Happy Victoria Day! What a Summer Like Day!

When I woke up this morning, I headed into to town to see how full it was of people. Turned out, it was packed by the time got there. So I decided that going back to see the MayDay Parade was out of the question. Sadly, Fort Langley has become a nightmare for parking, so I opted to stay at home instead. Once at home, I focused on cleaning and getting ready for the new week. I did sat on my patio for a while, reading, then taking my camera out to capture these silky ribbon looking clouds, which had moving waves that made them ripple in real time. Then back to more cleaning. 

My road was quiet today. Only a couple of cars travelled up, then back, along the dead street. It was what laid beyond that made me stay at home. When I was going down River Road, or 88 Avenue, there were about fifty cyclists, all done up in racing spandex. And beyond that, was Fort Langley parade. So, for my evening drive, I headed in the opposite direction–Abbotsford. Even that drive was full of people parked at every park and stop along the road. So I only stopped for a few photos, then off I went back home.

I feel rested, but could use some more time off. Tomorrow I go back to work, into the pit. I can only imagine how hot it will be in there tomorrow. Not to mention how grumpy some of my co-workers get when it is too hot inside. Because of security, all doors must be shut, and fresh air is hard to come by while on the floor. Do I look forward to that—not!

Well, at least the good weather will not outnumber the bad days. I hope this year, summer is awesome–but not too hot.

Happy Victori Day!

Bring it!

Oh ya, it’s hot outside. I think Mother nature has set the Sun to “Broil” (praise nature). It feels great…, no, it feels awesome! I think I have completely unthawed from winter now. I have a fan blowing out hot air by my front door, all my windows are opened, and my sky vent it set to “maximum suck,” blowing the hot air out from the roof. It seems to be striking that right balance of cool to warm air inside. I think we are in summer mode now!

I forgot that I left some candles in their holders from the last power outage we had back in mid-April. I noticed something odd when I looked on my counter. Something wast not right. Then it hit me–all of my candles were drooping down to the table. I looked at my “inside thermometer,” and it said, thirty-seven Celsius. It was a bit warm inside when I got back from my short drive out in the country this morning.

So, the long weekend is half done now. So far, each evening, I head of for a short drive, catching the scenery lit by the setting Sun. So beautiful. I headed down to “Two Bit Bar” in Glen Valley, along the Fraser River today. The river was high, and there was no one around–very peaceful for a walk in the park. Below is what I think is the perfect image that captures my general feeling so far this year. Yeah, I know, the chain and the post, so symbolic with so many metaphors. But look at the green, with the setting sunlight, and the shadows cast by the chain–there is my story.

With only a few hours of light left, and still cooling down my home, I think I will spend the rest of the day out on my patio looking at the trees, the sky and maybe finish off my current book I am reading. Happy Victoria Day, from Glen Valley, British Columbia!

The Unofficial Start of Summer – Here at Last!

As far as I am concerned, summer has started! The weather is awesome, it is a long weekend, and I am feeling good. I think with the sunshine outside, that is what is making me feel good. But it is here: the long weekend. I slept like a log last night. I did not get up until noon, although that is when I normally wake up anyway for my day job, but it still feels like I slept in. So many plans, will I have the energy to do them?

I ran outside when the Sun was fall over the horizon, to take this photo. You could say I was going for the golden hour, which creates the best light for photography in. When I saw the sunlight through the tall leaves beside my patio, I went into camera mode. It reminds of the jungle. I like this shot, as it caught my eye when I went outside. These plants shot up in the last week, and eventually they will turn into these awesome red and yellow dragon flowers, which I have shot before and posted on the weblog. They bloom around August and September.

Later on tonight I want to take a drive, and perhaps do some night sky photography, if the clouds are not to bad.

I had more cows last night on my way to work. I call it a Cow-Jam, when the damn animals crowd the road, and refuse to leave, no matter how many times you honk the horn at them. I actually had to get out and push one of them from the middle of the road so I could get by. I know, farm country in all, but sheesh, they do not belong on the road, stopping traffic. I usually give myself lots of time when I go to work. I have two sets of railway tracks, and a hundred intersections with traffic lights to cross, so it can take anywhere from twenty to forty minutes during my commute. I never factored in cows, nor a Cow-Jam, into my commute!

