January 3rd, 2010:
Another New Year, and a very pretty one it is, with bright sun, moderate temperatures and occasional calm periods between gusts.
Sandy and Blaine were here; also, my sister Cathy from Prince Albert. We spent a very quiet, enjoyable New Years, mostly watching movies.
This morning, we enjoyed another family brunch at the Station House. There were twenty four of us there, including Cathy’s granddaughter, Joanne Scheidt and her partner, Scott Faulkner. The little kids were perfect angels; Brie spent the whole time being passed from lap to lap.
We went to another play at Persephone Theatre on December 16th; as usual, we were picked up at our door by a taxi, taken to Parktown Hotel for a great dinner, then taxied again to the theatre. The play was a musical, “Little Women”. I hadn’t read the book as a child – that was girl stuff – so didn’t know what to expect. Doreen had read it, but couldn’t remember anything about it. It was about a mother and her four girls living in New England during the American Civil War. The father was away in the army, and the family had almost no income, so lived a pretty precarious existence. There was a rich aunt who was willing to help, but her help had conditions that the family would not accept.
Basically, it was a study of five very different personalities. The mother, loving and caring, but spending money her family could have used to help a worse-off family nearby. Meg was a pretty girl, Mother’s helper when she wasn’t dressing up to impress the boy next door. Jo was a writer of plays, impulsive, sometimes outrageous, but good-hearted. Poor, tragic Beth, very musical but dreadfully shy and timid; and the youngest, Amy, who liked to draw and paint but was a spoiled brat capable of awful tantrums. I was a little surprised to find I thoroughly enjoyed it.
Our cold snap wasn’t all bad – when it finally warmed up to normal temperatures, we thought we were in the tropics. It was spring jackets for a little while. Some more cold weather just before Christmas, but it just didn’t feel so bad.
Christmas week, we finally got some snow, though nothing like what they got farther east. We must have got four or five inches, and without the strong winds. Light and fluffy, and easy to shovel. It made the streets terribly icy, though, so there were lots of fender benders plus some serious accidents.
Tuesday morning coffee at the Co-op, and Wednesday morning coffee at Market Mall, continued through the holidays, but Saturday morning breakfast with the Sunseekers was cancelled. The Field House CARG program shut down after December 23rd and doesn’t resume until January 4th; with the icy conditions, we didn’t get much exercise, except for our elbows.
Speaking of the Field House, we run into a lot of acquaintances there. Most recently were Ray and Elaine Hill. Ray was United Church minister at Wynyard in the early ‘60s.
On Christmas Eve, our two grandchildren, Sara and Scott, and Sara’s friend Shannon, Lucille, and Jenny were here for supper. We had a wonderful visit – a big bunch is nice, but for one-on-one visiting there’s nothing like a small group. We got to know our grandchildren better than ever.
On Christmas, Mike, Marg (from Spy Hill) and Danny (from Carrot River) were here besides Jenny and Lucille, and again it made for great visiting. Visits with our family are always upbeat affairs.
We went to Costco for lunch on Boxing Day; it wasn’t all that busy, in fact there were less people lined up at the cash registers than I have ever seen. Lunch was good – a hot dog and pop for two bucks. When we left there, the west-bound lane of 71st Street was bumper to bumper, just inching along. Same thing on Idylwyld, all the way to 42nd Street, and we could see the same on the Highway 16 overpass. Everyone was going to the hockey game, where Canada beat Latvia 16-0. We heard next day that traffic was so slow that there were thousands of seats empty for the whole of the first period. Police are begging people to car-pool, or take a bus, but the busses weren’t moving any faster than the cars. I guess they were hoping to cut down on the number of vehicles. Can you imagine the mess in the arena’s parking lot? It didn’t affect us at all because we were going the other way.
Christmas night, we had Mike, Marg, Danny, Jenny and Lucille with us, so we took two vehicles and toured the Enchanted Forest light show. We hadn’t been there for a couple of years, and there were several new exhibits, the most dramatic being Noah’s Ark. Traffic was light and we felt no compulsion to hurry. If you are in the city, make it a must – it is terrific.