Sharing My World 11

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My world sharing got put on hold for a while and I’m not sure what I missed, but no one has been beating down my door to find out, so I’m just going to carry on.

Share Your World 2014 Week 48.

What is your favorite toppings on pizza?

In my ongoing quest to cut things out of my diet, I have given up pizza crust.  The gluten-free pizza crusts are okay, but I have also been experimenting with burned cheese crusts.  So far I have been unsuccessful at actually burning them!  I know, I can’t believe it either.  I’ve also experimented with zucchini as a base, baked with pizza toppings.  Yes, my life is just one bizarre experiment after another.

I like a pizza that’s loaded with lots of stuff – pepperoni, mushrooms, black olives, onions, green peppers, fresh tomatoes, ham, bacon.  Double cheese.  I haven’t cut dairy out of my diet because if I find out I’m allergic to cheese I’ll cry.

I want to learn more about …

I used to think I’d be good at watercolor painting, but that was a delusion.  Everything I try is a disaster.  Best to stick with acrylics and develop my basic skills with that medium I guess.  Improving my drawing should also improve my painting.  This is a strange time in life to be finding myself in art, but now I  have the time to do it and I’m learning new things every day.

What are three places you’ve enjoyed visiting?

If it wasn’t for my sister I would probably never have gone anywhere interesting ever,  except to her house.  We went to Great Britain (England, Scotland and Wales) together, then with our spouses to Canada’s east coast (Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island, New Brunswick and Newfoundland), and this May to Greece (Athens, Santorini, Mykonos, Paros, Crete) with our sister-in-law, nephew and two nieces.  All wonderful trips, and I’m happy to have been to every one of those places.  However, when it comes to planning a trip on my own, or having a burning desire to go somewhere new, it’s not likely to happen.  I missed the travel gene, or bug, or whatever it is that a wandering gypsy has that I don’t.

Do you prefer eating the frosting of the cake or the cupcake first?

I would eat both of them together last, although I would prefer to be too full of other nutritious things to want to, and pass them up altogether.  Sweet things don’t tempt me, but anything salty is another story.

Bonus question: What are you grateful for from last week, and what are you looking forward to in the week coming up?

I’m grateful for a quiet week of nothing much and looking forward to another one like it.  It’s hard to keep up with me, hey?   I don’t know how I ever learned anything interesting before we had Pinterest and YouTube, and I am grateful for a seemingly unending wealth of information about things I had no idea I needed to know in the first place.  There is Christmas shopping coming up soon (I am procrastinating because there’s nothing that has to be mailed) and Christmas cards to write.  And fudge to make because apparently W can’t have a proper Christmas without it.

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Junk and Treasures

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Before bed she watches her grandma scurry about the house making preparations for tomorrow, putting what appears to be worthless junk on the kitchen table, although she knows her mother considers these things priceless family treasures and will be thrilled to have them.

In the  morning she is still disoriented and exhausted after her long flight across the ocean, the drive to the farm and her restless night in yet another strange bed, with nothing better to look forward to now than a two-day road trip on her long journey home.

With a defeated sigh, she throws her things back in to her travel-worn bag, wishing she could stuff her bad mood and all her worries in there right along with them.

Once she gets everything downstairs she simply can’t stop laughing at the sight of her funny little grandma, giant fork under one arm and enormous spoon under the other, declaring herself all set and ready to go.

And just like that, all the irritation disappears.

Five Sentence Fiction  is about packing a powerful punch in a tiny fist. This week’s word: IRRITATION

Lillie McFerrin Writes
…and…
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Six Things and Then Some

The highway going north, except this trip it wasn't that green.

The highway going north, except this trip it wasn’t that green.

Three things about the road trip last Sunday:

1.  Dry, bare roads in the sunshine encourage me to drive faster than the speed limit.  I used to have a little four-cylinder car that wanted to die going up the hills.  Now I have a car that wants to pass everything.  Twinned highways are the best.

2.  There are spots along this route where there is no phone service and no radio reception.

3.  I have favourite bathroom stops along the way.  Because I’m not fond of surprises.

The highway heading home, except not that bad because there was no drifting snow.

The highway heading home, except not that bad because there was no drifting snow. This time.

Three things about the road trip yesterday:

1.  There were scary sections where slushy ruts had frozen solid.  Black ice was a definite possibility.

2.  There are a lot of big truck operators who do not observe Remembrance Day as a holiday.

3.  I seem to be honing my skills for missing turns on arrival anywhere, including home.  I drove by the turn off I should have taken, took the next one, and drove into a maze of new residential developments which I then had to find my way out of.  Once I knew where I was, I took yet another TWO wrong turns.  Talk about your scenic route.

Six things that will make me read a blog. (A Nano Poblano Random Prompt)

1.  Lists and random photos.  (So, is this working for you??)

2.  Likes.  I like how Word Press suggests taking a look at the likers posts.  I like to do that.

3.  Common interests.  Or completely uncommon interests.  This is a wondrous place.  I especially like to read blog posts by people who have answered the same prompt.  Or by people who have tackled the same subject.  Or by people who have written about subjects of which I have no knowledge whatsoever.

4.  Recommendations by people whose blogs I already follow.  If I like you, chances are very good that I will also like whoever you like.

5.  Comments.  If someone new takes the time to comment on something I write, I will make a supreme effort to check out their blog.  My supreme efforts sometimes fall short, but I am trying to bump up the supreme part of that and get better at doing it.

6.  Reading the comments on other blogs often prompts me to click on the commenter to see what else they have to say.  I am really nosey.  I have found a lot of incredible blogs that way.

What makes you read a blog and decide to follow it?  Are you still reading this, or did your mind wander before making it through to the end of the first list?  Do you think I should start using the direction finder thing on my phone???

