Monday, October 16, 2017


Another week on the Island begins.

Yesterday was bee-you-tea-ful!
15c and sunny. We walked around the neighbourhood and chatted to folks. This neighbourhood is about three minutes driving distance to our new house. Probably not the area we'd be walking through with the puppies once we move into Stonewood Village.


Not a lot of changes to the new house. The mudding on the drywall takes time to dry. Who knows maybe some painting will commence this week and the siding on the exterior looks like it's set to go. The house next to us has their siding finished, as does three doors up the street, so we hope we are next in line. I was thinking we would be in a bit earlier than mid-November but reality has smacked me up the face and I now think we'll be a month away from possession.
The Hallowe'en décor will stay packed away for this year. ~sigh~
What's a person to do?

Pine Tree House Hallowe'en 2016
Am I getting better at playing the waiting game?
Its still hard and we both wish we had our stuff around us- now.

We browsed through some Downtown Duncan shops on Saturday- after the farmer's market, chatting with shopkeepers Leslie at Embellish and Heather at Khaya. Nice stuff at both stores. I could have spent a mint.  My Tom spied a Quebec spool-back chair with rattan seat. Apparently he just had to have it.

He had made a rule that we wouldn't buy anything until we moved into the new house but I guess rules are made to be broken since the chair is sitting here in our kitchen.

I would expect that the leaves are falling or have fallen off most of the trees back in Orillia, Ontario.
Certainly here in the Cowichan I have yet to see anyone raking their yard. So much is still green. A few trees are bright red and along the Island Highway yesterday heading up island, there were some that had turned a brilliant yellow. I expect once these trees shed their leaves the landscape will go back to green. I remember back in February when Tom and I first visited Duncan and the Cowichan, we were amazed at how green it was in a winter month- keeping in mind we had just arrived from snowbound Orillia. I guess this is where we separate the men from the boys. You in Ontario being the boys and we- "the men".

Bamboo green and lush
Our temps will stay pretty much where they are these days in the high single digits or the low teens.
Last evening coming out a local restaurant chain called "White Spot", we were amazed at how mild it was- warm, even. I mean not Hawaiian Island warm but I'll take it!

You see, our minds are still stuck in Orillia expecting crisp air and the hint of colder temperatures to come. Not so here on the Island and it is playing tricks with our mind and bodies.
We keep saying-
"Oh yeah, we're on the Island now."

Come on out.
It's fine.

Saturday, October 14, 2017

ROBBLOG #661 W E E K E N D Edition

Time for my first call from the "Big Guy" upstairs since arriving on the Island.
I am so excited!
So grab a bag of popcorn and enjoy...


Me: Hello?

HIM: Well Hello Rob. It's me. Your Heavenly Father. You know up here floating around on a cloud.

Me: Hey, it's good to hear your voice Lord. How are things?

HIM: Now Rob, I should be asking you that question. So now you're an Island Boy Eh?

Me: Yes, finally. It's quite a change. So different out here.

HIM: Yes it is different but goof for you- and Tom!!, I've been following you along your journey across the country in your Priscilla. She took good care of you- didn't she?

Me: Yup. All was good...except for losing our Boy Doyle. That was sad. Very sad....

HIM: Yes it was but this thing we call life throws up some roadblocks now and then.

Me: I thought you threw those roadblocks up just to test us.

HIM: Afraid not Rob. All that stuff is happen-chance. Nothing to do with me- or with my Son.

Me: Oh...

HIM: Look. Don't give up your Doyle. Tony is doing what he can.

Me: Tony?

HIM: Saint Antonius. Helps you earthly humans look for things. You know like your car keys and debit cards.

Me: Oh, that Tony. ~pause~ Hey God I know I've hinted at this before but I sure would like to meet you in person some day.

HIM: Oh Hell Rob, that would burn your eyeballs out. I mean I give off such a bright, white glow
it would knock you off your feet. It was part of the reason the shepherds were sore afraid. Afraid of the light and their eyes were sore if they peeked at ME. Like looking at the eclipse.

Me: Hmmm. I thought that was a "Multitude of Angels" floating over those fields.

HIM: Oh it was but I was there too floating in the background. I mean it was my "earthly wife" bringing forth my newborn Son. I had to be there in the waiting room. Boy, that Mary. Such a trooper. Rides an uncomfortable ass for weeks just to have my kid. My ass is uncomfortable just thinking about it. That's a joke Rob...

Me: So I hear.

HIM: Actually, Mary and I are going out for coffee later today. Joe's gone fishing over on Nebula at Lake Titicaca and it gives us a chance to bond and catch up.


