” Mercury Forecast Mesa 32 degrees, Edmonton 5 degrees, Calgary 3 degrees
“December first already is shocking. Time is going by so fast. Too quickly really as there are still things I need to get done.
Just a few little things. I think tomorrow while Jackie is golfing, I should be able to get them completed.
Todays was my men’s group where I played the last 8 years at Whirlwind. Economics moved us to Longbow. Still a Troon course, still beautiful (not quite as nice) but a special deal made it worthwhile.
Two guys I have golfed with before and one new guy. Dale Bible hits the ball longer than the average golfer by far and Ken Willson is mister steady always in the centre. Some good golf and poor golf from our group today. BUT WE WON ONE TRIAD THAT PUT MONEY IN OUR POCKETS. Dale had an off day. Steve had a real off day and Ken golfed very well ending up with a 77. I played very well with 8 pars and a birdie. The sand traps here are killer with 6-inch-deep soft sand. Twice I was in them and twice a volcano. Extremely difficult if not impossible in some cases to get out. I putted pretty good today and it wasn’t easy as the greens were fast reading 9 on the Stimp. That is quick.
Beautiful day, fun guys to golf with, winning money, playing well, what more could you ask for. Keith Harry loves this course with the planes landing and taking off right over you. Loads of antique or biplanes and ex war planes.
You know you meet certain people and there is a connection. I had to include this sad news as Gail was one of those special people. Gail was such a nice lady. Smart, humorous, caring, fun loving, funny and a giving person. Listening to their stories as told on the deck, morning coffee or afternoon wine was always enjoyable. In fact, when I first started writing this blog in 2014, I was over at their house and had a few too many sips of wine. They loved the wine. I loved hearing their experiences as they extensively travelled and saw a lot of places. I walked across the street and blogged and had too many spelling mistakes. Anita Geddes caught me, and I had to laugh when I read it back. The teacher in her.
Gail passed away and we all will miss her. It sort of seems unreal to us. I think this piece tells the story of Gail very well. Wonderful lady !
I can see the beauty that caught Ian’s eye. She looked like a movie star.
I got home and found a super deal on flights back to Calgary. Turns out our two flights are cheaper than our one ticket for Daisy. LOL First time for us flying Flair Airlines so we will check them out. They are a Canadian discount line that flies lots out of Edmonton but not so much out of Calgary, so I was happy the timing worked out. We will see if we have three hours of good dog or bad dog. LOL More like 6 hours with boarding and deplaning. A nice supper and relaxing outside on the deck at 7 pm and I am loving it. I have one concern and that is the stupid people spreading this new variant and our dumber than a sack of hammers, Prime Minister closing the border again with our car left here and house not ready for leaving. The media ONCE again scaring people into submission. Viruses mutate if giving the chance. That is the way they work. Covid will become a virus forever that will be like the annual flu. Maybe even requiring an annual needle if big pharm gets their way. We cannot go back to lock downs. We cannot allow Trudeau to keep on borrowing money. We must learn to live with virus. Yes, a few million weaker people will die but truth be known we need a cull. And hopefully it will be only the unvaccinated older people that die.
It is funny how this pandemic has changed us. Here is my observation of people. March 2020 it was panic over logic taking over people. We witnessed a mass exodus of our park as the pandemic set in. Plus, no mind Trudeau stating it was important for Canadians to come home. For months people were attached to phones and news about the virus killing so many. The news blew this up 100-fold. It was like short term survival mode had taken over people. Some people locked themselves in and refused to exist in our sick world. Companies and governments suggested this with work at home and home schooling etc. Fear keeps people motivated in hand washing, masks etc but over time fear subsides and frustration, annoyance and depression start to take hold. Exhaustion and complacency sets in. People start to take the health mandates lightly, go to restaurants, stop wearing masks if not mandated and will socialize with people that they shouldn’t. It is human nature. What amazes me here in Arizona ( it is red state) is how there are no rules, only a few people being cautious, and everyone goes about life even with 4000 new cases daily. Having said that we are 90% safer here than at home in Calgary. We DONT go out to eat unless patio, we wear masks, we hand wash and distance and have only a small cohort bunch we see. Jackie & I golf but that is a relatively “safe sport” as we are outside.
We will fly back, try to have a safe Christmas and get back to Arizona again as soon as possible. This flying sucks. We need a PCR test 72 hours before flying, need to be double jabbed, have to download the Arrive Canada app and edeclar app just to make things more complicated.
Thought of the Day
Christmas seems more like the birth of Santa than Jesus lately !
“Mercury Forecast Mesa 28 degrees, Edmonton -1 degrees, Calgary -1 degrees”
Up earlier than normal this morning as I had a golf game set for 8:52 am. I was just ready to take the car when my uber cart driver Kirk showed up. He was golfing with his neighbor today, but I was lucky enough to still get picked up. Awesome.
Just as I headed out, he picked me up and Jackie walked by with her walking partners, Terry, Tracy and Olga. Coincidence or just timing right?
Ron, Kirk, Bruce and I were the group. It ended up Ron and I as partners against the other two. There were struggles today for each of us.
Ron and I won the first 9 by one point. Awesome. Then the second nine started and after three holes we were down by 5 points. That is lot. Most often that would mean game over.
Remarkable as it sounds being down by 5 we came back to win the back nine by one. I repeat we came back to win after being down by 5. I played very well with par after par and a birdie on a stretch of holes. It was just a fun time and always fun to tease and bug your competition when we won. Down 5 and winning. Unheard of. LOL The drives today I wish I could bottle as many were long long and straight.
Ron, as he doesn’t have a place here at Viewpoint bought everyone food and drinks at Fat Willy’s after the game. Very nice of him as the bill was quite hefty. And nice for a change to have chicken wings and onion rings along with cold beer. Jugs of beer. Jugs of beer. I will continue to call them jugs until I get slapped. lol
I arrived home via my uber cart Kirk driver and sat on the patio with Jackie relaxing and enjoying the sun and warmth and relishing in my victory.
