Sunday, July 31, 2011

Give Me A Broom or Give Me Death!

Sleeping beauty lay,
glazed eyes barely
able to see
the growing grime.
Was this a fairytale ending -
Forever to drool
onto cheap throw pillows?

Bring on the Drugs!

Don't worry. No camels were actually harmed during this photo shoot. She was actually sleeping!

I haven't played the Sunday 160 in ages! The drugs must be working a smidge, as I am off the couch! Well, hoping to be for some of the rest of this beautiful long weekend. Have a great Sunday all and Salutations to you Monkey Man for being such a super host week after week!

Saturday, July 30, 2011

Saturday's Email of the Week: Need a Giggle

Saturday's Email of the Week

I have been out of the loop this week. It started off me trying to play catch up after being gone for most of last week camping. We had a blast, but it was right back into the swing of things on Monday and trying to get ahead. Thankfully Monday was a good writing day, as Tuesday I started to sneeze. By Wednesday my throat hurt and I went to bed early, only to be like the walking dead sweating and dripping and scrambling for a thermometer. The floor was the only cool place to be, but lying there I just felt too exposed. From whom? No one, but I worried that my children would stumble over me on the way to the bathroom and be worried that I was lying in the hallway. Yeah, it was bad. I managed to fumble back to bed and pretty much stayed there for two days. I was weak, sore and had a metallic taste in my mouth, that today I finally noticed equated to my tongue being gray. Yuck.

With help from a friend delivering tylenol and taking my children to daycare, I managed to sleep most of the rest of Friday away. By the time they came home at 5pm, I was able to finally stand for 5 minutes again. Hooray! I even read stories at bedtime, which I didn't have the throat to do, even if I could have kept my eyes open for long enough. Victory is mine. Well, maybe not victory, as I am still pretty limp, but I will survive.

So I apologize for not being around much the last few weeks. I need a little humour to make me feel more a'rights, so hope you enjoy these dandies from my inbox this week. Feel free to send me anything that you think I might enjoy or want to share on my email of the week. Happy Saturday!

To make this story more relevant, please feel free to substitute
"Florida" or "Georgia" for "Texas"!

Dear Diary,

Just moved to Texas ! Now this is a state that knows how to live!!
Beautiful sunny days and warm balmy evenings. It is beautiful. I've
finally found my home. I love it here.

June 14th:
Really heating up. Got to 100 today. Not a problem. Live in an
air-conditioned home, drive an air-conditioned car. What a pleasure to
see the sun everyday like this. I'm turning into a sun worshipper.

June 30th:
Had the backyard landscaped with western plants today. Lots of cactus
and rocks. What a breeze to maintain. No more mowing the lawn for me.
Another scorcher today, but I love it here.

July 10th:
The temperature hasn't been below 100 all week. How do people get used
to this kind of heat? At least, it's kind of windy though. But getting
used to the heat is taking longer than I expected.

July 15th:
Fell asleep by the community pool. Got 3rd degree burns over 60% of my
body. Missed 3 days of work. What a dumb thing to do. I learned my
lesson though. Got to respect the ol' sun in a climate like this.

July 20th:
I missed Lomita (my cat) sneaking into the car when I left this
morning. By the time I got to the hot car at noon, Lomita had died and
swollen up to the size of a shopping bag, then popped like a water
balloon. The car now smells like Kibbles and Shits. I learned my
lesson though. No more pets in this heat. Good ol' Mr. Sun strikes

July 25th:
The wind sucks. It feels like a giant freaking blow dryer!! And it's
hot as hell. The home air-conditioner is on the fritz and the AC
repairman charged $200 just to drive by and tell me he needed to order

July 30th:
Been sleeping outside on the patio for 3 nights now, $225,000 house
and I can't even go inside. Lomita is the lucky one. Why did I ever
come here?

Aug. 4th:
Its 115 degrees. Finally got the air-conditioner fixed today. It cost
$500 and gets the temperature down to 85. I hate this stupid state.

