Favourite Books

  • The Green Mile
  • Animal Farm
  • Lord of the Flies
  • Lord of the Rings
  • To Kill a Mockingbird

Sunday, 31 January 2016


Well, in truth that title opens a series of doors, but today, I will take a peek into just one, one that is driving me absolutely insane..and I am sure I locked that door.
  Perhaps I am a little old-fashioned..nope..there is no perhaps..I AM old-fashioned. Growing up back in the time of steamships, and crank dial phones, everyone had something called their "Personal life". That was exactly what it was..it was something they kept either to themselves, alone, or shared with their significant other. Usually the personal life, was what occurred behind the closed doors of their abodes. Hey, sometimes stuff slipped out..sometimes, and it was obviously painful, the rest of the community would become privy to something that happened in one's personal life. See, maybe people back then were far more private, maybe the way they were perceived by their peers was important..remember the saying "What are people going to think?" Yes, I hated that saying, and admit, at this point in time..I don't give a rat's a$$ what people think...However, I do care what I think!
  I admit..I am sometimes attracted to gossip, guess it is human nature. My kids used to accuse me of being nosey..but..that was only so I knew who, and where they would hang out, and what was happening in that locale. No matter how hard one tries to stay away from gossip, it worms its way, into our world. I suppose the trick is, to either confront, or ignore..which I will say, I have tried my very best to do.
  I will say, I am an introvert. I may laugh and joke, and chatter about specific things, while at work, I may share bits and pieces of my world, however, the lesson of keeping my underwear covered, is one I think I have managed to do. Trust me, my life has not been squeaky clean, remember, I am a divorced woman...However..that being said, my travels along that route, were done pretty much alone. I had a friend. My sister-in-law would visit me almost daily. We would suck back coffee, and chatter for hours..to say we were close, is an understatement. With my mom's illness, and her care, we became even closer..but, my separation was not really a topic I shared with her. Why? Because that would put her in the middle of a relationship, a place she would have to decide what side she took, and that really would not be fair. Maybe if I had confided, that time in my life would have been easier, but..again.."you made your bed, you sleep in it"..I had to find a way out of the mess I made, by myself...She didn't help make that bed. And you know..at the end of all of this, because it was kept private and personal, each and everyone of us,yes, even my ex, came out as friends. It was just something that didn't work out, and we fixed it!
  To say I am uncomfortable when I am put in the position of having to sit on another person's bed, doesn't even come close. How you make your bed, and what company you invite in, and how many covers and pillows, and sheets you use, is NOT something I either need, or wish to know. It is none of my business! One certainly must know by now..you are not going to hear about my bed, we are not sharing information to come up with a solution for your stains...
  Do you realize when you confide (and that is a word that no longer has any meaning) to one who lends an open ear, you are basically sending the information out to the rest of the world? You have to know this, because this is the "new" friend rules. Friends used to be confidantes, in truth, there are still some of those friends floating about..but, I have found, as a rule, the majority are just conduits , soaking what you share with them in, and then spewing it out, gleefully to others.
  I have been a victim of conduits, hey, I still make use of the odd one when the urge hits me, and I want to get a message out there...However, I will say, I cringe inside when I see and hear this happening all about my world. I feel sorry for those who have never understood what it is like to have a true friend! I definitely doubt they will ever find that gift, because not a single one, will accept the rules. What a shame...
Truly another sign of the times..when instant gratification overwhelms the treasure of another person to stand beside you, through thick and thin. How lonely the world will be, when the time comes, and one looks around for that shoulder to comfort, and they find a pile of dirty laundry, instead.
  My friends are like me... They know an awful lot about my life, and I in turn, know about theirs. Why? Because we reached a place, when we decided we could trust each other. We know secrets..yes, that is another word disappearing quickly with the new friend rules. To be given a secret, by another is a huge thing. They are handing you a piece of their personal life, in order for you to understand them a little better.because, again, they trust you. Sometimes the secret needs to be told, so you can see them clearly, but now you are responsible to keep this secret between each other.
  This responsibility, like so many others, appears to be too much work for folks today. Not a single soul thinks about tomorrow, they are too busy creating messes out of today, and yesterday. Apparently they have far too much time on their hands, and absolutely nothing to do..some say, "tomorrow never comes" true enough, in some respects..but, if you spend everything today, you know damn well, tomorrow comes in a big hurry. Every one is just spending wildly, buying new linen, and leaving the dirty stuff for the rest of the world to see. Sooner or later, they are going to have to wash what they have, because time will come when they can't afford to throw it out, and they will find their beds too uncomfortable to sleep in!
  So, now my problem is, I cannot erase what I did not wish to be privy to. I have to continue puttering along in my world, with my personal life swirling about in my tiny little brain, smothered by the sheets of apparently other personal lives far more important. Heads up...I can't do it..I can't and I won't!!! I am putting a deadbolt on the outside of that bloody door..what happens inside will no longer affect the space I must share with the new world. Maybe this will allow me to focus on my world, because that is the only one that matters!