HIM: That you I hear giggling Robbie?

Me: Ya, Lake Titicaca always makes me laugh!

HIM: Me too. ~Hah. Hah.~

Me: While I have you on the line Your Heavenly Majesty....

HIM: Oh Rob! Superior Being is fine. We're friends after all. S.B. for short.

Me: Right, S.B. Um, should we all be worried about North Korea and Kim Jong.

HIM: Well Rob, that will all play out eventually but you know my hands are tied. Some of the folks down there on earth actually believe I can wave my hand and fix that sort of stuff. I can't. It's just the way of the world. You folks have to figure that out and good luck with Mr. Cheesepuff  who seems to have an itchy trigger finger.

Me: Oh. That guy.

HIM: It's a good thing there are reasonable, smart people there on the blue planet- like your Justin Trudeau, who do things the right way. That French fellah is a good "oeuf" too. Listen Rob, I got a pedi booked in two hours before I have coffee with the Virgin Mum, so I got to get going.

Me: Okay...Still calling her that eh?

HIM: Yes. Tough to change some people's minds and besides she still gets a lot of "I want this and I need that" from the Catholics. Look Rob, I want to wish you and Tom good luck there on the Island. That Island is one of my favourite places in the whole solar system. Those ocean views and those mountains. I was hot that day my boy. I was really cooking when I designed that place. Heaven on earth and it all came together in one afternoon.

Me. Yes...well, imagine that. We think we'll be very happy here.

HIM: You will. I can tell you that. For sure!

Me: Have a good day Sir and tell your Son I was asking after him.

HIM: I will Rob. He's off with the boys again this weekend. They're off ballooning somewhere. Kids, eh? They never grow up. Buh Bye now and take good care.

Me: Bye. Nice talking to you again.

Thursday, October 12, 2017


I must have more time on my hands these days!

I sure am blogging more.
I find it calming and it gets many of the repetitive thoughts out of my head and down on paper- or at least a computer screen. Blogging fills some time as Tom and I wait to take possession of our new home here in The Cowichan. Still a few weeks to go if you have been following our journey since August 15th  on this very blog.

I have been blogging a long time before that date, however. You might wanna check back and read some of the stories I posted over the years like Bleeker Street with Baby Jane and Blanche or Blog #579 which is an interview with Sister Mary Margaret. There are a few conversations with the "Big Guy" upstairs too- or with his son at #548.
"It's Not Like That" is Blog #157.
There's of Blog about my Mum #536.
You'll just have to scroll through until you find something you might like to read. My first blog was published on February 13, 2010! It was mostly about my Rob Reid Online Website changing to the ROBBLOG here on BlogSpot.
Gee, almost 8 years since I started writing here.
Time flies.

Back to the present now and this 12th day of October in the year 2017.

We have some sun.
We have some cloud in this new community of ours- North Cowichan and the City of Duncan.
I still wake up some mornings thinking I am comfy under the covers in Orillia, Ontario. I get a small shock when I fully open my eyes and realize the bedroom's Roman shades are not the white, plantation shutters I was used to for 24 years.

We are gradually getting comfortable here. It is still going to take some time especially when we make another move into our forever house.

In the meantime, I thought I'd list a few things that I consider "odd" here in Duncan.

Don't Jig when you should Jag or this is the look you'll get!
Street signs.
Don't look for them on every street corner. You may get one but not usually one on every corner.
Be thankful if you see one. Some streets have none.

Stop signs.
Some streets- like two near this house, don't even have a yield sign let alone a stop sign. You come to a corner and you edge forward. You look left. Then right. Then left and after it appears it's clear, you move on....cautiously.

In the open mall areas along the Island Highway it can be a bit of a nightmare. Streets are a variety of pavement markings with crosswalks, left turn only lanes, right turn only lanes, left and straight ahead only arrows and speedbumps and cement barriers and curves and more.
There are stand alone stop signs. The remainder of the signage is painted on the pavement. Huge arrows and yellow and white lines you drive within as you traverse the parking lot in front of  London Drugs, or Winners or Staples or Save-On Foods. At first all you see are lines and arrows and then more lines.
Eventually it starts to make sense.
These markings would never work in Ontario- especially Orillia. You wouldn't see then for 5 months of the year what with all the ice and snow. Orillia drivers always did what they wanted to begin with so this type of signage would only confuse all the elderly drivers and they would ignore them.
It would just never work.

