Prompt; Dawn; go away, I’m no good for you

I woke up this morning at 5:30 and really wanted to go back to sleep. I’m in a work marathon right now and all I can do is rest between shifts. Wednesday I worked until 8:00 p.m. and had to be in the bakery yesterday at 8:00 a.m.   Needless to say I was not at my best. My boss was frustrated that I couldn’t just fly through the work which involved all new items in our display case, four cake orders and stocking up for the big Labour Day Weekend.  I don’t want to waste my time writing about what a prick he was. I know, he’s tired, too, but he’s half my age.

Today I don’t have to be in until noon and I’m on ‘cash’ so I can work with nice, smiling ladies who also suffer from menopause and aging. I told myself I was going to sleep in but no, I woke up at 5:30. I tried so hard to get back to sleep but just hot-flashed thinking about my boss yesterday. I gave up around 7:00 and got up.

I am very tired, stiff and achy but I need the money: I can’t afford to turn down the work. I can do this ‘push’ every once in a while but I could not keep up this pace all the time.

I have four more days of this, one day off, then five more days of work. If the next schedule starts me off at Sunday again I will protest.

I’m so glad I have this blog today to complain.  Thank you for listening.

http://dailypost.wordpress.com/dp_prompt/new-dawn/

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Daily Prompt; Opening Lines

 

“It gets so sticky down here”— Little Bones by Tragically Hip

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It gets so sticky down here in the bakery in the summer. Layers of sweetness and sweat build up on your face and arms attracting the flies. I’m working spread out over a long counter with a huge bowl of whipped cream, a bucket of icing, and a tray of cakes; flapping my arms, shaking my head and cursing, “buggers!” “bastards!”

I’m sure some people must look in and think I have Tourette’s Syndrome.

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Today’s post was inspired by the Daily Prompt; Opening Lines :  What’s the first line of the last song you listened to (on the radio, on your music player, or anywhere else)? Use it as the first sentence of your post.

http://dailypost.wordpress.com/dp_prompt/opening-lines/

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I haven’t posted all week because I’ve been getting a lot of hours at work. Grand Bend is a tourist town and it’s the last week of summer. The kids are cranky, the mothers are harried, the young people are desperate to have a good time before its over; the tension is building up to Labour Day Weekend.

I live in another beach/cottage community and the feeling is the same here.  Fall is tapping on our shoulders. The tourists try to squeeze every minute out of the end of summer while the locals look forward to some peace and quiet. Being able to drive on the road without stupid people towing their unfortunate kids to the beach, teetering on the side-lines while testosterone-crazed young men speed around in their jeeps and fast cars. Labour Day weekend works up to a frenzy then, boom, it’s over. I love to see the sand blowing across the road; a  tumbleweed rolling by. OK, we don’t have tumbleweed, sometimes its just a shopping bag but you know what I mean. You can almost hear an harmonica cry a lonesome song.

I can walk on the beach again.

 

Daily Prompt; Marion; my sewing machine

When I read today’s prompt asking if we are on a first name basis with an inanimate object, I thought of Marion. She’s behind me right now, always set up and plugged in because I’m going to sew something……soon. I have a nook at the end of the hallway for my computer and Marion with a wheeled chair that floats easily between them. The computer is just a computer, no personality whatsoever.

The original Marion was my mother-in-law. Years ago I called her Brunhilda but since she has passed and I have aged, I’m not so hard on her. The only reason I mention it is that it describes her easily and succinctly.

It was in her will to leave me the sewing machine and all of her sewing stuff she’d collected for 40 odd years which was very surprising as she had two daughters. I feel honoured to own it.

It/she is a Singer from the 1970’s built into a wooden cabinet. It’s heavy metal and runs like the well-oiled machine she is. It’s beige, big and solid….. just like Marion.

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My mother-in-law kept everything she might be able to use again; trims, sequins, even bra hooks saved up in a little plastic container. The gold thread on the right in the photo is from a vast collection of threads on wooden spools from as far back as the 1940’s.  I rarely have to buy thread as there are so many colours and shades.There are gadgets and gauges that I can’t figure out.  There are three buttonhole attachments used on machines that came before her. One each from the 1940’s, 50’s and 60’s; all in their original boxes with the instruction books and they still work on this machine.  She was meticulous.