Wednesday, 27 January 2016

Victim of Abuse

Ethics are external standards that are provided by institutions, groups, or culture to which an individual belongs. For example, lawyers, policemen, and doctors all have to follow an ethical code laid down by their profession, regardless of their own feelings or preferences. Ethics can also be considered a social system or a framework for acceptable behavior.
Morals are also influenced by culture or society, but they are personal principles created and upheld by individuals themselves.
  Above, is the most concise definition of two words, which are quickly disappearing from our world.I had to Google, because, sometimes, I get these two mixed up, I forgot my schooling, and for some reason, thought they had the same meaning. Guess I know better now...But, I imagine,because I was raised in a household that held morals very high, Ethics were basically collateral..they kind of went together like butter and popcorn..one generally had the other attached.
  That would probably be the reason, when trying to figure out why things in many aspects of my world, just seem screwy, I can't figure out quite what is missing, Morals or Ethics.
  So, what happened to cause me to suddenly realize I no longer understand the principles of life? Back in my day, it was pretty easy to understand Ethics..when one started a job, they were explained what was allowed, what was not acceptable, what was expected, and what the result of not doing, or doing the correct or incorrect thing. That was a simple finale...the job was lost!
  Morals..well, those were pretty basic, as well. Societies rules were black and white. I am not saying I always kept within the boundaries, but, I knew when I was wandering outside the lines, and I certainly didn't broadcast it to the rest of the world. Most of the time I wandered outside the lines, I was in a group, and for a moment of time, I guess we reinvented some of the rules. However, we were young, and we, for the most part, knew what we were doing was wrong, and likely did not make a habit to repeat the trips outside the lines after we reached the age when "I didn't Know" could be used as an excuse.I will say.."I didn't Know" never worked in my house..It was always responded by "Well, you should know, and now you will never forget"..and then an additional reminder, generally some sort of pain stimulus that would ensure I remembered.
  O.K. even in my teeny tiny town, some folks lacked as many morals as others, and some folks tended to collect far more than average.  In my mind, neither was any better, the extremely loose morals, or the choke collar tight ones. To have to live life without any pleasure, would be horrid, to live life only thinking of pleasure, and fixating on one's personal pleasure, beyond everything else, would be extraordinarily selfish.
  So, in saying this..I have answered my own question. See, far too many people in society, have decided that their sole purpose in life is the goal of personal pleasure. They don't care what they have to do in order to obtain it. They have removed consideration from their world, because that entails thinking about someone else, and to do so, may cause issues in how quickly they can secure what it is they want, to get pleasure.
  See, before, someone like this would have been seen as selfish, but..in today's world, it is the norm..It is somehow acceptable to overlook even Ethics, for some, because still, there are just a few old folks who live by the old rules, they were taught. Those folks, well, they tend to be abused, yes..that is what happens, they are expected to cover, because the others, well..."They don't know"! I call total BS on this reasoning. They bloody well know, because if they didn't once, they have been informed since. Perhaps it was the lack of pain stimulus? No, more so the lack of job loss!