I sure hope we have everything we need to fly as it is very convoluted, and most people are struggling to get everything correct. Lots of work to get it right. It is so much easier to drive across with all of the timing to get test results, fill in arrive apps and e declar apps. These apps have to submitted on TIME and if not one may not get on the plane or off depending. So far this is done:
- Covid PCR test booked in time frame required at Medical Centre
- Patient Profiles set up to access results for airport
- Arrive Canada app loaded and double checked to make sure working (can’t load before 72 hrs of leaving so am not sure of loading covid info yet)
- E Declare app all set up and ready to go
- Flights booked along with Daisy (her cost is equal to both of our seats LOL)
- Paperwork backup already for us and her. (With a dog you get pulled aside on entrance to Canada)
Flying used to be so easy. It is our PM that it is making it a lot more difficult than needed. Media scaring people again is dumb. Having said that I know of two people on 500 block with Covid. Americans !
A light supper due to wings and beer and then news watching. New is always bad news as that is what sells. Luckily even with 4000 a day cases the news doesn’t hi-lite Covid like we do. It is just another news item.
After supper we went for a walk around the park as Daisy likes it and we get extra steps in. The lights for Christmas are amazing even though not as many as prior years.
All of November was averaging 10 degrees over normal in temperature and it continues on until Friday if we trust the weatherman. All I know is, it is spectacular.
TV and some computer work tonight and another day complete. Life is Good.
Thought of the Day
The secret of living well is: eat half, walk double, laugh triple and enjoy life without measure.
(I figure 3 out of 4 ain’t bad, as eating half just won’t be fun) Having said that I have maintained a 40-pound weight loss for 10 years now. In fact, this morning 42 pounds even with the extra beer I don’t have in Calgary.
“Mercury Forecast Mesa 26 degrees, Edmonton -6 degrees, Calgary -3 degrees”
Sunny and warm which I need to say JUST about EVERY day. Nice. Jackie did some cleaning and then we headed to Fry’s for groceries. I like Fry’s. I think the only weak section is the veggie department. I noticed today there were more people wearing masks than ever. Either there were more Canadian’s shopping, or the micron variant is scaring people. Nice to see though.
Day two of trying out Daisy be herself. FAIL. She is a brat and broke out of the pen again. So our next plan is to let her roam the house and see what happens. Next time !
We got Daisy’s new bag all set up on the fold up bike and went for a ride today. She loves it with the wind blowing in her hair. Plus it looks neat, and she gets a lot of attention.
Years ago the English banished their criminals to Australia as punishment and less costly to take care off. Can you imagine 160,000 criminals sent to another country. I am thinking why we should send all of our unvaccinated people to one country and let them fight Covid with their natural immunity. It isn’t cruel as they don’t believe it is real anyways. Picking the country is the only hard part
“Mercury Forecast Mesa 26 degrees, Edmonton -11 degrees, Calgary -6 degree”
The weather has been averaging 10 degrees warmer on average than ever! It has been wonderful but the last few days we have begun to notice for walks or staying outside on the deck we need the heater.
I seem to have been quite busy so haven’t had time to keep up. So, I will do a quick update. Let’s see. Fred & Terry are finished for now with their renovations. We finished off the drawer fronts with barn wood and Terry got her new handles. The drawers and handles look wonderful. The driveway completely done with new epoxy also looks fantastic. Ralph & Tracy had their driveway done by the same guy. Great work and decent pricing.
We were having Fred & Terry and Ralph & Tracy over to watch the western semi-final CFL games. I brought out our 55 inch TV and put it in the outdoor kitchen for the game. Nice to have a large screen to watch. We were cheering for the Riders as the Stamps were robbed of a chance to win the cup. Watching the Eastern semi, I am fairly confident Hamilton will win the cup. The QB was awesome. Winnipeg won but I didn’t think they looked that good. Time will tell. It was a fun couple of error filled games to watch.
I BBQed up hamburgers and chicken breasts for everyone. The chicken down here is all Double D sized so I to cut them in half as it was only the girls wanting chicken. I spiced up the burgers with a lot of different kinds and I thought they turned out good. I even learned a few BBQ tricks for doing hamburgers. I made sure we had a great selection of condiments. Mustard, Relish, Ketchup, Mayo, Relish, onions, pickles, tomatoes, lettuce, cheddar cheese, Swiss, and provolone cheese and bacon with sesame buns and butter buns . Salad and French fries. I enjoyed it and hopefully everyone else did. Beer and wine was out and down.
We all know what happened so two teams in row that I cheered for did not make it. So now it is Bombers GO Bombers.
After the game we all started playing Dice. Jackie won the first game, I then win and then Terry takes it. We all were a little fearful when Jackie won the first game after her performance last time. I had to turn the heater on for the first as it is starting to cool down now at night. Fred had to leave a little earlier as his aches were getting to him the last few days.
A fun day watching football, good food and visiting with friends.
Seven of us today in my VP group golfing. I was with Kirk and Barry. The golf today was disastrous for all three of us. Having said that both Kirk and Barry had to hand over their money to me. As I said this was the 10th time golfing in AZ this year and it was my highest score and the only one in the 90’s. Lowest of 78 and today the only game in the 90’s. All three of us were in the 90’s and high scores for us. It was just one of those days. My issue was three holes taking a 9,8,7 plus just not striking or controlling the slice. The sand today was mean, but the putter was also off. A bad game had to happen, but I was hoping for a little less beating. My only redeeming factor is I won the money. This was the first shotgun and I think lack of focus with waiting was the biggest issue. I will adjust. Plenty of walks again today for Daisy. On our walk tonight I met a gentleman that is a member at Turner Valley. Small world.
Thought of the Day
Why bad golf happens to good people! It is our brain not your game.
“Mercury Forecast Mesa 24 degrees, Edmonton -4 degrees, Calgary -2 degrees”
Overcast today as a storm on Thursday with rain is supposed to hit. When they say rain, it may be up to 1/10th of an inch. LOL But it is cooler than we are used to. In fact, I had to put on a light jacket this evening for a walk.
First thing was to ensure our printer was working as I need to print board passes etc.
Printer fired up and ink was perfect after no use for 2 years so all is good there.
Fixed up, threw away, and measured up the side yard for a shed I will built in January. I did a material list and cost analysis and yes lumber is high. But I want the shed to store our extra golf clubs, Christmas tree & decoration, lights, chairs etc. It will be JUST a shed ! LOL
I did some computer work, banking, transferring and changing to USA dollars. I moved some lights around and time flew.
Jackie & I headed to Western Sky Golf course. We were hooked up with a golf teacher at the University. He was a golfer. He just had rotary cuff surgery and was still recovering but you sure couldn’t tell. He was one under after nine.
