Wednesday, June 30, 2004

5:35am... after very little sleep, a few notes:

- Saw Fahrenheit 9-11 last night. Great! All Americans should see this before election day.

- Have not yet spoken to the landlord in person, but I think he'll be reasonable. I am not definite on my decision to move -- at least not yet. My daily work schedule in July precludes that.

- The posters for Night of Artists are in and I put several up yesterday. More later today, although I work until 3. And then have to pick up mattes and prints.

- Day off tomorrow, thank God. Scored free tickets to Keb 'Mo at the Jazz Fest. I hope to sleep 12 hours between late tonight and the concert! It's going to be necessary because:

- Double shift Friday. Work Sat and Sun nights. Double shift Mon and Tue... then single shifts before Night of Artists on July 10.

- With this kind of schedule, you can see why the traffic noise is so bothersome. There is never a break. I can't remember the last time I was able just to flake and enjoy nothingness.

Yawn... off to the mines...


Monday, June 28, 2004

The wheels are in motion.

I have told my landlord that after 6 weeks of traffic noise, I think it's best that I move. Unfortunately he is not home -- so I had to leave a message.

What does this mean?

Well - I have a lease. So it might mean that I forfeit my deposit (I assume I will) and it might mean an ugly battle. Or it might be easy. We'll see.

Moving on Aug 1 will be hard logistically. I am working nearly every day -- and the final weekend of the month. But this could be overcome.

Sept 1. would be easier. But with little work booked, financially it could be tough.

At the end of the day, it will cost $600 to move plus a new damage deposit. And any other expenses associated with getting away from the traffic noise.

The good thing is that I am 80% packed still... and I feel better for taking some action. No point being miserable, is there?

Today is also election day. I haven't a clue as to who to vote for -- other than knowing it won't be the NDP.

A vote for the Greens will be wasted. The Liberals suck. The Conservatives are too conservative. And there is no Communist candidate here.

What to do?! What to do?!

I'll know in 5 minutes... I think.


Friday, June 25, 2004

The hot weather appears to have broken.

I met Randy at Honey's Cafe at 6:30 this morning. It was cool, misty, and very pleasant. We chewed the fat over a couple of Americanos -- then he headed to work and I headed to the look-off.

At the trailhead I chatted with a couple of older Indian men who were about to do the hike. They were very friendly and full of questions.

I didn't meet a soul from bottom to top. At the look-off I planted myself and read the morning paper. Nice spot to do that.

Another local resident popped by and we chatted about kayaking and the noise. She does the hike daily, and was full of info.

I decided to continue on the extra kilometre to Indian River Drive... this is a good way to add some more distance to the hike. There is the second look-off and some nice old growth areas to enjoy.

On the way down, I passed several school groups... yikes! They're starting earlier every morning...

Anyway, the stats:

Time up: to first look-off only 27:08
Time down: Indian Lake Road to trailhead: 33:39
Time down: Indian Lake Road to look-off: Under 10 minutes
Time down: Look-off to trailhead: appx 24:00

Total KM new route: 6km return


Thursday, June 24, 2004

Funny how things go...

I picked up the car and discovered that there are some carb problems... but a temp fix cost only $54.

Then it was over to the city... I need 11 mattes for my photos for Night of Artists. And I headed to Commercial Drive to drop them off. But I was stopped from getting to my destination by crazed Portuguese fans celebrating their win over England today.

So I headed to work only to discover I was off!

No matter - I went to another matte place and dropped off the pictures. $15 each! Times 11! And there are about 10 more to come after that. $ $ $!

I used the rest of the day to get more stuff for the show... and it is all pretty much done.

Boy! What an interesting blog!


The car goes into the garage this morning. And I work at 2. And the next day off is next Wednesday. Blah blah blah.

Did the trail again this morning.

Conditions: Cloudly, cool-ish
People: 7
Dogs: 2
Time up: 27:35
Time down: 25:59


Tuesday, June 22, 2004

The question of the day: If you will something to happen, will it.

From past experience I know that all my willing to win the lottery and provided zero return.
But on the other hand, sometimes if you think something is going to happen, it does.