  Employers of the world are at fault for what has happened. Parents of the world are at fault for what has happened, Schools are at fault for what has happened, the legal system is at fault for what has happened, and...yes, those old folks, who live by the old rules, are also at fault for what has happened.Perhaps not quite in the order listed, as, generations are molded by their parents, so..children who are raised to expect everything on a silver platter, to have no responsibility for their actions, when they do something wrong,  Mommy or Daddy fixes it, that is the beginning. Then they go to school...if they can't do the work, it's O.K. you are ADD, FAS, Dyslexsic, artistic, whatever, we will bend everything to make you fit in, and you can move along with the rest of your classmates.
 I imagine there had to be a whole sh*tload of kids when I went to school who were born with Fetal Alcohol Syndrome, because back in those days, no one was telling women they couldn't drink when they were pregnant. How the F*ck did all of us manage to somehow do all the work necessary to pass our grades? Hey, there were a couple of kids who were put back to repeat, but..they did it. I did it..and I am the first to admit, school sucked for me, I had to work all the time, I had to practice my Pitman writing all through the summer, because if I didn't catch up, I would repeat a grade! There was punishment for not giving all my effort, because..out in the real world, if I wanted to work, that is what would be expected! The legal system, well..that is enough mess for it's own text book on what NOT to do. Then we get to the employers.
  These are the people with the power to change things. They control whether someone gets paid, and in these times, we all need money. They hold the power to weld the Ethics, and deliver the punishment if one does not put in the effort required. They weld the morals as well, because they make the rules! When there are two totally different sets of Ethics and Morals in play, someone is going to get the short end of the stick, well more than one short end. Jobs have to be done, they have to be done in a timely manner, because...someone is putting out the cash for this work. To build a sense of Ethics that are constructed on the ideal that with a set work load, it is O.K. to leave one person to do it all one day, and then feel one is entitled to get paid a full days wage the next day, but only do part of the previous days work, and take just as long, just seems a tad warped. For the person who has completed all the work the previous day, and finished earlier the next day, but somehow ending up with the same amount of hours as the other, something just seems wrong. But, how does one go about fixing this? They can't! They have the choice, to throw those old work Ethics, and a whack of their Morals out the door, and follow suit..or..to be the fool.
  Personally, I am almost at the end of being a fool. It has not done me a lick of good! To follow the Ethics and Morals of the old days, has simply made me a victim of abuse. Does that seem a tad strong? I am using a word in a frivolous way? No, I don't believe I am. I feel the need to complete the work load, that is my job, to ensure my employer gets what they need, and what I was hired to do. Those are the rules I was given, and I believe they must be followed, in order to receive wages. I will do all the work alone, if put in that position, and my employer will simply pay one set of wages for that day, often I will leave the job, tired, sore, and miserable, but, I did what was expected. What have I got in return for being responsible? Maybe a dollar or so more an hour, but in these times of inflation, and the many years of experience, and the burden of responsibility, reliability, now appear to be worth far more than the dollar or so, especially when production is taken into account.
  So...what choice do I make? At almost 60 years old, do I continue to hold tight to things that no longer appear to matter to most of the world? Or do I develop a modern set of Ethics and Morals? Going to have to ponder this for awhile,because I honestly believe I am a victim of my own making!

