Wednesday, August 20, 2014

A Lot Happens In Two And A Half Years

Greetings to whoever still checks in periodically to see if I've come back or to any one randomly finding me. As you can see I titled this post "A Lot Happens In Two And A Half Years". Well, even more happens in four or more which is what it's been since I posted with any regularity. So my first thought was to do a overview of the last couple of years which was then replaced with the idea of going back further to when I started slacking off.

Upon reflection that seems a bit much to bite off, especially for a first post since coming back. So I've decided that I won't even try to be comprehensive about it. I guess you will just have to read someone elses blog if you want comprehensiveness. Instead I will talk about some of the things from recently that are on my radar and possibly a few of the more memorable things that have happened in the last two to four years that stick out in my mind.

So here goes ...

First, since this is a public blog that anyone can chance onto I will start with public happenings and then move on to the personal which will only be of interest to a stranger if they happen to be having a really boring day - LOL or if something happens to turn out to be a relatable point. On such point might be the link I will be including to a friend's website. Yes, he too has one and unlike mine his may be of more general interest because as opposed to being about "all things random" like mine, his is about his unique travel journey.

But like I said I will start with the news. Since I am new again to blogging I am having a bit of a case of writers block so in addition to keeping it simple with my world news I will do the same later with the personal and only talk about the last few weeks in the case of the world-at-large and the last few months for that of my own personal world. That means that in the case of world news (read: in the entertainment realm) two celebrity deaths and one internet happening.

First the celebrity deaths. Those would be, of course, Robin Williams and Lauren Bacall. I don't have much to say regarding one or the other. No odes to either. Neither one was a beloved favorite of mine but it's always sad when someone goes and offers a chance to remember something about their life because who wants to be forgotten. Anyway, in terms of Robin Williams 

My friend David Tonner (who should be ok with his full real name being put out there because he has his own blog where he does that too just like I do) just returned to the city recently for a brief visit before leaving again on his travels through Canada and the U.S. David is a very interesting person and if you want to read about his travels he has the blog I mentioned that deals with his wanderings. It can be found at 

Went to the Edmonton Folk Fest. Was fortunate enough to receive two free tickets. Had planned to take a friend who loves this type of thing but can ill afford it. It was her birthday to boot on the day we were scheduled to go. However, there was a major screw-up (for the second year in a row!) with the arrival of the tickets and by the time it was confirmed that they were in fact coming, Katherine had had to make other plans so her birthday wouldn't be a total bust. So unfortunately, no Folk Fest for her.

That really was too bad since she was the one who really wanted to go. I was more along for the ride, so to speak. When it turned out that I'd need to find another person to use the second ticket, I did what I always do in these type of situations. I pulled out my phone book and starting with A and working my way towards Z I started calling up friends and acquaintances, old and new and asking them, on a first reply first served basis who wanted and was able to come at the last minute. Thankfully someone was available and ...

... that someone was Karen C. The fact that Karen was even able to go, or for that matter was home to take the call was surprising since it is her busy season for work. She works, along with her husband Nick, as a supervisor and salesperson for the Stars Air Ambulance Calendars and related materials that are sold during this time of year for a variety of good reasons but which, unfortunately, make it really hard to even get a hold of her during these times. Luckily she had a rare day off and we were able to spend some time together.

Before that there was a BBQ at Veggie House. It was pretty well attended. Residents from other Veggie Houses were among the attendees as well as both family and friends of the "inmates" at our particular location. Sonia did a excellent job of putting together what ended up being an indoor BBQ. There certainly was no shortage of food. Mom was happy as usual to see that Martina didn't forget how much Mom loves Martina's spring rolls and made enough for Mom to take home all the spring roll leftovers. LOL.

There was also a BBQ for my Monday afternoon Toastmasters group, The Peter Kossowan Communicators. As has been the case for the last two or so years we had our BBQ in the country as the guests of Fred Sawka and his lovely wife Joyce. And also as usual, I was fortunate that the Kozma's found a spot for me in the family van. What started out as a super-hot, super bug-filled day turned quite nice. As luck would have it, I was able to find a spot to hibernate inside for an hour or two while it was still icky out.

Miracle of miracles, my niece Larissa has begun to make good on a roughly five-year old promise. Being a busy person I can appreciate her not being able to fulfill her "pledge" at the initial time it was made but I have to say, after five or so years I really was being to wonder ... LOL. We have started the process but there was a hiccup or two along the way which isn't really surprising when you consider how long it's dragged out already. I will elaborate more when "Project Larissa" is finally successfully completed.

Starting back in June, Mom had to be hospitalized for around a month. Instead of getting into all the depressing details (it was serious!) let me just say that even though she had to be re-admitted a second time for an additional week only six days after leaving after a month long stay because she caught a life-threatening and contagious bug when in the hospital. Ironically, they had to let her go after those eight or so days back in the hospital because they were afraid she'd catch an even worse bug if she stayed! So ...

... she ended up recuperating at home for the most part. During that time, her boyfriend had his own health issues. Along with his cancer diagnosis he has had heart problems for many years that apparently had gotten worse. So much so that he also had to be admitted into the hospital for treatment. Turns out that he needed a pacemaker. I was surprised that at 85 or so and with terminal cancer that they gave him a pacemaker but like my aforementioned friend David T pointed out it's all about quality not quantity of life thankfully.