Aug. 8th:
If another wise ass cracks, 'Hot enough for you today?' I'm going to
strangle him. Damn heat. By the time I get to work, the radiator is
boiling over, my clothes are soaking wet, and I smell like baked cat!!

Aug. 9th:
Tried to run some errands after work. Wore shorts, and when I sat on
the seats in the car, I thought my ass was on fire. My skin melted to
the seat. I lost 2 layers of flesh and all the hair on the back of my
legs and ass . . . Now my car smells like burnt hair, fried ass, and
baked cat.

Aug 10th:
The weather report might as well be a damn recording. Hot and sunny.
Hot and sunny. Hot and sunny. It's been too hot to do shit for 2 damn
months and the weatherman says it might really warm up next week.
Doesn't it ever rain in this damn state? Water rationing will be next,
so my $1700 worth of cactus will just dry up and blow over. Even the
cactus can't live in this damn heat.

Aug. 14th:
Welcome to HELL! Temperature got to 115 today. Cactus are dead. Forgot
to crack the window and blew the damn windshield out of the car. The
installer came to fix it and guess what he asked me??? "Hot enough for
you today?" My sister had to spend $1,500 to bail me out of jail.
Freaking Texas . What kind of a sick demented idiot would want to
live here?? Will write later to let you know how the trial goes.

Friday, July 29, 2011


The circle of life
spun close to the edge this week
I recover via couch

Monday, July 25, 2011

A Twist of Fate

Excitement got the best of us in the morning. There were no long snuggles for Neale and I, as we were in search of plane tickets today. Cairo waited for us and Israel beckoned to be explored as well. Cairo was just the tip of the ice berg. We could see the world, but today it started with a trip to the travel agent.
Actually, it started with a phone book - to figure out where to locate a travel agency. Once that was accomplished, Neale and I dressed and headed out. I felt like a giddy school girl arranging to skip class, but far too excited to stop and think about the consequences. We would fly to Cairo and explore from there. I had always wanted to see the pyramids of Giza and the Great Sphinx, as well as wander through the busy bazaars. It was coming to fruitition  and I could barely contain myself. We would be stepping onto a plane heading North in a matter of days, if not hours!
Across town, we sat in front of a pleasant looking young woman and explained to her that we wanted to go to Egypt. Ideally, we wanted to leave as soon as possible, but realistically, the cheapest ticket would dictate when we left. She poured through time tables and looked at price tags, then turned to us with a smile.
“Would tomorrow do?” she inquired.
“Oh yes,” was our response.
She started tapping in my particulars first. I pushed my passport across the desk and squeezed Neale’s hand. We would be headed for Cairo tomorrow! A measly six hour flight would touch us down in a whole new country, as well as a new hemisphere in Africa for me. It was over 4000 kilometers, and I had no idea how I would be able to get back to Cape Town (where my plane ticket back to Canada departed from), but here I was stating my name and birth date.  
Tap, tap, tap…
“And how would you like to pay?” she finally asked.
I dug for my credit card and pushed it across the desk to her. The tapping stopping, then she punched more numbers into the credit card machine.
“There appears to be a problem with your credit card,” the travel agent said as politely as she could.
What the…?
“What do you mean,” I asked.
She tried the numbers again, but shook her head. She handed me the machine, so that I could see the explanation.
Oh, oh. This wasn't part of the plan. 
Step number two was to pick up the phone to see what was going on. The travel agent dialed the  phone number that was displayed on her machine, spoke to the representative, then handed me the phone. After a round of identification questions, a handful more questions, plus some of my own, the answer was presented to me – INSUFFICIENT FUNDS.
Our plans rapidly started to unravel. My credit card was at its limit. I could not use my debit card in Tanzania and I only had a $50 US traveller’s cheque left, as well as small amounts of currency from the last half dozen countries that I had been in. Essentially, I was broke.
Neale rallied to the cause. He pulled out his credit card and offered to pay for both our tickets. I knew that once I got a hold of my mother back home, I could sort out my finances and pay him back. That shouldn’t take too long, I reasoned. The money would be back in his pocket in no time.
Fate had other plans though. Our beleaguered travel agent shook her head once more and announced that Neale’s credit card had also been denied. We were both flat broke. We could not afford even one ticket to Cairo between the two of us, let alone tickets for both of us to go. After several more phone calls and other desperate measures, we dejectedly walked out of the travel agency empty handed. Our dreams of Cairo fizzled out miserably. We were not going anywhere.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Saturday's Email of the Week: Suggestion to Beat the Heat - Cucumbers

