So the Delica was wonderful to sleep in, thanks, after Mike sorted out the storage issues. He packed tent pegs, he swears he did, but he didn’t find them so the SUV tent extension never got put up. That hiccup aside, I got to camp:

In a new place (Sxótsaqel, Chilliwack Lake PP)

RIGHT ACROSS from the pit toilets, which were clean and unsmelly

Drank not a single whisper of anything alcoholic

Found out about recent generation camping equipment that’s most useful

with a cat and two dogs (Ninja, Zaya and Jasper)

with a raven flying through the woods

listened to the other people at the campsite play Mölkky which is a deranged Finnish version of skittles invented late last century

and three little chipmunks so we kept yelling for Alvin

with new people and old (Stephanie, the long term girlfriend of Erik (all camping trips should have a meltingly beautiful young couple to admire, she’s one of those women who without being too much into herself can put her hair into a messy bun in 1.5 seconds and then look gorgeous) and her beau Erik who instead of being Jarmo’s child at Baumfest, conspiring with Ville to lock me in an outhouse LOL LOL is in fourth year med school prepping to be a radiologist and who probably saw Tom on rounds when he was dying at RCH, and Päivi, whom I hadn’t seen in easily 15 years; and Samppa her oldest whom I hadn’t previously met and Matthias who turns out to be ANOTHER Finnish extraction med student. We got into the prolapses folks, it was intense, also hilarious)

Not having to prepare a single meal, cup of coffee, pack except for myself or do any driving. I wiped some stuff up, cleaned the small trash off the campsite, got the chairs out of the rain, that kind of thing; told stories and sang songs

—very nice gig frankly

With a view so intense that if you want to see the mountaintops through the trees you have to tip your head back

and a beautiful beach

and it’s only two hours from here, less if you maniac it down highway 1.

I have more notes and more details later, but I’m home, and happy and I can hardly wait to tell Katie about it but I bet she already knows about this campground. Maybe pics later if I can liberate them from Mike.

All hugs and kisses to Mike for underwriting basically everything

Laundry and walk

I did laundry! I went for a walk in Fraser Foreshore! 14389.

The woods were full of leedle yellow birds. I am convinced that I saw a Wilson’s Warbler almost the instant we got to the park (it was flitting about in the shrubs below the stand of cottonwoods at the western end of the western parking lot) and the two of us were stunned by the joy of all the leedle birdies’ mingled songs; it was amazing. No eagles or herons; but ducklings and small birds. And someone left a hawk feather on the path…

It was a SUPER pleasant day in the park. Paul was in fine form. After we got back we all watched a Burn Notice and then when I stood up I put my back into a spasm and the pain was so bad I mistook it for a heart attack. I staggered out to the car and as soon as I sat down the spasm cleared and I realized it was referred pain. Total elapsed time less than 5 minutes.

I apologized most sincerely to Paul and Jeff (I won’t lie, the pain terrified me and I didn’t want to go to a hospital in the middle of the plague anyway). Now I feel fine. We’re going to do a shop this morning after Jeff does the trash.

I am so lucky I have people to look after me when I’m feeling crappy.  I really feel cared for and not everybody, not even close to everybody, gets that in this modern variable hellscape.


gorgeous day

I suppose what I should have been doing was mowing the lawn, but if it’s not raining today that’s what I’ll do. Maybe I’ll put my two loads of laundry away LOL PROBS NO.

Tested negative for COVID again.

Putin didn’t mention victory in his victory speech. Nor did he mention nukes. Soft good traitor tyrant.

12623, I think the writing drain is unclogged and I should be able to go. It’s hard to match the 4000 word day I had earlier on this story, sigh, but at least I have all the protagonists herded into one place psychologically for their life changing phone call.

Katie called first thing yesterday and PULLED ME OUT OF THE BATHROOM and then we howled laughing, thinking ‘MY TODDLER NEVER LETS ME POO IN PEACE’ and how that just never changes because THEN WE PHONED OUR MoM and got her away from her exercises so she’s PUFF PUFF PUFF it’s so PUFF PUFF PUFF lovely to hear your – PUFF PUFF oh that’s better – voices.  Katie and I also breathed sad and mad at each other about RvW because what the fuck can you do.

