Turning down the heat.

I recently sold my condo in Vancouver and moved to  Courtenay BC.  I although I had stayed in Courtenay for a few weeks last year, I did not realize how noisey and busy it had become compared to paradise. (Hornby Island)  Ironically, Vancouver became considerably quieter with Covid-19.  Traffic was down by about 80%.  Everything was closed except grocery stores.

My new 4th floor condo in Courtenay overlooks a busy street and faces west, letting the hot evening sun stream into my floor-to-ceiling windows.  Not something the home inspector picked up on when she viewed the unit. I investigated some home cooling options and started with ceiling fans which have helped.  Then  Safe and Sound came to install window film.  Visually it looks good, a bit like looking through sun glasses. They used 3 different kinds of film, depending on the sun exposure.

Even with the film it is still too hot without the AC on at the peak of the heat of the day.  The temperature on the balcony sometimes hit 40C. The portable AC was a very good investment.  I also bought a tilting patio umbrella.  It took a while to ship the order as I guess they were sold out.    I tracked the temperature on an excel speadsheet (see below) and the inside temperature has been able to be kept around 25C or less while the outside temperature goes up to 40C late in the afternoon. So here are stategies in the order of how much I think it helps:

  1. portable air conditioner $500
  2. window film $2500
  3. tilting patio umbrella $200
  4. opening windows on the north side of the building during the day,
  5. ceiling fans x 2 $500

Some of the heat is a result of the heat rising from the other floors in the building.  Really the whole building should have air conditioning.  Ok  I think this project is done!

The minimalist retirement wardrobe re-titled Quarantine Wardrobe.

Now that many people are working from home.. there is an opportunity to downsize your wardrobe. I did this when I retired but it has some relevance for the quarantine wardrobe. It is tempting to hold on to work clothes, but it is at the expense of freeing up room in your closet.  A lot of my work clothes were kind of dated anyway. Joe Fresh has almost everything you need for retirement. Yes I know their hiring practices in Bangladesh have been controversial but you can’t beat the prices and styling and there are no snooty ageist sales people. Ok no sales people.  I have converted many of my friends to Joe Fresh who already shop at the Salvation Army.   What is about baby boomers that draws them to the Salvation Army? The Tyee has written on the role of clothing in global warming. Most of my peers have had minimalist wardrobes most of their life.

Yes you need a two season wardrobe in Vancouver.. Winter/Spring/Fall and Summer. Don’t forget Junuary. Are you working part time? Ok let’s say you need business casual two days a week. Save something from your work wardrobe. Do laundry once every 2 weeks. If you do laundry once a week you can do with a smaller wardrobe.

2 days a week work wardrobe all year round.

    • 1 pair black pants or tights
    • 1 long black/grey/burgundy warm sweater
    • 4 long sleeve t-shirts any colour.  I suggest Patagonia if you want a good quality t-shirt that fits loosely. Or Joe Fresh but their stock varies from month to month.
    • 4 short sleeve t shirts any colour
    • 4 pairs black socks
    • 1 pair shoes/runners depending on dress code
    • 2 scarves – warm, fancy etc to dress up wardrobe and keep neck warm.

This takes care of 4/14 days all year round.

Asymmetric Hem Stripe Print Cowl Neck Navy T Shirt

Winter/Spring/Fall in Vancouver

  • Tights – 2 pairs black, 1 multicolor for fun
  • 10 long sleeve t-shirts -various colours

Outerwear 

  • Rain coat with lining: Hely Hansen  is my favourite because it has a zip up collar at the neck, a two way zipper and flannel lined pockets as well as a light weight lining
  • Windproof shell you can wear over down or fleece jacket.
  • I seldom wear wool sweaters in the winter in Vancouver.
  • 1 Fleece Jacket
  • Down coat, knee length. It can be very windy in Vancouver and the dampness goes right through you.   Here is my favourite from Eddie Bauer.    I am on my second one.. buy a dark colour!
  • Short lighter weight down jacket with shell – Eddie Bauer and North Face have lots to choose from.
  • And of course you need socks.  I love socks that have padding! These are winter socks with lots of padding

Summer in Vancouver/Travelling south in the winter

  • Knee length tights – 2 pairs, black and multicolour.  Joe Fresh has a great selection.  Very cute patterns.
  • 2 pairs LLBean Comfort trail shorts because the waist is adjustable, quick dry, will last forever and good for travelling south.  Black and khaki. $ 50.00 US.
  • The  Mountain Hardwear Women’s Dynama Capri cropped pants, they are stretchy and have pockets big enough for an iphone.  The Mountain Hardwear Dynamo line come in shorts and long pants as well.   I have replaced both shorts and knee length tights with the MH cropped pants.