Thursday, 21 January 2016

Forgotten in The Archives of My Mind

Wow..Long title,eh? Funny, it's been a very long time since I wrote about what originally started all of this. You know, hotel etiquette and all...Strange how it took so many turns, and ended up a chowder of many things. Oh well, my take is, it does me good to sit and put this crapola down, I haven't been sent to jail yet, and if I am on the radar of the terrorism police, well..first of..save your time and effort, I am too old and too tired to do diddly beyond tap at the keyboard, second, although you may think different, I have never been accused of resorting to violence(and I raised 3 kids). There, that's covered, just in case...
 So, again, this blogging has taken me to a place I never expected, and all because I wanted to ensure some of the strange and unusual stories from my line of work, didn't disappear. You know..at the beginning, all I wanted was to open up a link of some sorts, so toilet scrubbers from all over the world, could send in their incredible guest stories. Imagine how much fun that would be? I work in a very small town, I bet those folks cleaning the big Casino hotels, and penthouse luxury rooms have seen things I couldn't imagine. But, apparently I am not a tech geek, and my limited knowledge on how to get things our into the vastness of the world wide web (yep, I do know what www. means) never got things off the ground, so you are stuck with what has transpired. Since I sometimes feel just a little guilty, because hotels seldom enter into my writings lately..I was privy to a moment of joint recollection the other day, so..here is a little hotel happening for a treat..For all I know, I already wrote about this, but if not..here it is..
  So....many years ago, we had a full crew staying with us. I think they were pipeliners. Now, don't get me wrong, I have met some pretty awesome hard working pipeliners, in fact, once upon a time, I even rented my own home to a group of 5, best renters ever..But, like every other group, there are some turds(yep, I am leading up to things slowly).
  This particular group stayed in one of our outlying properties. This property is made up of large units, with 2 separate nice sized bedrooms, a kitchen, a living room, dining room, and a bathroom. If one is stuck staying away from home for long periods, this is a far nicer place to stay than a small hotel room. So, these guys basically had an apartment, with daily cleaning service. Now, after many years of cleaning up after guests, I can sort of tell what kind of person someone is, sometimes, I can tell their age, and their appearance, just by cleaning up after them. Because someone drinks a lot, doesn't mean they are drunks, but..the way they drink, tells me an awful lot. When I find empties scattered all about, well, not empty, but partially empty, when I find the tabs thrown about all over the rooms, when I find cans beside the toilet, or in the shower, and cigarette ashes on the bathroom floor, in the sink, not flushed in the toilet, or..yes..this happens all the time..ashes in the clean bathtub, beside the toilet..I generally have a pretty good idea what these people are like..
  