Friday, June 26, 2015

This has been a mighty big month of posting and exploits - Wow!  The summer, and my 14 month sabbatical is just beginning too.  All in all it has been a busy week and lots of things seem to be happening.

There was an airshow in town this week. The iconic and distinctly Canadian Snowbirds did those maneuvers, rolls, and flips that they do.  I would say it was highlighted by two jet fighters however.  I think I am writing it correctly when I say there was a CF-18, as well as an F-18?  I don't know the lingo.  But they each screamed and screeched over the town of Goderich and rattled many-of-houses in the process.  It was pretty cool indeed.  One of the jets used Lighthouse Street as an indicator to fly westward over the lake whilst I was sitting in the front lawn.  I would guess its elevation to be 500 feet or more - but it sounded and felt like 50!  And that piercing/searing sound after it passes....

That was Wednesday.  While running home on Tuesday the Snowbirds flew over me while on the trail running in.  Again, it just seemed like they are only a few hundred feet above me.  I had quite the view.  As for pictures - terrible quality/framing, but you get the idea.  I never did get a picture of those fast jets.

Last night I attended and voted in my first ever political candidates meeting.  I am a card carrying NDP member.  There was the Huron Bruce nomination meeting for the upcoming fall 2015 federal election.  There were about 125 - 150 people there and Gerard Creces was voted in to be the NDP candidate for the riding.  Good luck to Gerard and his team!

Today is it.  The last day of work for 14 months!  I don't really have too many obligations - well no obligations as far as I am aware of, until September 2016 with the AMDSB.   14 full months off.  I have continually been enrolled in a deferred salary plan where 20% of my pay is withheld for 4 years, and on the fifth year I get paid all that 20% which has accumulated.  Another way to look at it is stretching 4 years worth of pay over 5 years, and one doesn't work that fifth year.  So ya!!!!  It is fantastic.  Absolutely a terrific thing to do.  So I am pumped up and excited for this.

I ran out to school this morning.  Okay, I ran some of the way to school this morning. The school is about 17 miles from home, and I made 8 miles or so before my ride arrived...  Beautify morning in the country.

The front of the house is looking pretty good with some colour.  We've got a few flowers in and keeping the weeds to a minimum.

Sunday, June 21, 2015

Months have gone by without a picture of Shelly...  There just hasn't been one as she has operated the camera mostly, rather than being a subject in its view finder.

We are all doing very well.  The day is just getting going.  It is Father's Day and I am not quite sure what adventures are going to happen.  I think Molly and I will most likely go swimming at the YMCA, and then maybe head up to Hollyrood.  I might bring a fishing rod and a gun - hit the bass hole with a few worms and blast off a few rounds.  It is a great looking weather day out.

I have been on a few mini adventures over the past few weekends.  Two weeks ago I had a great ride up to Blue Mountain.  There was a teacher's rally at the ski hill protesting the power's-at-large of an organizations called OPSBA  (Click here for more about OPSBA - who they are...)

At any rate, there are big enough differences between OPSBA and the various teaching unions who bargain with the government that my union, ETFO, staged a rally at their annual general meeting = or perhaps it was just a somewhat regular meeting for them.  Nevertheless an enthusiastic crowd of about 600/700 made it to rally in cars, buses, and at one by KTM motorcycle.

I must say the overall turn out must have seemed disappointing to the organizors.  There are well over 70,000 ETFO members in the province. By my decent quantitative estimates there was not even 1000 there. But on a positive note those who were there were plenty vocal, respectful, and passionate about the cause at large.  Congratulations to those who were there - especially a large presence from the greater Toronto area. There local presidents had some great words and messages to the attendees.

Yesterday, as the top picture shows - I hit up another ride with a neighbour/former neighbour - hopefully always will be a neighbour in the spirit of the word, if not by geographic location, Dave Glousher.  We were also joined by local company including Jim Wallace, Peter Herring and Trevor.  (I don't know Trevor's last name.)  We skinned and scammed our way to Paris, ON for the Canadian Vintage Motorcycle Show and Swap.  I had never been to Paris, and I will say I was quite impressed by what I saw - of the show and of the town.

