Saturday night in Orleans – Ontario, not Louisianna


It’s been months since I’ve written anything.  I’m not sure if I lack inspiration or just the time and energy.  A lot has happened in the past 2 months.  We’ve now partially moved into the new house, but the old house is still not sold, sigh… I am not sure why that is except that the economy is a little unsteady and mostly people are cautious about job security, transfers and raises.  Oh well, I keep having open houses, hoping today is the day!!

School has been very hectic.  Funny, I don’t remember it being that busy or stressful.  Perhaps teachers have to do more than ever or maybe my memory fails me.  We are at the end of our contract in August and contract negotiations are not going well.  Basically, the government wants to freeze our wages for 2 years (not a surprise) and remove all our accumulated sick leave and cut our yearly allowance for sick leave from 20 days to 6.  That might not seem like a big deal to outsiders, but when you’ve had all these benefits throughout your career and you are finally at the age when sick leave might be really important (in case you get a serious illness as many of us do in our 50s and 60s), well, it’s really worrisome. So, stress is my middle name these days.

On the fun side, the new house is awesome!  We have plenty of room to enjoy each other’s company in the kitchen and den area and I am finding we tend to spend more time together at dinner.  Of course the townhouse wasn’t the best place for long, leisurely dinners.  Leon went to BC to get his car, his trailer and furniture and brought back his youngest son, Bradyn.  They’ve been working on the house, trying to get it to up to our standards (well sort of, we need to paint and do a lot of things before we meet those).  Leon’s pride and joy so far is his 96″ screen projector in the new media room in the basement.

We’ve also been to a few exchange teacher meetings in Ottawa (CLEE).  We’ve met quite a few former exchange teachers, most of which went to Australia over the years.  I didn’t know this, but most of the exchanges with Canada are exclusively from Australia now.  There are actually 9 exchangees from this area alone this year.  I thought I was one of very few last year.  Last weekend, we had the Ottawa conference which included tea at the Australian High Commission, a bbq and a dinner out at Tucker’s Restaurant.  It was nice to hear the Aussie accent again.  It made me really miss my buddies out there.  Of course, I forgot the camera each time we had any of these events.  Not sure why that is, except that my life is so scattered with 2 homes within 1 km, that I can barely remember to put my clothes on right or drive my car on the proper side of the road most days.

It’s Friday, the beginning of the long weekend in May, the unofficial beginning of summer and cottage season.  We haven’t got a cottage, but we do have plenty of cold beer, a sunny forecast ahead and high hopes to relax until Tuesday rolls around again.  School is down to 5 weeks, so I am really starting to feel the end is in sight.  Of course, I have lots of school work to do before June 29 but I’ll get there.  We haven’t planned our summer travels yet as the house is keeping us here for now (mentally and literally), but things change fast in our lives, as we all know.

More next time, hopefully with some pictures.

Remember the doomed dress from Hoi An? Well this is the dress I ended up buying and wearing. I think it’s pretty hot. And the ball was a blast too!

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