So it was natural that I should name my sewing machine Marion because this machine is infused with her spirit: I feel her when I work. When the tension goes wonky and does a thousand loops, I wonder ‘What’s going on with Marion?’

Sometimes when I’m sewing I’ll talk to her; “Hey, Marion, how about that son of yours? tsk,tsk!!”  She would not be happy we broke up….. and I probably would not have gotten her wonderful sewing machine if she’d known!

http://dailypost.wordpress.com/dp_prompt/the-names-the-thing/

Too old to party? Too young to die.

Daily Prompt; You wake up one day and realize you’re ten years older than you were the previous night. Beyond the initial shock, how does this development change your life plans?

That did happen to me! I really feel 71 today instead of 61.

This weekend my sister and I made a long drive to Bracebridge for an annual reunion. I met a great group of friends in Toronto in my early twenties. They had been friends since public school and when I started to date one, they took me in as one of their own. Thanks to Facebook, we all re-connected and meet at a friends cottage this time every year. We reminisce about the good times and good music and how freaking lucky we were to live in Toronto in the “Summer of Love”….. before AIDS and crack. If crack had been around it might have been a much sadder story.

The cottage used to belong to my boyfriends parents so we remember going up on weekends. Sometimes we could go up with our friends and no parents and stay up all night doing ‘mind-expanding’ drugs.

I remember when we were this age wondering what we would be like when we were old; joking at playing old and feeble; “Remember when we used to do acid and try to walk across the falls?” Now there we are; just like that!

Oh gosh, we were young then. This year, with our little bits of pot, wine coolers or beer, we barely made it to midnight. The next morning we were all up for coffee by 8:00 and wanting to get home to our own bathrooms and beds.

But back to the subject of this blog; I feel ten years older today but if it were really true I wouldn’t have to go to work tomorrow because I’d be retired!!!! Yahoo!

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http://dailypost.wordpress.com/dp_prompt/new-wrinkles/

Daily Prompt; Think again

Tell us about a time you made a false assumption about a person or a place — how did they prove you wrong?

I had a huge crush on a man who turned out to be homosexual and I had no idea, even ignoring things that later seemed obvious.

In my younger years I was a caver. My husband and I would go down to West Virginia several times a year to join a cave trip. We wanted to branch out and heard about a man who organized cave trips in a newly found cave called Blue Springs In Tennessee.  We organized our own trip with a few other cavers and went to his historic house built before the Civil War.  It was right on the Trail of Tears Highway just outside of Nashville.

He showed us around his house and told us how he had restored it as authentically as he could, even using square nails like they used to.  Upstairs he was working on decorating the rooms with antiques he picked up at swap meets.

“Would y’all like to see my queeeaalts?” he asked in low, slow, sexy southern drawl.

“pardon me?”

“queeaalts…. ?” he opened a cedar chest filled with antique quilts and lovingly took them out one by one, explaining what each pattern represented.

I was smitten. He wasn’t good-looking; he looked like a hobbit version of Albert Einstein but he had a nice body and was very graceful.

There was a young man living with him. A very young man whom he’d met as a troubled teenager and took him in. ‘What a kind and generous guy” I thought. They had been living together for quite a few years.

“You guys fight like an old married couple!” I joked once; still not even entering my mind. These were tough, southern, manly men.

We caved with them for a few days as Blue Springs turned out to be fantastic and too much to see in one day.  The second day I was getting tired and he offered to take me out as the others wanted to go much deeper into the cave. His friend would stay with them. Outside we changed from our cave suits into dry clothes while the sun set. He was very respectful about my privacy while changing and didn’t try to sneak a peek.

The sky was still orange behind dark blue hills when he said softly; “come here, I want to show you something”  We walked across a gravel road and into a field filled with fireflies. I’ve never seen so many. They twinkled like stars below while the stars above were starting to appear in the sky. It was a magical moment and I was high on love.

