Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Pop rocks

Remember those?  They fizz in your mouth and pop, like static in your head.

See them there?


But wait, check the package carefully, can you see where they're made?

Totally weird, they're made in Spain, indeed in Barcelona province.  TOO weird.

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Not made for ant stomping

These are my trail running shoes. Actually I have two pairs.  The ones in Spain have even bigger treads.

Look at the picture below, the only part that touches the ground when you're on a hard surface is the yellow bits.

And the yellow bits are pretty tall, see?

So if you're trying to stomp on an ant, the chance of actually getting him is pretty low.  I tried it.  Once, again, and a third time.  After that I thought he (actually they're all she's aren't they, the ones we see) anyway, after three shots, she got a reprieve and I let her go....well, I gave up trying.

Good for running, but don't ask me to squash anything.

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Paying for air

The man and I, for our sins, had to go and schlep through all the crap in storage.  When we first left to go sailing, we thought we'd be gone for a year, so we sorted through the crap to a degree, and then shoved it in the basement.  A few years later I spent one hellish day in the basement with 6 guys....rented sons, literally, and sorted through it all.  The guys went up and down the stairs, with crap.  I stood in the basement and designated storage, lawn or garbage.

In TO there is (was) this great company where you can 'rent a son' so a young strong university age student comes over and mows lawns, helps pack crap, etc....and they're polite, the only bit of false advertising there.  Not all sons are.

So, we had these two storage pods out on the street, and the guys were loading stuff into that, from which it would be trucked into storage somewhere....and one heck of a lawn party was happening, all the neighbours turned out with lawn chairs to pick through the stuff we got rid of.


Fast forward and we still had these two pods in storage, the man and I had gone through them a few times, taking some stuff out, but it was time for the big sort.

That was yesterday.  Now the living room needs the big sort, but whatever.

One thing we did do was get the bikes out of storage.  3 of them (I do wonder what happened to the 4th).  After a decade in storage, the tires were a wee bit flat.

So this morning, I went off to the gas station.

Turns out you have to pay for air now in my little part of TO.

I mean really?

Pay for air.

I have to go back again too, cause I didn't have a looney or four quarters.


Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Super slow run, no jog

When I go out for a run, I usually run, as in I go fast or fast-ish.

I should probably have a go at some proper training, but mostly I just run as fast as I can maintain.  But the other day I was pretty bagged, thoroughly tired.  So I went for a trot, a gentle little jog along, not trying to do anything, just trotting along.

This is not exactly a revelation for anyone at any level...but it was a wild change.  It was so easy.

Not something I want to do all the time, but it was relaxing, and it was amazing that I could go on for a long time without even breathing very hard.

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

The spider

Look who came piggy back in my bag!

After leaving the museum of civilization, for some rocks, long grass and food....


Monday, July 22, 2013

Drive out

I have no photos of this, as I was too busy driving to take them.  Friday night here we had some fairly serious thunderstorms that came through in a big long line.  Youngest and I ended up driving under them, as in sorta kinda chasing them unknowingly for 4 hours.


Visibility was about 10 feet / 3 meters.

We hydroplaned a couple of times, Youngest sat up straight and fast, the car feels odd....that's cause we're floating I replied.

One time we were blowing sideways, not getting buffeted by the wind, but sliding sideways with the wheels forward, enough water under the tires that the VERY strong winds (read tornado warnings) were blowing us over.

Nearly stopped in a hotel at one point...then we turned away from the lake up towards Ottawa, and it was GONE

Utter heaven.

Not such a fun drive.

Sunday, July 21, 2013

Long post to come

but for now,

Wouldn't this make the best imaginable bike basket?

Not exactly aerodynamic, and a pain the the rump in traffic, but goodness me, that'd be a dream!

Saturday, July 20, 2013

where am I?

One of the things I love about Canada is all the water.  Yes, I know I live within sight of the beach in Spain, but no one uses it for much of anything except in the summer.  There is some rowing, but most boats don't go out, and they don't go out with me....swimming is chilly, though maybe I'll have to get a wetsuit and get going on that.....but here?  In the summer?  EVERYONE is out on the water.

In downtown Ottawa we found this:

Yes, that is a kayak slalom course in the city!

There are boats in locks, all within 10 minutes walk of the parliament buildings...

The national gallery of art is doing renovations, so look what they did!!! I imagine it isn't quite so welcome in the winter, the cold frigid winter

Some art.....

Some more one spat at me this time anyway....

These statues were seriously cool....never noticed them before.

Art in the gallery....this was enormously long.

A gopher!


We ate nachos, Youngest got hennad, we wandered around and sat in the parks, drank excellent lemonade and had a simply marvelous day.  It was LOVELY.

And as a bonus we figured out where to pick Eldest and her friend up, the reason we're here....all I knew was Ottawa at 4pm, doesn't narrow it down a lot!

Have a good one,


Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Bailing hay!

Got a chance to go bail hay, and I haven't done this since I was 23 or so in Germany of all places!

We phoned up some friends to ask them over to dinner, and they countered with an offer to go bail hay!  Of course we said yes.  Eldest valiantly came with us, but her allergy to basically all things rural - and subsequent wheeziness - meant a trip back into more 'heathful' urban settings.

Youngest however popped an anti-histamine and aside from some hay induced sneezing, worked long and hard.

One tractor died, so we were down to the one that pulled the bailer and the wagon that we loaded behind that:

Tractor, followed by red bailer then followed by wood coloured wagon with three folks stacking hay on it.

Youngest was slinging hay bails on the wagon, and after we filled one load said she didn't want to do it anymore.  I countered that the other guys (all quite big, and all guys) had done three loads.  She countered by noting that they were all three times her size, so it worked out as even.  She had a point.

When we did the math, the biggest guy (age 21 at 210 lbs) was lifting less than a quarter his weight with each bail.  Youngest, was lifting almost half she slept well last night.

Riding the hay wagon back on bailes we stowed.  Very very cool day.

A lot of hard work, and a nice crowd of folks.

plus some half grown chickens, ducks and layers,

and some cows.

Very cool outing, I'd definitely do it again.

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Ceramic museum

The Gardiner Ceramic Museum in TO has two great exhibits on, one called A Bit of Clay on the Skin which is ceramic jewelry, primarily from Scandinavian and French artists:

We could take pictures here:

These ones looked like turds, and have human hair for cords.....

These ones look like bums, no?


A little more generally normal....

This sucker is great...and Youngest particularly likes the camel

Made from found jewelry?

Didn't get the names of these artists...

And this was a separate piece of work....I just liked it.

The REALLY cool exhibit though was a block of work by Kathy Venter, her work was AMAZING!