Spiders

Man, I hate spiders! I know there are a lot of people out there who think the same way I do. They are the nastiest creatures known to man (or woman). There are some people who don’t mind them…Oh, you sick fools.

I think they should be abolished. (The spiders, not the sick fools.) They have their uses I guess; eating flies and bugs and stuff but I could do that if I put my mind to it. I think they should be stomped, battered, drowned, sucked into the vacuum cleaner and generally folded, stapled and mutilated.

It’s been estimated that spiders could eat every human on earth in one year.

See! and people tell me they’re harmless. One thing’s for sure, after watching the video attached to the article I sure as heck ain’t going to Australia. And to think that there are about 130 within one metre of us and there are almost three million for every man woman and child on the planet. I don’t want mine, I think I’ll give them away.

When I thought I saw a gecko in Mexico and it turned out to be just a scorpion, I was relieved that it wasn’t a spider. Although they have tarantulas In Colorado that migrate in the millions, they don’t seem to scare me so much. Perhaps it’s because they appear slower and don’t bound around like some spiders do. (Oops, just read that they can travel quite fast.)

When I was a lot younger and installing alarm systems, I was at a home that had a pet tarantula. It was kept in an aquarium where it sat and munched on grasshoppers all-day. I was quite fascinated by it. It didn’t move much and seemed very docile.

The following day I checked on the critter and the aquarium was empty. The owner said he didn’t know where it was but to be careful where I trod. You’re darn right I was careful. I finished that job really fast and got the heck out of there. In an aquarium is one thing, running loose, quite another.

I’m somewhat prejudiced as I’ve been bitten three times by the nasty things. The last time was the worst and took a lot of meds and time to heal.

Notice that I demurely covered my boob

I even woke one morning with one in the bed. I had rolled over and squshed it. It had bitten me and there was a lot of silk where he tried to wrap me up and take me home for the kids. True story. I was told by the doctor at the hospital that spiders don’t bite??? He may be a doctor but he ain’t that smart.

I was taking some wood from the pile earlier today and underneath was a huge wolf spider. In my arachnophobic mind, it was about two feet across. When I had calmed down and stopped screaming, I realized it was a mere three inches from toe to toe. It was still one of the biggest I’ve ever seen. I’m not going near the woodpile for a while….maybe I’ll send Rosalie, she braver than me.

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Living without wine etc.

It can be done, I’ve proved it. When the Doc said to cut back on my wine intake I decided to quit altogether for a while. The guys at Beer Day can take a breath now, I don’t plan on being reckless enough to quit that little pleasure. Besides, I couldn’t take the humiliation.

Me when the Doc said to stop drinking and lose weight.

I stopped drinking last Friday (stands up put a hand in the air and declares “I have been sober for four days. Sits down to a round of applause.) I did have a shot of Glayva but that was Rosalie’s fault for getting it out of the cupboard.

I find that it’s been just a habit. After doing a few chores it was time for a glass of wine. Nothing wrong with that. Except, that one leads to two etc. It’s what we retirees do. I didn’t notice much change after the shakes and hallucinations went away. (I kind of miss them, they were fun.)

In the last few days, we have been analyzing our new lifestyle. We do this quite often to see if we are both on track with the idea. I think Rosalie wanted to wait until I was sober. (seriously I’m not that bad.)

We live outside most of the time. Even when it’s raining we just snuggle up in the gazebo with the fire alight, watch a movie and fall asleep. Often we just listen. It’s so quiet you can hear if Alan/Ellen drops his/her nuts. Also, if we go outside on a clear night the stars are spectacular. And of course, there were the robins which gave us a lot of fun for a few weeks. We decided we like it here and don’t want to live anywhere else except Mexico.

I’m so looking forward to seeing this again.

I’m sure most people think we’re mad, which we are but for different reasons. Perhaps we look at them the same way, each to his own. We don’t want to get stuck into a lifestyle we’re not happy with just because everybody else thinks we should. I think we are just a pair of old hippies at heart.

The weather has started to change, it’s more long pants than shorts these days. Even so, I’m outside writing this and Rosalie is sitting at the table working out the documents for our Mexican visa application.

When we decided to try this at the beginning of last year we were a bit apprehensive, but we both think it turned out better than expected. Rosalie was worried about living at the trailer for six months and I was concerned about living in Mexico. We were both surprised that it all worked out fine.

