It seems like the year has Zoomed by, and I mean that literally and figuratively.
I just Zoomed off a French language meet-up as I couldn’t understand. But I have been able to understand the DuoLingo conversation groups I have been attending every Wed for the past year and half and I have met many interesting people from all over the world. We have bonded and I even met one participant from Vancouver while she was on Denman Island and I was on Hornby Island last summer. We spent a lovely afternoon getting acquainted In Real Life in French. Unfortunately Duolingo is discontinuing these free conversation groups but one of the groups will be switching to Meetup and still continuing on Zoom.
And while we are talking about Zooming I have been practicing my mandolin on Zoom with my friend Barb who is learning the Ukulele. Lessons learned. Get the music score that includes musical notation so you can play the notes at the same time. My favourite is the Campfire Songs that has the chords for guitar, ukulele, mandolin, banjo and mandolin. I look forward to playing with more people more next year as I build up my repertoire.
When I first started blogging I did a post about all kinds of volunteer opportunities. Covid19 has made this more challenging. Nevertheless I volunteered with Habit for Humanity to help out with their on line auction. This involved going into their deep dusty
closet store room and looking at all the weird and wonderful things that people have donated and doing some research on the value of the items. It was pretty interesting to try to find items in Ebay and determine the value. The best hit was a silver platter that I was able to estimate a value of about $ 1000. Looking for vintage dental equipment? This is the place!
I have been more conscious about how we are all getting older as I see friends and friends of friends passing away as well as seeing the mortality and morbidity from Covid. I have been getting my own affairs since your life can change in a nanosecond. I found a lawyer in Victoria that manages estates when you die. I have set up a Power of Attorney with a lawyer here. I found a company to manage my investments and an accountant who relieved my anxiety about loosing my Old Age Security.
I was also concerned about what would happen to me if I ended up in the ER without being conscious. After several inquires online I discovered a package called My Voice you can download from the Ministry of Health. You can designate a Responsible Person to make some decisions about your health care on your behalf. The document requires signatures by the responsible person and two witnesses. I called several notaries and they would not witness the document. I then called 3 friends and we had a signing party at the Griffin Pub. The final part of this process was a document called MOST. Medical Orders for Scope of Treatment. It is a document that your doctor signs and keeps a copy. In theory if you end up in the ER, they can access your medical records with your GP. I remain skeptical about this really happening. But all you can do is put the pieces in place. I was advised that I should put all this information on my fridge door in case EMS came and apparently this is where they look for information. I’ll believe it when I see it.
I continue to find condo living to have it challenges. Most recently I received a 63 page document for the annual general meeting. You would think that after 40 years of condo living I would have it all figured out but alas, this is not the case. No one can truly process 63 pages of legal-ese about what you have to do if you renovate. I really think that a single family dwelling might be less irritating. Some friends have opted for a rental situation and both have 4th floor units with a view. However, there are no shortage of stories of hostile neighbours in single family neighbourhoods as I found out when parking in a no parking zone in Comox. I did a short drive around looking for non condo options and there are some. But I finally decided all you can do is manage how you react to the nit picky strata council and neighbours. After looking at the alternatives around town I come back to the great river walk beside the condo where I live and decide it’s too good to move. It is different every day of the year and continues to give me solace all year round.
One of more challenging project of the year was participation in a choir. We had performances in the spring and Dec that required a lot of work and time to master the music. Here is a link to the performance from the spring on You Tube. My favourite part of Christmas is the music. I just can’t enough of it. COVID has inspired many online events including an online choir out of the UK. If this doesn’t bring goose bumps nothing will. Best wishes to all my followers for a better 2023.
Here is a 2 hour podcast of Christmas music compiled perhaps in 2020 or 2012 by departed friend DJ David Wiseman on Hornby Island.