Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Mike Missing

Tonight is the third night that a man from our community has been missing. The RCMP and many local volunteers have been out searching the rural roads and unused farmyards for his truck, which he was driving Monday afternoon, the last time he was seen in town. It's only about 10-below at night and he is a resourceful man, but he is 85 years old and we are all pretty worried.

Yesterday Scott and I drove around between the Godhe land and up to Lintlaw, looking for tire tracks on rarely used roads, thinking "You never know ...  he could be anywhere," but didn't see any sign of him.

His wife and daughters won't be getting a decent sleep if any at all — what a helpless hell this must be, and my heart goes out to them — but I'm off to bed in hopes of some good news tomorrow: that he's been found safe and well somewhere tonight.

See the Wadena News website for a little more information, if you're curious.
If you browse through some of the other articles since Christmas, you'll see one that Mike wrote after he got stuck in the snow — stranded — for a night or two once before. He came through it no worse for wear and maybe he'll be just as lucky this time around.

Tuesday, February 2, 2016

How to Live

"How does one achieve peace of mind? On this latter point, Plutarch's advice was the same as Seneca's: focus on what is present in front of you, and pay full attention to it." - from How to Live: A Life of Montaigne in one question and twenty attempts at an answer, by Sarah Bakewell

So, "Be Here Now" is not just a New Age philosophy, is it!

I've been reading Bakewell's biography of Michel de Montaigne, who was a self-examiner if ever there was one, and whose most common written statement might well have been "but I'm not sure."

A few bits, among the many, that struck me:

"Montaigne himself did not brood in his tower like a Gormenghast earl: he liked to be out walking."

"Easy conversation in trivial situations was valuable; it opened the path to deeper relationships, and to the more pleasant evenings where one could joke and laugh at ease."

"The only hope of emerging from the fog of misinterpretation is to remain alert to its existence: that is, to become wise at one's own expense."


Meanwhile, I'm going outside for a walk under the big sky.

Dear Shelly

Your Christmas creation has managed to stay on the back step all winter so far. A Christmas miracle, apparently.

It's a pleasure to see it out there and remember your last visit. 

Your pail of pussywillow blew off the step and was set up in the snow on the table below, but I see it has blown onto the ground and needs a "quieter" spot.

Monday, February 1, 2016

Light and Shadow

It was a perfect day for a walk.
I turned north from the driveway.
Click on images to enlarge.

After half a mile I retraced my steps and wondered what it would be like to follow this trail of animal tracks down through the ditch, across the field and into the bush. For a moment I was tempted. Such a beautiful day ... 

Instead I strolled on past our driveway and the grass driveway that goes into the back yard, and swiveled to look yet again behind me.

It's all about the light, out there!

I kept on going south, toward the ravine and the correction line. Twice, Ducky Doodle stepped on a layer of snow and ice and it cracked, scaring the shit out of me. Sounded like gunfire, real close.

From our driveway to the correction line and back takes me a half-hour. And the light! And I often do a 360-degree turn to see if there's a moose crossing the road behind me after I've passed. It's happened before. 

Home again, home again, jiggity jog. Halfway down the driveway, I look past the trees and beyond the rusty old car to the road leading north. 

I don't even know who I'm talking to, but almost every day when I go for a walk, I thank someone or something for the pleasure of living here and the time to enjoy it.

Sunday, January 31, 2016

This Far

Well okay, not all the way done. Still gotta find a spot for all those pillows and put the quilted bedspread back on. Scott's going to tackle the closet one of these days and the pillows will go in there afterward. I had been meaning to reorganize the closet for some time, and his work in there forced it. Kinda. It took three weekends of best intentions, once he put everything on the bed. It wasn't that pressing.
I got rid of and put away a lot of shit. 
Wrapping paper and old Christmas cards and an entire plastic grocery bag full of bubble wrap.  
A fax machine and a sprout-maker and ... on it goes. 

Some things we never use and likely never will: out they go.
The garbage and recycling and giveaways are in the porch, awaiting transfer to the car.  There'a a bag of Emil's things to be taken to his place. Ducky figures it's a good place to park himself. 

You see the lineup beside the door, ready to go.

The wrapping paper that I chose to keep and the Xmas cards to make tags with and the potential gifts are now stored in the old cardboard trunk till next year. They lay flat atop the Christmas decorations, the tree skirt, the strings of lights, the stuffed elf, and so on.

One job down, 364 to go.