Monday, August 13, 2018

West Coast Summer

West Coast summer has arrived

It's summer time on the wet west coast, and guess what?  It's not wet!

In fact, summers here on the southwest coast of British Columbia are anything but wet.  While the climate is quite mild all year round (snow is such an oddity that people have no idea how to drive in it!), with very wet winters, summers are often very dry.  It seems like the only time it might rain on B.C.'s Sunshine Coast is either during Sea Cavalcade or just when the tomato plants start producing fruit (or is that a vegetable?).

(There's something in the air, here - a very scary thought if you stop to think about it - that causes hollyhock leaves to "rust" and tomato plants to turn black if it rains after the tomatoes start forming.  What are we breathing, anyway?)

Here we are, living in a rainforest, yet there is actually a contest here for the driest, brownest lawn, due to the fact that we haven't got a big enough reservoir to get us through a summer dry spell without taking extreme measures.  Watering your lawn is a taboo that can get you ostracized by your neighbors.  

That's one of the paradoxes (or is that paradoxi?) of living in a rainforest.  Even Prince Rupert, on B.C.'s northern Pacific Coast, billed as one of the wettest cities in North America, has had to put watering restrictions in place some summers.  We have brown grass here in a rainforest, while our desert-dwelling friends in Kamloops and Kelowna have gorgeous green lawns all summer!

The problem, of course, is quite simple.  Because we live in a place where it rains all the time (which, in fact, it doesn't), we assume we'll never run out of water.  Therefore, we don't create water storage facilities - aka, reservoirs - that will hold enough water to get us through a drought - which we often have for three or more months every summer.

That worked out fine a few years ago, before the Sunshine Coast was discovered by Vancouverites who discovered they could sell their tiny rancher in the lower mainland for a millon-five and build a mansion over here.  Our local governments, ever looking for ways to raise taxes easily, have been only too happy to continuously grant development permits for lots and subdivisions, but without doing anything to increase the water supply, ergo the brown lawns.  But it gets worse.

I mentioned the blight on the tomatoes and rusty hollyhock leaves if it rains.  But at least if it doesn't rain, we can water our plants and veggies, and enjoy the flowers and fruits of our husbandry, right?  Well, actually, no...

If we have an all too typically gorgeous, dry, hot summer like this one, the powers that be will wait until our tomatoes are almost ripe, the corn almost ready to eat, the very productive squash plants producing abundant gourds in preparation for our enjoyment alongside the lettuce and pole beans...  Then they will tell us we can no longer water even our vegetable gardens, even by hand.  

That's right.  Here, in a rainforest, we have to let our vegetable gardens wilt and die, due to a lack of water!

But along with this really annoying fact, there is one more sinister.  A rainforest has an abundance of growth on the forest floor, including some of the deepest most you could ever slosh through on a hike in the woods.  But during a long, dry summer like this one, that moss and everything above it dries out.  One lightning strike, one spark from a chainsaw or truck, or lawmower, one careless camper or smoker, and we have one of the scariest things you can imagine - a forest fire in a dried out rainforest.

This year, we've seen a few started, all by human carelessness, but thankfully, our fire fighters have been quickly dispatched to exercise  their excellent skills and thus saving us from a conflagration.  However, we've already lost one of our own brave warriors not so very long ago, and can't afford to lose more.

Thus, like it or not, until our water storage issue is ameliorated, we must put up with beautiful brown lawns and wilting veggies, or risk not having enough water to fight a deadly fire.

Perhaps that's the price we have to pay for living in a place as near to paradise this Earth offers.  What do you think?

Sunday, September 20, 2015

Vandalism During Elections

English: Gibsons Harbour, Sunshine Coast, Brit...
English: Gibsons Harbour, Sunshine Coast, British Columbia Deutsch: Uferweg am Hafen in Gibsons, British Columbia (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Vandalism During Elections:  What are they trying to accomplish?

Vandalism during elections is a problem that never seems to draw enough press.  What are the folks who knock apart and otherwise destroy campaign signs trying to accomplish?  What kind of message are they trying to send?

Let me ask you:  If you saw a truck with an NDP sign stopping at every Green Party sign, the driver getting out, and trashing the sign, would you be inclined to vote for the NDP?  Not likely!  It applies no matter who is doing it.