That's who these people were. So, doesn't matter, we are hired to clean, and everyone gets the same service, even if we want to leave them a note telling them to throw their garbage in the can provided. Now, these units are probably almost, if not as old as I am. They have been well used, can't imagine the number of guests that have sat on those toilets, or climbed into the tubs, some of which are the originals. After decades of use, even the good old bathtubs will lose their finish, especially when day after day, they are cleaned with chemicals. One tub, in particular was really bad. We had requested it be replaced for years, but...although it was black, in spots, grey in others, scratched to rat sh*t, it did the job. That bathtub, believe it or not, was probably the cleanest tub in town, because every time that unit was stripped, the person doing the job, would scrub forever, unsure if they were scrubbing at the old stain, or something new..honestly we even went so far as to use toilet bowl cleaner to attempt to make it white again, to no avail.I am wondering if when we used the toilet bowl cleaner, if we were sensing the future..
  So, about a week after cleaning up for these two gentlemen (and I use that term loosely) our maintenance man had to go around to check on the toilets in these units. He headed off to this job first thing in the morning, around 7:30. The workers went to work at 7, so he knew everything would be empty. He went into this particular one, now..keep in mind, this man has been doing his job, at this hotel for decades..he has seen some of the stuff we have, but only because we find it first, and if it is beyond our capability, we have to haul him in to assist. So, he is standing by the toilet, about to check the workings out, and sniffs..something is a tad off..oh, here is another tidbit, he is the first to admit, his sniffer isn't the best, often when we insist there is a smell, his nose refuses to pick up the stink. But..this time, he has no doubt..nothing in the toilet, but, now it is clear, it smells like sh*t!! Nothing on the floor, but lordie it is real close by..and then he turns to glance to his left, and there it is!!!!
  The drunken pig, appears to have been offended by the stained bathtub..he didn't use it to shower, oh no..his little pinkies were not about to step foot on that nasty surface..his body was not about to touch such a disgusting piece of porcelain, nope..instead he sat on the edge of the tub, and took a great big stinking crap! There it sat, big as life, and twice as stinky. Really..remember, he was not alone in this place, he shared this with another guy, only one bathroom.....
  Now sometimes when we find something gross, done by one of our guests, we, as housekeepers have to plug our noses and deal with it, and trust me, there have been a lot of nose plug situations, this time, was different. This was found by someone who was not responsible for cleaning, someone who went directly to the employer, and explained what he had found. We got the heads up before even commencing our day, and we jointly decided we were not going to pick up this dog's poop. This time, our employer called the guest, and....after questioning why he did something so gross,and that he would be responsible for cleaning it up, she was informed he didn't do it, someone must have broke into this room, after himself and his buddy left, and done the deed! He was NOT going to clean up a strange poop!  Well, since maintenance was up there 1/2 an hour after he had left, someone would have really had to be quick..we knew he did it, so..for the one and only time, since I have worked at this job, the bathroom door was shut, the remaining housekeeping was done, and the deposit was left in the tub.
  The next morning, the offending offering had been removed. Clearly the owner was found, perhaps it was the other guest? We will never know the answer to the mystery of the bathtub pooh. The tub was cleaned, and showers were taken afterwards. That was the single feces in a tub event we have had, the tub has since been replaced, but there is another one looking much the same..I hope I am long gone, before someone sits down on the edge of that one, and empties their bowels...
  It's a pretty sh*tty job, being a toilet bowl scrubber..pardon the pun....

