F 1 D 0 - 2003 03 15 at 23 20

Back at home.

I'll begin with a rough outline of life recently.
The purpose of this list is for my own benefit,
to help me recall the events.

Sat 15 Sunny day. Relax ride to cheese farm.
Fri 14 Student Art Show. Marc's 40th birthday surprise.
Thu 13 Bus ride home. 
Wed 12 Packing Day.
Tue 11 English Dance. Mandarin with Tom + Cindy.
Mon 10 Irish Dance. Assorted meetings with Dave A.
Sun 09 ?
Sat 08 Contradance. Day with Tim to Long Branch. 
Fri 07 ?
Thu 06 ?
Wed 05 Assorted meetings with Dave A.
Tue 04 English Dance.
Mon 03 Irish Dance missed.

I should have made notes.

I know that some of those question marks
are for days I spent with Tom trying to 
learn the way to code ASP to talk to Access
databases, using the Microsoft Jet Engine.

Today. Saturday March 15th. It's almost over.

It began with coffee and me having a delicious
chocolate flavoured protein shake. This stuff
tastes more like ovaltine than a shake. It was
fine. I'm told that if I exercise as much as I'm
doing, this stuff should help tell my body to
repair torn muscle instead of packing on extra lard.

Most of today I've been as I was during my visit
south: full all of the time. Eager to eat, but still
full full full. That Full Feeling only passed this
evening. I had a salad just now.

Oops. I'm out of time sequence.

The protein stuff doesn't just have liquid nutrition,
but is designed to create a sense of fullness.

I'll keep you appraised on how effective it is.

I got a letter from the Games Complex. It is
written by someone. I don't know WHICH someone.
Her freemail address is gorjus at something.

It talks about a group meeting at the rec centre,
and good dates for recertifying our CPR and First
Aid. I'm thinking I'll get mine done again soon.

The weather here is always sunny, and today, we
had spring time all day long. 

That had some interesting effects on the children
around here. They were all scrambling to play with
the snow before it all melted. The kids next door
were at it, making forts. The children across the
street were throwing it around as well. I'm telling
you, it was warm and wonderful, but people here really
are friends with the snow, and there hasn't been all
that much of it, from what I hear.

Ann and I decided to go take some bottles to the local
recycle area in the north east corner of town. Then
we went the other way, to visit the Thunder Oaks cheese

This place only makes GOUDA. But they are well loved,
and this is deserved. They make it right in front of
you, if you care to stand around and watch for long

I've been asking each time I go about EXTRA OLD GOUDA.
They make two kinds. E-O-gouda, and E-O-Swiss-Gouda.
Both are rather firm cheeses, and they seem to be
popular. "When will you have it in stock once again?"
I chirp. "Maybe for new years?" she answers me.

She wasn't kidding. The old cheese sells well, so
well, that it doesn't make sense for them to run
out of that. So they'll take the stuff earmarked
for extra old, and sell it. They are trying to 
catch up with demand, but it isn't working.

Our order for today was one package of garlic
curds, a block of Clove and Cumin flavoured,
a block of Old, and a small package of Fennel
flavoured. The herbs in the cheese are special.
I like how you smell it as your teeth touch.

We took the long way back home. Along Broadway.

In any US town, Broadway would be the main street.
I don't know who labelled it here, but it is full
of large scale factories. The Abitibi pulp mill, 
and the Bombardier train factory. Other large
business too, but I don't recall their names.

I saw a new GO doubledecker passenger car in the
lot, and a couple of PCCs from the 1940s too.

Winding our way through spacious lots of light
industrial firms, we found our way to West Fort.

On Frederica Street is a delicatessen for Italian
goodies. They always have lots of meat ends for me.

Not this time. "You snooze, you lose!"

Maybe later on I'll buy a large economy sized tin
of anchovies. 

Chapters Bookstore was next. I was thinking of going
into Starbucks there as well, but I've been full full
full, so I was happy just for a bathroom stop, and 
to read some books on ASP, ADO, dotNET, and other
alphabet things. I'm eager to learn some new skills
which might be of interest to others needing development.

Next stop was the Superstore. This place is related
to Loblaws or Zehrs, in that they stock President's
Choice products. Ann had a hanquering for daffodils.

We passed our street, and went to Folino's, a news
agent. A big spacious store full of most magazines 
and newspapers. 

We came home. I prepared a soup, as that seemed
to be the thing I desired most. And only a little
while ago, after it all went down, was I interested
in also having some salad. Ann pulled that together.

- -


There was a major art show for students
which opened today. More than a show, it
is a juried event, where prizes are awarded,
and people get to see everything.

The Thunder Bay Art Gallery was full. I'm
thinking the official galleries in Toronto
wouldn't do this kind of gesture, even for
the art schools nearest to them. So making
this a city event does a lot for the participants.

I'm getting old. All of the students seemed
so very, very young. One, their spokesman
for the evening, had trouble with "La Dolce
Vita Pastries", a sponsor of the event. Oh,
not a personal problem, just pronunciation.

But I wonder if I did any better when I was
that age. I think so, but I don't know so.

Some of the artwork was remarkable. I liked
a drawing of stones at the water's edge. I
wasn't alone. That work received three awards.

Some was whimsical, other things smacked of
academic assignments. Still, it was well done.

After the goodies were all handed out, Ann
met with many people and well wishers. We
were in a hurry, as we wanted to continue
our evening with some fine wine and party
food for our next door neighbour's 40th

I found out he suspected something was up.
What he didn't expect was where it was arranged.
They used Ann's new studio.

