Two weeks in Cowichan Bay – some quiet grizzling.

Our boat is bust. Yes, bust. We have a little problem with a fuel lift pump we should look into asap, but our marine mechanic says he is busy. I see him every now and then tootling around the village in his hot little sports car, the wind ruffling through his beard. He should feel guilty he’s not helping us with our niggling problem, but he doesn’t look the least bit guilty.

So this weekend while I’m delivering my Paul back to Edmonton via Greyhound (I expect near-death experiences and to get yelled at), the man I love will attempt to fix the problem. Yes, fix it.
He shall crawl into the engine room and rip out hoses and look at them. He is very clever.

I spent the last week sewing and fitting cushion covers. I finished them yesterday, then last night it rained and the cushions were baptized with drips from the deckhead. Yessss! They are now REAL boat cushions.

Paul and I volunteered this summer for the local FruitSave organization. We pick other people’s fruit, then donate 1/3 to the tree owner, 1/3 to charity and we get to keep the last 1/3. We scored enough apples and plums and pears to do a bit of jam-making, though my best propane element is firing inconsistently and melting the element. I hope I can make it through the last batch of pear jam, then we’re in the market for a new propane oven.

And now a word about by-law officers.

The fluorescent pink notices they tacked up all over the Bay have faded to dull grey, and everybody is ignoring them. Business is being transacted, hot-dogs are being sold, and though nobody is taking nor hammer nor nail to the structures (in strict accordance with their directive), our lives are unimpacted by the by-law visit, bless their hearts.

They are welcome back here any time.

In Yellowknife, NWT, however, things are different. You can access YouTube and type in ‘Yellowknife by-law’ to enjoy a video of Yellowknife by-law officers wrestling a 60 year old man with a medical condition to the ground as punishment for not wearing a full seat belt, on account of his recent operation.

Enjoy.

You’ll be glad to know the gentleman is suing everybody.

So you see, our by-law officers are wonderful, polite people with pink notices and thumbtacks. We should appreciate them.

love to you all, and many blessings.

Catherine Dook

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Back from the wilds of Yellowknife

It was a lovely RV vacation in our rackety old Vandura full of incident and woodsmoke and horseflies.  The low point was the breakdown at 60th Parallel Campsite.  I cooked supper in the van in the boiling heat while  thousands of horseflies shot past me like bullets.  Luckily, the wonderful campsite caretakers reattached the faulty battery connection that was causing all the trouble and soon we had a working van AND supper.  And dead horseflies up to our ankles – John Darling is dangerous when he’s roused. Son Rupert drove us from Edmonton to Yellowknife and back.  “I’m very disappointed you left the lights on again, Dad,” he said.  “”No way!” I said.  “No way would Dad leave the headlights on seven times!  Six maybe, but not seven!””

There was smoke in Alberta, and scary-looking stands of burned-out trees, but no delay because of fire.  I shall vote for Elizabeth May.

Yellowknife was . . . itself.  We were glad to see family, and we hope family was glad to see us.  Maggie and the boys and Michelle and Mom and Dad, and the littleuns who are now walking and talking and showing signs of Dook intelligence.  They get their brains from me. There is a wonderful walking trail around Frame Lake where you can meet a microcosm of the city – business people and housewives and young mothers and the odd flasher.  Reluctantly we kissed everyone goodbye (not the flasher) and drove south.

John Darling tends to grasp the steering wheel, lean forward and concentrate on getting as far down the highway as he can before the crew mutinies; on the way back I managed to convince him to slow down a bit.  We slowed down short of Jasper (the Miette Hot Spring pools were lovely).  We slowed down IN Jasper (the pizza at Jasper Pizza, 402 Connaught Drive, was sublime).  Then I gave up and we gunned it to a lake near Mission where Penny and Barney have cleverly parked their RV on a raft.

Good friends and family, safe travels and hotsprings and all the horseflies dead – it was a wonderful vacation.

Blessings,

Catherine

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