Tuesday, 19 January 2016

Flower Child

Ahhh..See, that title should pretty much date me..Yes, I was alive when WoodStock happened, and Flower Children flitted about, really wearing flowers in their hair. Hippies, kind of the same thing, but Flower Children sounds so much nicer, doesn't it?
 First off..let me state, I was pretty young when Woodstock occurred, 1969 was the year, I was 13! I was never a flower child, I did embroider on my jeans, and I did wear flowy muslin tops, bell bottoms, and Paisley prints were high fashion. I think for 3 years every thing I owned was earthy brown.Flower power...in truth, it was a generation that believed in Peace and love, not unlike many of us wish the world was coated in. They tried..they had battles, we lived during the Vietnam war, atomic bombs were going off in the oceans and deserts. Times today, well, they are not so different, just as  awful, just as many wishing we could plant flowers everywhere, and rainbows. Flower children loved everyone, and sex was given away as freely as the flowers. Hey, those folks smiled an awful lot..Most of the time, they were so stoned, they had no clue what was happening, that was likely another reason there was an awful lot of smiling. Flower children begat communes..love flowed all over the place in those..different mindsets, different morals, different lifestyles. They truly had things figured out, how to live life simply. Now I imagine there was a sh*tload of fallout for the children of these flowers, because free love is not everyone's cup of tea,.  Their children grew up surrounded by sex, drugs and likely not so much rock and roll..more likely some Sitars..and flutes and maybe some bongos...
  O.K. Basically what I set out to do, was to make the point, free love has been around for a very long time..I am not a prude, but it wasn't appealing to me back in the day, and it is less so as I have aged. I believe love is something that takes a lot of work. Yes, one can fall in love quickly, and if they are very lucky the feeling is mutual. But, there are reasons people fall in love. There has to be some sort of common ground, a foundation. Just because one thinks someone else is cute, is not a foundation..just because they claim to be a Porn star in the bedroom..that does not create love. See..right next to love is another L word that seems to get confused with love, and that is LUST. Love is created, lust dissolves. Lust last only as long as it takes for something more appealing to open the door. Lust is like new car smell..after a while it disappears, and the stink of the real world takes over, and off one goes looking for that smell again.
  I suppose when one is young enough, they can wander about sniffing the new smell, all over the place. Back in my day, guys would be congratulated with the notches on their belt, but, they would never be considered a keeper, because they "fooled around". Girls, well..they were simply sleaze balls, or easy..or, of course, sluts.However, many of these folks got this out of their systems, and actually fell in love. They found someone who offered more than just a nice smell, they found someone who made them feel the need to stay, to build a foundation, and to work with, to build a life. Cripes, those of us from teeny town, we may remember Joe or Joanie Blow as being easy, but..they grew up, they had families, and they worked hard building their lives with the ones they loved, who cares what they did when they were young?
  However...This is where things get foggy. Sometimes, some people expect love to be something more akin to the new car smell. They don't understand there is upkeep, work has to be done to maintain love. It is not always shiny, and often, it stinks! Well, actually it isn't love that stinks, it is life. What happens is reality often overwhelms love. Things get in the way..kids, money, jobs, routine. Expectations become too high, folks forget about the foundation, and it gets crumbly, and oops, they slip off. Slipping off is because someone decides they just don't want to put the energy into something that will always be imperfect. That's a fact, love is never perfect, no matter how hard you work at it, but, even imperfect, there is nothing better in life.
  See, maybe it is hard to understand when you are young, even when you hit middle-age, but if you stay and put the time and effort into making your foundation strong, when you reach a certain point in life, lust doesn't matter. New car smell, well, you know that wears off. Instead, you have this amazing partner, who knows you almost as well as you do, someone who has overlooked all of your flaws, who has seen you at your best, and more often, at your worst, and yet, worked right along side to make a life together. That life is, if you are lucky, the longest relationship you will ever have. Although I do know a friend who found love, and didn't have her partner long enough, but..she will be the first to say, the time she had, has left her a lifetime of love. See, all it takes is a commitment, 2 people to decide to spend the future together..and from this, you get the present..that present is the past..it is everything you worked for together, memories, warmth, comfort and one day, even the bad, will fade. Dedication, devotion. Turning all the night time into the day
 So, when people say"you're so lucky, you get along so well", no, not really. We fight, we argue, we storm about, pissed at one another. But....we are lucky, because we have put so much work, so many years, made so many memories, neither of us has the energy to begin at the beginning, again. It is harder than one imagines, once the glow wears off, but...see, no matter how many years go by, that glow was so shiny, if we stop and think hard enough..we can see it, sparkle..it is the present we can open anytime we want! 
  So, my thought, if you want flowers, plant them in the garden, they won't last forever, just like the new car smell..but if you want love, get ready to work really hard..payback is well worth the effort!

