Thursday, November 29, 2018


  The solution to my leaking humidifier came about very easily.

   The first day I thought I had to check with the company who made the humidifier. I found out these humidifiers are no longer made and that if you were very, very lucky you might find parts. I then checked out stores that had sold the humidifiers. I found a surprising number of part but no hoses. That took care of the first day.

    We've dealt many times with a man who runs a small retail outlet for a plumbing supply company. So the next day I said we'll go there first. Were we lucky. He was able to supply us with all the necessary parts . So :7 ft of hose, two ferrules, two inserts and a copper compression nut .  Put them together and we were good to go.

    So with a little help from my friend things were repaired quickly and easily.

Image result for brass compression nut

Monday, November 26, 2018


     Yesterday I got up at the usual time and stumbled around until my head got cleared up. Finally, I was ready to get my breakfast. Oatmeal porridge! Great stuff.

    About the time the last spoonful of porridge was consumed the Micro Manager arrived in a panic and said , "I hear water running!" Now in the last 50 years I'm sure she's heard water running about 5000 times. I usually check because I don't want water to get a head start on me.

    The micro Manager zoomed downstairs as she was in the bathroom when she heard water dropping and thought the water was leaking down stairs under the bathroom..

    I followed her downstairs at a more leisurely pace. We didn't detect water dropping in the furnace room. After bouncing up and down a few times , the micro manager beat it upstairs again. Once her noise was gone I discovered where the water was dripping. Yes, this time she was right . There was water dripping.

    The little water intake hose for my humidifier had sprung a leak. So turn off the valve that controls water to the humidifier and the leak is over.

    Fortunately we caught this leak right away and not much water had accumulated. Water was wiped up and a fan turned on to dry things up. We both wondered what would have happened if we'd been away.

   Now comes the fun part...finding a hose replacement. The proper sized hose is tricky business. Pressure nuts are on both ends of the hose so the hose has to be one that fits the nuts and the ferule inside the hose. So far I haven't found a suitable hose.

   Wish me luck.

Image result for water drop

Saturday, November 24, 2018


     The house next door to me is being renovated. I have a ring side seat to see the action. The waste is appalling.

     The house was built in 1963 not old. It was well built and has a brick exterior. Very few houses here have any brick on them. Brick is very expensive here. Wood is very cheap so our houses are mostly built of wood.

    The house next door was sold on Oct. 31. The buyers were reported to be planning to spend $100000.00 on renovations. The next day two women showed up and started taking things out of the house... kitchen cupboards and anything that would move. It's just gone on. Attic insulation was removed. Then gyproc went out to the dumpster. The last two days all the interior studding was hauled out. Now the studding is perfectly good wood. It is a crying shame to throw good would into the landfill site.

    I'm afraid more of this house will go into the garbage before they are finished. and start rebuilding. So all electrical and plumbing will be ripped out and thrown away. 

    Now I admit that this house needed some work on it. The people who lived in it did not do regular up keep and it was not very clean. However, a little elbow grease and cleaning would have made a big difference. Then a good paint job. I think the windows may be rotten so they need to be replaced.

    So I think we are very wasteful. Where I live there's lots of good wood so why not throw good would away? I think it's a shame to throw usable material away.

    Why destroy a perfectly habitable building away?


Tuesday, November 20, 2018


   I had an ultra sound on my right shoulder a few days ago. My appointment was to be Dec.20 but  I had put myself on a cancellation list.  So Friday morning at 7:53 AM I was phoned and asked  I wanted an appointment at 8:30 AM.  I thought for a minute. I really didn't want to go as I had no hair or beard combed. I didn't want a bad hair day! I hadn't brushed teeth or put in dentures. I had finished breakfast. I looked at the clock and was sure I could make it so said , "Sure I'll be there."

    Most people have had an ultra sound. You know, plaster some slimy cool goop on the area and then rub a cold electrode over your skin while they watch a screen. 

   Well the young lady who took me was miss antisocial. No small talk from her. Not even a comment about the weather. Just business. Short brief commands as to where to put my arms hands or body.  Rub more goop on and keep rubbing and searching for soft tissue someplace. 

    The ordeal didn't take long. She briefly told me that she had to see the doctor to see if she had been successful with the ultra sound. On her way out she put a towel on the stool for me to wipe the goop off myself. I picked up the towel. Ich! It had the horrible goo on it. I found a place without goo and wiped. The towel was so goopy it didn't seem like I got much off. I put my shirt half way on. Yuch! More goop. 

    I finally got enough goop off to finish dressing.

    About that time, smiley face returned and informed me that things were alright and that I was good to go.