The Boulevard near White Spot
One can never drive from A to B or even C here in Duncan.
One must drive A to B to C to D,E and F- sometimes G.
There are centre boulevards on the Island Highway that prevent a simple left or right hand turn.
On Coronation Avenue for instance, one can turn left or right into the Shoppers Drug Mart/Dollarama parking lot but when you leave you can only turn right- east. Even exiting from the lot onto the Island Highway, one can only turn right- or south, and travel a block or two towards the White Spot Restaurant, then circle around the Great Canadian Superstore (Like a Zehrs in Ontario) where you can turn right or left onto Trunk Road to head west through Duncan.
Tom and I have spent many a joyful time detouring, getting lost, ending up on the wrong side off the divided street and detouring again.

One day, we were on Canada Avenue heading to our new build to have a look at the progress. We were in the curb lane. Cars were in front of us. We couldn't see the pavement. The vehicles started to move forward with the light change when suddenly we realized we were in an exit only/turn right only lane.
We drove down the street.
Circled a Mobil Oil Change shop to turn around in order to head back to Canada Avenue.

We are doing better than a few weeks ago but really Duncan-

I'll have more quirks in another blog.

Lator Gator.

Wednesday, October 11, 2017


The first reported earthquake since being an Island Boy.

2:26am Wednesday October 11, 2017. 170 km out in the Pacific- west of Tofino, then down so many metres. No shakes and shivers here in the Cowichan but I have added Emergency Info BC to my Twitter account.
One never knows.
I do know, we have to have Earthquake Insurance here on the Island.

I was up "gawd-awful" early today.
I had my eye doctor appointment. Drops in my eyes to dilate my pupils so I can be checked for glaucoma. My Grandmother- my Dad's Mum, had it, so I have been checked these past 5 years or more. There are signs it is there- especially in my left eye, however, I am not on drops yet. I return in another six months.
Just a note here. If there is glaucoma in your family history go to an Optometrist to be checked. The Optometrist can send you to a specialist if need be.
You need to catch this early.


I was a bit taken aback earlier this morning when I read that actor Terry Crews had been sexually assaulted. He is a mountain of a man. Muscles on top of muscles. He stars in the TV show Brooklyn 99- a funny show and a funny guy and totally into Jesus and the whole "saviour" complex.
Cripes! Who would have guessed?
Now, I am not into a lot of muscle.
Why I am sharing that- I am not sure...
I appreciate how he looks and I am amazed at how tight the wardrobe department is able to make both his shirts and slacks without him popping buttons and seams.
Anyway, apparently he was "grabbed in the swanstucker area" (pronounced: swan-stooker) at a Hollywood party in recent years by a big Hollywood Executive.
Terry Crews.
I should imagine a lot of drink was behind it but it is still not right. I guess he turned the other cheek. Lucky for this executive he didn't find himself flat on his back at the end of one of Mr. Crews massive fists.
Creeps are everywhere and it appears with other current new stories, Hollywood still has it's quota of lecherous men and women too.
We have all heard stories of the "Casting Couch".

Oh, this brings up a question.
Was it alright that I wanted to take Hugh Jackman and press his gorgeous face and hunky body to mine when I met him at the stage door of the Princess of Wales Theatre in Toronto a few years back?
Is that bad of me?
I mean my Husband Tom was right beside me and snapped a couple of photos, so there was nothing dirty going on.
I mean I guess I thought dirty thoughts but I was a gentleman.
Ok...I giggled and blushed like a little schoolgirl but still...was I being a bad boy?

Mr. Hugh Jackman signing a DVD cover for me.
He wouldn't sign my left pectoral...
Meanwhile, here on the Island we had a nice afternoon and dinner yesterday with our sister-in-law Gudrun. We chatted and laughed and toured her around our new build. It was a terrific afternoon weather-wise but warm autumn sunshine gave way to frost on the grass this morning. Temps got quite cool overnight but they are rebounding to the teens again today- with more Island Sunshine.

Gudrun & Us
Our house is moving right along. We worked with the Interior Design Consultant Joanne yesterday going over our paint colour choices for inside the house. Then, we dropped into both the Benjamin Moore paint store and Dulux paints to grab some colour chips.
Good Gosh, we must be getting close to possession!
Painting then flooring then cabinetry and finally light fixtures. All have been chosen and awaiting their turn at installation.
Me-thinks and me-hopes we might get in a bit earlier than the proposed Nov 16 date?
Fingers and toes are all crossed.

Colourful later afternoon clouds
over Mount Prevost and our new house
Looking forward to hearing about your first snow on the ground back east when that happens- and it will happen.
Heh. Heh.

