Monday, December 29, 2008
First off...happy holidays everyone!
That's right, I'm doing the unthinkable and using one hour of my 500+ hours of vacation to do a blog update!
Where to start...
I've been in NS for a little over a week now, and it's been quite busy believe it or not. A time of contrasts, if you will. The excitement to see family and friends was fueling me as I took off from the Simpson airport last Thursday afternoon...and unfortunately I was running on fumes soon after. Massive delays at EVERY AIRPORT on the way home will do that to a guy. I know! Beneath my rugged, ridiculously impressive exterior is a regular person just like you! A regular person who wanders about aimlessly while contemplating selling off all of their possessions in an act of defiance at the Calgary airport.
Let's see...there were weather delays at the Yellowknife airport, the Edmonton airport, the Calgary airport, and Toronto airport, and then yet another delay in waiting to be picked up at the Halifax airport. Although, to be fair to my brother and cousin who picked me up, it wasn't really their fault as they didn't have a clue of what time to pick me up. I think being in Simpson where theres only 2 flights a day has led me to believe that every airport is in the same boat. The only piece information I relayed onto my family in regards to my flight was that it was on Thursday. Apparently, there's more than one flight that comes into the Halifax airport on any given day. Who knew!
Anywho, so come Friday afternoon, I was finally back in Nova Scotia. It was a time of glee! Friends! Family! No snow! 12C weather! Rain! Getting jumped on my way home from downtown!...
yeah....sorry to make that into a bit of a downer. But yeah, without going into too much detail I was sucker punched/jumped on my way home Saturday night by several cowards, which led to me acquiring several holiday cuts/bruises and 2 damaged teeth. I suppose things could have been much worse had I been knocked out as a result of the sucker punch but luckily I made it out relatively unscathed. Will the Christmas miracles never cease!?!
Needless to say, my face as a result of my Saturday night has not helped to alleviate the perception that I live in the bush amongst the natives of the isolated north. But is that really such a bad thing?
As much as I'm against the over usage of the term "irony", I will say I do find it a bit ironic that I've yet to ever have any problem while living in the NWT, where crime supposedly runs rampant and out of control, yet the 2nd day I'm in a sleepy little town in Nova Scotia I have this happen! The ironing is delicious, indeed. (obscure? maybe)
You may also have noticed in the picture above that I appear to have lost a mustache bet. Not true! I have decided to not shave at all while on vacation. Take THAT, (the) man
I'll be the first to admit that I absolutely suck at growing facial hair, although I'm not quite sure how much skill it actually takes. (Am I not rubbing the correct amount of motor oil and gravel on my face before bed each night? Is that what it is?)
Regardless, I still have the opinion that guys who can grow kick ass beards are better than me. Things are looking up for me though; last night while sitting at the local pub with some friends I was voted as being 4th Best At Growing Facial Hair!
And get this: There were more than 4 people there! (There were 9! And only one of the 9 was a girl!)
In more visually appealing happenings, I've been down to Peggy's Cove (and the area surrounding it) 2 times already. This is a good thing because I have lots of family there and I love the scenery there. For those not in the know...go there! You will love it! Or at least have a good, commitment-free night with it.
I hope the following series of pictures can help to convey the sense of beauty and awesomeness that is Peggy's Cove:
But I gotta be honest with you, all this excitement has made me tired. Time to go lie back down on the couch with one arm and one leg hanging effortlessly off the side and let the drool accumulate on my shoulder. (Hey, don't hate)
I hope everyone is having a break as good as mine!
That was not intended to be a threat against you. It hasn't been THAT bad for me! I promise.
at 6:20 a.m.
Monday, December 15, 2008
hmmm okay so maybe I am a bit of a procrastinator. You don't have to go making a big deal of it! I'm sure you have faults too. I'll get around to pointing them out some other time...
Anywho, so the time for my holiday vacation is quickly approaching, and I still have a frickload of things to get done before I go. In typical Alex fashion, I've been talking about these things I need to get done for several weeks, yet I refuse (forget, whatever) to complete them until the last second in a raving lunatic-like manner. What to do...
-Finalize Sadie's dogsitter plans: __ (This one is driving me crazy! I dun wanna leave muh baby gurl!)
-Wrap up work related projects/tasks: __
-Pack for the trip to NS: __
-Clean the house before I go: __
-Fix several items on my truck: __
-Purchase Xmas gifts: __
-Make a pointless list that only makes me feel worse about being such a slackass: CHECK!
-Whole whack of drinking and say my temporary goodbyes to everyone in Simpson: Can you really ever fully check this one off?
Regardless of what the next 2 days of mad-dashing-around-trying-to-get-shit-done have in store for me, I'm definitely looking forward to the trip to Nova Scotia. (Minus the actual trip to Nova Scotia that is. How I love thee, Edmonton Airport)
I haven't been to see NS in almost a year, so who knows what it'll look like! New haircut?? New shirt!? Who knows! I sure don't.
