The Wee Tadpoles Of Life

A quick snow update:

I went outside to clear a few paths of snow that the 40kph wind gusts last night, had filled in. It was -26 … in the sun. A tad brisk, I thought.

On with today’s thinks that I thunked last night …

-oOo-

It’s not something we thought about when we were wee tadpoles, that the musical icons, the artists, the people who impacted our lives, whose songs moved us and got us through all those hard times, who tend to be a generation older than us, we didn’t think that one day they’ll go and die on us.

As we get older, occasionally accidents, (self-inflicted or otherwise) took some of them away from us, and we mourned, and were perhaps forced to confront our own mortality, our own foibles and addictions, but there was still an aura of indestructability in the air, for us to breathe and take comfort in as we merrily trundled along our chosen Paths.

We weren’t encouraged to think of them dying. (we’re certainly not encouraged to think of ourselves dying, perish the thought!) They were supposed to be immortal, or at least immortalised by their art continuing to be in our collective consciousness after they were gone.

But they weren’t immortal. They faded with time, as the years pile up behind us, as did our memories of why they impacted our lives. And when we heard of their passing, we may have paused a while, smiled a bit whimsically, and said to each other, “Oh, I remember that song,” and along we trundled again.

But now, here, around-about the middle of my sixth decade, it hits harder, some days when I’m feeling melancholy, when one of those figures dies.

Christine McVie … 12th July 1943 – 30th November 2022 … Bon Voyage, and thank you for all the beautiful music.

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SNOW!!! … But I’m Getting Ahead Of Myself … Part 1

The Winter Tree 2022 edition

The Winter Tree 2022 edition

I didn’t deliberately set out to take such a long break from blogging, but as events unfolded, it seemed, hmm, well, necessary … so I did.

-oOo-

First this happened …

 

(this video’s being a pain to embed into this post. If you could let me know if it’s working, that’d be great, otherwise you can watch it on YouTube itself)

It was only a short pootle from the BeeLazee campground, through town, along the highway, and on to a quiet street, where …

… oops, getting ahead of myself a bit.

We knew we needed to move on before the campground closed at the end of September or we’d be, almost quite literally, orphans in the snow.

Rentals in town were ridiculously astronomical, and apparently nothing was to be had elsewhere. But, just as Mrs Widds went on Craigslist and found our cottage on Widder Island, so too did she find us a house, on a quiet street, with an acre of lawn, (which I’m going to turn into a huge garden next year), and surrounded by mature trees.

This is the view from our front door, and the back – Tree heaven!

 

The trees, the trees, they stole my heart.

-oOo-

Even though we hauled in whatever we needed from the trailer, the house was so large (three times bigger – at least – than our little cottage on Widder Lake) we felt like two little lost socks in the Washing Machine of Life. Very disconcerting it was, after living so small for so long, (ten years in the cottage) and then smaller still in the RV.

Being on unstable ground for so long, (people with bad knees should not live in a small RV for any length of time – I’d far surpassed by ‘use-by’ date) I could hardly walk by the time we signed the lease and officially moved in, if you could call my hobbling along a ‘walk’. There are steps up to the front porch and off of the balcony at the back. There’s also another set right in the middle of the living room, (don’t ask me why they had to be in that particular spot – it’s a mystery) that lead to the downstairs craft/workshop, the storage room, and Mrs Widds study.

Hobbling up and down all those stairs was hard, painful, time consuming, and exhausting … however, we had our Winter home.

We set up camp in the living room and began to figure out, 1 – how we could afford twice the rent we were used to paying, (which is slowly sorting itself out) and 2 – how we were going to bring up all the rest of our worldly possessions from our storage unit 700 kilometers to the south.

U-Haul, it turned out, was U-seless … their business model only works if there are as many people needing trucks going one way as there are going the other. Unfortunately, all the U-haul trucks of the size we required were in Alberta, (the next province east of us) and weren’t likely to come back any time soon.

After literally weeks of not knowing if we would be able to even do the move this year, let alone before winter set in, a friend of the family, I shall call ‘Sir L’, stepped up to the plate with his 7-ton moving truck.

The catch was, (of course there was a catch, there’s always a catch!) we needed to be at the storage unit to help with the loading … 700 kilometers away.

Leaving Valemount

As I’ve discovered about most things to do with our Adventure, it allows one (that being me) to contemplate the raw edges of my psyche, that haven’t seen the light of day sine I left my life behind in Australia almost eighteen years ago, with nothing but two slightly battered suitcases. (and the knowledge that Mrs Widds would be waiting for me at the arrivals gate – which she was!)

Before we delve into those semi-uncharted depths, here a bit of a thing that tickled my fancy …

See anything unusual about this RV?