I didn’t hear from Keith but I heard he was playing with Ryker when I Katie called and that was good enough for me. Later in the day, Tammy, bless her, called, and we had a good long chinwag. Trying to time the market is a hard and always potentially expensive game. Paul and I got lucky, is all. Toronto is not a good market right now.

I got amazing feedback about my ‘activism’ from back when I actually was an activist and not just a keyboard warrior yesterday and it was lovely. I’m not going to repost it but to remind myself in future, 1100 reddit karma points for my welcoming congregation post was COMPLETELY UNEXPECTED and I cried at some of the comments. REPRESENTATION IS IMPORTANT and in this case it was an asexual saying ‘thanks for making me feel seen’ and that was a moment that made me feel THIS IS WHAT I WANT FROM LIFE.

So now I suppose I need to be more of an activist. I’m doing what I can given that I never leave my rental. LOL.

I miss my filking buddies. This is the ‘other’ Jeffrey in my life, lol, and what a lovely man he is, married to an even lovelier person, Jeri Lynn (well she makes homemade raspberry soft candies that taste like a trip to the Hesperides so of course I like her better.) Jeffrey gave me his dulcimer capo, can you believe it? what a guy.


Camping trip!

Mike and I are going to go car camping next weekend, if all lines up (we’ll be self-testing before we go). So looking forward to it!!!

No progress on the writing. Very much enjoying the Burn Notice rewatch; Gabrielle Anwar is quite something as the volcanic Fiona Glenanne. And of course Bruce Campbell is just wonderful. I am now pronouncing the character of Michael Westen asexual – if one does, many of the things he does make a lot more sense.


creeping progress

12409 words (creeeeeeping)

Had an absolutely lovely and heartening phone convo with Sue, my friend from church. She has an ongoing part in a TV show here in town! which we had thought about watching but now we’re rethinking it. At least I am. An IMDb listing, good golly y’all. I’m sure she’s fantastic. Also the entire series is CRAWLING with Stargate series alumni, I was snorting at the cast list, Paul McGillion makes an appearance.

We spoke of many things. Renee Spakowski passed. She was a truly amazing person and a really good organizer. I knew about Jean Donaldson passing away. Other people from church have died, and I haven’t been making phone calls because I’ve been very wrapped up in myself.

I told her about my spot in Guest 23 magazine (thanks to Dave, being the editor lol) and she was very kind about the poem I read at Tom’s memorial service. She said that in the first few lines the congregation knew where they were and what was happening and I said all I wanted to do was write something honest that other people could relate to and she said I succeeded. That was good.

And we talked about R v W and we talked about the state of the world and we talked about what happens when you have to end a friendship and so I talked about the friendship that I had to end and how years and years later I’m still so SORE about it, because it’s a personal failure, or so I feel. But one sets boundaries and tries to live accordingly, and it’s damned hard.

and she asked me about Ryker the wonderbaby

Allegra and Ryker aged 4 months

I send morning greetings, hope you are all doing well today!

lovely brief walk

Paul and I sat in the park down the hill and blossoms fell on us. The dogwood tree looks, in full bloom, like something from a Tolkien film. We came back and drank tea on the deck.

Buster’s wounds are healing well.

12066 words, mostly revision. I’ve done a stem to stern adjustment and tightening of the story so far, and it’s stalled a little bit because I am pantsing and there’s three ways I can go.

Survey Sunday:

If you had a choice between living your life again and going back in time and killing Hitler in 1933 which would it be?

remarkable day

Jeff and I got up and went for a walk yesterday morning, just walking around the neighbourhood. The birdies were loud and it was a very pleasant walk. I’m thinking TWO WALKS IN TWO DAYs Allegra must be feeling better (finally, and I do), and then Mike called and we went for a walk in Fraser Foreshore park. I told him to take his camera and he got:



log booms


and unfortunately the chickadees were not interested in coming to me because it was the wrong time of day, but it was still a lovely walk and one of the crows walked right up to me and begged.

(I didn’t start limping until I was coming up the walkway for home.)

