Archive for June 2014

The turtle people are coming   22 comments

 

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The turtle people are coming.  They are arriving en mass to partake in the annual ritual known as camping. I call them turtle people because they tow their houses, children, pets, cars, boats, and various other things, to places far and wide to commune with nature.

 

I often find myself trapped behind caravans of them as they travel the highways at a pace that can only be described as a meander. Good for them that they have nothing but time to cruise at the speed of a glacier ice melt. Not so good for me when I am stuck in a parade devoid of marching bands, clowns or balloons.

 

The thing that I don’t understand is the need or desire to live outdoors. I’ve camped before and, quite frankly, I can see why mankind chose to climb up the evolutionary ladder. I would also hazard a guess, and say, if Neanderthals could see us trying to devolve and be one with nature again they would probably be very confused. After all their hard work and sacrifice to better themselves! I’m pretty certain chasing the wooly mammoth and discovering fire was no day at the beach for them. Yet here we are thumbing our noses at convection ovens and flushing toilets and blatantly turning our backs on progress to embrace the same archaic behavior that made their entire species extinct. It’s a bit of puzzler.

 

The last time I went camping was the last time I’ll ever go camping. With only two weeks off a year, the very idea of spending it in the woods, devoid of any convenience is tantamount to torture.

 

How do I hate camping? Let me count the ways…

 

1. Waking up in the middle of the night and playing deal or no deal with your bladder because the very idea of using an outhouse that has been host to more asses than Parliament Hill is too horrifying to comprehend. This, of course, does not even begin to describe the odour that emanates from within and I’m pretty convinced it’s what Hell itself must smell like.

 

2. The bugs … do I really need to elaborate? Okay, I will. I generally look like I have small pox after one or two very passionate and committed mosquitoes have dined on my life’s blood all night long. The good news is that I now reek of sticky bug repellent, and the lineup for the community showers is longer than my last cue for a ride on Space Mountain.

 

3. Dirt. It’s everywhere in nature. Which is why I live indoors. I really have nothing more to say about that.

 

4. Cooking on a campfire is ridiculous. People have died for less. Nothing about camping is food safe. The whole idea should be prohibited by law. Roasting wieners on sticks until they are charred and caked with embers is carcinogenic … there is actual scientific research to back this up, and yet the turtle people dine on them with reckless abandon. If you take nothing else from this, please make a mental note that 1.6 people in North America die from choking on hot dogs every year. I’m not sure how the .6 person made the statistic or what .6 of a person would look like, but it’s obvious to me that wieners are not the fun food that Oscar Meyer makes them out to be.

 

4. The weather. I could be camping in a desert that has been devoid of moisture for the better part of forever, but if I pitch a tent it’s pretty well guaranteed that six inches of rain will fall overnight. The second to last time I was one with Mother Nature, she decided a simple rainstorm was a little generic … so she brought forth an actual tornado. Gotta love camping in central Alberta! Not.

 

So to all you turtle people I say this: go forth and convene with the vast uncharted wilderness, channel your inner caveperson and throw caution and convenience to the wind. I may not understand your customs nor wish to partake in them, but I applaud your spirit. If you ever want to find me on my vacation, however, I’ll be relaxing poolside at an all-inclusive resort sipping margaritas and basking in the afterglow of my morning at the spa. I like to believe it’s how the Neanderthals would have vacationed had they survived the climate change. So I guess in a way I do it for them.

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The day peace and quiet ran away   20 comments

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Yesterday, I found peace and quiet. I was so excited and overcome that I decided to put them in a safe place so that we could have a proper visit later, when I had a moment to spare. Later came, and well, I think we all know how that story ends. They are now officially missing in action; or is it inaction? I put up some posters in the neighbourhood but no one has called. I fear the worst.

I should have spent more time with them when I had the chance. Now they are gone and I am not sure they are ever coming back. I was going to file a police report but that seemed like a dead end. I knew in my heart of hearts if they had been found by someone, that person was never ever going to admit it, much less return them to me.

I was so careless and cavalier, thinking that there would be time to get to know each other better. I so desperately wanted them to feel at home where I lived; that was wishful thinking. The dogs probably thought they were a stranger and barked them away. Let’s face it they were definitely new to our neighbourhood. Everyone knows peace and quiet can be quite skittish when confronted with two nervous chihuahuas.

