Monday, 30 January 2012


Yeah, no, not her.

So, one of the ongoing REALLY BIG QUESTIONS is, how to make Zombies interesting - except of course for those who find Zombies inherently interesting, not me, I don't, but lots of other people who I like, do.
Where was I?
Oh yes, 'The Fades'. My goodness, what a little gem of a TV series - BBC I think, but it was on our telly, and such a quirk that we found it. Since we rarely watch the telly as it happens, we are rarely channel surfing, but we did, once, and we found this. Awesome series. Never let up. Watch it and then we'll enter into dialogue about whether the Fades count as Zombies. Um, and not just the first episode,

Another unbelievably fab series is 'Call the Midwife'. It is about a group of midwives/district nurses operating out of an Anglican convent in the East End of London in 1957 - yes, the year of my birth. Utterly fascinating, and finally we are getting some programmes about women's work.

Ever thought of this ? - You know those questions you get where someone asks you who from history you would most like to meet? And you say, 'Eleanor of Aquitaine'. Well, I would. And what if we DID get to meet that person and it turned out that actually we WERE that person. That in a previous life, we were them. How would that work? Spookily, I feel.

So, that aside. Saturday evening, returned from work, straight down to the Static. Icy rain, dark, I cycle to the barely heated swimming pool. I swim, alone, every time the wind blows, the awning - the bubble - over the pool, shudders and icy water rains down through the holes in its roof. Enjoyable though. I put my jacket, trousers and trainers on over my cossie and towel, and cycle back through the icy rain, and realise I am racing a skunk. Who knew they could move like that? They always seem to amble along - waddle almost, but this one was really legging it. Important to outrun a skunk though.
You could argue - training for the zombies apocalypse.

Tuesday, 24 January 2012

Solar Flare

So, bit of confusion over the Year of the Dragon - thought it was yesterday, so did the rest of predominantly Chinese Richmond, but the Chinese astrologer in the local rag reckons it's 4th Feb. This is the same local rag that this week brought us the gem, 'We got a funnel!' Indeed.

Still, the year of the dragon appears to be heralded by severe solar storms raging out in the ...well, solar system. The Aurora Borealis is apparently so active that the lights can be seen down here. Not quite sure what you have to do to see them though. I've peered out at the night sky. There is a stunning sliver of crescent moon and a bright star, but no light show.

On Friday we awoke to really big snow, the sort that makes you think you've moved to Sleepy Hollow, but by the evening it had been mostly melted by the driving rain. And the rain is still driving, let me tell you.

It comes home to you how many channels on our TV are from the US when Obama is giving his State of the Union address. This evening I had to scroll through quite a few before finding an actual programme.

Amazon recommended me a bunch of books based on my recent purchases - according to them."Hokkaido Highway Blues : Hitchhiking Japan". Seriously, they got this from a bunch of British Field Guides and some random fiction?

Trinity Baptist church on Granville Street, Vancouver, has a sign outside that declares that God's favourite word is 'come'. Hmmm..Well I suppose God's name does get called a lot at that moment.

Why does Julian Assange think he's worthy of a TV prog? Good grief. Must be the solar storm messing with reality.

Wednesday, 18 January 2012

Big Snow

Well, biggish. We had snow on Friday evening. When I drove to work from Birch Bay on Saturday, the fields to either side of Route 99 were insanely beautiful. The evergreens were draped with sparkling white, and in one blanketed pasture, a bunch of dark-coloured llamas were kneeling down. Right at the tope of bare-branched deicduous tree, a bald eagle looked hunched into its feathers. Yet the eagles love the cold weather, they simply own the sky.
There was another sprinkling overnight on Saturday-Sunday, but when we got back to Richmond, there had clealry been more.
Very early this morning it started up again and the drive to work was through driving snow. If I didn't have the windscreen-wipers on all the time, then the snow froze as the blades cleared it. The roads hadn't yet been fully cleared, but at least people were driving at sensible speeds and with a good stopping distance in between.
For now, we are not due any more until tomorrow night, we'll see. Today, the top temperature has been -6.

Monday, 9 January 2012

Just Bleuch

My day off! So typical then that I felt suddenly so rough around midday and throughout the afternoon, that I thought I might be seriously ill.
I took my pulse and found I had none. Rather than assuming I had hit the wrong spot, I naturally wondered whether I was in fact dead and hadn't realised it.
This was probably more as a result of watching a British TV programme yesterday called 'The Fades', where people who couldn't find the way through to the afterlife, wandered around, unable to interact with the living world, and getting angrier and angrier about it.
I noticed that I was in fact able to interact so the chances were that wasn't what had happened. When I did find my pulse, it seemed to be a fairly normal 68.

Still, waves of nausea, feeling that I was going to faint and feeling hot and cold wrecked my day. I know several people who have had truly awful bouts of gastric flu in the last couple of weeks. This, I was not keen on.
I'm still hoping it won't develop, and I certainly feel much better than I did earlier, but haven't been able to face any actual food. I've drunk water and hot Marmite and lain around like a sickly heroine.
Feeling cold's a bit of a novelty.I think I could handle it without the nausea and faintness.

Thursday, 5 January 2012


Television's coming back. It has been away for about a month, and we had almost exhausted our saved-up British TV programmes and then the new episodes of things started to trickle in. This Sunday, it starts up in earnest and of course soon, so will the meetings.

This week we have had Noah-esque rain, although today was dry and by the end, clear. And thus, colder. In fact, when I left work this evening, the sky was an almost-dark blue, rather than black.

We've been watching a programme about the people who believe the Mayan prophecy about 2012. It seems that it has been downgraded to more of a 'something bad will happen sometime'. Yes. If we don't stop warming up our planet, the climate will change cataclysmically.
Apart from the man who thinks it will happen earlier. Say wha'?

Monday, 2 January 2012

Happy New Year

Happy New Year wherever you are.

We were down at the Static for New Year, a friend stayed over and we had a quiet but enjoyable evening, food, film, wine, sparkling wine and oddly timed fireworks. They seemed to go mad between nine and nine thirty and then nothing.
Today we returned and took the Christmas decs down, swept the floor of fir needles, put washing on.

Our Christmas period entertainment has been mostly Downton Abbey. England's obsession is our obsession. With just the two-hour Christmas special to go, we face the long, dark teatime of the soul until the next series appears.

Sometimes, the Christmas period seems interminable. Sometimes it's over in a blink of an eye.

I don't have any resolutions. I have things I want to do, to explore, to face head on, but nothing as specific as a resolution.

Today would be my friend Anne's birthday. I have been typing up some of the 'missing' chapters from her novel. I have the hard copy, but no electronic file. For one reason or another, I had to photocopy some of the pages. As I typed them up, I put them in the recycling. One morning over the past week, I awoke to a familiar, yet unplaceable scent. It came into my head that it was Anne's soap, yet I still couldn't say, 'oh yes, of course.' I went down to make the coffee. I was standing on the opposite side of the kitchen and suddenly, the pages of Anne's novel lifted up from the bin and fell down the stairs, as though they had been moved by a breath of wind. Of course, there were no windows open and there is no heating vent anywhere near the recycling bin. Coincidence I guess, at a time when my friend is very much in my thoughts.

I still find it unbelievable that she is no longer here. In the grand scheme of things, I hadn't known her that long, but we were good friends. When I think of friends that I don't see, or don't see very often, but whom I've known for almost my whole life,  it seems impossible that the world could continue without them being in it. At some point in my life, I guess I'll experience that - or they will.  And I can't imagine it, nor do I want to.

New Year.
Makes you think.