Then it all went weird.  His young friend had come out by himself, leaving the others in the cave. They were competent cavers and had maps but it was still a surprising and reckless thing for him to do. He was standing there with the top half of his cave suit down to almost his privates and was ‘strutting his stuff’ like a rooster. He seemed really irritated, even angry. I couldn’t understand what his problem was at all.

Then there was the drive to where people meet under a certain bridge. It was night-time; he was taking my husband and I around to ‘see the sights’. I thought it was for antique car lovers until he informed us it was for another kind of lovers. It was sort of a sex swap meet. We both wondered later, ‘why did he take us there?’

We kept in touch with him so I was very excited to be seeing him again at a caving convention. I was expecting to hang out with him but he seemed very uneasy at my presence; completely different to what I had experienced at his home. He seemed very uncomfortable and didn’t introduce me to his friends who weren’t very friendly, anyway. A group of teenagers came over and were showing off all the fancy cave things they had “scored”; expensive stuff. I asked one of them a question and he completely ignored me. I thought maybe he didn’t hear me and repeated my question but he was ignoring me. They were starting to talk in low voices about going to the hot tubs. Why wasn’t he going to the hot tubs?  I overheard my friend say, “I don’t now how to get rid of her”

Ouch, I was so humiliated and I went to my tent.

One of my caving friends, a young, good-looking long-haired guy that had been on the trip with us and was also at the convention, laughed at my naivety. He’d know as soon as he walked into the house the first time!

I did continue to have a crush on him until I started to hear things I wish I’d never heard.  He didn’t just like men; he liked boys.

So I learned you not only can’t stereotype homosexuals but also child molesters. They are not the creepy cretins we imagine. They can seem like nice, caring people who ‘love’ children and really believe that about themselves.

Sadly, this happens everyday. Molestation is done by those who no one suspects and the children don’t understand they are being exploited until it’s too late.

These days we always have to ‘think again’.

 

http://dailypost.wordpress.com/dp_prompt/think-again/

Turkeys!

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I get so excited when turkeys visit. This week 2 adults and their babies, too fast and numerous to count, have been taking a break from the woods to walk around my house and garden picking at bugs, slugs, berries and buds. The mothers are so protective: they are on constant vigilance. I have to watch very carefully because if they even see me at a window they will run. It’s very eerie that I can be standing away from a window but Mom’s eye will be on me. I’m not sure if she can see me or is just watching the window but she always seems to be looking right at me. I got a few good shots holding my phone camera against some unscreened windows, hiding to the side.

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This one was taken through a screen but I wanted to show the size of them;

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I have scared them away before. Last week I went out my back door and was surprised by a flapping of huge wings and running birds. They are big! I closed the door right away and went to the windows. They had run into my garden and were all over it. (Later I went out to check; you couldn’t tell anything had been in there; nothing broken or trampled.)

Turkeys had been exterminated in Ontario, Canada by the turn of the century. When I was young, wild turkeys were in our history books along with pilgrims.  About 25 years ago my husband and I were driving down a gravel road flanked by corn fields when we noticed a HUGE bird standing at the side of the road. We slowed down in case it ran in front of us, not believing what we saw. This was no chicken!  It didn’t move. It stood its ground and watched us slowly drive by with our eyeballs bugging out….. then afterwards … “It was a wild turkey! a wild turkey!”

That must have been one of the first new turkeys. In 1984 the Ministry of Natural Resources exchanged wild turkeys from states in the U.S. for animals we had but they had made extinct. We sent river otters to Missouri in exchange for turkeys. Canada Geese went to Iowa, Hungarian partridge went to New Jersey and Vermont, 50 moose went to Michigan. As a result, 274 wild turkeys were released throughout southern Ontario.

They have proliferated, even reaching Muskoka which is north of their natural, original habitat. In fact, they came back so fast it only took 5 years before they could be hunted again. Too bad, I can’t imagine looking at a beautiful beast then blasting it with a gun, but we have to keep a balance, too, as they will eat the eggs of grouse and other ground birds. At least now there is a specific season and amount you can ‘cull’.

Wild turkeys aren’t such a rare sight anymore but people are always delighted to see them. We should all be happy that things CAN get better. Twenty years ago our Great Lakes were not as clean as they are now.  We CAN turn things around if we really try.