Tuesday, February 27, 2007

What a Girl Wants

Other than that, of course. Duh.

“In Cavaillon, there are seventeen bakers listed in the Pages Jaunes, but we had been told that one establishment was ahead of all the rest in terms of choice and excellence, a veritable Palais de pain. At Chez Auzet, so they said, the baking and eating of breads and pastries had been elevated to the status of a minor religion”. Peter Mayle

Where am I aiming for with the business? I want to bring a place like that to Regina. Or perhaps Victoria. The latter may be easier than the former but I won’t say no to a challenge!

So what drives me, what would I like to see in a Boulangerie~Pâtisserie? I think Peter Mayle covers it quite well describing that shop in Cavaillon:

“There are chairs and marble topped tables along one wall where you can have coffee and a croissant still glowing from the warm breath of the oven. Posters by local artists, photographs, and mementos share wall space with shelves line with bottles of champagnes, pots of homemade jams and syrups, baskets of almond biscuits, flasks of truffle scented olive oil.
And then there’s the bread – a panorama of bread, stretching for perhaps twenty feet behind the counter, bread arranged according to type and size, varying in color from pale gold to a deep chocolate brown, a display as tanned and tightly packed as tows of sunbathers on a Riviera beach”.

I have enjoyed everythingthat Peter Mayle has written, and for a quick little trip in the joys of bread and baking give a read to Confessions of a French Baker.

Yeah, there are other things in life that I want but we’re just talking business here, ‘k?

Monday, February 26, 2007

All I can say is that the pain was responsible.

Now that I’m feeling better (better as in than I was, not as in everything is totally fine now) I’m ok with talking about the hospital visit. Not that it was stranger than usual, simply that emergency rooms tend to have more happening in them than say the local dépanneur.

Having taken Mayb away from vacuuming –which I think is a pointless useless task anyway. And things always end up in smoke anyway – to take me to the Pasqua H., I figured that my troubles were over. Forgive my naiveté, but it’s been a while since I’ve been to a hospital and I’d forgotten the minimum two day wait period.

The first thing you do is check in. Wait, no the first thing you do is wash your hands with that gel stuff. Then you check in. So I was, sit in the chair and hand the nurse my health card. She takes it and does computer stuff. Then she SNAPS on the counter in front of me and says “this says Sterling, we have you as Gordon. What’s going on here?”

Now, I’m pretty sure name changes happen all the time. You get divorced, or married, you’re in witness protection, you’re running from the monstrous evil that was your previous life. So I was a bit puzzled by this statement. I was also, unfortunately, in a great deal of pain. So I said “I’m running from a South African hit squad trying to get their conflict diamonds back from me. But Sterling really is my name, they’re looking for Gordon, the fools”. Not perhaps the best idea. May even have added to the time I had to wait. It’s just…I was in a great deal of pain. Don’t mess with someone in pain who should have been enjoying the first Provincial Family Day ever. Gave her the real reason for the different name. She gave me a wrist band, and told me to put the wheel chair away (I fainted when I came in, before the hand washing. Nice nurse helped me to a chair).

Ah, welcome to hospital life!

Friday, February 23, 2007


First of all, codeine is not what it is cracked up to be. Makes me sick, woozy merely dulls the pain. Doesn't actually get rid of the pain, doesn't give me neat hallucinations - doesn't give me any, for that matter - and doesn't let me sleep well.

Jello and pudding are beginning to pale. I will be happy when this is all over. And I'll have steak for supper, followed by a really crisp apple for dessert. Because that day will come, sooner or later.

Thursday, February 22, 2007

Three Times NOT a Lady

Do something once and it's an accident.
Twice and, well, that's a bit careless, yes?
Three times I"ll bet there is something sinister going on.

There I was, sitting in the hospital waiting room when a guy in a wheel chair arrives- Hockey accident, how very Canadian!- pushed by his wife. Moving him into the room she accidentally runs him into a wall. Screams of pain and an apology of "oops, I was going a bit fast there, wasn't I?". She turns the corner into the waiting room, and accidentally runs him into a chair. Another apology, and the rest of us are now watching. Sure enough, when it is his turn to go she manages to YET AGAIN bang his foot into a wall.