Short Sleeve Split Neck Butterfly Print BlouseShort Sleeve Split Neck Butterfly Print Blouse

  • 10 short sleeve t-shirts various colours and styles.
  • Two dresses with short sleeves. Can wear to work.

In Vancouver you will seldom need: Sundresses, tank tops, tops with spaghetti straps or bathing suits. Vancouver is pretty casual so the work wardrobe can work for upscale events. Layers are the best way to go as the weather changes hourly and from area to area in the city.

Underwear

Now that we are in quarantine mode..you can shift to a more comfortable bra.  I have been shopping around for the best sport bra/no wire and found it online at La Vie en Rose.   Once you switch it will be hard to go back to a regular bra.  I have found this style also reduces rashes under your breasts.  I have recently discovered a similar model as Walmart.  534-113-0-03_001_1

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Finally I have added the Quarentine Hoodie for those cool evening quarentine walks and hikes.

Places to shop for masks. 

Fine Art America

E-bikes are helping keep seniors young

E-bikes are helping keep seniors young and, in some instances, even alleviating the symptoms of Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s.

— Read on www.fastcompany.com/90341686/the-unlikely-way-e-bikes-could-transform-how-we-age

This should help rural people to become more active. I saw a fellow on a $2000 Costco ebike yesterday. It was a gift to his wife. 🙄

 

Research predicts second-hand will overtake fast fashion within ten years | Fashion & Retail News | News

SAN FRANCISCO – Results of research conducted by online thrift shop Thred Up say that the second-hand clothing market will grow to nearly 1.5x the size of fast fashion by 2028. The Thred Up 2019 Resale Report says that in 2028, the second-hand market…
— Read on www.ecotextile.com/2019040124196/fashion-retail-news/research-predicts-second-hand-will-overtake-fast-fashion-within-ten-years.html

The story of Lululemon

The minimalist retirement wardrobe


Services around Hornby Island 2020

As a result of Covid19, some of the inflation here is not up to date. One of the biggest challenges to living on the island is that most things are only open a couple of days a week and/or part of the day and there is no universal closing days or times. This can result in wasted trips. I take pictures on my phone of the sign on the door. There are not many websites with opening and closing times. Times can vary by season with longer opening hours in the summer. There is a map that you receive on the Ferry or on the porch of the Coop with a list of services with location and hours. However a universal website would be of benefit to summer visitors. That said, because cell coverage and WIFI is variable across the island, people tend to rely on word of mouth and posters on roads. I have included links to some of the services that are available.

The master site for Hornby Island is http://hornbyisland.com/ includes links to accommodation, arts, events and transportation.

Accommodation

The range of accommodation is wide in terms of size and modern conveniences. Some cottages are without TV, laundry etc.   Some people rent out space on their properties for RVs and tents. Some rentals are done by word of mouth.  Many accommodations are posted on the Hornby Island Site with few listing on Airbnb. Booking is done by contacting the individuals listed as contact for the accommodation. Starting rentals are around $ 1500 a week to sleep 4-6 people over the summer months.   An availability calendar is available on the site but it is not kept up to date. Booking in May for July/Aug is wise. Wind and Waves also has listings from May-Sept. Camping sites are at a premium. There is a beautiful campsite site at Heron Rocks under management of the Heron Rocks Camping Cooperative which is open to members and then non-members if space available. Phone: (250) 335-2670 as no website was found. This may be closed due to Covid19 according to Google Maps.

Services on Hornby

The location of most of the services are on the visitor map you receive on the ferry or at the Coop porch.

Laundry & Showers. Joe King Park Laundry takes 2 or 3 loonies per load. Water is cold unless you opt for the $ 3 loonie wash.  You can buy a membership. Details are posted in the laundry room. A meal service is available M/W/F by donation.

Computer access center Mon-Friday 10-4 in Ringside offers WIFi and printing but the WIFI coverage was intermittent when I used it.

Credit union Hornby Island Branch 2115 Sollans Rd      250.335-2326 Tue, Wed, Fri 9:30 to 3:00. These is an ATM outside the building.

Co-op Store. You can find most things you need here both groceries and hardware. The website includes hours of the COOP, the  gas bar and  businesses in the same location as the COOP and the Gas Bar.  There is an ATM there.

The Cove Store Has some groceries, marina, camping and cottages. 7:30 am ~ 9:30 pm everyday July and August  8 am ~ 8 pm everyday September to June.

Medical Care Monday to Friday     9:30 am – noon and 1:30 – 4 pm

 The Library offers free computer access and wifi

Sun/Mon Closed
Tue 10am-12pm & 1pm-5pm
Wed 4pm-8pm
Thu 10am-12pm & 1pm-5pm
Fri 1pm-5pm
Sat 10am-12pm & 1pm-5pm

There was a summer bus but it has been discontinued.