Saturday's Email of the Week
Well, this week I am out of town sweating away in a little tent with the girls. I am not writing from there, as we are without running water, electricity or many of the other luxuries that we are so accustomed to. No, I am close to the Tomato Capitol of Canada and near the southern-most tip of our great country. Yup, reporting to you from Wheatley Provincial Park today and headed to the beach again. 

But just because I am off goofing around making 'smores and sitting fireside, doesn't mean I won't share a little something with you from the old email inbox from this week. This interesting email was an informative little number all about cucumbers. Enjoy!

PS. If they are such a great way to rehydrate, we might have to stock up on them, as before we left for our camping holidays, heat alerts were being issued all across Southern Ontario. I foresee lots of beverages being drunk, cucumbers being eaten and plenty of water play at the beach.



1. Cucumbers contain most of the vitamins you need. Every day, just one cucumber contains Vitamin B1, Vitamin B2, Vitamin B3, Vitamin B5, Vitamin B6, Folic Acid, Vitamin C, Calcium, Iron, Magnesium, Phosphorus, Potassium and Zinc.

2. Feeling tired in the afternoon? Put down the caffeinated soda and pick up a Cucumber. Cucumbers are a good source of B Vitamins and Carbohydrates that can provide that Quick pick-me-up that can last for Hours.

 3. Tired of your bathroom mirror fogging up after a shower? Try rubbing a Cucumber slice along the mirror. It will eliminate the fog and provide a soothing, Spa-like fragrance.

 4. Are grubs and slugs ruining your planting beds? Place a few Slices in a small pie tin and your garden will Be free of pests all season long. The chemicals in the cucumber react with the aluminum to give Off a scent undetectable to humans but drive garden pests crazy and make them flee the area.

 5. Looking for a Fast and easy way to remove cellulite before Going out or to the pool? Try rubbing a slice or Two of cucumbers along your problem area for a Few minutes, the phytochemicals in the cucumber Cause the collagen in your skin to tighten, Firming up the outer layer and reducing the Visibility of cellulite. Works great on wrinkles Too!!!

 6. Want to avoid a hangover or Terrible headache? Eat a few cucumber slices before going to bed and wake up refreshed and headache free. Cucumbers contain enough sugar, B Vitamins and electrolytes to replenish essential nutrients the body lost, keeping everything in equilibrium, avoiding both a hangover and headache!!

7. Looking to fight off that Afternoon or evening snacking binge? Cucumbers Have been used for centuries and often used by European trappers, traders and explores for Quick meals to thwart off starvation.

8. Have an important meeting or job interview and You realize that you don't have enough time to Polish your shoes? Rub a freshly cut cucumber Over the shoe, its chemicals will provide a Quick and durable shine that not only looks Great but also repels Water.

9. Out of WD 40 and need to fix a squeaky hinge? Take a Cucumber slice and rub it along the problematic hinge, and voila, the squeak is gone!

10. Stressed out and don't have time for massage, facial or visit to the spa? Cut up an entire Cucumber and place it in a boiling pot of water. The chemicals and nutrients from the cucumber will react with the boiling water and be released in the steam, creating a soothing, relaxing aroma that has been shown to reduce Stress in new mothers and college students during final exams.