Have a good one and if you get a chance sometime in your busy day, Gudrun said I am to ask you to put a good thought out to the universe.
Ask Saint Antonius to help us find our boy Doyle and return him safely to us.
Any port in a storm.....

Monday, October 9, 2017

ROBBLOG #658 Happy Thanksgiving

Happy Thanksgiving.

I know you have better things to do than read this RobBlog on Thanksgiving but I wanted to say Happy Thanksgiving for the first time from the Island- Vancouver Island, about as far west as one can get in this wonderful country of ours. We- that would be me and Tom, would have to drive about 4 hours from Duncan through the middle of the Island and Port Alberni to get to the western shore and Tofino to get as far west as one can in Canada. Once we are in the new house, we'll do that trip.
Anytime of year is good but we have been told that winter surf is amazing and yes, they surf at Tofino.

Hope you have family and friends around today or at least had over the weekend. We had two Thanksgiving invites. Not bad for first-time Islanders.
We are truly thankful.
Being away from family and friends isn't easy and it's 3 time zones back to Orillia, Ontario.
We are moving forward and are still building a whole new life here on the Island.
We refuse to think backwards but we are looking ahead for the years to come on this new "Life Adventure" of ours.

It is a big step but it was now or never and for those friends and family back "home" just remember, if Tom and I can do it- anybody can.
We are homebodies and it took "hootzpah" and whatever else we could muster to change our lives so dramatically.

I am looking forward to letting you know when it's 9 or 10c here in January when you folks back east are dealing with 20cm of snow and -20 temps and a windchill!! I mean Alberta has already had snow. Not sure about Northern Ontario.
I will be gentle however, sending only one picture of us grass cutting in February.
I promise...heh, heh.

Now, I have a quick Thanksgiving story, then I am done for today.

At a recent market I was looking for a home-baked pumpkin pie. There was a booth that listed pie for sale on a chalkboard and pumpkin was right at the top. A new friend Roy and I walked up to the vendor's table to have a look. All the pies were almond this and almond-topped that. As I was looking at the other baked goodies, Roy spoke with the vendor. After a few moments Roy says to me-

"They have pumpkin pies but they can't sell them. You have to go up and speak to the guy."

"..and say what?"- I questioned.

"I dunno..."- Roy grinned and pushed me gently to the vendor's table.

I stood for a moment with my market bag in hand then said to the vendor-
"Psst. What he was taking about." I nodded my head in Roy's direction,

The vendor gave a broad smile. "How much?"- I asked.

"Eight dollars." he mumbled.

I pulled out a ten, he gave me a shiny toonie back and I passed him my Wal*Mart bag.
Then, he ducked under the cloth that was covering the table.
He looked like one of those old photographers from years ago who had to flip a black sheet over their head and shoulders while taking a picture.
Seconds later he came out from under the table cloth and passed me my bag.

"Have a Happy Thanksgiving" he said.

"Same to you and oh...who made the pie?". I whispered continuing the covert operation like any good CSIS Agent would have done.

"My Mum and I." was the reply.

I walked back to Tom and said- "Got it. I'll tell you later."
Roy and his hubbie Jeff -who was innocent of any of this pie-buying, spy vs spy stuff- both chuckled.

A contraband pie?
Who knew?

It was going to be a decent Thanksgiving.

Friday, October 6, 2017

ROBBLOG #657 W E E K E N D Edition

Today, Friday, there was one final opportunity to try and find our Doyle in Winnipeg West

Maili who posts on a Winnipeg Missing and Found Cat Watch said in a post earlier this week that she would go out to St. Francois Xavier today and check out the area and the KOA Campground where our Doyle jumped out of our RV, Priscilla.
He was seen the following night on Aug 18 and hasn't been seen since.

Maili was true to her word and travelled to St. Francois Xavier Friday afternoon. We thank her from the bottom of our hearts.

Here is what she posted to the Facebook Page:

"Rob, I went out to St. Francois Xavier and checked around and asked a few people. No one has seen anything. I went to the camp (KOA) and looked around and sat down to listen (for Doyle). I talked to Kevin (Kevin is the Groundskeeper we met when we stayed there Aug 17th & 18th) and he said he has not seen Doyle. I posted on the St. Francois Xavier site for Doyle to add more exposure."

Not the result we were hoping for of course. We had hoped to have found a small shred of evidence that Doyle was lurking along the banks of the Assiniboine River but it was not to be.
Yes, miracles do happen.
Even this afternoon, I read of a cat being reunited with his owner 2 years after his disappearance. The pictures of cat and owner seeing each other again were heart-breaking. The puddy cat clung to his owner's neck and closed his eyes.
Safe again.
In her arms.
The way it should be.
Who knows where he had been and of the adventure he had been on.