It makes a great space. Truly. It has tall
ceilings, and the art was handpicked for the
gallery/studio opening before, so it feels 
like a party in the hall of a wonderful

That will change soon. She's planning on 
covering the nice wood floors, and then
it will become what it was meant for in
the first place: a centre where she can
create more of these things. A working

I had two slices of cake. Big mistake.
I went out for a walk right away to
clear my mind. Stopped at the local
Italian meeting hall, where a wedding
reception was winding up. All of the 
men were in black suits, all of the
women were in evening wear. And me? I
wasn't in jeans, but I wasn't one of them
either. With this big beard, I've been
described as a Tasmanian Rabbi. I must
have a wildman look.

I think I look less wild than that,
but I digress.

I returned to the party, but my head
was still full of sugar. I needed to
settle down, and I found the music and
everything all too loud. So I found my
way into the basement for a nap, and
almost as quickly as it happened, my
head cleared.

A good time was had by all. I hear
Alison and Marc got home around 3am.

 - -

Previous Saturday Report. I had a great day.

I got up with a headache, and was sluggish,
but after a while, kicked my self out the door,
and met Tim at 401 Convenience.

That is a store open very late hours, which
sells pop, cigarettes, and... Trading Cards!

He bought a magazine there.

We walked south on Yonge Street, an important
main street in Toronto.

We took ourselves to Queen, where our adventure
would begin. But not right away. Tim said he was
hungry, so we went into a Pizza Pizza. They had a
long line up, so we gave up after 10 minutes there.

I took us to Taco Bell, where he had "number one",
two tacos, fries and drink. These places are very
similar to american Taco Bell, in that the drinks
are bottomless, and the quality is reliable and
high. I never have a bad Taco Bell experience.

(they have a guarantee and an 800 number, and I 
have never used them)

Before leaving for this trip, I packed a lunch too.
A very fresh pita, buttered heavily. Two smokies.
Three thick slices of fresh pork roast.

I had these while Tim had Tacostuff.

Onward. He wanted to see the ToysRUs, and I
wanted to see the Compu Smart. We used a lot
of time in both places, and both were oddly

Not a problem, I was glad to just have good
time with him, and agree on the subject.

Eventually, we found our way on the westbound
streetcar, along Queen Street.  This is a VERY
long ride. We began our return trip at Long Branch
loop at 530, and arrived back at Yonge Street after

The ride was familiar to me. I liked seeing the
districts along Queen and Lakeshore, where the 
streetcar goes. It runs through old Mimico and
"new Toronto". Many of the original historic buildings
have been removed for newer yuckier ones.

I split up with tim at Yonge Dundas. He went to
see Tom and Cindy. 

I went to a lovely dance. It began with a one-hour
waltz workshop. The guy who leads is knows he is a
nice guy, knows he is a smart guy, knows he is a good
dancer. He's awful just because of that.

Otherwise, he's fine.

But his workshop was well delivered and sharp.

The caller (I forget who it was) was a good
teacher and sharp leader. We did a few mixers,
many contradances, and a square. All was good.

Afterwards, I went out to J J Muggs, a drinking
place, and had an order of fries with a few dancers.
It was good to do that.

I came home to find Tim still here. He ended up staying
too late, so he got permission to spend the night here.
He's sleeping downstairs.

They got a medium pizza each. Tim's was hawaian (?sp),
Tom's was pepperoni and pepper, Syn's was chicken and
mediterranean vegetable. I had a slice of each. What a
nice way to get welcomed home.

For some reason, everyone is exhausted, so the house
has gone to sleep at 218am. This isn't normal. Yesterday
this happened at 530am or so.

I'm going to put some time into my new project, and will
call it a night when my eyes hurt a little.

- -

03 03 07 Friday.

Life here starts promptly for me when I wake
up, but it doesn't seem to matter whether that
happens at noon, or at 930am.

I got to see my folks yesterday.

I wanted more time with them, but they
were only interested in one hour, and 
that hour was inside their car, at road
side. Mom had back trouble and dad was
mostly silent. I'm not complaining. I
just wanted more, that's all.

I went looking at U of T bookstore for
my DNA book. They say they need six weeks
to get it. And the cost is now 129. Yuck.

It is a nice bookstore, never the less. I
relaxed and spent much time there.

There is a library sort of across the
street from that bookstore, where I also
spent much time. I realized I'd never gone
into it all of these years, so I checked it

I read the newspaper at Starbucks for an
hour yesterday. That was fine.

It had a lot of quiet time in it, yesterday.


That was a Dave A day. Lots of driving
and talking and hearing stories. I met with
Gordon C, as he had modem issues. 

He had a lovely USRobotics modem, external
kind. Wow! He went to a computer store, and
got a PC to PC cable as they look like universal
ones. The cable has four ends; two big ends, two
small ends. That should work, shouldn't it? 

No. Serial connections are almost a lost art.

When connecting from a computer to a modem,
a straight through cable will suffice. When
connecting from a computer to another one,
the cable is called a Null Modem, and requires
two of the pins exchanged (read for write).

Another serial issue is more obvious. There 
isn't a good standard as to whether the modem
plug should be large (with 25 pins) or small
(with 9 pins). Also no consensus about which
gender (male or female).

Add one more confusing thing.

The parallel port on the computer is 25 pins
female, so if someone is confused, they could
plug a serial cable into that, and wonder why 
nothing is working.

Gordon took us out for chinese food, which
was very much like going downtown for traditional
chinese. Very authentic, very good.

It took ages for it to go down. 

I'm having that trouble with all food of late.

It's nice, it's good, but the meal I have at
lunch leaves me full and distended until 10pm.

That's all I know.