Happy New Year 2017!

In just a few hours from now the new year will kick in, and with it, a three day long weekend! Now that is something to celebrate! The very end of 2016 has been (or still is), well, shitty for me, to say the least. I am ending the year off with the worse flu I have had in years. I even took time off from work becuase of it–that is how bad. I am not going to let that dampen my mood tonight as the old year draws to a close, and we switch over to 2017, I will stay up and celebrate it!

The only worry I have tonight is that we are being told to watch out for some bad weather. It is snowing at the moment, and it should start to clear up tomorrow, but then stay well below freezing for the next ten days or so. All should be good if the roads are free of snow before the freeze starts. If not, then we will have ice everywhere after that. And so much for the heating bill too.

I am planning on staying home, like the last five years, to celebrate the New Year moment. I will watch my clock as it moves from 2016 to 2017, and then wait for the neighbourhood to erupt with fire works (gun shots) and horns to mark the calendar change. Then slip quietly back into bed. Actually, last year, if I remember correctly, I think I just stayed in bed: woke to the noise, then fell right back to sleep.

ADDED:

It is about 9:30pm now, and the snow has not let off. There is one thing worse than having to deal with 15cm of snow, and that is power outages. Already, since 7:00pm, I have had 5 short outages, caused by trees touching the power lines. Luckily none have lasted longer than 10 seconds. The forest sounds like a war zone from the branches breaking from the weight of the snow. No doubt it will get worse as the night goes on. I think I am OK as far as a tree breaking on my home though, but I do have large ones not to far away from me. Tomorrow we are expecting to be well below freezing, so if the power does go out, it will be a chilly one.

I just looked outside to check on the falling snow, and it is still falling at a fast rate. No matter what, I am staying inside tonight; staying far, far, far away from driving on the roads today. OK, signing off. See you next year…

The Rush, the Rude and the Screwed

As promised from one of my earlier posts this month, I compiled a list of moments when acts of rudeness (only becuase these surpassed acts of kindness), and not surprising, most were motor vehicle related. With the Holidays, everyone here in the Lower Mainland and Metro Vancouver were out rushing about to get shopping done, preparing themselves for those lavish family dinners, and stocking up on general stuff. The big box stores were packed, and most Malls too, as people crammed the last minute shopping for gifts. But then there are screwed, like myself who was stuck in bed with a bad flu, which seemed to make the whole thing mute as I had no enjoyment for the next three days.

Acts of rudeness. By far, and way ahead of the rest, the number one spot on my list of rudeness happened back on December 15, when a woman, in her 30’s tried to hold a Handy Cap parking stall for here husband, while a legitimate Handy Cap driver was trying to park in it. In the Walmart parking lot, front parking stalls are always sought after, simply becuase you do not have to walk far to the store. I brushed up on my Handy Cap permits in British Columbia knowledge a while back, and have learned how to tell the difference between the fake ones. The fellow who was trying park had a legitimate permit. However, the woman refused to surrender the stall. Even I told her that she cannot hold a parking stall like this, “it is first come first serve.” She ignored me, and the rest of the passer bys as well. Finally, when I saw what her husband was driving, a rather large black SUV, he had no Handy Cap permit! His truck was to big to properly fit in the parking stall anyway. Maybe this was poetic justice?

The rest of my list is just small stuff; I will type not out a comprehensive list here. There is just no point to do that. I will just point out the highlights. Drivers driving to fast, or trying to cut in front of other cars to “get there first.” Leaving garbage in front of your driveway, or as in one case with a friend, in the back of his pick-up. Stopping in the middle of an aisle in a busy shopping store to talk on your cell phone, while others are also trying to shop down that same aisle. How rude. Coughing straight into the air, or into a crowed of people in a public place, with out covering your mouth. Leaving your shopping buggy right in the middle of the parking stall becuase your are to lazy to return it back to the special shopping cart drop-off centre. The list goes on and on, but I will stop here.