I like this course and played well. The odd mistake but I was fine with everything. Only one hole where I screwed up. Daisy sat and watched us perfectly again. Jackie played ok but her thumbs kill her golfing lately. The pain of a bad thumb is one of the most painful things you can experience.
Jackie and I headed to main street as the parks Christmas Golf Car Parade started at 5pm sharp. Normally our parade is led by the train, but it broke down last night on its Christmas light tour. I didn’t count but there had to be 50 to 75 cars all lighted up and loaded with intoxicated people. Throwing candies and having a blast. It was fun to watch. We all stood on the side of the road to watch.
Jackson got his stab which is great. Safer for him and the rest of the family. I am glad about the timing. We will get our booster shot on the 18th or so.
“Mercury Forecast Mesa 17 degrees, Edmonton -2 degrees, Calgary -1 degrees”
It rained quite heavy last night. Always nice to get that once in a while as it cleans up the dust very nicely. My home-made cord covers from cheap Tupperware worked perfect.
Jackie had her ladies league golf today. For Christmas rather than wait for a birdie to happen Jackie poured out Butter Ripple shots for everyone at the first tee. She brought the whole bottle. LOL
I whipped to Depot to pick up clear spot lights and a multi plug for my lights. I came home and painted a 2 x 4 and drove up to Fred’s to bore out holes and install the light fixtures. I like my new system a way better. It really makes the sign and bear POP. It really is too bad our block struggles with unity. Biggest factor is old people and opinions and being cheap/ A $ 75 decoration could last 5 to10 years. How is that expensive?
I was ready to build Noel signs and double side Santa Bears but no interest was shown so I will just carry on my own way. Some of the nay-sayers have left so perhaps in the future we can get back to having block parties and unity.
All done for this year. I will add NET lighting to one more tree next year.
Daisy has really enjoyed her stay with all of the walks, all of the dog meeting and having new adventures she hasn’t experienced yet. She has made many human and dog friends here.
We stopped by Fred & Terry place and looked at their new Apple TV. This thing is pretty neat and very useful. I could use it here and out at Oasis. Two things though. While cheap to get started the addon and subscriptions could add up fast. Ie Netflix account, Hulu, sports etc. As you know I do not care for Apple products. They are inferior, and more difficult to use than the Android or Microsoft systems. They live off the fact they are a little more secure. For every product they have there is alternate that is equal or better. Apple TV is $149 or up to $189 depending on the system. Then the add-ons. Firestick is $49 plus the add-ons and does everything Apple can do. Will I buy one most likely not as we really don’t watch much TV especially during the summer. I even have begun to distance myself from news as it is just negativity.
Four players today in my men’s league. My neck and shoulder have been bothering me lately so I took pills today. It didn’t help. I have had three bad games in a row. Today a 93 caused by numerous numerous missed putts and sand trouble. Putts cost me at least 6 strokes with the cup outs. Bad bad luck so I am not overly displeased. I am having trouble getting out of the sand though with each game taking a couple to get out. I need to read up on the tricks for the different kinds of sand. Poor score but lots of fun with Kirk, Bruce and Ron.
Drink time at my house and I had to turn on the heater for us sitting outside.
Jackie was awesome today as when we arrived, she had everything set up. Rum and Rye were out. Glasses, individual paks of chips and nuts, ice, beer can covers, and the TV was on the golf channel.
Night time walk, some Tv and another day in paradise done.
Thought of the Day
You can tell a lot about a person by the way they deal with tangled Christmas lights.
” Mercury Forecast Mesa 21 degrees, Edmonton -12 degrees, Calgary -4 degrees”
The first few days with average temperatures. Winter in Arizona means a morning temp of around 6 to 7 degrees and a high of about 16 to 24 degrees as a high. It means a light jacket on as soon as the sun sets. It means a heavy jacket when Jackie takes her morning 7 :30 am walks every day. Daisy loves these as she gets to go the dog park every day to meet new friends. Terry, Tracy and Olga all meet up somewhere on the streets and they walk away with a few other hundred seniors wanting to exercise, work off pounds or for something to do as they can’t sleep. Can’t understand that concept but I guess certain people are that way. I say don’t go to bed at 9pm or sleep during the day and it won’t happen.
I have been busy enough the last few days that I was remiss in updating this. Not a lot of excitement just enjoying warmth and friends. Trips to Home Depot with Daisy on my back as practice for the plane that have been going well.
A rest relax, grocery day, fix this and that day and that was about it.
Grey Cup today at Fred’s place. He arranged his patio and two TV’s going with different sitting spots for everyone. Spacing and food handling was done covid safe along with everyone having two if not three shots. I mean jabs, the shots didn’t happen as no one was really cheering for any team.
We had the squares out and everyone was wanting to win money more than caring which team one. I multiplied my money by 4 times winning the third quarter and if the game hadn’t gone into OT I would have won the game. It is always fun to be one of the winners.
Loads of good fun, drinks including Fred’s 3 finger Rye’s and a fun gathering. A fun way to watch the game.
Always interesting to talk to people. Chuck from Penticton was raised in Evansburg and was good friends with Keith Kjelland which was our neighbor when Dad had his service station. Keith went to grade one with me. Small world. We had a group from Penticton, Red Deer, Three Hills, St Albert, Evansburg, and Calgary.
Dwayne had a flight cancelled on them which caused a bit of issues so they had to get retested and rebooked which they have done. I think we are making it a little too difficult for air travel. Rapid test at the airport before you board and proof of vaccine and you should be set to go but we have governments involved making it very convoluted.
Thought of the Day
By us running in big circles we make it a small world.
“Mercury Forecast Mesa 22 degrees, Edmonton -12 degrees, Calgary -4 degrees”
Jackie was out the door at 7:30am. It was 7 degrees feel likes 4 degrees for about an hour or so. I actually slept in a little this morning. Daisy and Jackie returned about an hour later and she jumps onto the bed to bug me. She is such a cute dog and is loving the walks and doggie park.
I worked on the computer for a bit this morning, paid a few bills and I do have to say even with the food costs much, much higher than other years, we are living down her for a lot less than back home. And it is warm, sunny and bright.
Nothing on the agenda today other than golfing in men’s league. Jackie worked most of the day. I don’t think I mentioned it but she forgot to renew her driver’s license so it expired so she needs me to drive her. LOL
Kirk picked me up again right on time. Appreciated.