Our condo hasn’t sold yet, but so what? We aren’t in a hurry and there’s always next year.

Now, if only we could sell our excess furniture we would have a bit more room to move around.

Update

Walked out this morning and realized that fall will soon be upon us, definite chill in the air. This is the first year we’ve been here that there hasn’t been a fire ban; a strange summer.

We are counting down to Mexico with just over four weeks to go, starting to prepare for it. So many things to remember: book hotel and car; make sure we have enough wine to come back to; eat up all the freezer food; make a list of all the thing we want to take down with us that we can’t get there, like an Instant Pot.

It turns we can fit an instant pot in one of our suitcases. I can just imagine what the security will think when they see a pressure cooker on their x-ray. I’m tempted to put a bunch of batteries and some odd bits of wire in just to see what happens, but I won’t. I can also imagine a small piece of rope hanging out of the lid we a small note saying “Light fuse and run.” Ah! my weird mind!

Our furniture on consignment in Duncan idea didn’t work out, so we went to pick it up today. We got a free truck from the storage company we use. The last time we got a free truck from Budget it cost $168 so we were a bit skeptical. I had worked out the mileage and estimated the gas at about $60 for a total of about $100, not bad! We went to Duncan, grabbed our stuff drove it back to store in the sunroom. On the way, it was obvious that I had miss calculated the mileage. I probably based it on miles rather than kilometres. So my estimate was off. However, when I topped up with gas I look at the receipt and had pumped exactly $60. Redemption…somewhat.

It’s been a good season overall. We had a few good parties and some great Jenga games. There were also a lot of drop-in impromptu parties. Always fun! Not much money was spent on renos that I wanted to do. The garden wasn’t a great success but it’s in its first year and needs building up. I did get enough garlic and onions to pickle so was happy with that.

I built a bird box for the robins for next year. But I suspect that they will still attack the windows. I put a Canadian flag over our bedroom window and haven’t been bothered since. Must be patriotic Canadian robins not wanting to attack the flag.

My hand is healing well but we did have a bit of a complication. I have a minor rash and it seems to be affecting the healing process so I have to put on some heavy-duty steroid cream on my hand, to help. I  not out of the dressings yet but should be by next week. Other than that the hand is working great.

I had my annual checkup the other day and the Doctor said I have to quit drinking and lose weight. (This is true.) Anybody know of a good Doctor looking for any slightly tubby alcoholic patients?

Wings

Ah! What a weekend.

Rosalie’s sisters wanted to do something for Rosalie’s BIG birthday. So, they invited her down to Victoria where all five of them could get together and misbehave. In the meantime, my two brothers-in-law headed my way.

Vic was visiting a friend in Campbell River so we didn’t see a lot of him, but Gordie had made a new chiminea for me and we wanted to put that together so he stayed with me at the trailer.

Rosalie and I had decided on wings for Gordie’s first night here so she put some in the fridge to thaw out. Unfortunately, it was a big bag. We cooked some on the egg and they were great. The problem was that we had to use up the rest of them.

On Friday the two of us went to Comox to pick up supplies. On the way back we stopped at the Fanny Bay Inn. We spoke to Vic just before we got there so invited him and his friend, Larry, to join us. Which they did about 30 minutes later. Eventually, after about two hours, we all went back to the trailer and finished up the party, but we couldn’t get them to stay to share the wings. So, Gordie and I had to have another go at them.

Vis was going to come over on Saturday so great, we had lots of wings left, or so we thought. When we checked we found that we didn’t have enough, so, instead of driving into town I pulled some chicken legs from the freezer.

Vic arrived the following day and told us that he couldn’t stay for dinner as his wife was having a dental issue in Victoria. Great! Now we have too much chicken again. Before he left the neighbours and some friends dropped by, some wine was consumed and we had a great time.

I had told Rosalie about the wing problem so when I called her the next morning she wanted to know if we were having wings for breakfast, which Gordie and I found hilarious.

That afternoon Rosalie and Gordie’s wife Giselle showed up in the middle of another get-together with the neighbours. We cooked a pork roast on the egg (no more wings for a while) and once again had a great time.

The chiminea is a thing of beauty. Stainless steel and works great. Gordie did a fantastic job as usual.

My hand is getting a lot better. I was at the hand clinic as well as the surgeon’s office today and they were both pleased. I only have to wear the splint at night now, a great relief.

I’m not so sure of the results though.

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.