I knew when I moved out to the boonies that my car was going to die. I just knew it.
This is really no surprise, as the car is old and has nearly 400,000km.

And the minimum 35km I add daily probably doesn't help either.

Or the leaking tranny fluid. Or the leaking oil.

But the little $500 beast has been nothing short of a miracle -- nearly 2 years old, and the only things I've done is replace some tires and do some exhaust work.

But today, at 6:10am, on my way to work at the CBC, my great deal of a car up and died.

Luckily I had crossed over the Second Narrows bridge and was more than halfway downtown. But as I drove, something seemed weird. I can't explain it -- but it just wasn't running like its old jalopy self.

And suddenly, it died. I coasted to a stop in front of some low-track hookers and tried with out success to restart it.

It had acted like this before, but had cured itself.

Not this time. I nearly wore down the battery trying to get it to start. It did start once, but it would not stay running.

So I bailed and called a cab... arriving at work just shortly after my start time.

I fretted most of the day -- it is imperative I have a car as I have double shifts that start and end before and after the buses do.

Long story short -- I went to fetch the car this evening. It started and ran like a top, and got me home.

Go figure.

I still think its going to crap out, however...


I want to tell the world:

Cheryl Lovesbeer is my FAVOURITE Cheryl!

Monday, June 21, 2004

The beginning of the work week and it is sunny and hot. How unfair is that?

Well, for those who don't work on such a summer's day, it *is* fair. I just wish I were one of those people.

The clock is running out to get prepped for Night of Artists -- I still have many tickets to sell, and many photos to get printed and many mattes cut and many frames purchased. Luckily I am off on Wednesday -- so I have a full day to attend to that.

I suppose I could have done it this morning, but after working until midnight last night I wanted to try and sleep in. And then I wanted to do the hike to the look off:

Weather conditions: hot
Trail conditions: dry as a bone
People: 15 or so
Dogs: 4

Time up: 28:11
Time down: 24:17 *** NEW RECORD***

The trail extends a further kilometre... so one day soon I will explore where that goes.

I have to work tonight... bah! And then a double tomorrow... double bah! But if August is going to be a month sans work, then this will allow me to prepare. And hell, a week off would be wonderful.

Such is life...


Sunday, June 20, 2004

That was a great wedding!

Lorne and Katrina got hitched last night out at UBC -- it was the perfect night, the perfect place, the perfect crowd. Lots of pictures are to come.

The location overlooked English Bay and the north shore mountains. As the sun set, the air stayed warm -- and we all hung around outside celebrating the union of L & K.

T'was a dandy!

Today, Sunday, is another work day... despite it being 30 C and sunny. Sigh. Ya gotta do what ya gotta do!


Saturday, June 19, 2004

A good hike: 26:11 up; 26:10 down. Getting a little bit faster.

It was paradise sitting in the sun overlooking Indian Arm. I read the paper and enjoyed the quiet. Until about 20 10-year-olds showed up on some sort of outing.

Back in town, I stopped in at the little deli in my building and had a late breakfast of tomato juice, a banana and a tangerine. Fun!

And now it's time to get ready to head into work. I have some errands to run, so I have to go downtown early. Tomorrow I am off, but there is the big wedding to attend.

I hope I have some decent clothes that fit...

I may not have mentioned that I have sold another article to the Georgia Straight. This one on the divided Netherlands/Belgium communies of Baarle-Hertog & Baarle-Nassau.

Also, the sale of another photo is pending.


Friday, June 18, 2004

Friday. But it feels like Tuesday...

It's another night shift at CTV... and then a day off for Lorne and Katrina's wedding tomorrow. Should be a blast.

A million and one things to do today -- I've already had breakfast with a buddy. Now, at 9:15am, I am turning my sights on the hike to the lookoff. More to get some peace and quiet, but also to get some exercise.

A full report next issue...


Thursday, June 17, 2004

B-P Trail: 28:53 up; 26:53 down. Very hot day -- over 30C

Spent 2 hours on Chopper 9 yesterday. More pictures to come. And a link that works!

Gotta work...


Tuesday, June 15, 2004

The second day off...

