Bored and more parties

I have been getting a little bored lately so decided to get my latest hand surgery done.

It was originally scheduled for 16th August but they upped it to the 9th. I was good with this as I wanted to get it over with. The problem being, that the Melaque party was on the 11th.

I went meekly to my fate at the surgical clinic and they did their usual great job of getting me fixed up. We returned home and there was a little blood leaking but not enough to be worried about. I had an afternoon post-surgery nap and woke up to find that I had leaked a lot more.

Wanting to get my full monies worth from the surgery, I phoned the surgeon’s office and was told to head back to town for repairs. We did this, the doctor redressed it and I was soon on my way back home again.

I was given some heavy-duty pain killers but fortunately, have only needed one now and again.

We checked the weather forecast and it said there was a 30% chance of rain for the party. I decided that we needed the tarps up and went into my patented one-handed performance. It was quite the trick, including running ropes and climbing ladders.

The day came and people started to show up. I had decided to open my “Taqueria de Christo” again this year and managed to do it one-handed. It was quite the success. I didn’t make any money though as I forgot to put up the piece list. I would only have had two items: Taco con Carne or Taco con Pollo.

The following morning, of course, I had to remove all the tarps, Oh yeah, and it hadn’t rained after all.

While all of the tidying up was going on I got a call from the hand clinic to have my surgical dressing removed and a lighter dressing with a splint put on. They wanted us there at 8:30 am the next day so we had to get up at the unheard-of hour of 6:45.

I had asked for the same therapist that I had last year but she is on vacation. Since I had warned her that I would be back, I thought it was a bit inconsiderate of her.   Or perhaps she was fed up with my whining. Who knows!

The lady who replaced her is very experienced and taught me a few new things. Rosalie, as usual, was standing by taking pictures and generally reveling in the whole gory mess. Between the two of them, they bullied me into a real funky colour scheme for my splint and tie-downs. I don’t know how I’m going to face the guys at the pub tomorrow.

That afternoon, I had a bit of pain so took two of the pain pills. Soon, I was completely zonked out. I must have dozed off at least six times. I don’t like that feeling so I won’t do that again.

Of course, while I was writing this my blog site went down because I forgot to renew it. Maybe I do need the meds after all.


They’s gone

We knew it had to come sooner or later. Our babies have left us. But what a great experience!

Having watched them for a few days we hoped they wouldn’t leave while we were away on important business, like at the pub.

The camera has been set up for a while and usually, video is hit and miss. I was lucky yesterday though. I caught a baby leaving on its first flight. If you watch the video carefully, you can see that just as Dad takes off for more food the guy at the back plumps himself  (or herself) up and just goes! He flew off through the trees as if he owned the place.

The other kids looked as though they were going to go too but chickened out at the last minute.

When we eventually got up this morning I went and checked the nest and found it empty. I noticed a few different bird calls and hoped it was our kids saying goodbye.

Kinda sad, but at least I got my darn ladder back.


Wings and things

No, not BBQ chicken wings but new young robin’s wings.

Our brood of robins are growing fast and we expect them to be gone shortly. They are still young though and are still being attended to by their parents. We still can’t tell which parent is still feeding them the most but I’m leaning toward Dad. Apparently, Mum leaves about now and starts a new nest.

The latest video.

We notice that every day they get bigger. We saw them stretching their wings for the first time today.

Baby Robins

Although we aren’t bird watchers we love to watch birds. I do mean the feathered variety as well. The ones we are watching are, of course, the North American Robin.

In the last few days, we’ve watched the little ones get bigger and bigger. It’s amazing how fast they grow.  It’s hard to see them but we notice that they stretch more for food each day. Or perhaps the greedy one is standing on its sibling’s head, who knows?

We thought that there were only two for a while but I definitely saw three today. Perhaps the third one was the one being used as a step stool.

Check out the video.

Mum is trying to stuff a berry down the babies neck but the silly little blighter keeps spitting it out.

I have been trying to get some good video to pass on but when I zoom it gets too shaky. I told Rosalie that I needed a tripod and it just so happened that mine was close at hand. So I set it up. Although the location is not the best so tomorrow we try again.

50 years party

I had to celebrate my 50 years in Canada and because we are who we are, we had to have a party. We sent the invites out and eventually had 22 friends who were able to attend.

A card made for me by Mike of the famous Mike and Faye team. It’s hard to see as my scanner refused to work so I took a picture. It shows England to Canada. Awesome!

We checked the weather and sure enough, there was an eighty percent chance of rain. While we were in Nanaimo for Beer Day we bought a honking great tarp and I strung it up. The problem was that we couldn’t squeeze all the people in. Up went another smaller tarp I had lying around and we were all set.