Then there is me, the Screwed. I caught it on Friday. When  I got home from work. It had progressed into the full-blown symptoms of a flu. I already felt like I wanted dive right into bed when I walked in the door. So far, this is on nasty little bug. I have a full chest infection, and my whole body is going through the chill, and fever cycles every couple of hours. The worst; the coughing. I cannot sleep becuase it. I think next week will be hell if I cannot rid myself of this.

Taking Time Off

Loving the idea of having the next tree days from everything, is nice, but I am starting to develop what seems to be a full blown flu bug. Is there some cosmic joke playing at me, taunting me with 72 hours of bliss, and I get the flu right at the start of it? Right now I have the stuffed nose, congested lungs and a headache that comes and goes when it feel likes. Right now, talking is difficult becuase of the coughing. Some are enjoying my silence, but once it passes, I will talk up a storm to appease them. (Grin)

The Sun came out, but that only meant that it was bitterly cold out. I think it was -4C when I took these shots. The weather prognosticators are suggesting that we will be getting more snow for tomorrow, and possibly the day after. Great, more snow. I guess no bargain hunting shopping this week–staying home if it snows too much.

Yeah, I just rechecked my patio thermometer again, and it is showing -4C out.

Funny, the above shot seems like it is nice and warm day out, but it is not. There are icicles in this shot. Time to stay inside where it is warm, and drain my nose.

Happy Solstice!

Happy Solstice! Another astrological event is upon us, the shortest day of the year, or longest night of the year, marking the start of winter, yay (or not). But look at it this way, all we have to do is survive through the next three months of this, and then it will be spring. You just have to hang in there; it will fly by fast, I guarantee it. But anyway, we get about 8:11 hours of daylight here in Vancouver today, which is quite a bit compared to, say, Terrace, British Columbia, which will get 7:16 hours. The good news, each day will get a little bit better each time from here on in. I can see you smiling already.

As for the weather, well, here it is quite cool. In fact, we still have snow on the grown from the storm last week before the week and a half long freeze up, but it is raining as the temperature is hovering above the freezing mark.

A side note: I did get my water back on line. The water line finally thawed out enough. I am not taking any chances now–heat tape on the water line–and I am leaving the water run just a little bit to make sure the line does not freeze up again. Life without running water–sucks.

OK, now I am going to do a little cat nap. So tired. I love the holidays! 🙂

Snowing, Snowed, Snow… Then Rain, Then Brown.

Surprise, it snowed! Then it kept snowing, then snowed some more, then the snow seemed to stop. Since then, about lunch time, high noon, it started up again, but it got eerily warmer, and then the snow changed to a fine type of snow, then finally as of now, rain. It is now raining out as of 7:00pm. So, all of this might be gone very soon. Yes, there is a smile on my face while I typed that last bit out. The snow will be all gone: and warmer too, to boot!

I am betting that by tomorrow, all the roads will be awesome, and all the slushy white stuff will be gone. Well, only if the temperature shoots up to 10C. The above photo, I shot just around 6:00pm using a long exposure technique becuase it gets quite dark out this time of day. But the photo below clearly shows the snow storm at its hight around noon today. I say, about 8cm fell here at my place today, so far.

Just as a point of interest, I did use my 4X4 mode to get back into my driveway today after I picked up my mail at the Post Office. I usually like to back in, so I kind of spun out when I was getting to the high part of my driveway.

I still do not have running water. My lines are still frozen. I am not going to go through the effort of unthawing them when I know the warmer weather will kick in tonight. I will let nature unfreeze them for me.

Well, we will see what new weather the Weather Gods will bring us tomorrow. Hopefully it is all good, and not something that will keep me home from work tomorrow. 

Frozen Solid – Period!

Sigh… It has been a frozen week for us Lower Mainlanders who are not use to this level of cold. My home did not fair well, as I have no running water due to frozen waterlines. Sleeping at night have been very uncomfortable, especially when the temperatures at night had hit minus 11 and 12 yesterday and the day before. The good news is, we are going to bounce back to our normal weather starting tonight, but the bad news in all this, we start off with a snow storm before the (welcomed) glorious plus 9C kicks in for Monday. I am currently not a happy camper.

