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  • Writer's pictureRuth Mcbride

Groundhog Day...for real!

Where do I start to talk about today? Hmmmm....let me see??!!

Being Ground Hog day is a very good place to start! An early spring is predicted! That’s good for us in Canada! But for us today in Fanny Bay, B.C., it felt uncannily like the Bill Murray movie - Groundhog Day!

Richard headed off again to the Chrysler dealership in Courtenay to finally get the fuel sensor replaced in Jerry. We have had the ’Check Engine Light’ and the ‘gas cap’ light on the dash on and off and on and off and on and get the drift, for weeks now. Finally today was the day to get it fixed and it turned out the only thing that needed to be replaced was the Fuel Sensor. While at the dealership Richard was approached by the Sales Manager to see if we wanted to trade Jerry in, as they were looking for good used Jeeps on the Island. We both know this is a very good trick to get us feeling good about our Used Car, so that we will buy a New Car from the dealership. Richard told the Sales Manager that we have a ‘flat tow’ system installed on Jerry, to pull behind our RV, so we were NOT INTERESTED in trading Jerry in. Slimy car salesman!

Before Richard headed up to the Chrysler dealership, he noticed that the repair job he had done last night on Jerry’s headlight cover had not held on the driver’s side. The headlight cover was on the ground this morning when he went to start the car. It had reached freezing last night, so perhaps it wasn’t really a good idea to try and eproxy the cover onto the headlight yesterday. Richard checked the other head light cover and it was still holding, so off to Courtenay he went. Of course you know where this is heading don’t you?

Richard arrived at the Chrysler dealership and he was missing the passenger side headlight cover! He didn’t panic, but he was thinking about how he was going to find the headlight cover on the Island. Perhaps another trip up to Campbell River to the wreckers to get the other headlight cover, from the same Jeep Compass we had purchased the other headlight cover? What to do???

Richard decided he would drive a bit slower on the drive home and keep looking over to the left side of the road, because if the headlight cover had fallen off on the drive up to Courtenay, it would be over on that side of the road somewhere. On the 25 minute drive home he kept looking and looking and finally just before the Fanny Bay Inn about 4 minutes from Lighthouse RV park, didn’t he see the headlight cover on the right side of the road! He pulled Jerry over, checked both ways and ran across the road to retrieve the headlight cover. How fortuitous to find the cover! That was our first ground hog day occurrence for the day! Richard will have to wait for a warmer day and get some better glue, to try again, to glue the lense covers on Jerry.

Jerry missing his head light covers...AGAIN!

While Richard was off having his adventures with Jerry, I was having a very relaxing morning in Newman. I made pumpkin chocolate chip muffins and was doing research on the laptop I wanted to purchase. Firstly I’m researching what is the best laptop for photo editing. After I determined that Dell is now better than HP for photo editing, after Mac, which I don’t want, I start to build and price the Dell laptop. After I got up to $4200 with tax I went “woah”! That’s nuts! Next I started to look at what the best photo editing software was and I came across a new one called “Affinity” which for $20 I can get for my IPad Pro. I then watched a few lengthy You Tube videos on how to use Affinity and thought to myself, why don’t I try this new software program to see how it works on my IPad, before spending all that money on a new laptop to do photo editing? I would rather spend money on new lens for my camera at this point, than spend that much on a laptop! It was a well spent morning though as I don’t usually have the time to do this much research. It’s busy being retired!!!

When Richard was gone I had my shower and wouldn’t you know it, I almost ran out of hot water. I had asked Richard to leave the propane on, but for some reason the hot water was not hot. It’s always something with Newman when Richard isn’t here!

When Richard got home from having Jerry repaired, we were going to head out for a pedicure, but then Richard said when he called UPS in the Philippines this morning, while he was waiting for Jerry to be repaired at the dealership, UPS had told him the hinges for Newman which had been ordered on January 11th, shipped on January 20th and were to have arrived on January 28th, were now in Nanaimo at the UPS depot. Instead of a pedicure I said, “Lets go and get those hinges!“. It was +7C sunny and warm and a nice day for a drive.

No sooner had we gotten on the main Hwy 19, 5 minutes from Fanny Bay, but didn’t it start to rain! Really? Most of the way to Nanaimo we had rain, on and off, for our drive.

We arrived at the UPS depot in the South end of Nanaimo and Richard saw a sign on the door saying they were closed due to Covid. Oh no...not what we wanted to see!

The sign on the door also said to go around to the side of the building. So off Richard went to see if he could get his package.

After about 10 minutes Richard arrives back to Jerry empty handed.

Richard was told that UPS has ‘sub contracted’ his delivery to another facility just around the corner, next to the bowling alley, and we should go there and he would find his package.

The subcontractor for UPS in Nanaimo - VI Carriers.