Sunday, 17 January 2016

A Sprinkle of Stardust

 Today, as I write, it is my youngest child's 24th birthday. My oldest will turn 36 this year! The ages seem obscene..what the heck happened? There are 3 people on this spinning orb that I gave birth to, that are suddenly grown ups! They are living now in the years I seem to have been, just moments ago, years that are vivid in my mind..life changing events that each age they are now living, I lived only yesterday..
 I have to wonder if the recent loss of someone I never met, never even saw, but who had such an enormous effect on who I am, has something to do with this shock of the passing of time. Oh, true enough, I KNOW I am getting old. I keep telling myself I hit the big 60 this year, how insane! I know everything hurts some days. I know my grandchildren joke about my lizard skin, and morsels of food now gets trapped in the wrinkles as I eat. My hair is dry and brittle, and because I have been extremely "frugal" the past while it is long, and adds to the knowledge I am no longer twenty something...I have a lifetime under my belt (no, I don't wear belts, I have enough padding to keep my clothes from falling off) and thankfully I can remember a great deal of this lifetime. But geez, really...it is already someone else who has moved into the spots I imagine I was in a moment ago?
  Yes..it is the loss of David Bowie that has made such a massive impact on me. By now, most of you know, I grew up in a teeny tiny town, in a time that, perhaps, held certain "rules" those living my "young" years now, cannot imagine. I doubt a young person now a days has to hide record albums (hey, records are coming back in style) because their parents would go mad if they saw the covers, or read the titles, and certainly throw them in the garbage, not before a huge lecture on the devil. I doubt kids today will understand being told they cannot turn the Ed Sullivan show on because the Beatles are just a bunch of idiots that look like their mothers put a bowl on their heads to cut their hair (yep, really happened). I didn't develop my taste in music by what was on the radio, because all we had was bloody CBC, and trust me, they certainly never played Black Sabbath on our radio.
  I don't know how I found my place in music. All I know is David Bowie was who spent hours with me, singing on my incredible mono record player, making me feel I was not alone, with my understanding I was different. The difference was...David had the courage to show the world.I didn't. The only time I felt at peace, was when I listened to him. He gave me a few others that never quite made it as far as he did, none who grew old with me, like Ziggy, T.Rex, Mott the Hoople, just flash in the pans, but pretty darn good music! I was almost alone with my love for David, almost...there was one special person who shared my love, one person who..although he was not around for a really long time, he was there for the important time.
  Funny, I do believe there is a particularly important time when you are young, sure there are many ch-ch-ch-changes, but.. there is one time when you are vulnerable, when you are learning that growing up is not all peaches and cream, and you certainly are not Cinderella. I was ever so lucky to have Graeme. He took me under his wing...it was a really, really high wing, because Graeme was very tall, and I have never had the pleasure of being anything but short...He would sit and listen to David with me, he had all the albums, and in a tiny little town, Graeme had far more courage than I did, he was true to himself. Funny thing...now that I sit back and think about it, David and Graeme bore resemblances to one another, never saw that back in the day, and sadly, I know Graeme never knew what a difference, like David, he made in my life.
  Why was I drawn to Ziggy? Because, I believe, he followed his heart. He didn't care what was proper, he didn't care what was accepted, he simply did as he felt he needed, when he needed. He didn't fit into the square hole, the round hole, the triangle hole, he was different, so he made his own space, and fit himself. Even back then, I knew this was what I wanted. I hate having to squeeze into the limited molds..And now, after decades of listening to the songs, watching the videos, and sadly, knowing that the one who lived his life the way I so wanted to live mine, is gone...I have reached the place in my life, he found so long ago.
  Now I see there were so many, like me, who lived their lives with David's music, I didn't know that when I was 17..likely because I lived in the teeny tiny town. I suppose I would not have felt so different back in the day, if I had access to Google,LOL..But he allowed me to dream, and for that, I am grateful. Graeme, my friend, gone far too soon, and long before David,  would just sit quietly up in his loft, as I plopped myself in his space, playing the Spiders from Mars, and Mike Oldfield's Journey to the Center of the Earth, over and over, I know I was lucky to have you beside me, during the important changes.
  Is this how everyone feels, as they grow old? Did my parents have a David? I don't think so...I think my generation was the first, some had Elvis, some had the Beatles, some had Dylan, I had David. Do kids these days have David's? Sadly, I don't think they do. They have Justin Bieber, and Nicki Minaj, Do you think they will continue on into their 60's, changing, growing older with their fans? Yeah..kind of doubtful. So, I figure, the times were perfect for me. Technology was not rampant, music and books were the greatest forms of entertainment, and we were living in the time that gave us some of the best of both worlds.
  I started this, not knowing that Graeme would join the "story", but, I am so glad he did...the sprinkles of stardust are formed by two incredible people, who lived life as they felt.. honest, and outside the lines. My life is a better place, because of both of them!

