The Challenges and Opportunities of 2022

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 a departed friend DJ David Wiseman on Hornby Island.

Cee’s Black and White Photo challenge Transportation Aug 2020

Since I live on Islands, transportation is primarily by water for man and beast. Shots were edited on software to black and white and not all really work in black an white. Shots are from Vancouver island and Hornby Island and one shot of a friend in Kelowna. Ok these are not all public transportation but they are transportation in public. I didn’t take a picture of the 4 sailing ferry wait this morning when I dropped off a foot passenger to the ferry

Agency and Birdwatching in COVID-19

Gallery

This gallery contains 8 photos.

I bought a new camera as part of my COVID Coping Strategy and discoverd birds. Little did I know I would accumulate thousands of bird photos. Now Terry has posted a new challenge to prompt me to curate my bird … Continue reading

I’ve looked at clouds from both sides now…

Image

Every morning when I get up see the sky and clouds, I can’t wait to get outside for a walk. I love the panoramas, after living in the city all my adult life. Here is a selection of photos from my walks on Hornby Island (1-12) and Courtenay. Everyday the landscape is different. People on the west coast say “if you don’t like the weather, wait for an hour and it will change”.

All my photos except two were taken with my Iphone 7 or 6. Two were taken on my new Canon Powershot SX 70. Can you tell the difference? I can’t. It’s the last three.

Thanks to https://secondwindleisure.com/photography/sunday-stills-photo-challenge.. join her to do your own #sundaystills post.

Christmas in Courtenay

This has been a challenging year for us all. I have been fortunate to end up in Courtenay on Vancouver Island where there have been few cases of COVID19. In past years I have spend Christmas in Hornby Island, Puerta Vallarta, Costa Rica, Phoenix, Ottawa, Algeria and London England. As I went down memory lane in my photos, I enjoyed the memories each picture brought. I am enjoying watching Rick Steves on PBS and trying to see if I recognize any of the places he visits. This year’s pictures don’t have people in them for the obvious reasons. I will be doing a Zoom Christmas as others will be.

My favourite things to keep my busy have been walking, reading, Netflix, and my instant pot. I have discovered cooking as other have and have tested a few recipes I would like to share.
https://www.gimmesomeoven.com/pho-recipe/
Slow cooker Spanish Stew
Jamie Oliver’s Pesto Recipe. Use fresh basil from Thriftys. I found a new pasta called pappardelle in a specialty deli which is like fettuccini which was not in stock at Quality Foods. Odd?

My Netflix favourites have been Orange is the New Black, Breaking Bad and several series about politics: Designated Survivor (US), The Crown (UK). Borgen(Denmark) and Marseille ( France). These all captured my attention for many evenings over the past months. My favourite books of the year have been Cutting for Stone by Abraham Verghese, All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr, and Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens. I’d read them all again.

Another activity that has kept me engaged has been a weekly zoom meeting with 7 other bloggers from across Canada and the US. We have met every weeks since March. We had an in person meetup with 4 of the bloggers on Hornby Island during the summer. It is a fascinating way to get to know people in a more intimate level than in person. I thank the bloggers for their fun and support over the year.

I thought I would share some pictures of the area and my new COVID pastime with my new camera. It’s been amazingly mild here and there are some great beaches for beachcombing and birding.

I wish a happy and safe 2021 to all my readers.

Birding

Harelquin Duck

Bufflehead

barrows golden eye

pine siskin

heron

kingfisher

green winged teal

red chested chickadee

white capped sparrow

bewicks wren

house finch

Study: Birds Are Linked to Happiness Levels – EcoWatch

A new study reveals that greater bird biodiversity brings greater joy to people, according to recent findings from the German Center for Integrative Biodiversity Research. In fact, scientists concluded that conservation is just as important for human well-being as financial security.
— Read on www.ecowatch.com/birds-happiness-study-2649413979.html

Birding
Costa Rica Birding, The Top Costa Rica Birds – Lodges Custom

Christmas in Courtenay

Sunday stills. autumn and auburn challenge.

This is my first autumn in Courtenay BC and there has been an abundance of auburn everywhere. The trees are a stunning contrast with the blue sky, which is normally grey by now.

Much of the wildlife appears auburn if you look really closely.

And looking down at my feet I see this stunning seaweed.

#sundaystills

http://secondwindleisure.com/2020/11/15/sunday-stills-fall-color-challenge-shades-of-auburn/