While I waited in Jerry, Richard went into VI Carriers to see about his UPS parcel. Again Richard comes back to Jerry, (just like Groundhog Day), empty handed!!!!

By now I am thinking this is UNBELIEVABLE! Richard called the UPS call centre in the Philippines yesterday and advised them to make the delivery location ‘The Laundry’ in Courtenay, B.C. He had them waive the $35 fee for change of address location, because UPS would not deliver to the Post Office and UPS would not let him change the address on the delivery, until at least one failed attempt to delivery. Despite not getting any ‘failed to deliver‘ notifications, Richard believed that by calling UPS in the Philippines, they are updating the file on this delivery! WRONG!!! By visiting VI Carriers today Richard found out that the UPS driver has been driving around the Comox/Courtenay area since January 28th with his parcel in the back of his truck! The owner of VI Carriers called the UPS driver to confirm the package was in his truck and told him to deliver the parcel to ‘The Laundry‘ in Courtenay when he went by that UPS drop off location next time. I said to Richard ‘we should just meet on the side of the road between Fanny Bay and Courtenay in a dark alley, like a drug deal and pay the driver $10 to drop it to us directly’!

So if we had not gone to Nanaimo today - which is a 50 minute drive one way, the UPS parcel may have ended up back in Kentucky as ‘UNDELIVERABLE’! Talk about a dysfunctional courier company! And one more reason why I am reluctant to order anything else to Vancouver Island without having a physical drop off point. Using the Union Bay Post Office is great if you know the sender is sending the delivery by Canada or U.S. Post, but since there is no guarantee on how the sender is sending something and the time we have spent tracking parcels so far in our time in Fanny Bay, is not worth the aggravation of ordering the goods. Of course we do need these hinges for St. Stephen to come and fix Newman’s basement door, or we aren’t going anywhere until he does!

So after the aggravation with finding out we have no parcel to pick up in Nanaimo, we decided to go to the grocery store and kill two birds with one stone. Pick up some food for dinner and get some lunch.

A great Independent grocery store much like Trader Joes or Farm Boy!

Happy California roll.

Tempura yam rolls.

We had our once a week sushi fix in Jerry.

We also picked up a great basket for grocery shopping!

I had seen similar hand woven baskets on Salt Spring Island which I had really loved, but I couldn’t justify the cost at $150-$200. This nice woven basket was $40 at Country Grocery and it perfectly holds our daily grocery shopping. With a smaller fridge in Newman, we tend to only shop a day at a time.

We also picked up these beautiful hyacinths which will start to bloom soon and we know will smell beautiful in Newman! It’s nice to know spring is around the corner here when we see the spring flowers outdoors already at the stores!

Tomorrow we are trying something we have never done before! A virtual wine and cheese party on a Facetime or Messenger call! Our friends in Burlington have purchased the exact same Salt Spring pepper goat cheese, Breton crackers and B.C. Pinot Gris as we have! We have arranged a call so we can enjoy the same wine and cheese and get caught up with our friends. Almost like being in person, but without the masks, hugs and risks...etc.

Yum! Can’t wait to try these two out tomorrow!

While we were in the liquor store buying this wine for tomorrow I found a few choice wines that described our day!

We actually bought a bottle of this B.C. blend by Church & State Wines located in Oliver B.C. in the Okanagan which has about 200 sayings in circulation and on their website they have a place for you to ‘Submit a new phrase’ which they might use on a new wine!

Some of the other interesting sayings on their wines are: ‘Shut the Front Door’, ’Absolutely Fricking-lutely Perfect’ ‘I’d shave my legs for you’, and ‘I swear I won’t text my Ex’. Everyone needs an angle on their marketing and despite their ‘quirky’ names on their wines, they have quite a few award winning wines!

While we were in Nanaimo we finally got a little table for beside my couch in Newman.

We had visited the JYSK store in Niagara Falls to pick up a similar ottoman/table for Newman before we left home in November.

Finally I have a table and storage! And we have two ottomans that match! $24.99 at JYSK. We always had in the back of our minds that if we couldn’t find a table, a matching ottoman would do the trick.

After a busy afternoon of Groundhog Day in Nanaimo, we headed back to Fanny Bay and didn’t it start raining again just as we were leaving Nanaimo! Weird day. Weird weather! A true Groundhog Day...let’s hope we wake up and break the Groundhog Day cycle and the hinges from UPS really do show up in Courtenay in the next day or two.

And tomorrow we golf! +7C, and there is no rain in the forecast...Qualicum Beach Memorial Golf Club for 9 holes and hopefully we will have a second take at getting a pedicure after golf too!

Happy Groundhog Day everyone! Spring will be here before we know it! And so will the vaccines since the EU just announced they are allowing Canada’s allotment of vaccines to come from Europe!!

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