My playing partners today were Barry, Jim and Ryan. Ryan is the son of Mike and joined us for a couple of games. With the throw of the balls Ryan was my partner. Ryan’s handicap was pegged at 22 which I like. We then started golfing and it was hilarious. Ryan starts off with 6 pars in a row. We were killing the other team. They stood no chance with the strokes. Plenty of teasing about the handicap was in play. Barry had an off game, Jim was pretty consistent but a little higher score than normal and I played well except for a couple of holes. Ryan’s six holes straight with Par’s and then my 5 holes straight with a Par and throw in a birdie it was over for them. Ryan was low net at 68 and I was low gross at 86 which is a way to high but not today. Too many missed shots and one blow up hole. Needless to say, money came Ryan and I’s way. Love it. Plus, it was excellent to see him play so well and be my partner.
It was and no other word for it PERFECT out on the course today.
Drinks after at Kirk’s place which was good. I said my Christmas goodbyes.
I had a phone call and Jackson sent us pictures tonight. The poor guy had his hand slammed in the school door. X-rays and luckily no breaks but badly bruised and sprained. This will affect his hockey for a while for sure.
You can the indent in one finger. The blood under the skin is going to turn this into a black, yellow and purple work of art. Tomorrow it will look even worse.
A great supper trying to get rid of food before we leave and then a long walk around the park. The Coyote’s are howling like mad as it is mating season. Interesting enough there are two howls. One sound from the lonely males and one from a female looking for a mate.
The end of another great day and my last game of 2021. Love the game.
Thought of the Day
I think my new objective should be I can’t get out of bed for any day where the temperature is less than my age.
“Mercury Forecast Mesa 22 degrees, Edmonton -15 degrees, Calgary -14 degrees”
Jackie & Daisy were out the door again as every day at 7:30am for their morning walk. Only Terry and Olga today as Tracy had flown home. Jackie had a toque on this morning as it was only about 7 degrees C.
Jackie worked a bit today and I started to dig out a tree where I am planning to build a shed in January. I am planning for a 8ft by 30 inch shed to store our extra clubs, fold away cots, boxes Christmas decorations. It will come in very handy. Doing a price check I think I can get it done for less than $600.
We whipped to the mailbox and our vacuum bags arrived. Not a thing that normally would excite someone but Jackie was very happy. LOL
Fred & Terry invited us for supper tonight so we went a little early to play some cards. We got surprised by an impromptu birthday party for a lady on the street. It was her 70th birthday (she looks a lot younger) and I am sure she had had 70 drinks by the time she arrived for a nice short visit.
The girls AGAIN beat us. I am sure the world is tilted as this is NOT just right.
Fred made us a wonderful homemade soup and homemade bread supper so how can you go wrong. Awesome
We walked home and watched the Finale of The Voice. Not my pick but I am happy with trio winning and hope they do well.
Up this morning and headed for the drive thu PCR covid testing station. Very well organized and excellent nurses. Funny, friendly and thorough. Perfect timing as we were 10 minutes early and with no line up we were checked and out in about 10 minutes. Daisy drew all of the attention and was our hold up as they had to pet her.
I prefer the throat swab versus the brain wipe. They go up away to FAR.
Stopped at PetSmart for some stuff we needed for Daisy then home.
I loaded my EdeClar app for customs and have that filled out. I loaded and saved my ArriCan app until we get our results so we should be all set to go. Enough crab to go thru to get back into your own country.
I see Jason today changed the “rules” a bit which is good even though idiots will once again harp on him. He is by far not perfect as every leader has not been’ but if we would have had any other govt in power it would have been a disaster. Smart guy and I liked the media backlash responses today.
The evenings and mornings are quite cool. In fact, Jackie going this morning for walk with the ladies was in plus 7 degree weather. But it warms up fast.
I received my test results last night at midnight. We waited until 9 am and then booked another for 9:30 for Jackie. We rushed and got in line, second in line, and we were back home by 9 :35. Plenty of time for Jackie to get ready for golf. I assume she was a little stressed by the bad luck and having to rush.
About an hour and half later she phones. Her pull cart brake seized, and she was unable to push or pull her cart. I picked up the phone while shopping with Fred at our favorite store Harbor Freight. We need a hole saw and a level for upcoming project work. Luckily, she laughed at her bad luck and knew I couldn’t be right there. Fred & I hurried and headed back to the course. We found her on the ninth hole lifting her back wheels of the ground. If she put on 10,000 steps it should have read 20,000 as that is heavy. We picked up the cart and headed to Fred’s to see if it was fixable. Nope. Gear and brake cable was broken.
Here she has to drag, push pull her cart and bag and ends up shooting a 42 on the nine.
At home I checked Amazon for parts and no luck, so I phoned BagBoy direct. I have to say American customer service is wonderful. The young lady that was very knowledgeable helped find the model part number etc. Turns out a 10 yr old pull cart they no longer make parts for. She was very apological and then offered me a discount for a new one. I am thinking 10 percent. When she sent the email it was for 35% off. That is awesome !!
Speaking of Harbour Freight, I bought a 48-inch level for $10.99. That is amazing. Fred bought a rubber 1 pound hammer for $2.99 and at the till they gave a LIFETIME Warranty. On a $3 item. LOL
We received Jackie’s results and I started to load everything. Talk about a huge pain. It doesn’t seem fair or right to me that I have to go thru hoops to board a plane only because some people didn’t get vaccinated, and we have another variant. While appreciative of trying to play it safe it is a pain. I loaded on my phone and printed everything. Paper galore.
- Covid PCR test results printed and scanned
- Arrive Canada app receipt and submitting printed and scanned
- E Declaration app filled out and QR created to scan at arrival airport
- Boarding passes downloaded on phone and printed for backup
- Dog vet records
Jackie went to take a shower but I was worried. I didn’t want the hot water tank to stop working with her luck today. LOL
Fred & Terry came over for a few drinks and to play a few games of crib. Luckily the boys won three out of five games. Whittling down the win column of the girls.
Got some stuff ready as we are leaving tomorrow, Covered the car etc. We are being picked up at 3:10 in the afternoon and will spend about an hour outside with Daisy before entering the airport. That is what is nice about the Mesa airport size.
Thought of the Day
You never really know what luck is. Bad or good as we can label everything but perhaps it was just meant to be.
BACK TO CANADA
December 17th -19th
I helped Fred load up table and chairs for their block Christmas gathering. Covid safe with everyone outside and spaced apart and as long as Canadian at least 2 shots.