Anyway, it is the long weekend. Tonight, I have a cup coffee going, and a movie to watch in a bit, then off to sleep. Tomorrow, we will see. I have no plans tomorrow, but my end up cleaning. I have lots to clean, and sort out. The never ending battle with clutter.

My Late Bloomers

What keeps me sane from my job? Well, it is sometimes my photography. Getting outside, away from the house, where I can focus on shooting picture rather than on my day job. Like my working life, the flowers around my place are messed up too. These guys, the red flowers that grow by the well house, always seem to bloom a month later than the same ones do in town. I guess it is becuase I live behind a hill that blocks my Western view. I figure I have about six hours less sunlight becuase of it. But anyway, when the flowers do bloom, I jump on the opportunity to grab my camera and do some shooting.

Now, about work. It is crazy. With the spring season ramped up, I hit full speed, and do not stop until I leave. Right now my body is just in a state of numbness. All I can do is sit here, and type away, or stare at my screen. What a life, eh?

I see the good weather coming. The leaves on the trees are hitting their full size now, and most of the flowers in my flowers beds have started budding. It is amazing how fast nature has rebounded since having such a late spring here in the Fraser Valley. Today is much warmer too, which will speed things up too out in the garden. Now I can only hope that the weather does not go the other way, with to much Sun and not enough rain. I like it nice and even, but who know how messed up our climate is now.

Dial it Down a Bit

It is raining out. My thoughts are on next weekend, the long weekend, the May Day weekend, as we call it here in Fort Langley. But that is a week from now, I still have this coming week to deal with. Where I work, they say, this will be the busies week of the year, and next weekend will be the busiest three days as every property owners will want to spruce up their investments for the unofficial start of summer. It is said that we have the dirt, and you want it, in a big way. But right now, my concern is my own health and well being.

I am still sore from last week. The time off from this weekend is still not enough time to recover from the frantic onslaught of the spring season that my poor body has endured. From my head down to my feet, I am sore. I am also tired.

Sleeping has been an issue too. For some reason, I cannot sleep straight through the night. I could say it is the longer days, but I wear night shades, which seem to do a great job. Then there is stress, which I lots of. That could be it. But then there is my tired aching body, from all the pounding I give when I am working during the day. And I cannot forget about the rain. It is cool outside, and I say that has something to do with it.

My goal, to make it through the coming week, and prepare for the long weekend ahead. Rumour has it, we are to have a couple weeks of very nice weather coming, starting just before the weekend. So, something to look forward to.

Meanwhile, I am going to attempt to hit the bed early tonight, hoping that I can get at least a few hours of good sleep before I head into work tomorrow.

Eighty Balls and Cash Trained Employees

What a day. Between work and my home life, things seem to be going crazy for me. Lack of sleep, and having too much on the go, I think it is all having a toll on me. I am taxed right out; low energy and no enthusiasm–at all. Gee, could be time for change? Regardless, today was a bad day. You know when you do stupid things, make choices that are right out of left field, you get that feeling that you should quit while you are ahead. Well, I had that moment, right when I had eighty basketballs bouncing around me becuase I made a bad choice. Yes, I should have stopped, spent a moment to think, then move forward. Instead, I now had a mess on my hands, and that feeling of “stupid” on my face.

When logic and physics clash, it is often when you cannot tell what should go on top, or the bottom, becuase you cannot tell what would hold up, when stacking stuff with a forklift. On one hand, the bigger of the two means it should go on the bottom, when as the type of packaging and the amount of materials that go into the packaging should say otherwise. For example, if you have a skid of say, eighty basketballs, you would make that the top pallet, right? But say you have a small pallet of, say, power tools, that seems to be less than one fifth of the total weight of the basketball skid, then by rights, it could on top without any troubles, right? Well, my poor logic, and lack of thinking, caused eighty basketballs to go shooting everywhere in the warehouse because they should have been the top skid. I cleaned up my mess, but with some criticism from my co-workers. Yes, I deserved it. I am humbled–my bad.