First time - accident. Second time, well, maybe still an accident but you'd think she would have learned by the agonized reaction of the first incident. Third time? Methinks the woman has an issue with her husband, hockey or both.

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

The lottery is next. Statistical certainty.

Well maybe not the lottery, but something weird but nice, yes? I mean I can live with the cloud of weirdness that follows me around, I can cope with my son saying "you fainting in the kitchen wasn't a huge shock. Except for the sound you made hitting the floor", I understand my girl saying it is hard to decide what mom story is the funniest but all in all, statistically speaking something weird has to happen that is GOOD. Not something like phoning May-B for a ride to the hospital on family day (which makes her even more family that she already is). Not spending the whole afternoon there, and certainly not being on antibiotics for an infection that has gone from jaw to cheekbone (I never really gave it much thought but apparently bones can get infected). Also not getting a bill for almost four grand for work done on the street where I live. None of those things. Something cool. Magical. Wonderful. A lottery win would sufficient, as long as it was spectacular enough to match the spectacular weirdness that I live with.

I have stories from the ER to tell, but not until I can type with both hands. One hand has to hold the side of my face, the other has to type and all this has to go down while I rock back and forth on the computer chair. I now the answer to one mystifying question, though: what would I rather do over, delivering a baby or Monday/Tuesday thinking that surely death would be easier than whatever was going on. The former. I'd sooner be in labour than have this pain go on. The dentist said that two days on the glow-in-the-dark antibiotics for bones will ease the pain. It's been just over 24 hours.

On the plus side, I bet that my dentist has never had anyone react to his suggestion of needles and freeaing with "Oh God, please, yes please nownownownow". Sure made the guy in the next room look in to see what was going on! But that three hour block of freezing is the only bit of pain free time I've had since late Saturday. And what is today? Tuesday? Maybe Wednesday. Yeah, Wednesday because Monday was hospital, Tuesday was dentist.

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Ah Valentines Day

Ok, so I didn't have clothes-tearing house-rocking nookie, but it wasn't so bad: a hot bath with the water to my neck, a small glass of vintage port, aged cheddar with home made crackers, a really good read and Rickie Lee Jones with Dr. John (and others) playing in the background. Yeah, life is sweet.


And here you all thought I'd get nothing for Valentines! I got two things, as it happens: a singing card from the Caribbean and a BLOODY COLD FIRE ALARM.

Yep, you read that right: the most exciting thing to happen to day was a fire alarm, trucks and all. On a day that was -30 C. and that isn't even counting the windchill factor. The cold, in fact, is what caused the alarm. There are sensors on the roof and the best guess the experts can make is that the extreme cold from the added windchill factor make the alarms go. Totally NOT the day to be standing around. In the end we went into the mainly empty mall next door - you can get frostbite at temperatures like this. So now I have something to say when people ask me what I did for Valentines: froze my fingers to blueness, followed by an extremely painful re-animating back at the office.

Down Filled Deception.

You may not know this, but my comforter talks to me, the lying cheating thing. This morning it convinced me to stay in bed for ten extra minutes. So I did, and it was pointless. I don’t feel any more rested, I never did get back to the dream long enough to find out who I was whispering sweet nothings to and the house wasn’t any warmer when I did get up. All that happened was that I had to rush through getting ready, barely got to work on time and almost forgot to bring bread to work for taste testing. That down filled sweet talking thing is trouble. It even called me at work once, trying to convince me that it would be a good idea to go home and go back to bed.

Tuesday, February 13, 2007


My son is attending his first funeral today. The only other funeral either of my kids may have gone to took place when the kids were out of province. This one is for the mother of friends of his (twin boys), and he was asked to go. Wish I had time banked or something so I could go with him. The mom was really young, too. Poor family, this is a grievous year for them.

Monday, February 12, 2007

No, I don't want to see your ass.

'Member how I'm taking up knitting to fill in those few nano-seconds of spare time I have? Having knit two scarves I've decided to move on to something else. So I found a beginners pattern for a throw, or small blanket. I'm going to make it for M., because she likes to cuddle on the couch when we're movie watching. She usually grabs her bedroom blanket...and leaves it there. So I'm going to make something specifically for the couch cuddling.