We changed up the plans a bit. Fred & Terry picked us up and we took a drive to the testing center for their Covid test. It is only a 5 minute ordeal. Nothing like someone taking a QTip and tickling your brain.
After the test we headed for the Mesa Gateway Airport. It is sooooo nice leaving and arriving at a small airport and safer than the giant Sky Harbor one. Our new bag for Daisy worked perfect for carrying her and perfect on the plane.
I hate to complain but we stopped in this outside court yard for something to eat. There is an attached bar. BUT here is my complaint. I will admit a weakness and I HATE incompetence. It is not always an employee’s fault as in a lot of cases it is the lack of training. I tried to get the waitress’s attention for a long time. I then decide to talk to the hostess which one would think she would send a waitress. More waiting and nothing. Plan B buy from another place and eat in the court. I head to a bakery and they have a kiosk to order. Page and page of looking and it is marked sold out. Plus a line up of at least 10 people waiting. Plan C back to the hostess and grabbed two menu’s and sat back down. Again the waitress was oblivious. It was a change of shift and counting her tip money was more important. Plan D I walk to a “store” in the airport and end up with a pop, chips and a chocolate bar for supper.
Our flight ended up being about a 1 hour late. Makes it with a dog a little more iffy but everything worked out fine. This was our first time with FLAIR airlines and I highly recommend them. Things happen like deicing before arrival at another airport etc and FLAIR ends up buying and handing out free cookies for everyone. It is a discount airline so no frills. You want extra you pay for it. So for a less expensive flight where you do not need luggage etc they should be your go to. Brand new planes, friendly service and efficient. Any time you have a large corp and publicly traded like Air Canada or Westjet they really don’t care. Westjet now is just like AC instead of when they started as nice little friendly employee owned company. Flair is owned out of Kelowna BC and does have a backing of 25% from a US investment company but is a small company and a private company. We will be flying FLAIR more often than any other line.
Daisy if I had to rate her experience on the plane and airports was a 9.5 out of 10. The odd whimper on the plane until she fell asleep but other than that exceptional. Having said that dogs still are a lot of extra work.
The boarding process even though encumbered by the amount of new paperwork or digital documents needed was fast and efficient. The deplaning was easy, fast and not difficult at all. Our only issue was scanning from phone to the machine was the phone had to be turned the opposite of normal and the passports held for a long time to be read. Secondary screening due to the dog was fast and easy. So other than the STUPID paper work and digital documentation pretty easy. All this caused by unvaccinated people !!
I am going to make a prediction that this winter it we will have mass chaos with the amount of people not still vaccinated. There are the Trump supporters that believe it isn’t real, you have the rednecks that won’t be told to do anything, you have religious fanatics that try to find obscure rationale, and you have human rights activists that aren’t going to be told. Not one of these groups considers the reality of science and the fact it saves lives. Plus the fact the bulk of them wouldn’t be alive today if they hadn’t been vaccinated as youth.
We walked outside and the cold hit us. Daisy went for a quick pee break outside and came back in the airport shivering. LOL We were the only people in the taxi queue. As we were waiting a limo guy comes up to offer his car. I tried to negotiate a FAIR price but he decided it wouldn’t work for him. So when our taxi gentleman dropped us off I gave him a big tip to equal the limo amount without a tip.
RENT or OWN your HOME is always a question that both young and retirees consider.
20 Years Ending March 31st, 2008
Toronto Homes: 3.3% Annualized Return, 9.5% Standard Deviation
Calgary Homes: 7.6% Annualized Return, 8.7% Standard Deviation
Halifax-Dartmouth: 4.5% Annualized Return, 18.6% Standard Deviation
As a comparison, I looked up the annualized return of the TSX from March 1988 to March 2008 through DFA’s Returns Software and found it earned 9.93% with an annual standard deviation of 14.03%.
What is standard deviation in statistics? Standard deviation is a measurement used in statistics of the amount a number varies from the average number in a series of numbers. The standard deviation tells those interpreting the data, how reliable the data is or how much difference there is between the pieces of data by showing how close to the average all of the data is. So in this case we could just leave it out.
When I look at the data the ROI is much better no matter where you live to invest your funds rather than in a house.. This is only a consideration if you take the same amount of amount of money and invest it.
This is my argument that it is not necessarily the best option to buy for young people and a good option for older people to sell assets and rent as it can be a win with having access to cash to do things and no repair costs which can be huge and unexpected.
But that is just me !
This morning we were up and out to the ice rink to watch Jackson’s team play hockey. It was a fun game to watch and enjoyable. One funny thing happened right in front of us. This gentleman gets up and loudly states. “Darn I put my sweatpants on backwards this morning” his wife say she can’t take him anywhere. LOL The game ended up as a tie. Jackson sat with us as his fingers have yet to heal but he wanted to go to the game as the team had a after game event. Nice that Jackson has his Covid shot with the interaction with his team and us. Great kid !
Audrey, Alan, and MaryAnn came over for a visit. The Huggett’s are very safe with masks in the house. MaryAnn has always been a “safe” person as she carried hand sanitizer years ago.
I made roasted chicken, carrots, mashed potatoes, gravy and Jackie made a salad for supper with Audrey.
When then watched Tiger and Charlie play today. Great tournament with them finishing second which is unbelievable. Fun to watch.
Thought of the Day
“Mercury Forecast Mesa 20 degrees, Edmonton -4 degrees, Calgary -4 degrees”
Quite a change and as I have said before living in a cold climate is NOT good for anyone. Daisy along with Jackie are not getting their two or three long walks a day plus her play time in the park. I am not getting my one or two walks plus not golfing or building something, so not good.
Having one car is a pain and I have no idea how any family could do that. We took Daisy to her “salon” for her haircut. Sergi did another wonderful job for us on Daisy. But it does make her cold. LOL Cute though.
While getting her haircut we whipped out to do some shopping. This is one of the weirdest Christmas’s ever with timing, rushing, COVID , presents etc. We are attempting to cut back the dollars spent on presents on each other and others. Most people if they want something buy it them themselves.
We did do fairly well buying a lot of gifts. The gift buying decision is the most stressful thing about Christmas. It is finding something you think someone will like, is not that expensive and is valued. That is the stressful thing.
We took turns and headed into Shoppers Drug Mart for our booster shot. Again extremely well organized, three people in line so all is good. Jackie went second and in 1/2 hour we were all done. Didn’t feel a thing.