Tonight should be a lot warmer than the last five days have been. I am so looking forward to this. My heating bill will be huge come next month becuase of this, and I hope I can take is easy on my furnace the next week or so. I really do not care if we get a metre of snow, it will all start to melt by the time Monday gets here with highs well above freezing. Life in my tin box, as I call it–my trailer, has been tough as of late. This place has been very hard to keep warm and comfortable becuase it was never designed to be out in -15C weather. So I have resorted to just keeping one section nice and warm, while keeping the rest of it as warm as possible without freezing, especially at night when I am sleeping.

Frozen water pipes is not fun either. Fortunately I have a water cooler that holds quite a bit of water, so I have plenty of drinking water, but bathing and laundry, it will get tricky dealing with those chores.  I just bought a new water bottle for the cooler, so I have nice supply of water until my pipes thaw out. I am hoping to have running water as early as tomorrow, but Monday looks like the time when things really warm up to work on it. Either way I have plans in place, so I will not smell bad ether way. I will have clean clothes and a shower is close at hand. 🙂

 

Frozen – Solid, and More to Come

As the deep-freeze rages onward down here in Southern British Columbia, the thought of anther week of this Arctic Vortex (as the media calls it) is not sitting well with me. I am cold, and getting sick of it. Trailer living in the middle of a -11C night, does not make for a very comfy sleep with two heaters and the furnace cranked up to maximum, when this time last year we were enjoying plus 12C with sunshine! And to think, there is another week to go of this (@$%#$!@ weather) according to Environment Canada’s Website. (As I removed another icicle from the tip of my nose becuase of post nasal drip).

Yes, this is one bitchy Canadian who will not lie about life in the great White North, eh! If I could embrace El Niño and speed up Global Warming and Climate Change today, I would do it, just for spite. Hey, I am only miserable becuase my butt is freezing. Of course, this can change with moving into a proper house (if I had a million dollars).

Looking at the weather forecast, I see next Wednesday, and Thursday as being the coldest days to come with night time lows of -8 and -11 predicted. The good news, no wind or snow in the forecast.

The snow from Friday’s storm is still on the roads, and in some places it is pure ice where the Sun does not shine. For the most part, the roads are in awesome conditions in spite of the freezing temps. Even my Pathfinder is running great, starting up every morning without the block heater plugged in. I owe a lot to my investment of tires I put on the truck last year and the tune-up I gave it a month ago. The tires work better than expected on the snow and ice, and the engine has lots of antifreeze in it. 🙂

Trying to keep my water lines from freezing up is another worry. I have above ground water lines, only becuase that is how the water is hooked up by my Land Lord plug in system. My trailer is only “temporary parked,” so the water line is just a hose that plugs in to the main waterline. Sadly, this is a bit of a nightmare from nights when the temperature drops below freezing. Every year, except last year, I have had at least one day where my water froze. I am hoping to go two years on a row without my water lines freezing.

Minding the Melt: Don’t Step In the Slush

It is like soup out there. The snow, from the Snowmageddon event, has left its fury all over the place, and now the clean-up begins. The result, slush everywhere. Small lakes of water pooling up where it can’t run off, but only trapped in the melting snow. The joke, it is going to freeze tonight making for little ice rinks where the water has pooled. Shovelling will make way to chipping it away. Ho joy.

Am I worried? No. Sooner or latter it will all melt away, so why put the effort into it. Only paths, and perhaps the driveway, but not the whole area of the driveway. I just don’t see the point to it. “Leave it,” I say, “let nature take care of the rest.”

