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  • Writer's pictureRuth Mcbride

Hither and Thither....

This morning we awoke to a very grey, rainy day in Fanny Bay. I’ve taken to signing a song I made up on the days that we wake up and it Is raining. The song goes like this:


“It’s another rainy day.....in Fanny Bay”....”In Fanny Bay, its rainy and grey”....repeat and repeat....( or D.S. in musical terms =Dal Segno). I’m not going to win any Grammy awards for my lyrics, but it gives me something to sing about nonetheless, when its gloomy out.



I guess it could be much worse, when I look at the weather back home in Fort Erie and I see people posting pictures of snow and ice on the ground!




This morning Richard started to track down a shoreline restoration company for our home on Lake Erie. The storm we had in November last year, after we left home, destroyed our shoreline for the second year in a row and we need to start investigating who can provide a solution for us, that will stop the erosion if we have another killer ‘storm of the century’ in the future. These “storms of the century“ seem to be happening more frequently than once a century! Richard spoke to one person in Niagara on the Lake who will review the pictures Richard sent him, and will provide a quote and advice on what he would suggest. We are also sourcing out a few other companies to make sure we have the best solution for our shoreline restoration. Best to take care of this now, rather than waiting for April when we are home and then starting from scratch and all of the contractors are all taken!



Just as I’m writing the blog tonight doesn’t Richard tell me our neighbour in Fort Erie sent him a storm warning for the shores of Lake Erie tomorrow, that has been issued by the Niagara Conservation Authority. Yikes! Not another bad storm! I guess we will keep our fingers crossed that this one won’t be too bad!




I spent the morning downloading the new photo editing software called ’Affinity Photo’ and tried to figure out how to use it on a few photos, without any success. I watched a few ‘You Tube’ videos as well, to see how others were using the software.Finally I stupidly realized I had not registered to use the software after I had downloaded it, so that is why nothing was working! I’ll have another go at the new photo editing software when I’m fresh another morning. No point trying to learn something new at the end of the day! The software seems very comprehensive, which is what I was hoping for, but it will take a bit of time to get used to!





Today we were ‘hither & thither’ after we left Newman to head into Courtenay. We had my strength training day and the Osteopath today, with a brief 15 minute window in between the two appointments. We had to drive from Courtenay over to Comox and the drive between the two towns takes exactly 15 minutes. We knew we would be rushing to get to the osteopath on time, but she had booked the appointments, so I knew she would be understanding if I was a few minutes late.




I used the Wonder Woman image above on purpose! My strength trainer had me graduate from 7.5 lb weights to 10 lb weights today for my upper body. I had started with 5 lb weights, so I’ve really made a lot of progress! I told my trainer Paul that I’m “Wonder Woman!” He said he believes me too! We’re making great progress and I’m going to sign up with him for another 10 sessions, which will take me to the end of March, when we will be leaving the Island.



While I was at the strength trainer Richard headed to Thrifty Foods with my grocery list to buy what we wanted for dinner tonight and to stock up a bit for the meal I’m making for Super Bowl Sunday! I’ll keep you in suspense for our meal on Sunday, but its going to be fantastic!





In the summertime when Newman came to live with us, I was in a wheelchair and unable to weight bear with my broken femur. One day in August Richard had to go with Newman to Hamilton, Ontario to do his practical ‘air brake’ license with the Ontario Ministry of Transportation examiner. I decided to tag along with him, rather than lying in bed all day by myself. The day we drove up to Hamilton was a complete wash out. The rain was coming down sideways and it was a really nasty day! Our plan was for Richard to drop me in the wheelchair at the Eastgate mall in Hamilton and I would push myself around and shop, while he went and did his exam. I hadn’t been out of the house to a mall in months, and I was very excited to get out by myself, even if it meant pushing myself in the wheelchair. Now that we knew we would be wintering on Vancouver Island, I was thinking of all of the items that we would need to stock Newman. One of the items I purchased that day, but something that we hadn’t used until today, was:



A proper food thermos! I bought one in red for me and one in black for Richard. Today this thermos really came in handy as we rushed between Courtenay to Comox after my workout. I was able to have a nice hot, leftover lunch in the car on the drive over to Comox. I don’t like to eat anything heavy before I work out, so the little thermos saved the day today!


While I was at the Osteopath, Richard headed back to the Chrysler dealership in Courtenay to have them check the codes for the “Check Engine Light” warning that had come on again last night when we were driving home from Qualicum Beach. The technician determined that Jerry was making too much pollution because he is getting old (2010 Jeep Compass). Richard said to ‘Turn it off”. The technician had to get permission from the service manager to turn it off, and that’s what they did. Richard was told if the ’Check Engine Light’ starts flashing at him, that’s when he should be worried!



We really should just put some tape over the ‘Check Engine Light’!


After picking me up from the Osteopath with the new and improved Jerry, we headed to “The Laundry” UPS depot to pick up the hinges for Newman. “The Laundry” really is a laundromat that masquerades as a UPS depot in Courtenay. Anyway, Richard finally got his parcel from Kentucky! Almost a month after ordering the hinges from a wrecker in Kentucky, they are finally here. Richard had this look of fear and trepidation on his face as I was videotaping him opening the package. He was so nervous that the hinges would not be the right ones!



That look of excitement when your parcel finally arrives!



The “I hope these are correct” look on Richard’s face Is hilarious! What do you think St. Stephen? Did we get the right hinges?


We stopped at the Post Office in Union Bay on the way home from Courtenay and we were so surprised to find a parcel from Richard’s son Jon, and his wife Christal.



A photo book of our grandson Owen Benjamin Hotte! Such a lovely surprise present to receive in the mail today!



Richard is featured prominently in the book, as he is the “baby whisperer” and when we visited in October 2020, on our drive out to the Island, Owen was not quite 2 months old yet and needed a grandpa ‘baby whisperer’ to give mom and dad a break over dinner!


We had wanted to make Veal Parmigiana for dinner this evening, but after visiting 4 different grocery stores and a butcher, we determined that veal is not that popular on the Island. We could not find fresh veal anywhere! We decided to make Chicken Parmigiana instead! Dinner smells amazing and we can’t wait to dive into this dish!




Chicken Parmigiana!


It is amazing how we can still eat like kings and queens in Newman, despite a very small kitchen, 3 burner propane stove and a convection/microwave oven! It’s nice to have the time to shop each day for what we want to make for dinner! No rushing home after work at 7pm to try and figure out what I can stuff in my mouth, because I’m starving! Oh those working days are a distant memory now!!!





Tomorrow are golfing again at Qualicum Beach Memorial Golf Course with our new friends Ken and Curtis. The weather tomorrow is +8C and party sunny in Qualicum Beach. I’m sure we will have a lot more laughs with our golf buddies, now that we know them better! We’re looking forward to golf tomorrow because we know who we are paired up with! I think we have some more exploring to do after golf too! Milner Gardens is open and that intrigues me a lot! And the French Creek seafood shop is also on our agenda. Oh my! We’ll be busy and Richard will get into “Trip Directing” mode if I don’t watch it, trying to schedule our every move tomorrow!




I think tomorrow we will be ‘hither and thither’ again, much like today, but it keeps us busy, active and exhausted by the end of the day! We certainly sleep well in Newman!!!!





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