We came home and I wrapped all of the presents we bought while Jackie took Audrey out shopping.
Jackie’s phone has been acting up for months now and mine is a hand me down with a broken screen ( $360 for repair) so we decided our main gift to each other would be new phones. I hate slippery sales guys. The phone business is fraught with them. Long story short we ending up with two S20 Galaxies Samsung phones. Jackie’s phone as it couldn’t be started lost all of pictures and texts but everything else was fine. I have both phones linked together. A bit of pain but more helpful than not. So Google saved the pics that were downloaded and Gmail. As they are linked all of the apps transferred over just fine. Mobile Wallet as it is not internet based had to be re loaded with all of the cards, covid info , car registration etc. It took us a long time to get both completed and learn the idiosyncrasies of them. Having said that though I like them even though AGAIN a more costly monthly plan as they won’t allow grandfathering. This mobile world needs to come out of it’s protect mode and be open to all competitors. Lower pricing is for sure needed.
I spent hours working on getting my printer to work. Deleting drivers, reloading, rebooting, WAP wifi reset etc. At least two hours to get it working right. I needed my printer to do my budget work. All done.
On Jackie’s shopping outing she picked up some feet protectors for Daisy. I would say they are great but do not stay on perfect. She doesn’t care for them 100% but will like them as they will keep her paws warm.
We stopped at Tim’s then picked up Tor to drive out to Indus to see Jackson play hockey. First let me say they have a first class hockey arena. I was shocked with the extra heaters and cushioned seats. Yes cushioned seats. Add to the fact they are Covid safe with a door guard having a people count and QR code verification to get in. Nice.
Jackson played well tonight. He still had his fingers swollen which hopefully his parents ice tonight which HAD to kill him but he also had both sets of Grandparents there. Don and Peggy looked great and nice to see them.
The Blackfoot Chief’s which is the name of Jackson’s hockey team HAVE to change their name like so many sports teams. It is absolutely stupid that anyone could be upset over this instead of being proud. It is illogical. We will see what their new name is next year.
The Eskimo’s, the Redskins, Braves, Blackhawks, and perhaps even the OILER’s as promoting dirty oil is just not right.
I do have to say the booster shot affected Jackie & I the same this time. Both times prior not a thing but this time the arm/shoulder was sore to sleep on or touch. Now not painful but was uncomfortable to a degree. The only explanation for myself I can think of is with my massive muscle buildup the nurse hit a muscle to cause the pain. I think Jackie’s was just bad luck. LOL
OFF to Edmonton tomorrow to visit Mom for Christmas. We decided to miss the Willard gathering this year for a few reasons. With our attendance we would be over the Alberta Health authorities household limits, we will be in a enclosed space without distancing, there will be one unvaccinated person in attendance, we are not familiar with the lifestyle and precautions that some of the attendees have been doing or not and I do not like Russia Roulette. I have a car, and house that requires closing up if we are not allowed to go south and can not afford to get ill with the quarantines and time frames under law. I love turkey dinner and my sister is one of the best cooks there is and we will miss the family get together but we cannot afford to remove caution. The issue right now with Covid is, if the impacts aren’t close to home ( someone dies that you know) it creates a mental distance and the threat doesn’t sink in. Your perception that you are safe gets skewed. We will have a good visit with Mom and see the sibling, spouses, kids perhaps in the summer. This Covid soon will be a epidemic that we all will need to live with but until then it is far from over.
I really miss a Caesar from a restaurant though.
Thought of the Day
Have you noticed when you blow in a dogs face they get mad at you but put them in car and they want their head out an open window
“Mercury Forecast Mesa 23 degrees, Edmonton – 14 degrees, Calgary -9 degrees”
Up earlier this morning to drive to Edmonton for a Christmas visit with Mom. We dropped off Daisy at Audrey’s as she was going to babysit her today.
Driving along the QEII it was noticeably busier than normal. We were car on car both lanes. We had a perfect 120 kmph drive until Wetaskiwin and then then we hit a snow covered road. A road that hadn’t being plowed or sanded. THIS IS THE MAIN ARTERY HIGHWAY OF ALBERTA. Years ago to save money we third party contracted road maintenance and it is now horrible. In the spring of this year we had a super slick road near Lethbridge and today the highway was super slick again. The drivers overall were awesome. We all were down to 50 kms per hour on the highway and in some places lower. Then we were stopped with a mile long line up for a couple of accidents. Three ambulances and two cop cars later trying to get between the cars and we got up to the accidents. Between Wetaskiwin and Edmonton there were 2 semi trucks and 25 cars in the ditch, many with people still in the car. And this was just on our side of the road. NO SAND on the road and coming up to the slick part they dropped large gravel on the road. The Jeep took a few hits on the windshield. Some big hits but I need a need screen in the spring anyways.
The cops should have shut the highway down until it was sanded it was that slick.
I took this picture as we were stopped on the highway . You can see the solid glare ice on the road. The only “deicing” done was large gravel as you can see. Let me tell you I took many large rock hits on the Jeep windshield today. So lets throw rocks over ice instead of sand or deicer. One good lawsuit against the contactor for damage and bodily harm perhaps they may do their job.
It took us 5 hours to go less than 300 kms with a normal speed of 120 kph.
Driving into Edmonton coming from Calgary it is like night and day. In Mom’s parking lot there were 10 ft high snow piles. Calgary has had maybe 3 inches of snow. The roads were covered, it looked like at least a foot of snow on the ground and it looked like WINTER. I forgot to check the bike paths but I am sure they were nice and clean. LOL
It is amazing how 3 hours make such a difference and go another 2hrs to Lethbridge and again it so much different on the warmth and less snow side.
We had a great visit with Mom and Alfred as he had dropped by. Beside being Covid safe it was much easier talking and being involved, with not having so many people around. I think it was also better having Mom involved in all of the conversations.
It is a shame as we age our bodies fail us. Mom will be 90 in April but she is getting very weak. This was a super tough farm girl. Was at least 5’9 tall but now 5’4 and very light. With the crushed vertebrae which would be very painful she now has a rounded back. She is so much weaker in every aspect as she just experienced another TIA episode and with each it hurts her.
Strong mind though still today but the strokes have affected her writing, thought processes etc.