On the way home Mike picked up some marinated halibut and we joyfully stank up the whole house, likely the neighbourhood, likely the city, likely all of solh temexw, cooking it (Seriously I can still smell it with every intake of breath so I can only imagine what horrors Jeff is experiencing) and I made green salad with avocado and boiled up some herb fettucine noodles. Then we watched the dubbed first episode of the anime ‘Ghost Story’ (weird, also funny) and the boys started ‘The Batman’. Since I didn’t watch the whole movie (at eight pm I announced “I’m cleaning up and taking my drugs and going to bed,” and abandoned them mid-movie (I’ll be candid; I can’t review the movie because I didn’t watch the whole thing, but it was not impressive to me), and I slept until 4:40 a.m yeah!!! So I have no idea how long Mike hung around for, but go me for setting boundaries. Also, we consumed no alcohol – Mike has quit and I’m not supposed to and Jeff rarely drinks and only drinks beer when he’s feeling good already.

Yes, it was a remarkable day – I got in two walks! At some point I hope Mike will send me pics, I’ll fire off an email to him now.

On a completely different topic, and late, I’d like to thank Unca Garry for helping pOp with the Camaro. pOp really needs that car available for drives in the country (he’s retired, go around him) and Garry made that possible. I couldn’t see him when I last went, even though he was in Victoria, because of the plague and having to be considerate of the immunocompromised (Alex has has one shot but the baby has not and we could all still carry it without symptoms) so thank you Garry and sorry I missed you Diane.

And tonight I get Alex. I have work to do before he gets here…

No words, no feedback from AO3. But the publication for the ‘Guest’ that my poem will be in creeps closer!!!

Laundry, Buster training, writing

10608 words. Haven’t checked for kudos yet, snicker. Okay, now I have, and it’s just the one.

Buster trained so hard this morning, and was so weird yesterday morning, that I honestly don’t know what to make of him. And while the communication board has shipped, I can’t get tracking data because they want me to have a cell phone to download the shipping app onto.

jesus parkour christ, seriously?

Yes, I know it’s 4-20. But every day is that for me, so celebrating it seems foolish.


a repeat, but a good one

The Plateau

I went walking with Jim and Jan, a long time ago, and ‘prisma’ed’ the above photo…


Heard from Tammy

lovely Chag Sameach call from Tammy, we talked for ages and really caught up. I am so glad that she and her family are all doing well, and that she has a trip planned for July (but to where, she can’t say).  She may or may not be back here for Christmas. Work for her as a therapist is still disturbingly busy and she’s currently caught up in the multinational maelstrom known as the Toronto real estate market, but if the winds are propitious all will be well.

Three kudos overnight (appear to have collected a new serial reader LOL with a super cute user name), 9973 words on “Totally Boned” – the working title for my little romantic thriller, wordle in five, and I ran the dishwasher and washed and dried two loads of laundry yesterday (also cleaned out the laundry room sink and tidied the kitchen).

Jeff made a Timmy Ho’s run and there were NO HONEY GLAZED!  INTERNAL WAILING well go at 8:30 am and that’s what happens. He got croissants and raised chocolate donuts instead. I’ve started an old-fashioned craving too, they are good and not super sweet.

Left a message for Mike.

Getting into Raised by Wolves! Like a lot. What a weird disturbing show.  Finished (I think this is my third time through) Elementary. I think we’ll probably go back and watch the whole thing again, forever, on repeat. It’s the most nearly perfect network TV show ever, and, unlike POI, doesn’t bloodily kill the lesbian character just as she’s about to be happy and represents an appropriate platonic friendship without being bloodless or sappy about it.

We should probably go back to watching ER, it’s nice and LONG.

another lovely day


a shopping expotition; the longest walk Paul and I have done in months; a lovely meal at Phó Edmonds.

Re: the shopping expotition DO NOT LIKE SHOPPING WITH NO MASKS but at least it’s an environment in which one does not experience harassment for wearing one, so that’s a plus. Also, we go first thing in the morning and we don’t both go in. It’s annoying that we can’t get the Ritter Sport MINT chockie square any more but they support the Russian invasion, so NOPE.

