The Last Night of Lawn Bowling

….what a great season

This was the first year, since 2020 where we were able to play a full season and with fewer restrictions. Many of us, including myself, had the experience of playing in tournaments with other clubs and with the addition of 30 new members in our club alone we made a lot of new friends.

Thursday evening was our last opportunity to play. It was cold and windy but enough members came out to play on three rinks. Today the city came by and laid a layer of sand to the pitch which prevents us from playing into next week. In a couple of weeks we will have one more opportunity to get together and share a meal at a local restaurant.

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Weekly Prompts Weekend Challenge – Waste

thanks to Sue W. and GC for hosting Weekly Prompts https://weeklyprompts.com/2022/06/11/weekly-prompts-weekend-challenge-waste/

I don’t often take photos of waste but two years ago, at the beginning of COVID, my neighbour and I went out every day for a month and collected the waste that people left behind. We were appalled at the amount of trash we picked up every day. People started to notice and thanked us and many people picked up the cause. It seems that the amount of trash is somewhat less these days.

Much of the trash that we collected had washed up from the lake and we found some pretty interesting things along the shoreline, hidden under the rocks and landfill that lined the edges of our parks.

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Cooking for Ukraine

last Friday a good friend hosted a Ukrainian lunch

Patricia is of Ukrainian descent and loves to share her culture and food favourites with her friends. Last Friday she did just that and asked that we make a donation to a charity of our choice that supports the Ukrainian people.

The table was all decked out with a beautiful table cloth and a wheat sheaf. Before lunch we were treated to kielbasa and slices of buttered rye bread as we got caught up with the comings and going of our lives. This was the first time in over a year that we got together in person.

When we sat at the table we were greeted with a beautiful bowl of homemade borscht, followed by cabbage rolls and pierogies with sour cream and mushroom gravy. The meal was topped off with coffee or tea and poppy seed cake. A lovely meal and all for a good cause.

When I got home I found a charity that was matched dollar for dollar.

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If you’d like to donate to an organization that feeds the Ukrainian refugees here is a link for the World Central Kitchen, donations@worldcentralkitchen.org

I Got My Booster Shot on a Bus

….no kidding, it was a pop up clinic in the middle of a parking lot

Last Thursday I decided to go to one of the many pop-up clinics that are showing up in Toronto and elsewhere in Ontario and try to get my booster shot a little earlier. I had managed to get an appointment for January 6th but with the kids coming over at Christmas I thought I’d try to get an earlier appointment.

When I got to the outdoor plaza at Dixie and Dundas, I wasn’t sure I was in the right place but I eventually saw the GO bus where the clinic was being held. After I parked the car I walked over to the line where people were masked and socially distanced. It was hard to tell how many people were ahead of me because the line snaked around rows of parked cars. Luckily it was a mild and sunny day.

Soon after I arrived someone came around handing out tickets to make sure they had enough doses and they announced that they had run out of the free testing kits. Half the line behind me left when they heard that. I quickly got to know the lady behind me and saved her place in line so that she could find a washroom. Most of the people in line were in their 60s and knowing where the closest washroom was was essential. We quickly got to know the couple in front of us and for the next five hours (I kid you not) we chatted up a storm. Not sure I would have stayed in line if I had known that the wait would be that long. When we got there they told us three hours, which was bad enough.

Did I mention that the sun was out and it was 15 degrees celsius when we got there? It was but it changed over the next five hours and it became cloudy and very windy. We prayed that the rain wouldn’t start because there was no shelter in the line. At about the 4 hour mark our legs were becoming quite numb and we started jumping up and down to keep the circulation going and warm up our feet. After five hours I finally I got my booster shot that took all of five minutes. I said good bye to my new found friends, Suzanne, Jackie and Warren and we all went our separate ways.

Am I glad that I got my booster shot? Maybe glad is the wrong word but I am relieved. It is one less thing to worry about for me and my family.