After the victory yesterday -- getting new tires (ok, not much of a victory, but one less thing on the long list of things to do)... it was a relatively peaceful night. Perhaps I am getting used to the you know what?

I was up early this morning and hit the hiking trail.

Roughly 30 min up, 28 down.
45 minute phone call at the look off. Cheesy, but can you think of a better place to do business?
Fair number of people -- but less than 20. 3 dogs. Great day.

Coffee and muffin and the Globe and Mail followed at Honey's.

Still searching for documentation for my taxes. I *had* it... but... I can't find it now. Oh, the life of living in boxes.

I'm heading up in Chopper 9 at 1pm today... that's going to be fun. The first helicopter ride ever -- and the chance to get some shots to pitch the story...

I have to run to Richmond... so... see ya!


Sunday, June 13, 2004


Managed to get 8 hours of sleep -- very nice!

Did the Baden-Powell trail for the first time in over a week.
29 minutes up, about 28:10 down.

Not a lot of people, but a few groups. It was green and dark going up, then the sun came out and it was beautiful... I could even see my breath due to the dampness.


Back to work again... then three off.


Saturday, June 12, 2004

Early morning after a late night and a long day.

It was a double shift day: 8 hours at CBC & 8 hours at CTV.

Good news: the Georgia Straight is taking another article... on a small town in the Netherlands called Baarle Hertog-Baarle Nassau. It's the town you don't know what country you're in.

More on that soon. But it is time to crash.


Thursday, June 10, 2004

How much is a lot of traffic?

Yes... I'm still stuck on this.

In Deep Cove it's enough to drive you mad. Or into bankruptcy.

Consider tonight, a damp Thursday night in June. Tourist potential is low. Stores are closed. The community can't be more than a few thousand people... and my street isn't the only access route.

So, armed with a stop watch and a pen... I began taking notes. Here's the minute-by-minute tally:

7:10 - 7:11: 12 cars pass
7:11 - 7:12: 9
7:12 - 7:13: 7
7:13 - 7:14: 7
7:14 - 7:15: 7
7:15 - 7:16: 7
7:16 - 7:17: 6
7:17 - 7:18: 5
7:18 - 7:19: 6
7:19 - 7:20: 4

This includes NO buses, large trucks or cars with loud sound systems. And the total: 70!

On a wet, Thursday evening, 70 cars drove by in 10 minutes. That's 420 an hour. And that's not as busy as it gets. But it's average.

Obviously I have begun to obsess about this. But I fear there is nothing that can be done short of surgical deafening or building a big wall made of foot-think sound proofing.

I am stumped. I am tired. I have had it.

I have to move... and drop another $1200++ in the process. This will be fun.

Not so cheerily,


Thursday morning -- another day of writing for and

It is very weird to be in Vancouver and writing about Alberta news. But no less odd than it was doing the same for Winnipeg. And its dandy work. I like it!

The noise update: the traffic continues, but I think I may be getting used to it. I managed a couple of hours yesterday with the windows open.

I think there may be a solution to the bedroom noise too -- move to the office. The window is much smaller, and I think it is way quieter.

Having a noisy office isn't a great thing, but what can you do? And it is destined to be a room for a future roommate.

The car is leaking tranny fluid like there is no tomorrow. It's worse than in the past -- but I don't think its getting worse on a daily basis. All I can do is wait and see. It may be cheaper to fix it than replace the car. But I don't want to start throwing good money after bad!

There may be some job changes in the future. A friend of mine who also happens to work for the CBC show ZeD was in the 'hood last night. She mentioned that there may be a position that I would be perfect for. It's a 10 month contract... and I am definitely interested. The job entails field producing segments for the show. Travel is likely involved. Yay!

There is still a big hole in August -- originally my Europe trip. Now I'm not sure if I should take it off and hang out -- or take work if its offered.

The next border trip -- to Albania, Kosovo, Bulgaria, et al. is scheduled for May. This is not to be missed. And 10 months of full-time employ may help. Depends what the wage is. But regardless, I will not miss it.

Work beckons...


Monday, June 07, 2004

It's over.