So there is just too much to see at this place.  There must have been parts to assembly 10,000 bikes completely.  It was a haven for forks, sprockets, gas tanks, seats, seats, seats, and all of those other bike buzz words - I certainly am not up to the lingo and vocab with much mechanically currently, so I was even more at a loss with the terms of reference from the 60s, 70s, and 80s.  However a lot can be said for simply nodded your head and agreeing.  And to through in an, "Ah yes.....  That was really great back then."

Trevor rode a vintage Nortan.  It was a cafe style racing bike with dropped handle bars and foot pegs set back.  He unfortunately had a few electronic issues with starting his bike and getting it going.  I didn't want to tell him that I have had all sorts of electronic/battery issues with my bike too.  That I can't seem to keep batteries charged up or from not draining too.

We had a great, fantastic lunch at a pub called 2 Rivers in Paris.  Again - from what I saw I was very impressed with this community...
Just some other pictures from the past few weeks or so:

Monday, June 8, 2015

Lounging Around

I was probably a bit hard on Wally when I posted a few days ago with all his wincing, grimacing, and cringing that goes on.  It is a first world problem for me; so I should go a bit easier on the little guy.  Shelly calls him Buddy quiet often.  I have started to call him that too as a term of endearment.  It feels better to call someone a nice, friendly name, perhaps rather than "Wally".  "Buddy" is a good name to say and it actually relaxes me a fair bit.  I look at him a bit differently too when I call him "Buddy". 

When Wally was born we were told that there is a bit of a legal requirement to fix a name within 30 days....  And the nurses had told us on a few occasions a child has left with one name and came back in a few weeks or a month with another.  This story isn't really going anywhere because our 30 day window is up, and we aren't changing Walter, but I do find that Buddy is a very suitable option too.  Especially when he is off on a scream.

That other child of ours is doing just fine.  Molly was asked to pose for a picture with Shelly's requirements and staging and she came up with this:

It isn't a bad picture or anything.  Shelly has no training on photo layout, metering, cropping, lighting, intensity, or whatever the buzz words are in this world....  It is just her pointing and shooting with a Canon G16.

Then Shelly asked Molly to pose however she wanted.  This is what happened:
So I suppose this has nothing to do with picture quality, or those picture buzz words that I mentioned, rather the thought and intelligence process and processing that goes on in-between the ears of a 36 year old, and a 3 year old.  I suppose for a 3 year old it seems perfectly normal to strike a pose such as this.  At least her finger wasn't in her nose.

And again I am thumbing through the pictures taken and I am seeing a lot of the kids, a bit of me, and not much of Shelly.  I can only assure you all that she is indeed still around and plugging away at those crazy things she does.  The two of us are certainly due and looking forward to a nice night out on the town in the next few weeks.

Friday, June 5, 2015

Some Chicks and I

A chick I work with, Kerry, and I, were out on a chick run on Friday...  There were 54 chicks in all to be picked up, 55 including Kerry I suppose.  That is a lot of chirping and peeping and chick'n for a guy like myself.

First things first, we get into a pick up truck with plenty of room.  Whilst transporting and moving 54/55 chicks, one needs lots of space.

Next it was off to the Lucknow Co-op.  There is no other sure-fire location to score a chick than at a co-operative store.  Especially this time of year.  (We weren't the only 2 in line to pool chicks...)

We unloaded these chicks and immediately got them some heat and food.  There is nothing better to make a first impression on a bunch of chicks than warmth and comestibles.  Yes, it was a red district for sure with them lamps turned on.

After that nature takes over.  The chicks immediately knew what to do and how to do it.  Their new living quarters was bedded nicely with saw dust and wood chips.  We locked the cats out though.  Apparently cats and chicks aren't a good match for one another, mostly on the chick side, at this time and place.

Monday, June 1, 2015

Happy Birthday Trevor

I didn't get anything posted for my brother's 38th.  I gave him a few pairs of good athletic socks last summer to bike and run in - perhaps he'll remember and think of those as my gift?

At any rate I talked to him just the other day and he mentioned that there wasn't much action or updates.  That there wasn't any new photos or likenesses taken of Wally. 

So in that spirit = Here is a quick Happy Birthday present and photo for Trevor...