See anything unusual about this RV?

Let me enlarge it for you …

– ‘Stealth’ – I don’t think that word means what they think it means

– ‘Stealth’ – I don’t think that word means what they think it means

(with many thanks to The Princess Bride for the innumerable quotable quotes over the years)

-oOo-

If you strip away all that is familiar, in a very brief period of time, the unfamiliar, the unknown, leaves you with nothing but your own inner resources to call upon when things go agely-googly. (as the do on an almost daily basis) I’ve discovered I don’t do at all well with that level of ‘unfamiliar’.

In a dollar store the other day, I felt scarily panicky wearing a mask.

You’d think that wearing masks for the last two years I’d be used to it, but no, my lizard-brain was convinced it was going to suffocate.

Later, after having a good cry and talking it through with Mrs Widds, I had to acknowledge that tiny self-judgemental ‘I’m not the sort of woman who gets the vapours’, give it a good smack, and accept that I am indeed, the sort of woman who can only deal with so many ‘unfamiliars’ at a time.

-oOo-

And so, here we are, ready for the next Adventure.

Arriving in prince George – About two hundred meters lower in elevation. Aspens, firs, pines, and tiny salmonberry plants. This is much more our kind of campsite.

The Last Summer Tree

Taken first thing this morning in the first beam of sunshine that came along

Taken first thing this morning in the first beam of sunshine that came along

We as packed up as we’re going to be.

The Rv’s as loaded as it’s going to be.

The bloody rain has FINALLY stopped.

This is it!

Videos and posts and pictures as we go.

Thank you all for your wonderful support. I will miss you for the little while we’re out of touch.

Big hugs for you all.

Widds

Boxing and Unboxing

Our first load to the storage unit for this year …

It may not look like much but you'd be surprised many boxes and bags we squished in there

It may not look like much but you’d be surprised many boxes and bags we squished in there

… and then we moved more empty boxes into the house to fill up …

It may not look like much but you'd be surprised many flattened boxes we squished in there

It may not look like much but you’d be surprised many flattened boxes we squished in there

… and then …

… for a while now I’ve been subscribing to newsletters, YouTube channels, blogs, etc, created by people in the RV-ing community. The amount of things we’ve learned about RV-ing in general, maintenance and fixing things ourselves, how our travel trailer is put together and what we have to do to keep it together, has truly been an education worthy of a high-falutin’ degree of some sort.

One of those newsletters, RV Travel, has a weekly giveaway. I enter, just because I can, and let’s face it, if you don’t play you don’t win, and last week I won …

A box within a box!

A box within a box!

… an air fryer!

At this point I had no idea what an air fryer was …

Ok then, it's a plastic ... um ... thingy

Ok then, it’s a plastic … um … thingy

After opening up everything and removing all sorts of interesting bits …

Still none-the-wiser

Still none-the-wiser

Time to read the instructions … chop up a couple of potatoes, toss ’em in a bit of oil and herbs, into the pot-thingy they go … turn it on and see what happens …

Voilà! Widder-fries!

Voilà! Widder-fries!

They didn’t taste half bad either.

We’re not sure yet if we’ll take it with us or put it into storage, but we’re going to experiment with a few recipes over the next few weeks and see how it works out.

Smashwords and D2D Merger

Important news for indie writers. An email just arrived in my inbox, from one Mark Coker, the CEO of Smashwords, saying that the two publishing platforms have decided to merge, and it’s all set to be concluded on or about the 1st of March.

D2D’s YouTube channel is hosting a live Q&A tomorrow (Wednesday) at midday (Mountain Time) with Mark Coker and Kris Austin. (D2D’s CEO)

I plan to be there with my ‘The Wunder-Lusters’, hat on – mostly because that’s the name of our YouTube channel.

Here’s the LINK to the Q&A. Or just do a search on YouTube.

My feeling is this is going to be great for authors who publish on either/both platforms … the best of both worlds. Of course there’ll be chaos and grumbles and pouting though, that’s what humans do.

2022 Here We Come!

I’m back in the swing of it all, with my shiny new, curved, 32″ monitor.

These things have to be seen in action to be believed. The actual curve of the monitor took some getting used to, just because it’s visually unfamiliar, but once I did .. wow!

What a difference it makes to the far left and right of any images/print/video I’m looking at. I don’t have anywhere near the same feeling of eyestrain that I did with my flat screen … and this thing is 12cm (5″ bigger!)… sheer decadent indulgence, for the price of an average indulgence … I’m a happy camper!

This picture really doesn't do it justice, but you get the, ahem, picture. :)

This picture really doesn’t do it justice, but you get the, ahem, picture. 🙂

I still haven’t been able to find an adaptor for my old monitor at a price I’m prepared to pay, to even be able to find out whether the problem was with the adaptor or the monitor. So, for now Old Faithful is back in her box, and off to the storage unit she will go.