My plan was to order a turkey diner for us but on second thought, I thought that would be 3 turkey dinners in a week for her,so perhaps something different. She is quite fussy on things but was determined to have a baked potato. Unfortunately the Canadian Brewhouse next door didn’t do baked. So I ended up going to Wendy’s. Good baked potatoes but not as fancy as I would have liked. But Mom was happy.
We left just after 7:30 pm knowing the road conditions. Freezing fog, heavy fog , the same slippery roads all met us. Fewer cars on the road which was nice. Slow going, difficult to see with freezing ice on the windshield, and the same slick roads with no salt. We hit Lacombe and back to normal conditions. No stops this time on the highway so we made it in a little over 4 hours.
Daisy was “supposedly” good and was very happy to see us when we got to Audrey’s place about 11:30pm.
Up early and Christmas shopping again today. Jackie did a great job of organizing the where, the when and the what. Right at lunch I picked up Jackson to spent the day with us. I had my vehicle so I quickly whipped and picked up Jackie’s gift and lunch for us. Jackson is one fun kid and we had a great time. He is at the age when he can the odd time legit beat me at a game. We had a good afternoon.
He was so proud of his MVP award in his hockey tournament that he even brought all of his stuff for us to see. He tries so hard so it was excellent that the other team voted him the MVP. Good on him.
Jackson and I had fun playing with Picart this afternoon.
Victoria came over after work to pick Jackson up and Jackie made a light quick supper as they needed a few things to head to Alix in the morning.
Jackie picked up our food for our Christmas dinner. A 10 pound turkey is still expensive. It will be two years in a row of a very small gathering. It will nice to get back to normal.
The roads are nasty out there so hopefully everyone takes caution.
Thought of the Day
When driving on snow you better drive slow ! Doesn’t sound like me but I am always cautious when slippery as driving skill is only a small portion of the control.
December 24th –25th
Christmas is always a nice time. The food, presents, get togethers, and music make it special.
Jackie is out shopping with Audrey for a few last minute things and as we have only one car I am keeping warm at home. I like that.
Not a lot on the plate today which I am enjoying. I sent out a few emails. Adjusted my golf sheet for the Viewpoint gang and sent out the update. I sent out a notice for May Long Weekend camping this year. Ironic that Keith was the first to respond and he isn’t as computer savvy as the younger ones. I appreciate quick responses. I am sending out two requests and then booking who ever has responded only. I found a wonderful place if they are available as time will tell. I sent out my yearly Christmas wishes. I few Christmas themed memes left my box. Paid a few bills. Viewed Facebook, and cleaned up emails.
My best memories of Christmas are always the years we went out to Niton. There were years that the snow was 3 ft or more deep around Grandma’s house and watching the cousins and Uncles “plowing” trails to the house was fun. Four or five guys jumping up and down in the truck bed and another four pushing as one Uncle after another attempted to make it the house and back to the road. One year Grandad had to take the horse and stone boat all the way out the highway to pick up some Uncles & Aunts as the roads were closed with heavy snow. ( in those days similar to the drought of 1930 there were no kids yelling climate change) . I loved that Grandad would chop the tree down on Christmas eve and we would decorate it that evening. Depending on many were sleeping over we would be upstairs in the attic or in the bedrooms. The house got VERY cold as Grandad would stoke the fire with coal and by morning it was just about out. We were not allowed out of bed Christmas morning until Grandad and Grandma had the wood stove and the cooking stove fired up and warming the place up. Grandma on a wood fired stove would cook for at least 30 people or more again depending on how many relatives decided to come each year. Our family came every year and is a wonderful memory that we will carry forever.
Christmas changed when Grandma passed away.
A very relaxing day. A great pork chop supper and then we relaxed and watched a good movie. So a very different, yet relaxing Christmas Eve.
I find it more annoying as time goes by, how we are losing our traditional celebrations. I don’t care if you are Jewish, Muslim, or any other religion, Canada was built on a traditional Christian lifestyle. Christmas has been attacked by these groups claiming there own values are not being met. Have your own traditions, celebrate them with your peers but leave the countries founding traditions and celebrations alone that you have come to live in. Commercialism has also undermined the traditional Christmas.
But to more pleasant thoughts. The girls, Victoria from Alix and Jessica from Raymond video conferenced this morning at 8 am. The grandkids were spoiled rotten and the girls were having fun. So a Christmas on the quiet side. Kids do make it a lot more spunky. The excitement is fun to watch. But hectic.
We have Alan & MaryAnn along with Audrey over this afternoon for turkey dinner. I had Jackie buy corn for this year as I have always given that up as it appears the English think corn is cattle feed. I love corn so this year it will on the table with a piece of butter melting on top. I will have a 10 pound turkey, a 2 pound ham, roasted root vegetables, mashed potatoes, gravy, cranberries, corn, stuffing, and hot cross along with regular buns. On the simple side with limited dishes but will be awesome. Cooking for a small group is so easy compared to a large group. Most of the stress for me is right when the potatoes are being mashed, gravy being made and turkey carved. There is 10 minute window of being hectic as I am a stickler for making sure everything is hot. Having said I discovered over the years the resting turkey remains hot for about a 1/2 hour, and then you just to make sure the gravy is piping hot and timing isn’t as much of an issue.
As I have said before if I was in prison and they asked my for last meal it would be a full Christmas dinner. Always good. Second a Keg Steak.
Jackie and I opened our gifts this morning and relaxed. It was nice. We are having Christmas Dinner around 5 so no need to start to prepping until around 1:30 pm.
Alan & MaryAnn came along with Danielle came for a Christmas meal and gathering. Danielle is a RN and was very luck as she had a shift booked but they called and as there were only a few patients on her ward they asked if she wanted it off. Double time pay so for a young girl it was appreciated she wanted to spend time with family.
I was pleased with the ease of cooking, the timing on everything and the quality and taste of the meal. I love turkey dinners.
We had the great meal and fun discussing the world problems. I always enjoy Alan & MaryAnn’s company. I did notice AGAIN as people age ailments are a main topic of discussion. LOL
Some nice gifts received and given which adds to the fun so a wonderful quieter Christmas Day. I especially like my hoodie from Audrey as it is light and comfortable. I received Boston Pizza gift cards that I always enjoy and like. They work great when we have the kids out for a meal which will be spring now with Covid.LOL
Thought of the Day
Don’t you hate people that believe celebrating the Christmas spirit is being Scrooge?
