is open and she's got a clear track to bolt! She does, however, really like to eat the snow that gets tracked into the house.

Pips, on the other hand, is quite disgusted that the ground is now very cold on her little toes. She desperately wants to go outside, but only if I am carrying her... the little princess!!

Friday, 19 November 2010

Happy feet?

Bet you can't tell if these are happy feet or frozen feet.

Overnight low predicted to be -20C (that's just a hair below zero for you south of the border folks) with the windchill estimated at -32C.

I'm betting they are frozen feet... :-(

Thursday, 18 November 2010

It is now mid November and we are just getting our first real taste of winter. It is, most unfortunately, in the form of an Alberta Clipper.

We are currently experiencing light snow with plummeting temperatures, with the promise of about 15 cms of snow and a further drop in the mercury. I'm really not sure who decides how Winter should makes its entrance each year, but this really is a rather rude way of showing up.

The two provinces just to the west have been pummeled with wind and snow and cold, with accumulations of up to about 20 cms in places. This means heavy equipment on the streets to clean up the drifts so that actually using your car is again possible.

It is times like this that I am very glad I decided to buy a 4 wheel drive SUV. Even with that, though, it was still slippery driving home from work this evening (after a 12 hour shift) and I am so not looking forward to walking the dog!!!

And given that LHB is now enroute from BC (furthest province to the west) back to Winnipeg, on a journey that will take him to Florida by the 29th of the month, I am just a tad concerned about the road conditions he'll be traveling through. Having spoken with him this evening, and knowing that the pass through the Rockies is closed tonight because of the weather, I decided that he needed a Guardian Angel to watch over him on his travels. I'm sure he'll be quite happy with this one... ;-)

I'm not too keen on this happening along the way...

Because he is already on his way, and because his load doesn't need to be delivered to Florida until the 29th, he is fairly certain he will have a few days to spend here before having to hit the road once again.

I'd be lying if I said I wasn't pleased with that possibility!!!

Sunday, 14 November 2010

Live in the Now

This evening, my sister took me out on a date. To see Cesar Millan, the Dog Whisperer. We've both been big fans of his since discovering him on TV several years ago and were using some of his dog training techniques long before we knew about him. (Aren't we smart cookies!?!?)

The seminar was great and he's quite a funny guy to listen to. And to watch. He really gets the dog body language down pat when demonstrating how dogs do things. Especially wagging his tail!! ;-)

His Canadian tour didn't originally include Winnipeg but a local doggy day care set up a petition to get him here. It worked! He was truly impressed that we wanted to see him here that badly and got a little emotional at the end.

But one thing that he said during the seminar really made a lot of sense. Dogs live in the 'now'. Humans do not. Humans hang onto the past, fret about the future and try to analyze every second of time. And look where it's got us. In really bad trouble! Cesar wants to go all over the world and help people learn to help their dogs and themselves by experiencing life in the 'now'.

Look at how many wars were started years and years ago by something that someone did in the past. And humans are still fighting about those old things to this day. Look at how many people keep bringing up bad memories and fearing that all that stuff will keep happening. It will if you think it will!

So make like a dog, forget about all the crap that happened way back when and get out and enjoy life today. What's that old saying? Yesterday is the past, tomorrow is the future but today is a gift... because it's the present!!!

Friday, 12 November 2010

So much for a minor head cold.

It simmered for the better part of a week, just enough to be annoying but not enough to make me feel ill, really. A drippy nose. A bit of stuffyness. Not much more.

Until Monday, that is. Just in time for the arrival of LHB, my cold decided to flare up into mind blowing sneeziness and brain clogging snottiness.

Great. Isn't that just perfect timing.... NOT!

LHB had a load to deliver just north of the city Tuesday morning. Or so he thought. So he arrived in town Monday afternoon and we got to spend some time together. His boss said be there Tuesday morning at 8 a.m. And because it's about an hour's drive north of here, he'd have to head out early to get there.

So. He called the person he was delivering to, to confirm the arrangements because a crane was necessary to offload the load. Wed. morning, he's told. For sure? Yep. So Wed. morning it is.

Cool! We get an extra day! So he's here from Monday early afternoon to Wed. early morning. We were both very pleased with that! I think we both looked like the Cheshire cat when we heard that!!!

Time isn't really something that has been in great abundance yet in this relationship. Little snippets snagged here and there when possible. Phone calls when reception allows, although there are often dead spots where we play 'can you hear me now?' regularly. Email contact has been sporadic as well, with him dependent on wifi availability at truck stops.

We've tried to remedy at least that one issue by getting an mobile internet stick for his laptop. I've one and it works well in the city. The trick is how well it will work while he's on the road. But it works more like a cell phone so if he has cell coverage, he should have internet as well. At least enough to email. Surfing may be slower than molasses in January though.

So we figured he'd be off again once he offloaded that cargo. He called me in the afternoon on Wed. to say his next load was to be picked up very close to my house. And that he didn't have to head out until Thursday morning. And not at the crack of dawn either, because it was Remembrance Day, so leaving would be around 10 a.m.