Election campaign signs, whether we love them or hate them, whether for our candidate or theirs, are legally erected for the duration of the campaign.  It is a criminal act of vandalism to destroy them.

What many people may not realize is that people who put up these signs are volunteers who care about the community they live in.  Never mind what their politics are;  they do a lot of work during a campaign.  All those large signs that are so manly to destroy are put together by hand, built from lumber that has to be measured, cut, fastened together and driven into the ground by community minded volunteers who love their country.

The other day I noticed as I went down "the Bypass," here on the Sunshine Coast, BC, and then back up again, that someone had destroyed every single one of the Conservative campaign signs on both sides of the highway.  One was repairable with the tools at hand, a pair of rocks, so I did.  The rest required a lot more than what I had with me, so I did not.

Today, as I drove along the highway between Gibsons and Sechelt, I saw where someone had vandalized a Liberal campaign sign, cutting out the face of the candidate.  I suppose these criminals must think that if they destroy all except the signs promoting their candidate of choice, people will vote with them.  

Wow.  Such mind boggling intelligence!  They must think the rest of us are very stupid...

Tuesday, May 07, 2013

My Latest Visit to Steveston

Any time your doctor prescribes coffee as an effective medicine and tells you more is better should be considered a good day!

Yesterday, I went to Steveston (Richmond, BC, has absorbed this quaint and beautiful cannery town, now a museum of the dying BC fishing industry).  It was my monthly trek to see the only doctor in BC that I know of who is actively treating Lyme disease.

Friday, February 01, 2013

New Lyme Culture Test Causes Major Denial

As usual, the standard denials and misinformation regarding the reality of there being far more treatable people infected with Lyme disease is being spread by the mainstream medical community.

While they pretend to show empathy, stating that such tests must not be used until proven (by their standards) to be valid, because they may cause patients to miss out on having a correct diagnosis, many, many patients, like me, ARE SIMPLY GIVEN UP ON by mainstream medicine.

I was ABSOLUTELY STUNNED when my doctor admitted to me that they were giving up and would not be doing any further diagnostic work.  The bottom line was, none of the doctors or specialists knew what was wrong with me, nor how to go about treating me other than pumping me full of pain medication, but rather than look seriously at any of what they claim is unproven and/or bogus diagnostic methods, they simply gave up.

WOW!!  If you give up in ANY OTHER PROFESSION, YOU ARE FIRED!!  But not doctors.  Does this inspire trust?  Not from me, any longer...  The greatest danger to health is not people going for untested and unproven medical help;  the greatest danger is those, including the various Colleges of Physicians and Surgeons, who are FORCING very sick people to look elsewhere for help.

The following article regarding a new Lyme Culture Test, published today on PubMed, is typical of what is going on:

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Getting Set Up on Technorati

Nothing is simple, any more.

It used to be that I could just join something with a short name and password, and "click!"  Job's done.

Well, that's not how it works, any more.

It seems that since we have created this great big chunk of invisible playground we call Cyber Space or the Internet, we've also created a giant playground for cheaters...

So... I have to create this post with a special little code included, so that Technorati can check to make sure it's my blog... PLUS... I have to make sure the feed is also working properly, because if this post doesn't ALSO hit my feed, BAM!  Time to start over...

So, here it is, Technorati, the gobbleygook (that IS a word, right) you've been looking for:  JYG85BRQDRJG

Sayonora till next time.

Tuesday, January 08, 2013

A Capital Ship for an Oily... er... Ocean Trip...

So, it is probably inevitable that a pipeline will be built from Alberta's oil sands to the BC coast to carry liquified bitumen from Alberta's frozen north to Asia's sunny shores...

Let's just take a tour of this project on the last part of its route through BC, especially if the present players build the line...

Place:  British Columbia, Canada, circa 2020...

We begin somewhere west of Hazelton, BC, along the banks of the Skeena River.

Note that the pesky odour of fish is no longer there to drive tourists away.  Instead, we now have the pleasant fragrance of diesel on warm summer's days, the gorgeous rainbow colours spread across the surface of this mighty river, the occasional dead eagle floating past....