Six Word Story #11

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Septic pumping in winter is unusual.




Haha!  That’s because, generally, it’s easier to have the septic tank pumped in either the spring, summer, or fall.  And, generally, that’s when we’ve usually had it done.

However, it got missed this time.

And so last week we found ourselves with a “backing up of septic material” scenario thrust upon us.

We had to immediately put a hold on any water usage activities last Tuesday evening, such as dishes, laundry, showering….even basic personal hygiene….and well, er…..those other daily bodily emissions.

Wait, what?!?! Can’t use the toilet?  Eek!

Actually, we all handled it rather well.  It sounded better being dramatic…..haha!

Yep, all of us in the family have done our good share of wilderness camping, and so we have a handle on what to do.  Yes…..even in the wintertime.

And, of course, a phone call was made to our regular, local septic pumping expert.  Since it turned winter on us again the day before – after we were given a taste of spring-like warmth for a few days – that meant that the caps on the tank would need to be freed of the now freshly falling snow, as well as pried open before the gentleman would come over to do the pumping.

So, that’s what all my lads were busy doing on the Wednesday…..


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After those tightly wedged – and frozen! – concrete caps were extricated – a BIG job! – then my husband, who had gone into town earlier to get some supplies for this activity, unveiled the new green rings and caps to go on top of the two tank openings.  And their design is such that it should make future jobs of septic tank access and pumping much easier.

Here he is, drilling away…..




The septic pumping gentleman, in the first photo, did his usual fine job….this was Thursday by that point, and we were happily on our way to being able to have running water in the house again.

One suggestion he did leave with us though is that when the weather turns warmer and more spring-like again, that since our tank is at least 29 years old, we may want to have the soil around the tile bed tested, just to make sure all is well.  It may be that a new tile bed needs to be put in.

We shall see in the months coming up.




A Taste of….Wrongful Conviction!

As I have mentioned on a few previous posts, in addition to writing and blogging and other jobs, I also am busily involved with music, having experienced being in bands and performing live as well. (And I started eight years ago, when I took up drumming lessons)

Here in the Ottawa area is an organized opportunity – called the League of Rock – for aspiring musicians to take part for 10-week sessions in being put together in bands, learning 3-5 songs, having weekly rehearsals, getting coached from mostly local professional musicians, getting to perform live, as well as going into a recording studio to experience the process of recording one song.

I have taken part in four sessions – started in the fall session 2015 and finished with this last fall session – and it’s been an amazing experience!  I have met so many keen and talented musicians and had a LOT of fun.  There are a lot of friendships made, and also a sense of family created amongst the participants.

Truly memorable moments.

Here is the video that my band finally received from the photographer about our part of the finale live performance, where all five of the bands in this fall session showed the appreciative audience what they’d been working on.


Videographer – Christopher Paine

Olympic Gold for Fiji!

Fiji men's Rugby Sevens Team

(this photo was taken when the Fiji Men’s Rugby Sevens Team won the HSBC Sevens World Series; accompanying article is here)



Right now I was watching the Olympic Rugby Sevens game for the gold between Great Britain and Fiji. And in the first half the Fijians were a force to be reckoned with – WOW! The score was 29-0 for Fiji just in that first half! These Rugby Sevens games move along quite fast. Britain managed to get a try in and field goal, and the Fijians kept right on with their momentum and won the event with a 43-7 score over Britain. The game was exciting to watch! With some surprise twists, too.

But then I find Rugby far more fun to watch than football. I’ve watched football but can’t get into it much. The first time I saw a regular Rugby game – which included the New Zealand All Blacks team – I was hooked! No offense, ye football fans, but rugby players look far more strong and fast to me. They aren’t wearing padding everywhere…there’s none of the seemingly endless tackling and blocking…..the game just keeps moving along. And a Rugby Sevens game seems to move even faster! It sure was fun to watch Fiji supporters in the audience, going all crazy for their team. Haha! Good for them!  After the medal award ceremony, I heard the news announcer say that the Rugby Sevens competition made its debut in these Rio 2016 Games.  

One surprise team, Japan, made it as far as the bronze medal game versus South Africa…..yes, even usurping the New Zealand team! But I can see from the final score of 54-14 that South Africa won the bronze. I didn’t watch that game. That’s quite an accomplishment for the Japan team.

When I posted about the Fiji Men’s Team on Facebook, it was a pleasant surprise to see that someone shared it.  When I clicked on who, it’s a person from Fiji!!  On their wall was posted this photo, which looks to be even more recent – all the happy Gold Medalists!