However, with Doyle, it's time to leave it alone now.
It's been almost two months.
It's up to the universe to protect him- if he's still on this earth.
We'll be waiting here on the Island in case the info from his chip finds its way to us.
Friends are waiting back in Orillia in case he shows up on the verandah of our old house. That would be quite the trip Doyley-Boy.

For now, we think of all the pleasure you gave us.
From the day we saw you and your brother Dickens as 3 month old kittens. Boy were you two a handful. We kept you in a kennel overnight for the first 3 months.
As you got older you would snooze on our laps.
So content.

There was the meowing for your supper.
Coming down the stairs to the Keeping Room every night around 930 for a puddy treat.
How handsome you looked laying in the sunlight streaming through the dining room window, as you  sprawled across a favourite chair being bathed in the warmth of the sun's golden rays.
You cozied up in front of the fireplace on a cold winter night or plopped on top of a heating grate.

We hope you are warm and comfortable and loved wherever you may be.
You will always be "Our Doyle"

It's right that we should care about you

It's right to feel the way we do
Because, because we love you

It's wrong to say we don't think of you, 
You know it makes us blue

Give us a chance to be near you
Because, because we love you

(Lyrics from Because- The Dave Clark 5)

Have a Happy Thanksgiving one and all!!

Wednesday, October 4, 2017


I gotz a code ind by doze.

That's right kids, the re-gifting gift that keeps on giving.
A cold.
A freeking Island cold! Apparently once kids get back into school it's a hotbed of cold germs and they take and give them to anyone, anywhere. My husband passed along this cold to me and I did my best to stay clear but when you open your eyes in the middle of the night and he's 6 inches away from your face breathing on you, it's hard to stay healthy. So it's Buckley's daytime for me and copious amounts of tissue.

Yesterday we had our first chiropractor visit here in Duncan. Our new chiropractor is Dr. Darren Burry. Dr. Darren pretty much had all the same moves as Dr. Murray did back in Orillia. First, he did a massage- shirtless.
I mean, I was shirtless not Dr. Darren, although....

In 30 years of going to the chiropractor this was the first time I had to display my massive chest and rock hard abs but I did it!

~blink~ and ~shake my head~

Okay. I am back to reality now....I displayed my drooping tits, gray-haired chest and Pillsbury Dough-Boy stomach.
I am 66.
Oh, Dr. Darren says in conversation- "What are you 55..56..?"
Apparently, like me, he's terrible at mathematics.
"Nope, 66"- I say, "Born 1951. It's on the paper there."
I am taking that as a compliment and I like this fellah already. I have to go back again tomorrow. My neck is a stiff mess but it's a 100% better after yesterday.
Reminder to stop eating and do some sit-ups before I get there.

We are getting some cheques in the mail from back east. A nice one from Union Gas and a final one from our lawyer since everything is paid now. Still no apology or word on that lawyer letter from the Missus who bought out house that we received last week. The one that asked us for $3300 dollars because we had apparently lied about having a rental hot water heater and furnace- which we never had. Drop back a few blogs to read about it.

Pine Tree House
As far as we know our beloved Pine Tree House still sits empty, waiting for a nice person, persons or family to buy her and move in. Neighbours have said the yard is already showing signs of neglect.
I am not surprized.
It was a full-time job.
Usually by now I had harvest décor on the verandah and all the Hallowe'en decorations were sitting at the ready for mid-month spookiness.

I wonder what it's going to be like inside PTH come January with snow piled as high as your "ying-yang" and brilliant white walls inside.

Our new house here in Duncan is repeating all the same colours we carefully chose back in Orillia and I am looking forward to the coziness once again. A December or January evening sitting next to the fire in my favourite Laz-Y-Boy chair. Lighting fixtures, ceiling fans and flooring will all be new but our furniture and antiques will be the same and allow us to feel really at home once more.

I know that time is coming sooner rather than later as the days and weeks pass by us.

Have yourself a great day and I hope your Thanksgiving plans are coming along.


Our friends Leanna and Jason from the Soup Shack just brought over homemade chicken soup.
Yumm. We'll be fixed in no time.
Then, our friend Brenda in Ladysmith- who we were supposed to see Friday and begged off because of the colds, is playing "Dr. Brenda" and suggests rest and vitamin C.
How nice|!
As the song goes- That's What Friends are For...