Again, the Cheshire cats reappeared. Wow! This is unheard off! We got three days and nights in one place. It was wonderful. We actually got a chance to get to know each other in more 'real' situations than being out on a date. We went shopping, we hung around the house, we cooked dinner. Walked the dog. Normal stuff. Everyday stuff. The way you really get to know someone and get glimpses of who they are and to see if there stuff there that freaks you out.

Nope. Nothing. Just enough to know we both want to do this more often. With greater regularity. For longer spans of time.

So the hunt continues for something for him to do here for work. We've bantered ideas back and forth. It's really tough when you've been a trucker for so many years. He's done other things too, but really, trucking is the main thing. So I am hunting online for local businesses that may be something he's interested in. I have the time, you see.... and the motivation!

Saturday, 6 November 2010

Head Code

I haz one. Snotty nose, scratchy throat. That kind of stuff. It's not bad. Nothing like the one I had in September. That required medical intervention... antibiotics and steroids. And several days off work. Blech.

No, this time it is a minor annoyance. I suck on lozenges to ease the scratchiness and carry wads of Kleenex. I started taking Cold-FX right away. And stocked up on Dayquil and Nyquil. I've actually had two nights of 8 hour sleeps! Better living through chemistry, right?!?!

Unfortunately, it is courtesy of the LHB. I hate to tell him this. I haven't, yet. He'll feel quite awful, I know. He'll worry that I will get as sick as he did.

He's on the mend, by the way. The new drugs and a good modicum of sleep have done the trick! He was incommunicado for most of Thursday, which had me worried. Turns out when he slept, his phone was turned off (which was why it went straight to voice mail when I called in the afternoon) but then it died. While he was sleeping. So he had to charge it the next day. And then he was in a place where retrieving his voice mail just wasn't possible. He's had that issue in the past.

So he didn't get the subsequent messages I left him later on Thursday, voicing some concern for his health. Because he had sounded like death warmed over when I had last spoken to him. Seriously... and barely warmed at that!

I was worried. Did he succumb to his illness and now have a full blown pneumonia, complete with raging fever and delirium? Alone in his truck? Would I read the paper with a headline like "Body found in truck mired in phlegm"? Did he manage to get himself to a hospital and was he languishing in some ward, no one to visit him, unable to use his phone due to it's dead battery and hospital policy? Sometimes your mind detours quickly to the worst scenario, doesn't it?

But when I finally did speak to him, he was sounding chipper and happy and very much alive. Which was a huge relief to me, let me tell you! Because I want to see where this budding romance might lead. I'm being selfish in that, I know... but he has told me he feels the same, so there you go.

Excuse me while I dig out the neti pot and flush my sinuses... and smile frequently because he'll be back on Monday. :-)

Wednesday, 3 November 2010

I sit here, in front of my computer, munching on some deliciously sweet and tangy pineapple, careful not to drip that sticky juice into the keyboard. (Wouldn't that just gum things up completely, eh!?)

I've just had a very lovely light lunch consisting on a variety of whole grain crackers, hummus, creamy havarti cheese, ham sausage, grape tomatoes, sugar snap peas and am now completing my repast with a dessert that tingles my taste buds!

The pineapple is courtesy of the Long Haul Brit (herein to be known as LHB. What? It's easier to type...) on Sunday. Now how many of you women have received a plump juicy pineapple on a date??? Tell me... who? I don't see any hands there. Flowers are pretty, they smell nice and the cats love to eat them, but they are also kind of the 'norm' for a new beau to bring. So it was lovely to be handed a plastic grocery bag containing one whole pineapple, spiky fronds and all. Although as he passed it to me, it promptly fell through the bottom of the bag and plunked to the floor. No injuries were noted during this unfortunate accident. Except to the pineapple, which seemed to have sustained a split bottom, as I found it had piddled on the counter when I moved it later on.... Luckily, it was a minor injury and very little juice was lost.

It would appear that the willingness to proceed with 'exploration' between myself and the LHB is mutually desired. There has been great discussion about many things, included the likes of previous 'dates' and escapades in online dating. We both have a number of stories to tell, it would seem. The important thing to note here is, for me at least, there are no warning bells going off in my head. There are no red flags, flashing lights, screaming sirens.... No gut feelings telling me to turn and run for the hills. So I take this to be a good sign.

He's back on the road again, and this concerns me, as he's been battling a chest and sinus cold, complete with cough, for 5 weeks or so. He called me today, sounding very harsh and tired, saying he'd been to a walk-in clinic in the city where he dropped off his cargo, and has been given antibiotics and some kind of nasal spray. At the moment, he doesn't have direction from head office on where or when to pick up the next load, so at least he can spend some time resting.

If you can call bunking in a truck sleeper restful. I don't know. I've never seen the insides of one, so I have no idea how big or small it is. But at least he can sleep.

Needless to say, I am concerned. What he really needs is a week off, just to rest and sleep and heal. Of course, one would need a 'home' to do that in, as a hotel would get slightly pricey... and right now, his 'home' is that truck. I am hoping that head office will leave him sit idle for a couple more days, allowing him to take it easy and let the drugs do their thing. (It's just too bad he's about 1500 kms away while he sits idle...) It's a very stressful life, being constantly on the move, never really having any time off, not having a 'life', so to speak.

So I am doing my best to send healing vibes his way, to chase that nasty bug out of his respiratory tract, and to get him feeling more human and less like roadkill.