Congratulations, Fiji!!  🙂


Fiji Men's Rugby Sevens Team Wins Gold in Rio, rom Naikela

Have you seen this?

I just discovered this video via my son’s friend.

It’s a new kind of sport that I’ve never seen before.

As I was watching, I found the flow of the game to be fascinating and impressive; the incredibly intense skill level required by the athletes.

I kept thinking, “WOW!!!”



The agility and strength and flexibility – AMAZING!

This is definitely an entertaining sport to watch.

I don’t know the name of it, do you?


Anger Inside

Yeah….who am I kidding?

I’m still mad at you.

I was so looking forward to the fun!

The energy, the sharing, the teamwork.

When we’re both on….it seems to flow.

And if one of us isn’t, it’s rough.

Earlier on it was you, for whatever reason.

Over time, as we worked out the wrinkles,

Our system improved.  The teamwork evolved.

A little more giving and sharing and helping.

With you, somehow, my confidence is shaky.

But I always keep trying.  How else will I get better?

And our teamwork seemed to flow more and more.

An important time was coming up….to me anyway.

Because of the people who would be there.

I practiced and worked at it.  I had high hopes.

This time, though, a few things intruded into our circle,

And then it seemed as if I was going to fall apart.

I wasn’t scared.  I felt disappointed.

And somehow I managed to hold it together.

People were appreciative and sounded happy.

That helped a bit.

But later on….I was trembling, which surprised me.

And then I realized it was a flood of anger welling over me.

I tried to put it into perspective….thinking my quick temper

Would dissipate, as it usually does.

But no….it’s still there.

Every time I think about it.

God, you drive me crazy!



Note:  I wrote this poem on Dec. 12, 2011….at a time when I had a friend, who meant a lot to me, and who managed to re-ignite my up-till-then-gone-into-hiding poetry writing energies.  🙂




The Ceiling Tiles Hijinks!

Yesterday was my visit to my senior friend, Leah, again.
It was going to be a team effort between her and myself in taking down all of her kitchen ceiling tiles – those older kind made of somewhat opaque plastic – she didn’t feel comfortable being up on her two-step ladder and stretching upwards to negotiate getting the tiles down, but she was quite keen to do the soaping of the tiles and drying, then for me to replace them again.
It seemed like a great plan!
Ever since I started going to see her in the fall, she’d been telling me of her dislike for the dirty state those tiles were in and that she was waiting for a carpenter friend whom she had commissioned to replace those old ceiling tiles with a new pot lighting system. Except the fellow was involved in a big home repair project and then seemed to be embroiled in another project, so even though he said he’d take care of her project, he’d say that he would come and then he’d cancel.
So, she patiently put up with those dirty ceiling tiles for months, until finally she asked me if I was game to help her with cleaning them.
You betcha!
She still plans on having the new pot lighting system put in, but for now the tiles will have to do….



In the first two pics you can see the dirt….and those weren’t the dirtiest. In the last photo are the cleaned ones.


So Leah and I had a good flow in our cleaning routine….and we’d chat a bit and laugh and tease. Great fun!
On the third ceiling tile in the bunch, she burst out with an exclamation of minor dismay at having put a crack into the tile. I told her it wasn’t anything we couldn’t place in such a way to hide that crack.
A few tiles later and I caused an even bigger crack in a tile – during the negotiation of removal – eek! So, there was a whole bunch of teasing on both sides! I told her that I only did that so she wouldn’t feel bad about her crack… know, like that.
Then even later one of the tiles that I removed almost effortlessly totally slipped out of my hands and dove for the floor! Yikes! Yep, there was a corner chipped off a bit. Even more teasing from Leah at my expense – hahaha!
It was getting trickier to hide our mistakes by putting tiles in darker areas.

And each time one of us had such an oops, we’d laugh about it (after I apologized for mine!) and then Leah would say, “yes, and we’re still talking!”

Finally, we got the whole ceiling done, and she felt SO relieved that the job was finally done and all those dead bugs and some mouse poop had been cleaned away.

Afterwards, Leah made us some egg salad sandwiches, and I made us a pot of tea…..and we sat down in the comfy big-arm chairs in the living room to enjoy our well-deserved lunch!

And even more chatting ensued……

I will be at her house again this week, as we plan to tackle her walk-in pantry for cleaning and re-organizing.

Bound to be more laughing and hugs and…..oh yeah, she promised some more egg salad sandwiches!