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A Tribute to Shirley

…Shirley was a long time cottager up on Big Sand Bay

Shirley O’Donnell passed away a week ago today. I saw her one last time back in August when we were both at our cottages. She looked well but clearly her health was not good. Her log cabin cottage was the envy of the beach. Over 40 years ago she had the logs of the cabin floated over to Big Sand Bay and rebuilt on top of the dune. Every summer she and her two children resided in this rustic cabin. She only had electricity installed in the last decade and like us used an outhouse for most of her cottage life. Several years ago she had a beautiful little building put up next to the cabin with a composting toilet and an outdoor shower.

On the weekend I got up early Sunday morning and took a walk to Shirley’s place and started to take photos of the view and the special little touches that made her place so special. The mist coming up over the lake was very mystical and I almost felt like Shirley was looking down on us and sharing the morning with me.

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The Beauty and Fun of Trash Collecting

…how can collecting trash be fun or beautiful?

On on our 30 Day Clean-up Challenge people have often commented that they couldn’t do what we were doing. I think one of the reasons why we were so successful and persistent on completing this project was because we could see that it was making a difference. The parks were definitely cleaner and ‘some’ people were making an effort to help keep it that way.

We also had fun while we were doing this. Sometimes it was like looking for buried treasure between the rocks and often we’d be amazed at the things we found. The lost wallet was returned to its owner and Trish also found a cell phone and was able to locate the owner.

After each haul we’d take a minute or two for photo ops. Trish loved posing in unusual stances, sometimes doing cartwheels and hand stands. I on the other hand was a little more conservative with my poses.
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The beauty of trash collecting in the parks comes from discovering the nooks and crannies of the park that I would never have ventured to before. I had never walked onto the rocks before and there were areas around the pond that I discovered for the first time. We also met a lot of wonderful people and we really came to appreciate the beauty of our environment.

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The Hazards of Trash Collecting – Part 4

….on our 30 Day Challenge Trish and I had a few mishaps

Collecting trash in the parks, along the beaches and in the rocks has its misfortunes. Luckily for us none of them were too serious.

Trash collecting can wreak havoc with your clothes:

Burrs were a constant problem.6-EA0-AD5-B-C3-B7-4-C84-85-AE-5-A2-BBF55697-E ACC70191-3-F13-413-A-AEFD-D36-E93-BE9-E82 153-B5-C4-D-72-E4-4-B56-B8-CD-B60476-E188-EF 3-C144-F3-A-28-AB-413-F-BBD4-D5-FE8-C41-ED99

Climbing over wire fences can cause tears in your tights.
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The insects can also be problem. The midges were particularly bad. Thanks goodness for face masks.
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Wearing proper shoes and gloves is very important. I learned both the hard way. On the rocks I pulled out a broken beer bottle and promptly cut my finger. Luckily I brought water with me and Trish had hand sanitizer. I put pressure on the cut and cleaned it out as best

I could. Once the bleeding stopped I put on my gardening gloves and continued to work.

On another trip I was wearing my sandals. It was towards the end of the challenge and a lot of vegetation had grown in on the pathways. Everything seemed fine until I felt a burning sting under my foot. I quickly looked down and saw a wasp fly out from under my toes. Upon closer inspection we didn’t see a stinger but I did notice red ants in the area and I suspect it was an ant that bit me and not the wasp.
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Towards the middle of May as the weather warmed up it was important to wear sunglasses, hats and sunscreen. There were days when I felt I had been in the sun a little too long.

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The final hazard of course is falling. There were days that I wasn’t comfortable on the rocks and I soon figured out it was due to my low blood pressure. If I didn’t have my morning coffee before we left I felt dizzy on the rocks and I would stay on the pathways while Trish did her thing diving between the rocks to retrieve treasures deep in the crevices. Even on the beaches the rocks were slippery and on the paths rocks jutted up and were tripping hazards. There were a few times that I slipped or trippedĀ  but luckily I always caught myself before going down.

Trish was more adventurous and one day she tried to jump to a large rock for a photo op but she slipped and ended up in the water (only her shoes got wet).2116-ED66-FA85-4009-BB9-C-868-D582-D5238
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In the next segment I will talk about the fun and beauty of trash collecting.