11. Just finish a Business lunch and realize you don't have gum or mints? Take a slice of cucumber and press it to the roof of your mouth with your tongue for 30 Seconds to eliminate bad breath, the Phytochemicals will kill the bacteria in your mouth responsible for causing bad breath.

12. Looking for a 'green' way to clean your faucets, sinks or stainless steel?Take a slice of cucumber and rub it on the surface you want to clean, not only will it remove years of tarnish and bring back the shine, but it won't leave streaks and won't harm You fingers or fingernails while you clean.

13. Using a Pen and made a mistake? Take the outside of the Cucumber and slowly use it to erase the pen Writing, also works great on crayons and markers That the kids have used to decorate the Walls!!

 Pass this along to everybody you know who is looking for better and safer ways to Solve life's everyday Problems...

Thursday, July 21, 2011

The Firefly's Dance

sparks of light flicker
fire on wings of summer's night
no music heard tonight

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Leaving on a Jet Plane - The Musical

After yesterday's post, I just couldn't help but share this song. It reminds me of days gone by in a sweet melancholy way. No jet planes in my near future, but I can still dream of good days to come. I can still dream of arms around me, as I remember sweet kisses in your smile. 

sweet kiss
morning's bliss
forever a song
in my heart

Monday, July 18, 2011

Leaving on a Jet Plane

Neale and I were constant companions over the days that followed. After spending a second night in his larger room, I decided to pass on keeping up appearances and moved in with him. There was no point in us both paying for rooms, if we were only going to use one. You couldn’t separate us if you tried. We wandered city streets, chatting, laughing, holding hands and finding quiet corners to share a passionate kiss or two. We met back up with Nimesh for a personalized tour of the city as well. Neither Neale nor I had much cash flowing out of our pockets, but that did not dampen our euphoric spirits. Burgeoning love feeds the soul.

The problem was that the more time Neale and I spent together, the less we wanted to be separated. While in Dar es Salaam that wasn’t a problem, but neither of us had the money to stay put and the city was quickly losing its appeal. We were both travellers and our feet itched to move on. Neale was headed North. After my failed attempt at being an overland courier, I was still drifting and sought direction for which way to go next. I felt like home was vaguely calling my name, but Africa was in my blood and I loathed the idea of leaving it. Temptation arose and I had no good reasons to turn it down. Neale’s hearty laugh and generous compliments had me in favour of pretty much anything that he suggested. So when the proposal came to accompany him to Cairo, it took me all of two seconds to agree.

While I did get excited at the prospect of seeing Egypt, a few worries couldn't help but cross my mind. Was it really a good idea to be traipsing across the continent with a virtual stranger? Hmm. Well, I had been doing that for the last nine months with a steady stream of strangers, many of whom I knew even less than Neale. So that could be crossed off the list of worries easily enough. If we went to Egypt together though, how and when would I get back to Cape Town, or Canada for that matter? Seeing the excitement in Neale’s eyes erased any doubts that my brain tried to muster though. I was present in the miracle of the moment. I had travelled long enough to trust my instincts when the fates presented new opportunities to me. If it felt right, then it was meant to be. The idea of this potential trip excited me and definitely screamed as an opportunity to be taken advantage of. How could I not jump on board? Neale's enthusiasm was contagious and it was decided.

All that stood in the way, was the means to get there. So over a cheap beer in our favourite pub, we decided  that we would leave for Cairo as soon as we could muster up some plane tickets. Giddy with anticipation, we finished our pitcher and wandered home arm in arm for the night. The plan was to find a travel agent in the morning and leave on a jet plane to Cairo, as soon as we were able. 

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Saturday's Email of the Week: Birthday Wishes All Over Again

Email of the Week

While this video came to me compliments of Facebook, I did get an email regarding other songs by the same band. I personally liked "Cake" best though, so thought I would share it here with you.