But things did get worse. Because of the demands that are placed on me at my work, I sometimes get sent off to other departments to help out.  On one such excursion, I was ask to man a cash till becuase so many cashiers had phoned in sick. I was never trained on cash, but the day supervisor thought I was just saying that to get out of working up at the front end. It meant that I had to waste time arguing with her, and getting the H.R. Manager involved, while my department was imploding with the back-log of stuff that needed to be done. I was happy to have found out that H.R. had supported me one hundred percent, but a shamed that it took a half hour before I could leave the office to go back to my department. Later, I found out, it was all a mistake due to someone checking off the box that said I was “trained as a cashier” beside my name, when it was clearly a mistake. This seems to be how desperate they are for front end labour. When I think about it, it was funny–me on a till. Gosh.

So, at the end of the day, I thought, maybe it is time for a break.

Right now, I am too tired to think, and too sore to move. I think I need about forty hours of sleep to catch up. Zzzz Zzzz Zzzz

Beware the Scammer

It was a couple a weeks ago now, as I was nonchalantly looking at the rental market up in Northern British Columbia, that I came across an ad that seemed to good to be true. I was delighted when I got a response almost within hours of my query to the ad. I was inspired, and felt hopeful glee, when I was told that this particular home was available, and that I was the only one who has responded. However, in the end, once it was evident that this was a scammer hard at work, trying to dupe me, I whisked away the happy thoughts and moved on.

So, yes, scammers are everywhere, and sadly, not even our law enforcement in British Columbia, the RCMP, can do much about it. It is buyer beware, and due diligence that must be practice when combing the ads of both printed and on-line media. Scammers are everywhere, and they have no moral values; they are human parasites in today’s world.

What was obvious at first for me was how awesome the ad was. It was too good to be true. The price for the dwelling was, unreal, to say the least. So moving forward, looking at the price, and how it was a deal, was the first sign of the scam. In a market that is flush with little competition, where prices were outrageous, seeing a deal that was unbelievably fifty precent below market value, was a dead giveaway. But I kept going with the email exchanges anyway, hoping that this could be the real deal, but doubting it more and more as time went on. Added to this, all utilities were included, even cable and Internet. Yes, he was going to pay for my Internet! My B.S. meter/detector was pointing off the scale now.

The second warning sign came in the form of how fast the acceptance was, and the rush to move to the actual rental agreement form. I should also point out that the replies I received were typed in very poor English, almost to the point that this person was using a spell-checker, while doing “cut and paste” chunks of phrases from other emails. The poor grammar, and ward choice, coupled with flawless paragraphs in the same email proved that this scammer was luring several victims at once. Yes, I had one section where he was speaking to me as a female. Not to mention how basic the rental agreement was, and how little information I had to give, I laughed when he added that to the text of  the email–no attachment or signature in return. It was obvious that all I needed was a pulse, to prove that I was alive, and money, to give to the scammer.

Third, was when I asked to see the place first before I would give out any money for the damage deposit. Now this is where things got murky. In British Columbia, the laws are different from other jurisdictions about what a land lord can, or cannot, ask for as far as money, information and types of contracts rental agreements. To pay for “site unseen” is, well, not the proper way of doing business here in Canada. So when I asked to have the address of the dwelling before I would consider paying with any money, the answer was no: “pay first, then you get the keys” was the reply. The exchange was to priceless. First was the Trans Union Money address in the Untied States, and then the promise of the keys and receipts delivered to me by Fedex. Then was a possible visit, once I was moved in, to see how I would enjoy my new home.

I stopped my conversation with David, the scammer. He never bothered to continue as well. It all stopped as it began. However, I could imagine him waiting for his next prey, another unsuspecting person searching for a place to live here in British Columbia with his deceptive ad.  All I could do was hope that his ad be taken down after my complaint and rid the net of this parasite for about thirty seconds.

Please use your head when shopping on-line, or from printed media, especially about renting. If it seems to good to be true, than it will be a scammer hard at work ready to take your money. Do your research, and please report these ads to the appropriate authorities once you have determined them to be scammers.

May the 4th Be With You!

Other than it being May 4th, today also can be a day Mother Nature (praise nature) turned up the heat on us. Aside from the usual complaining about the weather and work today, it was a good day becuase I upgraded my home PC’s CPU, Yay! I am super happy about that. I ordered the chip about three weeks ago, and the wait almost made me go mad with anticipation. Outside, the day was gorgeous, until the thunder storm crept over top, after that is was a “stay inside day” playing with my freshly upgraded machine, running my 3D graphic software.

