Friday, April 13, 2012

Mind reading is my next trick.

Or that would be my guess,  since I went to the bank machine this morning as was able to use my card.  Still no call from the Bank Lady though, so I guess I was supposed to get the word “telepathically”?   Or something.  Or just keep trying the card?  Sure glad we’re not travelling.  That would be stressful.  Cripes!

I thought maybe the amount was the problem so I only took out €100,  which means I’ll have to go back at some point.  The amount shouldn’t be a problem though,  since I think our daily limit is something like 2000 bucks.  The only snag is,  the machine here will only deal out €400,  so we’re capped at that amount.  But two thousand bucks?  That’s kinda scary.  I don’t recall why we put it that high,  but there was something once upon a time about having to do a transfer of some sort.  Somebody who didn’t take Visa?  Long since forgotten.


I like to have a couple Euros hanging around on the weekends,  in case Travelling Companion gets any “ideas”.  No complaints though, neither of us really spend much,  since we seem to have enough “stuff”. 


For my part,  I decided to do a little shopping this morning.   (*ahem* speaking of stuff…)

Well,  besides at the butcher and the baker.   There was no “candle stick maker”,  but I did go to the other two.  Sometimes the butcher has a really nice looking tenderloin,  and he’ll lob off a couple steaks for me,  at whatever thickness I’d like.   It ain’t cheap,  but having a steak cut from the tenderloin like that means there’s absolutely no waste.  Plus,  I really don’t like to work too hard at eating a steak.  Cheap is good,  but not at the risk of cracking a molar.


Anyone who has a clue who lives north of the forty-ninth parallel knows about Lee Valley Tools

I suppose that’s sounds pretty harsh.  Possibly if you’re some high priced lawyer working on Bay street (isn’t that where they hang out?)  and have never had to do a stitch of manual work in your life,  you might never have heard of them,  but you’re going to be too busy to read some drivel on a blog anyway,  so I’m reasonably certain I’m not going to be upsetting anyone on that front. 

Considering that the last two digits of my six digit customer number is ‘86’,  you can get the idea that I’ve been shopping there for a while.  That’s what?  26 years?  Whoa.


The thing is,  since I’m way over here on the other side of the globe and have some silly need to feel connected in some way,  I have a few outfits that send me little email snippets from time to time.   Even got one from the local guy where I buy my good clothes.  Unfortunately taking advantage of his offer of a ‘second pair of trousers’ is a bit of a challenge.  That was their latest email offer.  There was more to it,  but it doesn’t really matter.  Besides,  I’m a little “full up” on the good clothes front.  Never hurts to look though.

Took me a couple minutes to root out these photos,  since they are on another drive,  but this place was also where my son-in-law got fitted out for his wedding.  OK, my daughter’s wedding.  Whatever.  Come to think of it,  it’s where I got fitted out for MY wedding too.  Hm.  I guess we’re what you would call loyal customers.


wedding pictures 013

It’s the kind of place where,  they have all your information (used to be on a rolodex,  but now it’s on computer) and if I did need a couple ties,  or a shirt or whatever,  they already knew what I have on hand,  my size,  and what would go with it. 

Remember these things?



What that means for a guy like me is,  I can be in and out of there,  having bought a couple shirts or whatever (and a few hundred bucks poorer)  within a maximum of 20 minutes to a half hour.   More time spent shooting the breeze than anything else.

My kind of “shopping”,  really.


wedding pictures 012

And here’s my brother Angus (that would be the fellow who has the hobby farm in rural Nova Scotia)  trying on a really spiffy jacket. 

That jacket was about 50 cents short of a thousand bucks.  I love my brother,  but I wasn’t buying him no freakin’ jacket!

Actually,  he was just trying it on,  to “see what that felt like”. 


So I got this note from Lee Valley yesterday I think it was:


I resisted for about a day,  but then I had to do it.   I heard tell of some sort of a “shoe buying maxim”  amongst the ladies where,  if you see a pair of shoes and you think about them for a week,  you need to buy them.   Of course,  with some of these special buys from Lee Valley,  if you don’t get on it within a fairly short period of time,  they may very well be sold out.  This I know.

Now,  I have a couple compressors and enough hose.  But I have the kind of hose you fight with in the cold temperatures.  Not fun.  So I splurged just a little. 