December 26th –27th
“Mercury Forecast Mesa 15 degrees, Edmonton -30 degrees, Calgary -28 degrees”
Today we headed down to Lethbridge to have our Christmas with Jess and Tor. The Waldie’s drove from Alix to Raymond. It was nice to have “our” family together.
The roads between Nanton and Claresholm had ice ruts on them again due to no sanding or grading. I am sure it is a different company but the same issues. Again having to slow down with blowing snow and ice covered highways. The drivers overall were again pretty good with only the idiot driving blind flying by. It sure is a stretch of cold weather we are getting and Raymond is not escaping it.
Jessica & Penny’s house looks wonderful for Christmas when you add their character, design and Christmas additions. The boys all were spoiled with their gifts from Santa and others. Hopefully they get good use.
Sitting around joking, talking and watching the kids and dogs play and fight is what Christmas is.
Penny is an awesome cook. She prepared a full Christmas dinner. Remember this is my favorite meal. Hers was equal to the best. She is also my kind of girl loving niblet corn, lots of gravy and mashed potatoes. She also had great tasting beets which I love. The dressing was exceptional, salad great and add in the buns and hot cross buns it was perfect. Great job cooking and making a delicious Christmas dinner.
Jackie played with the boys for a long time as Corey and I watched Junior hockey. Great games with some wonderful moves.
The drive home where we arrived home about 11 pm was excellent. The roads had been sanded and plowed so no blowing snow or ice. Nice drive back with Daisy snoring she was so tired after a full day of playing with Rudy. A very nice day.
Did Jackie & I ever get lucky with such beautiful, wonderful family members. We were not perfect parents but you would not know that by the way these girls turned out. Add in fantastic wonderful spouses and grandkids we are blessed. The best !
I made on small error and left my gout pills in AZ and wouldn’t you know it a flareup that only happens once a year or so had to happen. Cherries and many many glasses of water trying to hold it at bay. It is not full blown yet so I still have my hopes as I do not want to go the medical center for a prescription. I was surprised at my error.
Today is just a relax day, do some emails, some Facebook and drink water day. It is too cold for anything else.
Jackie and I were talking and for some reason this Christmas even though “covid” changed it, it was very very nice. We enjoyed our intimate gathering with Alfred and Mom. We enjoyed our intimate gathering of Alan, MaryAnn, Danielle, Audrey and us on Christmas Day and we loved our immediate family gathering in Raymond on Boxing Day. I got to enjoy two wonderful Christmas dinners, we were able to have conversations with each other easily, and we were not rushed to be anywhere. So to have it different but in a lot of ways even better was great. I thoroughly enjoyed this Christmas season.
Thought of the Day
Gout reminds me of a sports game. The agony of DeFeet.
” Mercury Forecast Mesa 14 degrees, Edmonton -24 degrees, Calgary -16 degrees”
The weather outside is frightful, The TV inside is delightful. The food and snacks taste so good. I wish everyone a Happy Day this holiday if I could.
We are lucky here in Calgary. Edmonton is still in the deep freeze. Mesa is cooler than average but still very welcoming.
I drank at least 15 glasses of water yesterday trying to pee out my access Uric Acid to no prevail. My foot kept swelling. I ate a bowl of cherries and had a smoothie with cherries in it but it was to little too late.
I whipped to my drug store late last night but they had no record of my prescription so they would not give me a small dose.
I got up early this morning and headed to the medical centre. My cloth mask over my normal blue mask to be extra safe in the petri dish medical center. Luckily only one other person in the waiting room. I was in and out within 1/2 hr which was awesome.
My doctor a very nice gentleman looked at my foot and went ” Wow, that has to hurt” and it does. Then he says ” The uric acid causes kidney stones ( which I have had for years) so be careful there as those are very painful” Gout is considered more painful than natural child birth.
I got home took a pill and within a hour my foot was night and day better and I could walk semi decently. It usually take 3 to 5 pills to get down to a manageable level. So lots of water, pills and selection of food that doesn’t increase it and all will be good.
Today is both a friend’s birthday, Arnie Henning and a friends anniversary, Larry Geddes.
For years at Henderson’s we would count inventory between Christmas and New Years. This process took us the full 4 to 5 days to complete. I remember many years where the sales guys would park their cars close to the count area outside and warehouse guys would take turns warming up as we were counting siding and snow bound rebar or shingles. It was not fun at all. We froze many many years and Arnie never got to celebrate his birthday and Larry never got celebrate his anniversary. I remember for years and years that I was just so tired that we wouldn’t go out on NYE having worked 5 days at 14 hour days. Stressful days as I was responsible for the count and it reflected our procedures in place to manage inventory. I hated pushing the button and waiting for the overage/underage number.
Not a lot on the agenda today.
I whipped to Home Depot and picked up my deck screws to build the shed in AZ. I am using 1.5 for the walls and roof and 3 inch for the framing plus a couple of bits. The USA just doesn’t get it. The Robertson screw is so much better and you can’t buy them down there, We will use any excess easily in future projects.
Then a thing that happened to me that I find very annoying. Rarely in my life have I felt dumb. Today it happened. When we bought our phones I also got a deal on a wireless charger for them. I tried and tried to make this work, Jackie tried and tried. I figured perhaps the protective cases on our phones were too thick. So I thought I may as well take it back. At the store the young guy grabs it, plugs it in, and wham-o it is working perfect. I asked him to show me how he did it. I laughed and said ” You are good, I am glad it is working” and left the store. WE WERE TRYING TO CHARGE THE PHONES WITH IT UPSIDE DOWN. Wham-o, talk about feeling dumb. An oddity but yet laughable.
Jackie did some bank work today and I vacuumed the house. Long grey hair which I have no idea where they come was everywhere. I dusted and all is good.
Jeff & Wendy are leaving for Arizona on Saturday which is good timing for them.
Thought of the Day
Half of being smart is knowing what you are dumb about
“Mercury Forecast COLD COLD “
Just spent both days getting ready to head south.
Dropped off the fridge groceries at Tor’s place. Jackie set up Audrey with groceries and made sure any events coming up for her were covered off.
Updated golf sheets for the guys. Loaded our investment data into my excel sheets. I had to get the bank to fix up a small error they made on Mom’s GIC’s. Downloaded the new QR code with our third dose on it.
We actually were able to take Daisy for a walk with her booties. They worked great but it is COLD outside.
Plans are just to watch NYE on tv and vegetate. Off in the morning. Yes warmth.
Thought of the Day
My favorite winter outdoor activity is the short walk back inside.