On the morning of the party, I was up at 6 am and lit the Big Green Egg. It had been raining a little so the tarps were a good idea. We had decided to barbeque turkey plus two pork roasts. We couldn’t get them all on the egg together so we decided to do the turkey first; now the fireworks started. I wanted to cook by temperature and Rosalie wanted to cook by time. Fortunately, we get along because the joshing got fierce. I reminded her of the Grizwalds Christmas turkey. She was right, of course, and I now have to ask permission next time we do a turkey.

Peter and Suzie had come up early, so at noon, when the turkey was done we had a nice turkey bun lunch. I checked the charcoal and decided we had enough to do the roasts. WRONG! Halfway through the temperature started to drop so I had to haul them out and add more.

Mike drew this for me. I was so thrilled. As it’s an original it is probably priceless; well, it is to me.

I wanted an internal temperature of 160 degrees for the pork but at about 140 the egg temperature started to drop again. Rosalie asked me to wait it out but the temperature kept dropping so I made the executive decision to haul it out to see how it looked. Rosalie may know turkey but I am the king of pork. It was perfect so we let it and I, rest a while before serving it up. Man what a meal.

After we ate we had to have some sort of entertainment to keep people around so I set up the Jenga game. I played in the first round and as it is my game I get to make the rules. One rule is that you can only use one hand to pull a block. We had to change that when I got caught using two hands. I didn’t think anyone would notice but my friends are obviously very observant regardless of the booze. Anyway, I eventually lost for our team by making a brave but foolish move known as ‘The Chris Wells Stupid Maneuver’.

It was a great afternoon and evening and I really enjoyed having a lot of my friends around to celebrate with me.

Oh! and the weather was great; I didn’t rain.


Robins, hatched!

We have noticed that Dad has been around the nest more frequently lately. One time we saw him bringing food for Mum. They were both there this evening and when they left to get some Chinese I took a quick photo and discovered three little balls of fur.

It’s really neat, but we have to watch out for squirrels getting to the nest. We trust Alan but are not sure of the new teenagers around here. They have no fear. we try not to feed them and hope they go away and leave the robins alone.

More to follow.

50 years???

Just where did the time go.

In 1956 I was eleven, my oldest brother Kit and wife Bridget came to Canada.  on their honeymoon and decided to stay. They would send home Canadian scenic calendars and after seeing them I wanted to be here.

We arrived in Montreal 2nd July 1969 and haven’t looked back. My former wife, my oldest daughter Lisa, who was 18 months old at the time, and I came by ship. We were probably one of the last immigrants to come this way.

My first sight of Canada was Bell Island peeking out through the fog in the mouth of the St Lawrance river. Shortly after I saw my first sign of Canadian life; a cop car driving up a hill with it’s blue and reds going. Two sights that I will never forget.

My other brother, Joe, and his wife Jean picked us up from the dock and drove us to Toronto. My first impressions are a bit vague after all this time but I couldn’t get over how far we went without seeing civilization. In England, we’re used to driving a couple of miles and running into another town or village.

Our first weekend was spent camping on an island on one of Ontario’s many lakes. We fished, water skied, swam and I thought this was paradise; and of course, it is.

The adjustment was huge, not only the language but customs as well. We knew about Halloween but trick or treating was a mystery to us. Also, what was Thanksgiving all about? And what the heck were weiners and beans? The cars at that time were huge and we loved them. In England, we call an eraser a rubber which cased a few giggles in the pharmacy.

My favourite stores which we didn’t have in England at the time were K.F.C, Dairy Queen and K Mart. I loved wandering around K Marts huge (to Me) store and just looking at all the stuff.

We settled in and eventually bought a house. As soon as we were able, we got our citizenship.

We spent four years in Ajax and Pickering  Ontario but then decided to move west. That’s when we bought our school bus and headed out. We eventually got to BC  via Wawa, and stayed eleven years before the work ran out. On a visit back to Ontario to see family, I was offered a job with Chubb Security. I accepted and ended up as the Installation Manager.

Eventually, Chubb and I parted ways, which is a whole other story. Anyway, by this time we had three kids. The whole family missed the West Coast so after four years we went back again.

After a few more years my wife and I decided to split. I eventually met Rosalie and have lived on Vancouver Island ever since.

I’m Canadian through and through but sometimes I get hit with something so English I can’t explain it. I  sometimes come out with words or expressions from way back and even I’m not sure what they mean.

I came to Canada mainly to make a living but the main benefit has been for my kids. I think they are smart enough to have done well for themselves in England, but they have had a better chance here.

When I go back to England these days I feel out of place. I suppose fifty years away will do that. For instance, I find it odd being in pubs and not knowing what to order any more. Over there I’m told I speak like a Yank which is very annoying. As you all know I speak just like a Canadian.

My home town of Rochester has seen a lot of changes but it’s still nice to see the old haunts again. Even though I’m only there a short time I miss being home in Canada.