Farmers Market Wed and Sat 11am -2 pm

Recycling/Free store the Free store is now closed. The recycling depot is open from 9-1 Thursday to Sun (summer)  for vehicles but you can walk up the driveway to access the services during other hours.

The free store was the place to find anything you forgot to bring with you. I have accessed warm clothes, scissors, a frying pan and ice cube trays. There is a great selection of books.  A friend recently scored a couple of Persian rugs and a radio in excellent condition.

Bank Machines are available at the COOP and the Thatch during opening hours. Many merchants only accept cash.

Cell phone coverage is variable but seems to be good around the library and the gas bar.

Arts/Entertainment

http://hornbyisland.com lists many events including concerts and movies. Most have been cancelled for 2020 due to COVID19.

Art Gallery shows and events: https://hornbyislandartscouncil.wordpress.com/

One of the major events on Hornby is a music festival Aug 1-10. www.hornbyfestival.com

Hornby Island Community Radio 96.55. The community radio station is one of the treasures of Hornby Island. The sad part is that it does not transmit beyond Hornby Island. However you can enjoy it while you are there. Multiple DJs have wide ranging tastes in music and deep knowledge of the artists and genres. You can support the station with an online membership.

Hornby Island has a unique natural history including rocks, marine life, fossils and birds. The natural history museum is no longer open.

Fitness

https://www.sundooryoga.com/

New Horizons offered yoga and other activities for seniors but is closed.

Cycling rentals- 250-335-0448 lucielemay@yahoo.com

Hiking and Mountain Biking. A map of the mountain biking and walking trails in Mt Geoffrey Park can be purchased at the bike shop beside the CO-OP.

Hornby Ocean Kayaks

Denman Hornby Canoe &Kayaks

Walking trails are shown on the visitor’s maps you receive on the ferry.

Diving

General Information

There are a number of Facebook groups related to Hornby interests: Hornby Helps,  Word of Mouth, Hornby Island Buy and Sell and Hornby Island Community Connections.

Meals – check hours on websites or Facebook

Seabreeze

Hornby Island Pizza, across from the coop

Fords Cove. fish and chips summer only

The Thatch at the ferry

Ringside- Forage, Vorizo, Sizzle.

LaRena vineyard.

Shopping.. some of my favourite things.

Securing your back pack

I have found that backpacks often slip off my shoulders and I have found a solution to this problem.   There are two parts to the solution.  One is a clip that attaches to the front strap of your backpack and the other is this handy bungee cord like device that clips on to the other strap. The bungee cord is adjustable to the width of your straps.

This is what is looks like on my backpack.    I have added a second miniclip but it is not necessary. 

Seniors Discounts

There are several sites that list seniors discounts in Vancouver.  It’s a bit cumbersome to sort through them all but here they are in the order of the number of places listed.

Vancouver BC

Frugal Vancouver

411seniors

Home To Home

Across Canada

Across Canada

CARP.   CARP offers many discounts to members, including 25% off some car rentals and numerous hotel discounts in Canada.  One year membership is $ 20.00.  They also have a list of discounts across Canada open to non-CARP members.

USA.  You can search by city and state.

Australia – State of Victoria has a searchable database of discounts in their area.

Skin Care

This is my favourite line of skin care products.  As I get older I find my skin is drying out.  CeraVe Moisturizers, Moisturizing Cream. This product contains hyaluronic acid which is used in some of injection fillers.   I would say that the research on this product is still in progress but I found one study that showed improvement in the appearance of skin over 3 months.  I just find that it makes my skin feel better.

Backpacks

This is a link to my favourite backpacks Beside-U  They come with multiple inside pockets so you can find pens, bus passes, glasses, iPhones etc. quickly. Be careful to check the size as there are some packs that are too small for groceries but are a good substitute for a purse.  The Nanette is on my wish list as it is big enough for a few groceries and has side pockets for an umbrella, gloves, sun glasses etc. Here is my comparison of some of the Beside-U backpacks that I think are big enough for a few groceries. Although they are expensive, shipping is Free.

link Side pockets Size Lx H x D Cost
Alloy 2 28 x 40 x 14 $135
Nanette 2 26 x 38 x 15 $135
Hornchurch 1 open, 1 zip 29 x 38 x 14 $125
Liza 2 29.5 x 37.5 x 14 $135
Mya 1 29 x 35 x 13 $150

 Walking Poles

Below are the Walking Poles with the best customer reviews from Amazon that ship to Canada.   These three models are collapsible and carbon fiber and range from $ 53.00-$ 60.00  US plus about $30.00 shipping and duty if shipping to Canada for about a bill of $80-90 US.

Every pole user needs shoes!  Save up to 50% on NEW Markdowns – ABEO, Dansko, Raffini, ECCO, Taos + more!

Ok you are ready to go!!
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