Monday, 11 January 2016

Slippery Brick Road

I know..the vents are few and far between. Just got caught up in a real twister and trying to keep myself from getting clobbered by all the bits and pieces flying about.
  So...Times around these parts are feeling mighty grim, right about now. Slow downs, shut down, lay-offs, firings, words that have become common place in areas that rely on the "Patch" to keep them going. I honestly feel so sorry for folks who are getting the rug pulled out from under them, right now.Not a warm and fuzzy feeling, and I know there will be many that suffer big time, folks who have lived the good life, enjoying all the fun stuff, living, as my Mom used to say "High on the Hog". Do I fault them for ending up in a great big hole? Nope, not really!! See I understand how easy it is, I have watched how society often works. It's the keeping up with the Kardashian mentality, and it is difficult to protect oneself from this. Lets say, 2 couples, always hang out, one guy makes a small fortune, and decides he is going to buy a huge trailer, and head off camping...oops couple #2 don't have quite as much money, but..geez, what are they going to do when their buddies take off for fun times..best find a way to rack up a payment and pick yourself a nice shiny new trailer..now you can all go off together. Then comes the boat, then the snowmobile..you know, for winter fun..oh, yeah, then there are the parties, got to keep up with those, can't possibly sit at home, you might miss out on something lucrative..hey, it's all fun, right? Now Mr. #1, well, no skin off his a$$, he is loaded, but.....sooner or later the others are going to have to keep paying the piper, and if they run into a hiccough, the smelly stuff hits the fan real fast!!
  Now..myself, well, this is not my first trip down the recession highway. It seems I always get myself into the fast lane, on this stretch. Yep, usually first in line.about the only place I tend to get up front in. This trip is one of the hardest to make, and although I know my way, I still keep hoping there is a detour I have missed in the past.
  Way back in the olden days, I tried to outlast my first trip down recession road. It didn't bode well. We almost lost everything, even with both of us working. Hindsight taught me, we should have packed up a year or two sooner than we did, but...that was back in the days I still had some hope in my heart. Never quite got out of that slump, but, we managed to hold on, and trust me..it was NOT easy raising 3 kids, with next to nothing. Now the first was forestry, the second, was forestry, which brought us to the big boom of oil and gas. These beauties hit about 10 years apart, and we thought we had hit the big time with oil and gas. Well..here it is folks, 12 years later, and lo and behold, the yellow brick road has become ever so slick, but this time, I wasn't blindsided. I saw this coming a mile away. Hindsight wasn't going to bite me in the butt again...we jumped ship. Oh, we didn't get on another ship, from from it, we appear to be on a kayak, but, we are still floating, and we are not too far from shore, there is a good possibility we can make it to the dock..that is only because we have had a lot of practice. I can see the bigger boats taking on water right now, and riding pretty low, it is doubtful many have life jackets on board.
  I read the unemployment numbers, but, reading the numbers and witnessing the actual facts, are two separate things. See, there are an awful lot of folks around these parts who are still employed, however..here is the kicker, they are listed as employees, but...they are not working!! So, the numbers are not really a true picture of what is happening here. You may get a pay day, but it sure isn't a full pay, you will be lucky to get a couple of days..but in the eyes of government, you are still working. In the eyes of the creditors, you are not paying your bills! There is a maximum to the amount of EI you get when you lose your job..it is not a percentage of $150,000 per year..LMAO, well..I suppose it is, but one I couldn't calculate. EI is not going to make a mortgage payment, an RV payment, utility payment, and food..Hah! What are you going to do? Sell your toys for less than you owe? That will get you a few moments peace, but, remember even if you do find a job, you have to try and make up for all that lost time..that can take a very long time, and trust me, you will struggle.
  My past has caused me to become hardened. I am always watching for the first tug on the rug, guess you could say I am "gun shy". I am called cheap, I am a workaholic, I don't have a life, according to some, including myself. It is not because I don't want a life, besides work, it is because I know times occur when work is just not there, but bills remain. No matter that I live frugally, facts are, the shutdowns, and slow downs hurt me. I live a 12 hour drive away from my partner, because, he is lucky enough to have a job, and so am I. Huge payment on our parts, but, we are so close to shore now, this will be our last trip down this highway. Oh, I am not saying retirement is around the corner for both of us, but, when we manage to wipe the grease off our shoes from this trip, we will be able to meander down the dirt roads, and get off the beaten path.
  Again, I feel sorry for those who are heading out on this trip for the first time, a tough wake-up call, and sadly, additions to alcohol issues, depression, and worse, suicide are the horrible effects of what a whole new generation of travelers are going to experience.
  Job security is a fact for some in these parts, just the lucky ones, everyone else, best hang on tight, and take a look around, check what is really important to you, and focus on fighting to keep that..family and relationships are at the top of my list..what about you?