Tampa Bay won.

Excellent series.

Calgary was great.

But now let's hope there is a season next year.

And that the 'nucks go further!


Here's a fun day:

1. Sleep poorly because of fiscal worries.
2. Sleep more poorly because of traffic noise.
3. Get up at 4am to work at 5am.
4. Notice that tires seem to be leaking air. Again.
5. Have meeting cancelled.
6. Call from dentist -- can you come in today instead of tomorrow? Say yes.
7. Get email: meeting back on.
8. Go to dentist. Discover you need a wisdom tooth removed.
9. Dentist does it right there and then.
10. Dentist advises no food, no liquids (!)
11. Discover joys of no medical coverage. Deplete all savings.
11. Go to meeting, despite throbbing head and frozen face.
12. Get ready to watch Calgary-Tampa Bay game -- without beer or snax.
13. Get ready to get up at 5:30am tomorrow (ooh! sleeping in)
14. Write lists to kill time.

It's a beautiful day in the neighbourhood...

Sunday, June 06, 2004

Another weekend over.

And it was quite the weekend. Lorne Wright's Stag.

Bright and early Saturday morning, I met up with the boys early and we headed to Vancouver Island. Lorne was kept in the dark as to the itinerary and "code of the road" prevents me from posting any juicy details,

However, what I can say is that we had fun - and we played paintball, watched the Flames lose, drank some beer, and enjoyed some Victoria drinking establishments.

Today (Sunday) we went for a nice greasy breakfast and then caught the 2pm ferry back. Expensive weekend -- close to $300. But it was all in good fun. The wedding is 2 weeks away...

Working at 5am Monday -- so an early crash is in the cards.


Friday, June 04, 2004

Exciting times after Calgary won last night. Damn good game.

My pal Lorne's stag is this weekend, if it weren't I'd be heading to Calgary for game 6 myself... many, many people are.

Can you say bandwagon?

Still, to be in the city when they win the cup (thinking positively)... that would be amazing.

Work continues... although it's a nightshift at CTV... that meant no getting up at 4 am. In fact, I made it until past 7 before the you know what woke me up.

But life isn't perfect, is it? And while the noise will take some getting used to, there are certainly rewards in living here. It truly is paradise.

Did the hike this morning:

Conditions: warm and somewhat gooey
Time up: unknown -- clock stopped. Assume 28:00
Time down: appx 26:00
Dogs: 10+
People: 15+
Highlight: Sitting on the lookoff and flipping thru the paper.

Life is good.


Tuesday, June 01, 2004

This was the tough one. The day began at 4am, after going to bed at 1am after working 2 full shifts in one day.

And it went pretty well!

I made it with seconds to spare. Another failed attempt at getting a coffee at McD's slowed me down. Now before you judge, remember that there is bugger all open at 4:30am in the frickin' morning. There's not even a 7-11 on my route. It's all 'burbs, bridge and port. Plus rummies, low-track hookers, and addict-zombies.

It's quite a change going from the wealth and beauty of Deep Cove/North Vancouver to the sad streets of the downtown east side. There's less traffic downtown.

Anyway -- yesterday I attempted to fetch a coffee and was held back from the drive-thru window by some derelict on a bike who couldn't understand why they wouldn't serve him at the drive-thru. His arguing was annoying and costing me precious time. I called him a name and drove off in a huff.

I am waiting for my pal Connie to arrive from Calgary. She's staying a night before heading to the Victoria Night of Artists show.

I work again at 5am, but I think that we should be able to fit in dinner before I hit the wall.

After work I did some errands, then drove past the old place -- and there were strange people on the deck! Enjoy the bongos!


Post Dinner -- Connie and I went to the sushi joint downstairs. $60 late we had stuffed our faces with sushi and saki. And then we wandered down to the water front before coming back home. Her day started at 5am as well -- but in Calgary... so it wasn't a late night.

Time for bed...


In the middle of it!

Worked 5am - 1pm today at CBC.
Then 3:30 to midnight at CTV.
It is 1am.
I work at CBC in 4 hours.
I am getting up in 3 hours.
I am not tired.