Have a great Wednesday!  I’m off to sign some important business papers.  Supposing I don’t get lost.

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Art du Jour 8

Today is a six-hour travel day for me.  I will be visiting 4/5 of my grandchildren for a week.  That’s not counting dogs, the count for them being 1/2.

In lieu of writing something interesting and worthwhile I am giving you this serious little person with wonky eyebrows and one large ear to look at.  It’s difficult to take a photo of a sketch, (especially at midnight under artificial light when you should be packing) and not have the reflections on the eyeballs do funny things.  Daylight works better.

And speaking of daylight, our clocks were turned back an hour on Saturday.  Spring ahead, fall back.  End up with exactly the same amount of light you’d have if you left the clocks the hell alone.  So I’m not sure who we’re fooling with this.  A better idea would be to extend October, a month that everyone likes, by a week;  and then transfer the last week of November into December, because that month is never long enough.  Isn’t that a great idea?  Except maybe not so much for all the November novel writers who would have to type a lot faster.

My great expectations for my week away include answering some of the excellent Nano Poblano prompts and learning how to draw a realistic ear.

Enjoy your Sunday (1/5 of the total number of Sundays for this November).  If you need anything else put into fractions, just ask.

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My Big Fat Greek Holiday (Crete)

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This is my last big fat Greek holiday post.  Probably for this lifetime, because I can’t imagine going back, or even flying across the ocean again.  With three days left in our HOE-liday (at one of the little shops someone had painted on the parking area ‘Enjoy your stay, Happy Hoeliday) I bought a hat.  It’s a white visor with ‘Santorini/Greece’ written all over it in silver, with a brim about ten times bigger than an old-fashioned little girls bonnet.  And there’s a ribbon tie at the back.  I don’t know what I was thinking.  So if you know anyone who needs a good hoeliday hat, I could be persuaded to part with it.

We arrived at the Albatross Spa and Resort Hotel in Heraklion, Crete, after nine o’clock at night following our last long ferry trip and about a thirty minute bus ride.  The rooms here lacked Greek-ness.  They could have been anywhere, really.  There was a shortage of hot water and loud live entertainment in the courtyard until well after eleven at night.  See how you can tell it’s all winding down by how whiney I’ve become?  If we had arrived in Crete first I probably would have loved it more.

On Saturday my nieces opted for a relaxing pool day and a walk to the beach, and the rest of us braved the public transport system and got ourselves to Knossos.  The first thing we did there was sit down at a street-side restaurant for lunch.  By now this will not come as a surprise to anyone since 80% of our trip appears to have been spent sitting down and eating.  Then we paid six euros entrance admission per person to this bronze age archeological site and once through the gates were strongly urged to pay another ten euros per person for a guided tour.  We decided to wander around on our own and learn as little as possible.  There were a lot of rocks and ruins.  We saw a peacock.  The sun was really hot.  We congratulated ourselves on six euros well spent and hit the gift shops.

This is where I bought a cute little chess set.  I don’t even play chess.  But that doesn’t mean I can’t admire the cuteness of Zeus and Athena and the Spartan warriors. There are some very persuasive shop owners in this country.

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Sunday, the 25th of May we were up early to catch yet another bus, this one taking us to the Imbros Gorge.  Here’s what the brochure says.

This gentle walk lasts about 2 hours and takes you through the captivating countryside, passing mountain villages and the impressive White Mountains.  At the end of the Gorge is Komitades village, where you will have free time for lunch.  Afterwards, drive to Frangokastelo, an old Venetian castle, where your guide will tell you all about its interesting past before you go for a swim in the Libyan Sea. 

Here’s what actually happened.  Our guide told us the eight kilometre walk was not an easy one, down hill over very rocky terrain.  She made it sound sufficiently horrendous that when I was given the option to ride down the hill with two French-speaking ladies (one of them had a cane) I completely chickened out and got back on the bus.  The others all did it in a little over two hours while I sat around drinking water and lemonade.  I regret this not one little bit.  Because when the walk was over my family informed me that I would not have enjoyed that at all.  Which I took to mean I would have been a complaining pain in the ass all the way down and they had a much better time without me.

I don’t remember any castle.  Did we see a castle?  And I wasn’t out in the sun for eight km either.  I do remember some crazy Libyan Sea swimmers, but I wasn’t one of them either.  I was impressed by some interesting washroom doors though, so the trip certainly wasn’t wasted on me.

On the 26th we were homeward bound.  Bus at five a.m. to get to the airport, one hour flight from Crete to Athens.  About a three-hour wait to board the Transat flight from Athens to Toronto.  Nine or so hours in the air watching movies and tv shows and playing games on a touch television screen.  I never even thought about sleeping.  Our flight arrived 45 minutes early in Toronto.  That meant almost a six-hour wait for my next flight, but I was able to change it to an earlier one.  Thank you WestJet.  Then there was another three-hour flight home.  With nine hours mysteriously added to the day.  A cab ride home I barely remember.  And then sleep consumed me.

I had one day to deal with jet lag and then it was back to work for four days, one day off, and three more days of work.  And here I am, still alive and in relatively good humor.  Amazing.

I’m glad I went on this trip and I know I’m lucky and blessed and privileged to have been there and done that and gotten back home safe and sound.  Now can I just stay at home forever and never go anywhere again?  Except for our trip to Ontario this summer of course;  that doesn’t count.  I mean flying across oceans.  I think I’d like to be done with ocean crossing and messing around with time zones and figuring out other country’s plumbing.

Thank you for listening and commenting and looking at my photos.  I’m off now to reply to comments that are so old you’ve forgotten you made them.