    Some people just can't realize the miserable projection they give of themselves. Have they ever thought of enjoying their job by trying to be pleasant to patients?  Have they ever thought of cleaning the patient off with a warm towel? Now after that I had a good day. I wonder if she had a good day?  

    Or am I being just a little bit cranky?  

Sunday, November 18, 2018


     Yesterday morning, Nov. 17, it was minus 17 C (0 F) when I got up. I was going out at 10:00 so needed the car. I plugged the car in ( the block heater) to make sure that it would start.

    The day before we had a nice winter snowfall...about 6 or 7 cm ( 2 -3 in.) I had shoveled my driveway and found it cold. I say nice snow as it was what we call dry snow...not a sloppy slushy mess.

    At 1:30 Pm yesterday I was meeting my bird watching group. It was minus 4 when we started. It was a brisk pleasant winter afternoon.  Nine of us spent 2 hours and found 9 species of birds. At the end of 2 hours I was ready to go home.

     All photos from Lynette Asselstine Braun.

Image may contain: tree, snow, plant, outdoor and nature

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Image may contain: bird, plant and outdoor

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    Today  Nov. 18 , when I got up it was plus 3 C ( 35 F). Around 9:00 AM it started to rain and rained for a couple of hours. Now we have a sloppy slushy mess. When things freeze this evening it will become icy. For the next three days our highs are 6 and 7 C. This is very unusual weather for us. I prefer weather to be stable and make gradual changes. It's easier to get used to things that way.

    So it's been a big change in just 48 hours.

Thursday, November 15, 2018


        I couldn't miss this photo opportunity!

        Our city is hosting the Canada winter games in January. We've been preparing for this event for 3 years.

       We've got two new arenas, an outdoor artificial speed skating oval , new cross country ski trails... When a city agrees to host an event like Canada winter games various governments come up with grants to build new modern facilities. An old elementary school has been turned into a sports administration center. 

       There are various things set up around the city to promote the city. One thing that's neat is the large red and white letters that say Red Deer. These are placed all over the city. I guess the city hopes that visitors will do as I did and take some photos.
      The letters are close to 2 m (6 ft) high. 

      The Micro Manager posing.

I couldn't resist this for someone who goes by the name of Red.

I'm a big cheering section for our city!

Monday, November 12, 2018


     I came home from birding about 3:30 Sat. afternoon.  As I entered  the house I sensed that the Micro Manger was in the basement.  I was unloading my back pack and putting birdy things back like my field glasses.

    I thought I heard something different like a screech. It happened again. The third time I realized that the micro manager was calling me. Instantly, I was on high alert and went downstairs two steps at a time. This sounded serious.

    I found the Micro Manager behind the washer with towels trying to stem the flow of suds. At first, I thought she was mopping up water.

    She was finally able to tell me that soap suds were coming out at the back of the washer. As her panic lessened she told me that she was running the washer on a special cycle that would clean the washer. It was cleaning the washer alright. Massive amounts of soap suds were forming. This special cycle would clean out soap residues. It was doing a great job. Soap suds were coming out of the washer drum from somewhere.

    As calmness was returning, she told me that she had never run this cycle before. She had always been cautious with the amount of soap she used for the washes. She always used less than the recommended amount of soap.

   So the micro Manager was very surprised at the amount of suds and therefor the amount of soap left as residue in the washer. She ran the cycle over again and also had a huge build up of suds. She has had this washer for close to ten years and never run this cycle.

   I guess after this she will run the cleaning cycle more often. As you can see it's one of the washers with all kinds of gadgets and options.

Image result for duet washing machine

Friday, November 9, 2018


      My Dad was a fanatic about fishing. He discovered fishing in the early fifties when a friend took him out fishing. 

     There was only one lake near us that had any fish and it was a good lake. There were other lakes but they were quite saline and didn't have fish. 

    Some neighbors built Dad a little wooden boat and he thought it was the best boat in the world. When fishing season opened he would take his boat down to the lake and leave it for the summer ...unlocked. In the late fall before ice formed he would make a trip to the lake and bring his boat home for the winter.

    Now one year he decided to send my brother and I to pick up the boat. I was 14 and my brother was 13. We didn't have driver's licenses. As kids in a rural area we began driving when we were very young. I started when I was 11. We didn't go to town. We just drove on the farm. By age 14 we drove all aver the place. 

    You may say why didn't the police catch you? There weren't any least not nearby. What about traffic? There was next to no traffic. We were in a very sparsely populated area so our chances of running over somebody were very slim.

    Well , we got to the lake and loaded the boat. Dad had taken the sides off the truck box for some reason. We had to be careful. 