The strange thing is that they seemed to enjoy spending time with me as much as I did with them. It seemed that we had a real connection in our short time together. Maybe I was just deluding myself; maybe I was just a rebound for them. They probably had a fight with some Buddhist caught in traffic and needed a soft place to land until the dust settled.

Now, I’m left with 2 radios; one blasting hip hop and the other some sort of angry rap music. The kids are fighting over dishes and my husband is in the garage using tools powered by an air compressor. There are no less than three televisions on, and the dogs are talking to everyone who walks within a block of our house. I’ve been reduced to speaking in a voice loud enough to be heard in Beirut in a vain attempt to get everyone to shut up, shut down, and shut off.

It seems like my life at the moment is not a safe place for peace and quiet to reside. I get it, I guess. Perhaps one day we will meet again. I wonder if we will know each other when and if we do? Will I smile and embrace them as old friends, or will I feel awkward and not know what to do or say? Will I miss what I will have to give up to have them stay? Is losing the busy chaotic bustle of my loved ones when they finally fly the nest the price I’ll have to pay to win them back?

Sadly, with the housing prices these days, I have the sneaking suspicion that my children will be residing with us for a good long time to come. So, I guess I’ll just have to keep looking for peace and quiet and see if maybe they have a guest room I can stay in from time to time.

 

 

 

“Mistaekes” happen   19 comments

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I have a tendency to make the occasional mistake. Ok, it’s out there, I’m not perfect. I hope I have not disillusioned anyone too much…take a breath…this next one might come as a shock ….I’m human. Just writing that down feels freeing because I have had more than one person question my lineage. No worries I’ve had blood work and to my knowledge nothing has been deemed unusual or extraterrestrial in any way.

 

Getting back to my over share….

 

Sometimes I err on the side of caution…although that is rare and really shouldn’t bare mentioning. Of course I will mention it because you might need a frame of reference for later. Your welcome.

 

For me to err on the side of caution would be something like not eating a chilli dog at a gas station when the next bathroom is 75km away and always wearing make up. The latter is mostly so I don’t scare small children and unsuspecting pets. The former should be a rule of thumb for everyone because you never want to be the star of that cautionary tale.

 

There is also erring by omission. It’s pretty safe to say that I’ve done that on more than one occasion. Who hasn’t? For example I have stared into the mouth of someone with spinach stuck in their teeth while they chit chat away totally oblivious to the fact they resemble a pirate. That is a though one because it’s quite distracting and I often find myself transfixed and losing track of what they are talking about. I imagine them with an eye patch and a peg leg and or a hook sailing the seven seas searching for things to pillage.

 

Those mistakes or errors I consider misdemeanour offences. Not earth shattering or life altering and certainly not cause to lose sleep over. Then there are the times that I have made slightly larger mistakes that require me to pause and contemplate the error of my ways. These tend to primarily be behavioural and for the most part can be chalked up to lesson learned don’t repeat.

 

Sadly If I were to be tested on some of these I would fail miserably and be forced to go to summer school on the special bus. These are usually things that seem like a good idea at the time but in the light of day not so much. I would elaborate but at the risk of incriminating myself will have to plead the fifth. Not sure we have a fifth amendment in Canada because I made the mistake of not going to law school, but whatever you get the point.

 

Then there are the big kahunas. These ones are what I like to call the game changers. There I was just skipping along living la vida loco and for what ever reason I zigged instead of zagged and in an instant everything changed. I’ve had a few of these and let me tell you they can be earth shattering, gut wrenching, we have a flag on the play, kind of moments.

 

They have been the ones that altered my path in life. They have led me to where and who I am today. I sometimes think back to these moments when my life changed because of something I did or didn’t do, and thank God I screwed up.

 

These days I live a life open to the possibility that while I may not be perfect I am the sum total of every missed call, missed bus, misstep, misdemeanour mistake that I have made and I’m okay with that because every once in awhile through no fault of my own I get something right.

 

 

 

 

 

                                              

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Posted June 1, 2014 by janyceresh in Uncategorized

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