The nasty side effects of climate change could not be more apparent than what I see outside, right now, all around me. My thermometer is telling me that it is 21C, with the relative humidity at 99 precent. Heck, why not just say, … 100 percent! It is so muggy out, I feel like I am living back in Toronto, in the middle of July. This is crazy. I have a fan turned on, blowing air outside, so I can get the cooler air into my bedroom. My clothes are sticking to my skin, and my scrotum is welded to my thigh–I am also ready to jump in the shower after I type this out. I ask myself, how could anyone say this is not unusual?

Cool, I just saw a flash of lightning right above me in the sky, by my bedroom window. So, the storm is coming up from the South. This should be interesting. Yup, here it is—hail! Lots and lots of hail.

Oh yes, my new fancy-shmancy CPU. Well, I bought a eight core AMD processor for one hundred clams from a wholesaler on Amazon. I was debating whether or not to keep this Motherboard, or just do a complete upgrade. Since I maxed out the RAM on this board, 64G, I figured I might as well save the money, and just do a minor upgrade instead. I have a Asus M5A97 mainboard, and I guess I can still get parts for it. It is doing a great job for me, so why not keep it for a little while longer. Sadly, it did take a while for the shipping and handling. I did not want to buy it from U.S. becuase of the taxes, so I bought from a place in Calgary. The dirty little secret is, no GST. Heh heh heh. And they seem to be hungry for business, so I went with them instead. It was a great deal. The place I normally do business with, I Surrey, BC, is, well, let me just day that the CPU would have cost me over two hundred clams–and leave it at that. Buying local can be a bad thing too.

So, May the 4th be with you! I hope you enjoyed the day as I have. AdiĆ³s amigo!

Yay, It’s May!

Well, it’s May 2017, already. I can sort of feel it outside, I mean the warmer weather, and the promise of summer fast approaching. But we all know how wacked out the weather is with climate change and all, and who really knows what’s going with Mother Nature…. (*praise nature). Yesterday my patio thermometer said it was almost 18C, albeit it was in direct sunlight, absorbing all that lovely solar radiation, mmmmmm. Far be it for me to say, but I’m hoping for summer like weather to start today. Yes, like right now!

 

Way back in April (about four hours ago) I took some more photos from over at the Glen Valley Aquifer site, and just did the finishing touches to them on my P.C. with the program called Dark Table. This bird was part of that shooting session. I was testing out my 28-300mm telephoto lens and seeing how good the auto focusing was with that lens. My Sony A77 had no trouble with it, as it kept the bird in focus at twelve frames per second. Out of twenty-four shots, only two were slightly out of focus. I love that camera. Anyway, I thought the bird shot was appropriate for this month, as I feel I want to fly away, far way, to somewhere else.

Later on today, I start Monday at my work. Not much to say there, other than I’m not looking forward to it. This is the busy season, and as the weather warms up, so does the building I work in. We have A/C, but it barely works when it get to 30C outside. So, here’s hoping that it does rain tomorrow, or at least it’s overcast. But not my luck, as the good weather always seem to start when I work, and stops during my weekends.

A Lovely Day in the Neighbourhood

The Sun poked out through the clouds, and I was up, and I had my camera with me, so I took the “shot of the day.” Here it is, just to prove that we had some awesome weather today. It was nice; for a change. I decided to blog about it, just becuase.

I had an evil thought today. I thought, is it time to shut down this blog, and give it a rest. After all, it is getting on twelve years now, and I notice that my web traffic is a mere fraction of what it was back in the day. I do not know, just thinking about it, for now?

There are two main reasons why I blog now. First, I like writing. Writing is the most difficult thing for me to do. And I know this goes for most people that I know. Writing is a though thing to do, especially in English, which is just a dog’s breakfast when it comes to technical writing, and the spelling and grammar police that comes with it. But I write on, and now I love it, or else I would not be putting these lines of texts here. My second reason is my love with photography. The website is a means to express that love for my art, and post it for all to see on the world wide web. This web site is loaded with images. Since I graduated up to semi-pro gear, so to has my volume of images as well, and this is the place to see that. But still, I have kept a huge number of photos from my point-and-shoot days with hundred dollar camera. But these are it, my reasons for doing it.