Once I found a pattern I decided that rather than go to Walmart and buy some weird synthetic yarn I'd go to a specialty shop and get something interesting. So I beetled off during my coffee break to a store fairly close to the office. Ended up with circular needles and four skiens of cotton yarn in a neat mixed denim colour.

I decided to stop in at a nearby drug store to get a tin of tuna or something for lunch as all I'd remembered to do this morning was grab a loaf of bread from the freezer. I go in, find some tuna and go to the counter. I am in danger of being late at this point, but it should be quick because there was only one person ahead of me. I'm standing there waiting when I realize that he isn't buying anything. He is talking to the cashier about his ass (his words, not mine). Telling her what a great ass he has, what with all the walking and biking he does. Asks her if she can tell he has a great ass. Then he turns do me and says "do you want to see my ass? 'Cause it's a really great ass. I work hard at it" (at this point I was counting how many times he said the word "ass"). I turned down his ass-viewing offer, stating clearly that I just wanted to buy some tuna and get back to work. One of the few times I've been anxious to get back to the job! He kindly let me ahead of him. And he was still talking about his behind when I left him behind. Poor cashier. Wonder if he's a regular.

Oh, and did I mention? He was retired, and in his mid-seventies. Yeah, that's the kind of ass I want to see.

Life Lesson

You should always carry a change of clothes in the trunk of your car. Just in case you go somewhere and have to give your shirt away. Especially in the winter, when being naked under a light jacket is no picnic. There. Don't say I never impart useful information.

P.S. by the way, either my luck has improved or chanting "please don't let me get pulled over by the cops" works.

Thursday, February 08, 2007

Blonde vs. Brunette

I was driving along with a friend, a female friend (doesn’t that sound like the next line should be “re, a drop of golden sun”?) this morning when the conversation took an unusual turn:

Me: Wow. Nice sky.
Her: where?
Me: Where?
Her: Where is he?
Me: Where is who?
Her: The guy. You said there was a guy.
Me: No, I didn’t I sai
Her (interrupting): yes, you did.
Me: what I said was Nice Sky
Her: That’s what I said you said. So where is he?
Her: Now you’re just being rude.
Me: And you’re just being blonde.

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

I would have thought everyone knew this.

I just want to say one thing: If you're going to work on a door that opens inward - i.e. TOWARDS you - you should put a sign on the door so no one opens it when you're up on the ladder. Because if you don't you could get hurt and it WOULDN'T be the fault of the door opener. I guess that is two things. But still, people need to do this.

Friday, February 02, 2007

When to NOT Google

I went and saw a doctor about the cold from hell I was going through and he wanted me to see my regular doctor for a different concern 9the cold was bronchitus and I did get antibiotics from that). No big deal, I made and appointment and I'm seeing my family doctor this afternoon. Which was fine until I googled "thyroid" just to see what the first doctor was worried about. Which was a giant mistake because in the space of two minutes I've gone from wondering what route is the shortest to Normanview Mall to planning my own funeral. Sometimes it's best not to read stuff in advance.

Peanut Allergy Rant

First of all, don't bother telling me that the whole thing started because of a mistake I made; I'm aware of that, but I'm still upset over the outcome.

So - I have two kids. One in elementary school where no nuts are allowed and one in high school where there's a nut free for all. I was driving my youngest to school and when she asked me to grab her lunch I took the wrong one. I grabbed the one with a peanut butter and jam triple layer sandwich in it, which was intended for her brother. So what happened when she discovered this at lunch? Asked to eat separately, and to wash well after? No. Sent to the principals office to eat? Nope. Sent outside? Nope. Asked to call home? No, as a matter of fact they wouldn't let her call me. Or even friends that live near the school that might have been home. And they wouldn't let her eat her lunch, either. How much time on the office phone would that be, a minute? "mom I have nuts in my lunch come and get me so I can eat at home". Not even a minute, but apparently that was too much to ask. So she went foodless.

I will, of course, be checking with the school to make sure this is what happened. I can see the lunch room monitor - who is an elderly volunteer - saying no to phoning, but I can't see the secretary saying no. So I'll check before I go kick butt.