I had wanted to do a couple of posts videos and pictures about the wave after wave, after wave, of snowstorms followed by rain/ice storms we’ve had recently, but it seems that the modern world refuses to even to speak to my old computer which runs on Windows 7 … c’est la vie.

So I decided I’d just post a few of my favourite photos from the bunch of ’em … and unless something impressive happens, I’ll keep the rain/snow/mud slushiness currently surrounding us to meself.

I hope 2022 has been kind to you thus far, but I also hope you’ve got your seatbelt fastened … just in case.

Mrs Widds Vs the mountain

Mrs Widds Vs the mountain

-15C, not counting the wind-chill, and I'm  widds-cicle

-15C, not counting the wind-chill, and I’m widds-cicle  

Ice-crystals on the INSIDE of the window

Ice-crystals on the INSIDE of the window

45 cm of snow, and our poor long-suffering pontoon is iced in

45 cm of snow, and our poor long-suffering pontoon is iced in

The other end of the lake - through the truck window

The other end of the lake – through the truck window

Ice floes on the Fraser River

Ice floes on the Fraser River

It’s Not You, It’s Me

Things have been a bit quiet around here lately.

On the 30th of December, last year, (isn’t it wonderful that 2021 is now ‘last year’?)  my computer monitor stopped working.

It’s either the monitor, or the adapter. Parts have yet to arrive to tell which is which – stay tuned for the exciting conclusion!

I’ve been barely online using my old faithful hard drive, which thankfully I kept as a back-up, and using it to check my WordPress dashboard once a day.

So yeah, it’s not you, it’s me.

Also, at the end of they year I had a bit of a meltdown.

I was dealing with the multiple environmental disasters fairly well, I thought. But it seemed like I never had enough time to catch my breath at the end of one before the next one struck.

We live in an old house, and stuff keeps on breaking down. Stuff broke down, in the middle of an arctic outflow, with daytime temperatures in the double digits below freezing. (we now have our very own electrician on speed-dial)

Some health stuff happened too. The concussion … aren’t they fun? .. I didn’t have time to catch my breath there either.

… and then … and then … you get the picture.

I kept saying I wanted a break, for the world to stop for a while. You know that feeling, where you just want to get off for a while?

I cried a lot. A lot … and then my monitor stopped working. It wasn’t the break I wanted but it was the break I got.

Yeah, not you, me.

I sleep late, and go through my day slowly, sometimes staring out the window at the snow, watching the raccoon yearlings and their mum bound through it like its their own personal playground, which, of course, it is.

I can feel my energy returning as the days slowly, almost imperceptibly at this time of year, get longer.

2022 is going to be momentous. I’ll be ready.

Winter Solstice – Snow And Ice

First came the snow …

Then the sun came out and the snow turned to  …

Slushies!

Slushies!

Then the ice rain …

Eerie coating on the jasmine vines

Eerie coating on the jasmine vines

Mother Nature in Her very best ‘deep midwinter’, mode …

Icicles in the night

Icicles in the night

Now, the days grow longer, and although our troubled world continues to struggle on under the weight of almost insurmountable challenges, this window of time, between the end of the old year and the beginning of the new one, always seems to be full of … possibilities.

May you find your possibilities. May you find your Path, and may there be beloved others who will choose to walk with you on it.

Blessed Be.

We’ve Been Here Before

Calamitous events of recent times, both near and far, have given me pause in these latter days of 2021. They might have for you too.

I find myself feeling a deep knowing, as though it comes from far enough within me that it might even be reflected on my DNA. It has certainly reflected on my Spirit.

The civilisations that have grown and thrived all over our world since the Industrial Revolution, are now seeing their Days of Autumn slide into Winter’s embrace.

It is the way of all living things, this birth, growth, decay and death. And are not our civilisations living, breathing entities as well? The Macro reflecting the Micro?

Our species has been here many, many times before. More times than even the most ardent of archeologists can only find mere remnants of.

The great city-states of Mesopotamia, Central America, Asia, Africa, and elsewhere, all rose to great heights, and all, finally, fell into ruin. It is only hubris that leads us to believe we will end differently.

Perhaps because our world actually does encompass the entire world, and not the ‘known’ world of those times, we have been provided with a unique time-scale.

Will we collapse on the swords of this mess we’ve created and leave our descendants to scrabble among the ruins of their forbears?

It’s happened before.

Or will we reach the stars, whether they be metaphorical or literal?

And has that happened before too?

-oOo-

I found inspiration for this post in the series, ‘Fall Of Civilizations’, on YouTube. It’s well worth a look.