The occasion this week was a friend's birthday. A long-lost friend and erstwhile boyfriend. In fact, the recipient of this song was my very first boyfriend. He was the one who introduced me to ska and began to open the door for me to an alternative world. When I met him, he was a skin head, rode a motorcycle, owned a scooter, and managed to cook me a shaky meal of spaghetti (with the help of telephone step-by-step directions from a sweet friend that couldn't resist helping the petrified young man). He bought me a super-soft teddy bear with flowers for our first Valentine's Day. No boy had ever given me anything as sweet as that before.

Ah yes, I was 17 and smitten, but there were underlying problems that just couldn't be resolved. This dear boy gave me a taste of pure romance, but lived an achingly long drive away. An hour and a half drive, once a week, every other, then finally once a month killed this fledgling relationship. I was in high school and he was a  college man. Our futures were uncertain and ultimately I bet against them. When I broke his heart, I broke mine too. My young years somehow knew that it was the right thing to do though.

but damn, it hurt.

For my fellow Cancer friend, I share this song today though. He always made me laugh and had an endearing smile. I am lucky to call him a friend still.

So for Saturday's email of the week, I share with you "Cake", by Rather Good. Perfect, I think. Happy Saturday everyone. And happy birth-month to all my fellow cancers out there celebrating a birthday this month. WE ROCK!

Thursday, July 14, 2011

A Goodbye

filled  up
with a thousand 
sparks  of  disbelief
over  the  loss  of  you...

to  face
no direction 
to claim as safe
when I crumple
to the floor
in grief


A funeral for a friend of the family has me preoccupied and sad, as the world spins on tonight. Another spark is pinched out just when it is needed most. Strength to you Pat.

Blessings George. May your journey to the beyond be well...

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

What Colour Goes With Yellow?

What colours go with yellow?
my daughter asks

Today's answer is brown,
and a creamy white

with shades of lavender

 hanging in the sunshine

of my mind's eye
- a brilliant sight to see

Monday, July 11, 2011

The Morning After

Lazily I stretched and cracked my eyes open to the day. An unfamiliar room greeted me, but that wasn’t surprising considering I rested my head in a different spot most nights. A warmth in the bed beside me reminded me that today was different though. I was not alone. A twinge of apprehension filled me, as I peeked at my companion. Neale breathed heavily beside me. He was apparently still asleep. 

“Wasn’t this jumping the gun a little,” I wondered to myself. “Maybe I should just leave before an awkward moment steals in to disrupt this cozy atmosphere.

With a pang of regret, I slowly eased my leg towards the edge of the bed. Just as I thought I was free, and beginning to wonder how I could go about quietly finding my things and leaving without waking my sleeping companion, a strong arm reached out and drew me back.  I was pulled into Neale’s warm body and a gentle kiss planted on my bare shoulder. Blissfully, I melted back into the bed. With a sigh, I cuddled into Neale’s chest and closed my eyes again.

“Morning,” he said.

“Good morning, “ I replied, as I opened my eyes to look into his brilliant green pools.

How could these joyful thoughts be a bad thing? I was the happiest that I had been in months. Neale’s generous grin filled my heart and more.

“Thinking of going somewhere, Beautiful?” he asked teasingly.

“Not anymore,” I said with a  smile. Not on your life. 

I was quite happy to stay like that forever. 

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Saturday's Email of the Week: Good Canadian Fun

Saturday's Email of the Week

I totally wish that I had received this email last week to share with you for Canada day! This week's email/video came from my Mother. I know that she is a fan of comics and I have seen her bust a gut watching this guy before. Russell Peters is an hilarious Canadian comic hailing from just down the road from me in Brampton. While Peters has since relocated to LA, he still comes home to hang with his Canadian friends and family that helped to start him on his path to fame. And what is his path to fame paved with - jokes poking fun at every ethnic group under the sun. While he often pokes fun at his Indian heritage, the video today ribs his good ole Canadian peeps. No doubt, eh! 

Enjoy and Happy Saturday!