I've had a few people down south already ask me how I'm able to take over 3 weeks off work for vacation, and not one of those days are actually annual days. Well, for those inquisitive minds, many of the offices (Government, First Nations, a couple others) simply shut down for 2 weeks over the holidays, all of which is paid time off! A wonderful system I like to think.
Of course I'm sure there's the select few that work gov't that either will still be required to work or don't get that time off with pay. Yes...you select few...uhhh ummm well...I'm really sorry I brought it up at all. Is that Christmas Rage I see on your face? Wow, that's definitely more intense than regular rage...
During my time out east I won't likely be doing any updates, mainly because I assume my social calendar will be packed to the gills and anything that doesn't involve PURE AWESOMENESS, such as this blog, will simply have to wait. No no, you're correct, this blog does contain AWESOMENESS, but the pureness of it is lacking. (Fun fact: This blog has an aluminum alloy frame...helps to keep the weight down while maximizing durability!)
But seriously...I do expect to have a lot of free time, I just don't know that my motivation will be making the flight east with me. We shall see.
In other news:
I traveled to Fort Nelson, BC this past weekend with the basketball team and the other coach for a small tournament. It was actually my first time seeing BC in any form whatsoever. So while you southernites would likely hit up Whistler or another lame locale such as Vancouver, I got to pop my cherry with Fort Nelson! I don't fuck around! (Tone it back Alex...easy now)
It was a nice drive down from Simpson, about 5 hours south of here. I had never seen the mountains down that way, and gosh darn it, they sure were purdy. See here y'all:
Nice, yes? No? NO?! I see...
As for the tournament, we placed 2nd out of 4 teams. So a mostly successfull weekend for our team. And by team I'm referring to all 5 players. Yes...we were lacking in players for the weekend. But regardless, we had a good time and impressed the Fort Nelson fans
Well I should go going and add more things to not do to my list.
If you're wondering about the blurry photo at the top of the post, it's one of the 3 caribou we saw alongside the road on the drive home from Ft. Nelson on Sunday, along with 3 moose, and a fox. Wahoo!
And you're right, it does seem out of place at the top of the post. Hmm....
at 11:06 p.m.
Sunday, December 7, 2008
Let's get a few things out there:
It's cold outside.
The entire length of the island of Fort Simpson is a little more than 3000m.
I only live about 500 metres from my work as the crow flies. Or about 750m as the man walks.
I have 2 feet.
I have a heartbeat.
I'm a sheep!
Keeping the above in mind...
Fort Simpson is a relatively active spot...you tend to see lots of pedestrians at any given time of the day. However, once the mercury starts dropping below -20C that number magically shrinks as a lot of people will retreat to the confines of their massive F-350s and Ram 3500s. I can't really blame them...it's tough to even fake a smile or act like you're not experiencing an exorcism when you're walking down the sidewalk and a blast of -30C snow and wind hits you smack dab in the face. I too must admit guilt as I've been driving my (also needlessly oversized 5.7L V8 gas-guzzling) truck to work more than I'd like to admit.
To remedy this, I decided that I'd only let myself drive to work maybe once or twice a week, and even then, there would have to be other factors present for me to do so (such as having to get groceries that day or need to drive to the airport for work or whatever). Needless to say, even if I have absolutely nothing else required that day besides the straight drive to and from work, I've been known to quip: "fuck it! I'm driving anyway. Yeeeeehaaaaaaw!".
But back to being a responsible citizen of the Earth.
Whenever I do actually walk to work, it tends to go something like this:
"Good morning Mother Nature! Another beautiful day you have given us today don't you think? What a great day to be walking to work!"
*puffs out chest, gleefully strides down front steps*
"And now to continue placing one foot in front of the other in a continuous succession of movements that will allow me to make my way to my place of work! What a grea-"
*Passing truck stops*
"huh? Oh hey, no no, everything is alright, I decided to walk today! No really, everything is okay. No, my doctor did not recently recommend that I get more exercise..."
*Truck drives away slowly with driver giving a concerned look to our hero*
"hmmm that was awfully nice of him to stop, but he sure did look concerned. Anywho, where was I? Ah yes! Walking! La dee daaa!"
*Passing by truck stops*
"...Oh, good morning. No no, my truck is fine, I've just decided to walk to work today instead. Please, keep your money, my truck already has gas in it. But thanks for offering..."
or something like that anyway. I mean I think it's awesome that everyone in Simpson is that nice that they will offer rides to anyone and everyone at any given time of the day, but I also find it a bit ridiculous that nobody can accept that I chose under my own free will to walk to work that day! Actually...now that I think about it, I'm positive I've done the same thing to other people that are walking to work too. Except that I usually throw out more expletives, ask them what they're trying to prove, and am more relentless in my demanding that they stop walking and let me give them a drive to work/home.
*palm to forehead*
at 10:22 a.m.