Dispatches from the Swamp – the ‘stoned edition’

  • Last Friday after I had all that awesome dental work done, I came home and went to sleep. At some point in the evening, thinking I was lucid, I decided to set up a more professional Gmail account rather than shihtzustaff@gmail.com.[1] So, I created a grown up account based on my name. I directed all of my personal email there and promptly forgot what I had done. Now, I had 2 Gmail accounts checking my primary personal address at Shaw. Some emails came through but many others did not. I booked flights with WestJet and didn’t get a confirmation email. Other emails I did not miss like Wordrpess’s ‘postaday 2011’ inane suggestions. Finally, on Friday, it all came back to me. I went to the new address and there were all my emails for the week. Clearly, the dental office should prohibit people from doing anything on a computer after being sedated with triazolam.
  • I have to say this: ”I am fucking sick of the monsoons already!” It has rained so hard today; I will not be surprised if the North Alouette River has gone over its banks. It is not that I am desperate for the sun to come because I am not but all this rain is too much! I know I live in a rainforest and I just need to suck it up but that would be a Herculean task for which I am not prepared!
  • Speaking of WestJet – they are an amazing company. I have a hard time flying due to obesity because of PCOS. WestJet has a program called One Person, One Fare. What this means is that if you have a disability, medical condition or you require an attendant to fly, WestJet will assess whether you qualify for an extra free seat. Your doctor needs to fill in a form and then it is assessed. I had my doctor fill out the form and fax it in. I was told that I qualified within less than 48 hours! For our upcoming flight to Calgary, we will have a seat between us. I did as much for me as for Deb. With her MS she needs to be able to stretch and move a little bit. We will also not need to stress out about whether the flight is full and if we can get a middle seat blocked between us. I can also kiss away the bruises I have suffered when we are crammed into a full row. We always fly with WestJet and we will continue to be loyal customers.
  • Zoe’s personality[2] continues to amaze me. That dog is relentless and is exceptionally good at getting what she wants all the time. Her newest thing to do is to bark and paw at me constantly while I am eating. It does not matter what I am eating she is convinced that she should eat it too. The other night I was eating kali daal, made with black lentils, and she would not stop barking and pawing, so I gave her some and she liked it. The dog is F-R-E-A-K! Dinner consists of her barking and standing on my stomach while I am yelling ‘no’ and moving her off of me. Good times Chez Shihtzustaff! The funny thing is: we wouldn’t change her for anything! She is loved, adored and treated like royalty – as all Shihtzus should be!

[1] I have been trying to use a different interface for email. While I like Gmail, I find the website interface a bit clunky and I was looking for something a little more sophisticated like Apple’s Mail program or Postbox. However, I was running into problems in that the base Gmail address was showing up as the address. I don’t like to use that, as I don’t really want people connecting me in real life to my online screen name. I especially don’t want my mother to find my blog.

[2] It always seem strange to say that dogs have ‘personalities.’

We’re back…

Well we are back home from our yearly visit to the Mother unit. Although this year, it appears, we have been roped into going back at Labour Day. Besides all the computer stuff I did for my Mother, there was a great amount of other work accomplished as well. When we got there I helped my mother set up her sun room. My mother is a heavy smoker (who continues to smoke even though she has <a href=”http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/copd/DS00916″>COPD</a&gt;) and if she smokes in her sun room it is not as offensive as it is mostly open. This involved getting rid of the wood for the fireplace, washing down the walls, vacuuming, setting up the furniture etc. As soon as we got there Deb started cooking because she was making a shit load of food for my mother – who doesn’t really eat. The idea is that it is in her freezer so it is easy and hopefully she will eat. She is a tall woman and is down to 127 pounds after being overweight her entire life. Deb made 2 kinds of muffins, soup, meat pies, fruit pies, her special ‘rollups’, and 2 kinds of cookies. She literally did not stop working for the entire time we were there.

It was an exhausting 5 days. Deb and I did really well though. Usually my mother is able to get us sniping at one another but this year we made a decision that we would not allow that to happen. We were supportive and considerate of each other the entire trip. It made the trip so much less stressful than it would have been otherwise.

Right up until the moment we left, my mother was sucking every little bit of attention out of us that she could. It was really sad and pathetic. It is really hard watching parents age and become a shadow of their former selves. I saw this with my step-dad when he died of leukemia in 2004. We talked about some past stuff and my mother said that it was him who insisted he was going to our wedding. This was such an amazing transformation from the man who would not even speak to Deb when he first he met her. My mother has also come around quite well. She does not introduce Deb as my partner but refers to us as her daughters from Vancouver. Not perfect, but it will do.

This post would not be complete with giving kudos to WestJet. We are so lucky that they fly out of Abbotsford. They are so accommodating. Both Deb and I are on the large side and they always manage to find a row to put us in where they can block the middle seat. It makes the flight so much nicer for us and we don’t torture anyone else. Plus they were all happy on our flight home as it was profit sharing day. I have never had a bad experience flying WestJet!