   By the time we got home it was dark. When we got out of the truck, there was no boat on the back of the truck
My brother and I at ages 3 and 4

.     The old farm house. I tried to find a photo that would show nothing but open space.

   Okay, we got back in the truck and put the pedal to the metal to find the boat. The boat was 2 miles down the road and had fallen off as we turned a corner. 

    The boat had not been damaged so Dad was ready for the next fishing season.

   Many times we did adult jobs on that old farm that were very necessary and we were proud of the jobs we did,

Wednesday, November 7, 2018


    Since a very nasty and divisive political campaign came to an end yesterday, it might be time to look at the situation since it's the morning after.

      I  look back in time to see strong dynamic leaders who led good governments.  Today I dislike the  governments we have. I look forward to getting a better more perfect government in the future. 

     I look back at presidents who I admire: Carter, Kennedy, Obama, Truman. I look back at Canadian prime ministers such as: St Laurent, King, Diefenbaker, Trudeau Sr. I even got to like Brian Mulroney and Jean Chretien. I think I would like  Eisenhower or Roosevelt.

     So when we look back things don't seem so bad. 

    However, today we have a different political climate. The characters we have today don't seem to have any concept that there is a country and that they serve that people. Policies should be crafted that bring about benefits for all and to make a strong country. Leaders today play fast and loose with the truth. Voters don't seem to be able to make these devils pay for not telling the truth or leading  country to strength and goodness.

    For tomorrow I'm optimistic. I hope there will be honorable great leaders step in to lead government. I hope that our governments will see the light that certain things have to be done to have a good country. They could start by seeing that something large and very concrete has to be done about climate change like yesterday.

    For me, I'm influenced by perspective. I wear a number of different colored glasses. 

    Do you have leaders from the past who you think were successful in moving the country forward. Who were these leaders? What were they like?

   Do you have hope that in the future we will have honorable people step in to lead a country for the good of all or should I say most?

Sunday, November 4, 2018


      I have gone through daylight savings time changes as long as I can remember. And that's a long time. I'm not sure if I've experienced day light saving time all my life. However, I don't remember day light savings time in the Arctic. I don't remember day light savings time in Quebec. 

    I have always maintained that the time change doesn't bother me. But I guess if you think that we don't need to use daylight savings time then it is a bother.

    Have you ever counted all the clocks you have in your house? I have 8 clocks and two watches. We don't set the watches. Now to set all those clocks is a pain. If we didn't have day light saving time I wouldn't have to change my time pieces. Now I have to do this twice a year. 

    If I stop and think about it there's not one advantage for me to  go on day light saving time. 

    It's interesting to read about the odd rebel who refuses to change the time. It would be much easier for them to change time rather than to keep track of things so that they meet their obligations.

    Now I will admit that for the days or few days of change I feel some stress. Today just seemed off. I stayed in bed until my get up time but I didn't sleep. All day things seemed off. I just felt that there were things I should be doing like eat lunch but it wasn't time to eat lunch. It seemed like there was a phantom day out there. 

   So the change in times does bother me. 

   I don't see the need to change and I think we are questioning more an more why we should use day light saving time.

  I could gladly fore go daylight saving time or should I say I would like to stay on daylight saving time all year.

   How do you feel about the time change?

Thursday, November 1, 2018


    For a long time my bicycle helmet has been descending into ruins. The outer shell is in two parts and the tape binding them together dried out. It was replaced with duct tape. Somehow the inner styro foam kept getting dirtier and dirtier. The inside pads were either lost , on the wrong place or rolled up. The chin straps were stiff from all the absorbed perspiration. 

    For years I had left the helmet out in the shed over winter. This meant that I didn't bring it in and wash it. 

   I'm not sure you want to go any further with this post. You know now that the helmet was in terrible condition. When I would stop and talk to somebody and take my helmet off I would keep the inside hidden.

    Well it got worse. During one of our recent snows, a mouse got in the shed and found that my helmet was a great toilet!

    Well, what to do now? So after some careful consideration I decided to rehabilitate my bike helmet. I fixed up a pail so that I could soak the helmet in soapy water. I used a brush and then rinse. I let the helmet dry out. Surprise surprise the helmet looked quite clean. 

    The micro manager had kept the original helmet box and guess what...there were spare pads in the box. So I replaced all the gross pads with new pads. I had to use scissors to modify some pads but it worked.

   So now I have a very nicely rehabilitated bike helmet! I'm not finished riding for this year but I'm certainly ready for next year.

I'm sure this is the most duct taped bike helmet around. It also looks like the old guy wearing the helmet could use some duct tape in a few places.