There was a period of a few years there,  when I was changing as many tires spring and fall as the average pit crew in a Formula One race.  Not quite as quickly though.  I’d do four cars in the fall,  and the same four in the spring.   Snows on,  snows off.   Ya,  we’re believers in snow tires.  You can have your “all season radials”.  Been there,  done that.  If you want anyone in your family who is not comfortable driving in snow to get over it,  (won’t mention any names….) they need snow tires.  It’s just that simple.

And it’s not just about the snow either,  it has to do with driving on cold surfaces,  from around plus 5°C. on down into sub zero temps.  Snow tires have a softer compound and give a better grip.

But,  that’s a whole other subject.  There are those who “get it”,  and those who never will.   Just as long as those who don’t “get it”,  stay the hell away from my rear bumper,  I could care less.  Trust me,  we’ve been rear ended by a couple in the “too cheap to buy snow tires” crowd.  Too bad they end up paying more for insurance.  Hm.  There’s a savings,  eh?


I’m getting a little long winded today,  but I guess I’m kind of “full of it”.   What’s that all about?


I almost forgot about this, but I tried something a little different for me last night in the dinner department.  I’m not much of a cook,  so new stuff is not really my thing.

We had some white asparagus left over from the weekend,  since Travelling Companion had boiled up enough for the two us,  but the package that we bought was just about twice as much as we could eat at one sitting.   These white variety of asparagus only come out once a year,  and in some restaurants for example,  they’ll add all kinds of dishes to their menu,  using white asparagus in a variety of different ways.

I thought I might like to try doing something on the grill,  and found a few ideas on the net.  Turns out it was,  where I’ve found a host of stuff in the past.  Good site by the way,  I recommend it.



I have this pan that goes on the grate for veggies.  Also recommended.  The “recipe”,  if I were to dare to call it that,  was “Bob” simple.  Just some olive oil and balsamic vinegar.  Put these guys in a plastic container with the liquids,  did that “shake and bake” thing to spread it all over,  and popped these little darlins on the hot grill.   Took about 20 minutes I would say.



And we were pleased.

They turned out a little crunchy, but not stringy.  I’m not a fan of “stringy”.  Just a texture issue.  Really tasty though.

The “cake” that you see there,  is a recipe from my sister-in-law called “Sautéed Chicken Cakes with Tomato and Sweet Pepper Sauce”.   They are also awesome,  but that’s a recipe that takes up a whole page.  I usually leave that level of expertise to T.C.,  since they can be frozen and heated up later.  Hey,  I’m no fool.


The only caveat is,  our freezer is about the size of the one we had in our long gone motorhome.  Sooo,  shopping decisions are usually directly influenced by just how much space I have available.   Life in Europe! Yay!

*he says with that painful look on his face*


It’s Friday the 13th,  so my guess is that there are at least a couple people I know who might be heading down to Port Dover.   It’s just one of those crazy Canadian things.  At least the weather might cooperate today.  Here’s hoping.


Have a fine weekend.


Thanks for coming on by.





  1. good looking food...didn't realize asparagus came in white...chicken looks good too...I tend to resist all internet offers of clothing etc...could be because I totally hate shopping of any kind...have a super weekend Bob...

  2. I wonder if the Rolodex company came out with a digital version or just went out of business:)

  3. Hmmmm...Chicken cakes. You have my attention.

  4. We did previously have Lee Valley Tools in Langley and Abbotsford. Those two business have since been acquired by KMS Tools. Not certain if Lee Valley exist anywhere else in Canada. KMS Tools is a nice place to browse too though!

  5. Trust me, Lee Valley is still around. They have a location on Marine Drive in Vancouver for those on the left coast.
    Plus of course, there's still Coquitlam and Victoria.
    Can't comment on whether the buildings they were once in are now occupied by KMS tools or whoever. I know Exotic Woods in Burlington moved to a new location, but they're still going strong.
    KMS tools looks like a bit of a "Princess Auto" type of place, with most of their wares coming from China. Fun to look at, but I'd be very sceptical.
    Go to the Lee Valley website and have a look around. Why, you could even order a catalogue!


Well, I've been getting too many spam comments showing up. Just a drag, so we'll go another route and hope that helps. So, we won't be hearing anything more from Mr. Nony Moose.
I guess I'll just have to do without that Gucci purse.