Friday, July 8, 2011

The "One"

There she stood, perfect. He slowly approached with eager anticipation. She was interested. He could see it in the curve of her hip, as she watched him draw near. Mmhmm!


Deflated, he paddled his floatie away… 

Oops, being silly with a Flash 55 for G-Man. He's one holiday, but I have had this picture kicking around that I have wanted to write a caption to. Poor little guy never stood a chance...

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

no blinks allowed

a microsecond 
of time caught - no blinks allowed
savour the moment

It's Wednesday - Have you stopped by One Shot yet?

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

happy birthday ...

Throwing my own birthday party here today!

I've had my cake
and presents too
before you try to sing
here's a birthday video -woohoo!

Monday, July 4, 2011

Long Weekend Getaway

Happy 4th of July to all my American friends!

I have been away since mid-week last week, so did not get a chance to get any writing in. Alas, no trip to Africa today! I can still whisk you away though, just not quite as far - Orillia. I took advantage of holidays everywhere and hid up north with the mosquitoes, deer flies, family and even an old friend or two thrown in for good measure. Today, I will just offer you a snapshot of the fun we had and get back to writing tomorrow.

So what did we get up to?

Sitting fireside, drinking beer, watching fireworks, playing, laughing, gambling, joining into sing-songs around the campfire, s'mores, barbeques and so much more...

Stinky dog washing

swimming in the lake


more swimming with cousins

Beer drinking

Just being goofy

Getting dolled up
For some birthday fun. Doh!

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Saturday's Email of the Week: Keeping it Light

Saturday's Email of the Week
So Saturday has arrived again. I have to say, it has been a crazy week, what with trying to get ready for the long weekend this weekend. Nothing that can't wait until another day, in the grand scheme of things though. I managed to get most everything done that I wanted to before sneaking away for a visit with the grandparents. Right about now, I am hoping to either be sleeping in, or perhaps lounging in Grandpa's boat catching a few rays, if not a few fish for dinner. It sounds like we will have company as well, as my sister shall be descending upon the family gathering as well. Woot, woot!! Happy Canada Day celebrations shall be had!

I hope that you all are having a wonderful weekend as well and that my American friends are enjoying their own long weekend fun in the name of the 4th of July. I will raise a glass of cheer to all of us celebrating our nations! Hip, hip hooray for summertime & the LONG weekend!!

In keeping with the spirit of celebration, I am leaving this light and fun today. Here is a funny video about the joys of exercise and the stairs, plus maybe I will throw in a little joke afterwards as well.

Happy long weekend all!

Four brothers left home for college, and they became successful doctors and lawyers .

One evening , they chatted after having dinner together. They discussed the Christmas gifts they were able to give their elderly mother who moved to Florida .

The first said, "You know I had a big house built for Mama."

The second said, " And I had a large theatre built in the house."

The third said, "And I had my Mercedes dealer deliver an SL600 to her."

The fourth said, "You know how Mama loved reading the Bible and you know she can't read anymore because she can't see very well. I met this preacher who told me about a parrot that can recite the entire Bible. It took ten preachers almost 8 years to teach him. I had to pledge to contribute $50,000 a year for five years to the church, but it was worth it. Mama only has to name the chapter and verse and the parrot will recite it."

The other brothers were impressed. After the holidays Mom sent out her Thank You notes.

She wrote: " Milton , the house you built is so huge that I live in only one room, but I have to clean the whole house. Thanks anyway."

"Marvin, I am too old to travel. I stay home, I have my groceries delivered, so never use the Mercedes. The thought was good. Thanks."

"Michael, you gave me an expensive theatre with Dolby sound and it can hold 50 people, but all of my friends are dead, I've lost my hearing and I'm nearly blind. I'll never use it. Thank you for the gesture just the same."

"Dearest Melvin, you were the only son to have the
Good sense to give a little thought to your gift. The chicken was delicious. Thank you so much."

Love, Mom


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