Jeff made sliced roast beef sliders for a snack in the evening, they were so good.

Midmorning Paul called and wanted to go for a walk, and it was an exquisite day, so Paul said he wanted a change of scene and to go back to Deer Lake Park. I wanted to go in case the snakes were out. It took quite a while to remember where the hell we’d seen them before but after scrambling up the bank I remembered… and then in my triumph I stomped too close to where the little beggars were and three of them all raced off back into their den. Biggest was maybe 16 inches, the rest smaller, all garter snakes.

The brilliant yellow of the skunk cabbage was everywhere in the low lying parts, and the birds were making a wonderful racket. Too early for frogs, no interesting mammals.

After, I had the number 32 at the Phó Edmonds (it was absolutely succulent, and the egg was perfect – and I don’t know how they make the vinaigrette for the carrots but damn that was good too) and Paul had a wrap and an order of their really nice spring rolls. We tried to go to Mezze, the relatively new Uyghur restaurant first, but they don’t open until 4 (and stay open until 8 – I have to assume that they do a roaring catering trade!)

The rest of the day I was quite lazy because hey I walked 2.5 km (we rested plenty)

No kudos, word count now 8131 so yes, I also wrote yesterday.

I spoke to Katie and she approved the pics, so….

Yes, that is the debris from a Mickey D’s brekky that Katie had delivered so my mother got exposed to her first egg mcfuffin and apple pie and hash browns and my father got a mocha and an apple pie for breakfast. For reasons best known to themselves they sent an additional pancake breakfast and that got et, too. I have to say that McDonald’s coffee has achieved an unlikely inversion of glory. From having the worst coffee of any chain, it’s now damned close to being the best and it’s definitely on a par or even better than Timmy Ho’s. I wouldn’t have thought it possible, but there you go.

I have to respond to the jury duty summons that appeared in the mail on Tuesday. GRRR GRRR. I’ve been joking about appearing at the summons half naked (I’ll get arrested even if it’s legal) or declaring that it’s MST land! and the justice apparatus has no legitimacy here! but I think I’ll just get a note from my doctor saying that I have holes caused by strokes in my cerebellum and I’m not fit for service.

Rob was here

One of Jeff’s oldest buddies came over for beer, ‘za and March Madness, and all was delightful. It had been so long since I’d seen him that I mistook him for the pizza delivery person, and of course this immediately makes me remember a Supernatural (2005) trope. He’s retired, and I’m so happy for him.

Current count 6620, two kudos overnight. Sad boys are sad right mOm (I’ve been sending her updates a day at a time so she knows what I’m talking about.)

Various things are annoying me this morning. I’m thinking “Should I vent my spleen? or should I just go about the tasks of daily living?” And you know what, I think I’ll just put it down.



Daily roundup

Paul and I went for a longer and faster walk than usual yesterday. The chickadees (probably just one bold chickadee) ate sunflower seeds out of my hand. (they also rocket overhead to get your attention, and the chipping sparrows and the towhees and flickers and crows all get interested. Still as a tomb – the Fraser was like grey glass. We managed to get out during a break between episodes of rain.

mOm got the Among Us art from Alex that I mailed to her.

Pollen count is insanely high.

I don’t know whether it’s the allergens but I’m so itchy and dull-witted it’s annoying to me and everyone around me.

After, I picked up croissants and went to the bank and Paul got Cape Seed bread for Keith, and then we came back here for me to snip THE WORST toenails I’ve ever seen offa Paul. Yes I still perform acts of personal service for Paul, why not, it’s solidarity.

Watched Black Crab (MAN WHAT A BLEAK MOVIE and about a quarter of it is scenes that look amazingly like escaping from Mariupol so that’s kinda disturbing. Noomi Rapace was, as always, fantastic. BUT BLEAK MOVIE don’t say I didn’t warn you.

Today – return book to library, take Jeff to breakfast, wash two-three loads of laundry, empty the dishwasher and try to write at least a thousand more words on the story.

No kudos today, but that’s the difference between Sunday and Monday in a world organized around 5 day weeks.