Enjoying the Snow Moment

Greater Vancouver gets snow! I just got home from work, as I worked the evening shift, so it is about 10:00pm now, and the white fluffy snow flakes are a coming down like, like…, like it has not since February 2015, according to CBC Vancouver. This event is like the changing of a president, or an economic super meltdown, or a catastrophic event of bilabial proportions, when it snows in Vancouver, the whole world hears our cry: It rarely snows like this here, we cannot drive in it! Snow is something we know we will get, but rarely see, and preparing for this is at the tail end of our To-Do lists. Snow tires? What are those? Seeing drivers putting around with the barest of wheels on their vehicles is past “funny” on the “Believe it or Not” scale, it borderlines pity.

As I drove home from my work, I had no trouble with the control of my SUV. Yes, I must stress that I own a SUV, a 4 X 4 SUV! Size and power makes a world of difference on the road with snow on ice conditions. I was in complete control throughout my entire trip–as long as I kept my speed no higher than 50km/h. That is the utmost point of the road conditions today–not having to much momentum so that safely stopping in a timely manner can be done. However, in my pursuit of safe-driving while on my way home in the snow, I have a young, wet-behind-the-ears driver, who insisted that his safe speed, for his little Honda (with summer tires), was a brisk 65km/h. His stopping range was beyond what was safe while braking at the intersection of Glover Road and 88th Avenue. He could not stop, and all I felt was a gentle tap from behind. He Rear-ended Me!

The damage was all his. My poor tow-hitch had a little rust scrapped from off of it. In all, myself and my Pathfinder are good. The young, wet-behind-the-ears driver of the little Honda, now has to replace his front grill that ripped off when we parted ways on the road. For me, I laughed at him silently under my breath, as he swore and cursed, and billowed and whined, looking down at his damaged vehicle, and then at the snow. But in all, the damage was minor, and not even worth going to the insurance company to make a claim over it (well, for me at least). The moral of this little story is, respect the snow on the roads, and see the signs; in other words, anticipate the conditions.

Sitting back and enjoying this new bit of scenery was a small bit of pleasure as I watched the big white fluffy snow flakes fall from the sky and land on the ground. A true winter wonderland, and winter is not for a couple more weeks to go–what a deal. The cold, below freezing weather, has been a bit of a aggravation for me, living in a trailer, these are not the best homes to live in while parked under an Super Arctic Air Mass that is covering all of Canada. But all this white, everywhere, is a nice change.

Next week, rumour has it,  we are in for an even worse super arctic blast from the North, where we might see temperatures rip below -12C! That is just unheard of in these parts. And worse yet, this arctic blanket of goodness might stay with us until mid January! Yes, some nether-regions of my lower body just disappeared inside me.

Changes Yet Again for Fort Langley

Soon, more changes will hit the little village of Fort Langley, BC, as the skyline will change inside the community as the old is replaced with the new. Almost an entire commercial block will be redeveloped with newness, as the primary owner of the commercial district of Fort Langley adds his vision in terms of commercial enterprises. For me, personally, losing the only pizza joint in the town will be a devastating blow, but deep down inside me, I cannot wait for the changes to happen. True, it will be a shock to see the town change like this, but on the other hand, we need good new change!

On the bad side, property value with shoot up, and taxes with rise, but the on plus side, the town will look a whole lot better. So, if you are like myself, and who has to drive through it every day, seeing a positive change is a good change. The only issue I have with Fort Langley right now is the bad awful parking situation.

Putting up “2 Hour Only” parking signs is a joke! You see, when you are at work, under B.C. Labour law, you get a rest break every two hours, which is plenty of time to go outside and wash the chalk off your tires after the Parking Inspectors have marked your tires when they do their rounds. For those who have employers who not provide parking for their employees, and can only offer curbside/street parking, bending the two hours parking rule is a joke for these people. But what about the customers?

Well, I already take most of my business outside of Fort Langley becuase of the parking issue. With the exception of the Post Office and my Bank, I spend very little time in Fort Langley now, and take my business out to Walnut Grove. Hey, if you cannot provide me with a place to park my vehicle, then you do not get my business–simple as that. Hey, I am willing to pay a parking metre if it comes right down to it. So I drive the extra distance away now not to have the hassles of finding a parking spot in town.