Thursday, April 28, 2011

Just a very short little post before I head to work.  Got word from Suzanne (my sister in law) that Ayman is safe (for the moment) - he is unable to leave the house where he is staying at - from my understanding of the message that was left. 

Monday, April 25, 2011

Time flies when you are having 'fun' - guess I am having way too much fun - NOT.
Started this post over a month ago and did not get it posted.

I am now in Fort McMurray - arrived here on March 24th - flew in - was kind of nice - not that I could truly afford to fly - but the difference in price between busing and flying was not all that great - but the time spent on a bus would have been at least 10 hours - whereas flying took only 1.5 hours - so ....

I phoned the Post Office on the 24th and told them I would be ready for work on the 28th - boss was 'thrilled' to hear I was back - have been working every day since - had truly thought I would not get many hours so soon - but hey - it is all good.  At least good for the bank account.  I find it quite stressful - not knowing what I will be doing day to day - one day I am doing one thing next day something else and then something else again - and unfortunately I get routes that require me to drive - which means I take a LONG time to deliver the mail - because you also get to deliver parcels and I am not very good at getting things 'organized' - no matter how hard I try I usually end up 'forgetting' at least one parcel - which means I have to back track - which of course puts me behind - oh well such is life.

Weather here has been very good - considering the time of year - we have had a bit of snow - not enough to really cause a lot of problems - although one Monday we did get quite a bit - lasted a couple of days - but then was gone again.  This weekend the forecast was for temps in the double digits - we did not get them - it has been a tad on the cool side - clouds today look like they are going to be dumping some snow on us sometime or other.  Time will tell.

I opted to stay in Fort McMurray this weekend - have four days off work - Marian and Matthew decided to head to Calgary - and I toyed with the idea for all of 15 minutes and then decided to stay here - and enjoy a nice peaceful weekend on my own - has been very nice.  Have spent the time resting, cooking for the week so we do not have to worry about cooking suppers when we get home from work, have been playing catch up on a few TV shows as well.

I went out last weekend and bought myself a bicycle - Canadian Tire had them on sale - actually got the bike Wednesday night - they had to assemble it - and that took them a long time - but it was done - now I need to gather my courage and go out and ride the thing.

Have had no word from Ayman - needless to say the family is frantic with worry (me included) - no one has told his mom that he has 'disappeared' - last time he was heard from was March 16 - a long time with no word - and of course the last he was heard from he was in the town of Binjawad - which apparently has been leveled - so .... His brother had been able to get through - but now all the cell phone lines are out of commission as are the internet lines.  Apparently Hatem (his brother) who is located in Tripoli is unable to leave the city - he waited too long to get out of the country and he is now 'stuck' - and in considerable danger - as is everyone else in the country.  I worry about all my family and friends there.  I am glad that I am here in Canada - at least I am working and keeping relatively busy - so that at least I am not sitting in Egypt stewing - although I would have been back in Canada anyhow - plan was to leave Egypt mid April so that I could visit for a bit before heading back to work in mid-May.  When Ayman left for Libya I told him good bye for good - because I 'knew' that I would not see him before I left for Canada - a little something told me - and it was oh so right.  I wonder what I would have done about money if I had stayed - I know he left lots of money in the safe at his house - and I bet dollars to donuts that Amal would not have made sure that I got my monthly 'allowance' - so all in all I am glad that I left Egypt when I did - at least here I have been able to help when I was needed and am back at work - so that I can take time off when the babies are to be born.

Before I headed to Fort McMurray I went to Creston for 10 days - and had a good visit - unfortunately I arrived with a cold and when I left both mom and dad had managed to contract a cold as well - not sure if I am to blame for both of them - but when I went I worried about mom getting ill - and now both of them are sick - sorry.

Arrived in Creston bright and early in the morning of March 10th - Thursday - had taken the bus - my nephew in law Ty took me to the bus depot as both Miles and Shani were otherwise occupied - was kind of nice - Ty had worked at the Greyhound Depot as a security guard - so I was given the 'royal' treatment - did not have to pay for my second piece of luggage - went to the gym with mom and dad - did some work on one of the elliptical trainers and then did weights for legs - must admit working out when it is hard to breathe does make it more difficult - but I worked my way through it. 

Friday we headed down to the States - went to Staples, Yoke's, GNC and WalMart - I do enjoy wandering around stores to see what they have that is different than in Canada - bought a few things - of course.

Saturday we headed to Cranbrook (108 km west) for my dad's eye appointment - things are looking good so that his next visit is in two months instead of five weeks - we stopped in at a local restaurant for lunch and then mom drove home.

Sunday I went to church - saw a few old friends - good to see them.

Monday dad and I headed to the gym - did 12 minutes on the rower - I do hate that machine - but it is a good overall workout - then worked on my upper body. Went to the gym a few more times - must admit I do miss the gym when I am in Fort McMurray - sick puppy I know.

Helped Dad gather up the 'limbs' from the trees he had pruned before I arrived - needed to gather them up so that the spring flowering bulbs that are in the area could show themselves.  Was nice to be there and see the crocus and other spring bulbs that do not get eaten by the deer - unfortunately the tulip crop got scavenged by the deer - much to my parent's chagrin.

I also did up my income taxes while in Creston - dad bought the program to do his and mom's and so I did mine as well - I was some chuffed that I could not finish them online - as I was a new 'immigrant' I was unable to finish them - so when I got back to Calgary I copied them out onto the appropriate forms and went downtown and put them in to be couriered to Winnipeg - have yet to receive my refund - any day now - I hope.

While I was in Calgary I 'dragged' my buddy Deb to a new store - the Bulk Barn - did not take a lot of arm twisting - what a store - good thing I do not live in Calgary - would be bad news.  The variety of bulk spices was fantastic - great place to go to stock up on a lot of things.

And then it was time to pack up again - I was only able to take one suitcase with me - so left a second suitcase and a bag for Marian to bring back with her.  She left for Calgary the day after I arrived in Fort McMurray - she had booked holidays - and my being in Fort McMurray meant she did not have to take all her cats with her - she left three of them behind for me to look after - and took the one that needs 'special treatment' - which is fine by me - I do not mind looking after the cats - although must admit doing the litter is not one of my favourite jobs to do.  Marian was gone for 10 days - so it was a very quiet re-entry into life in Fort McMurray.

Not much else to report - life is busy - work is keeping me out of trouble - well for the most part anyhow.