Another Typical Week Here…

I’ve been known to (er…occasionally ๐Ÿ™‚ ) vent about where I live and where I work.

A common question I’m often asked is how do I “put up with it” ?

Well, I go out into the bush a lot.ย  I eat nuts and berries, and commune with nature and the Great Outdoors.ย ย  I find this helps.

To give you an idea, here’s how a recent week went:

Friday July 4th
Drove to a favorite lake right after work, and plopped the canoe in.

Had some of the best fishing within recent memory (see Magic Time).ย  I lost count of how many large-mouth I caught.

Saturday July 5h
Tried another local lake.ย  It was the weekend, I had the place to myself.

That’s because there are so many damned lakes in the area, you can pick and chose where you want to go. (I know…we’re spoiled) .

Caught more bass (another 8-10), just for fun.ย  I threw them back.ย  (I hadn’t finished eating the ones I had caught on Friday).

Sunday July 6th.
Paddled up a creek off the main highway, past beaver dams and marshes.ย  Saw a blue heron.

Cast my line, and had a major battle with a monster small-mouth bass,ย  which I caught and let go.ย  Already the outing was a success.

Came to a set of rapids and a dead end.ย  Portaged up a hill, only to find a beautiful small lake.

It was a natural amphitheater, surrounded by gray walls of granite, with a roaring waterfall framed by a cathedral grove of White Pine.ย ย  A hot warm wind blew.ย  I plunged into the cool dark water, and basked on the warm rocks.ย ย ย  I tried fishing and was rewarded with plenty of small eager bass to catch and release.

I was only 1 mile from the highway as the crow flies.ย  Even though this place was on the maps,ย  as usual, no-one was here.

From the looks of it, hardly anyone ever came here, either.

Good.ย  I’ve found my secret corner of paradise.ย  My natural Zen garden.

I’m definitely coming back.

Monday July 7th
Day of Rest.

Tuesday July 8th
It was a warm muggy day, threatening to rain.ย  The river was like glass, with blankets of moist fog hugging the shore and the hilltops.

After work, I put my canoe in from the edge of town.ย  I was the only boat on the water within miles.

I tried my luck, and was rewarded with two nice pickerel. (Or walleye, as my American friends call them).

Not bad for 2 minutes from home.ย ย  I had the fish cleaned and fried up within minutes of them still being alive.

You can’t get any fresher than that.

Best.ย  Tasting fish.ย  Ever.

Wednesday, July 9th
I turned 44 today.

(In Polish, 44 is czterdzieล›ci cztery)

If you want to try to pronounce it, it’s “Shtair-reh Djesh-chee Shtair-Reh “.ย  (But I don’t recommend it, you’ll give yourself a stroke).

My Mom came from out of town to visit for the evening.ย ย ย  After supper, we drove on a bush road, and I terrified her when I coaxed my reluctant SUV through a small swamp.ย ย  We arrived at yet another one of my secret lakes.

It was too windyย  to canoe (whitecaps on the water!).ย ย  We fished from shore instead, along the railroad tracks.

We didn’t do too badly, actually.ย ย ย  Friar’s Mom got a large bass.ย  I got a decent pike, and a smaller bass.

As an added bonus, we discovered the Mother Lode of Wild Blueberries.ย ย  Right next to where we stood.

I’ve never seen so many.ย  And it looks like nobody’s picked here before.ย ย  Ever.

In between catching fish, we gorged on berries, and picked another gallon’s worth to bring home.

Not a bad birthday present.

Not a bad week, actually

Hopefully, THIS might answer some of the questions on how I “put up with it”. ๐Ÿ™‚

***************************
Photo credits:ย  Friar’s Mom

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44 Comments on “Another Typical Week Here…”

  1. Steph Says:

    Happy belated birthday!! Ach, you never said anything, you bugger! At least, not that I noticed. You might have. Maybe I missed it.

    This sounds like a lovely week. You are sooo lucky you have these perfect spots WITH NO PEOPLE around!! I hate when we go somewhere and there’s yet another person in this spot, no maybe this spot, etc. GRRR.

    And you fished with your Ma?? How cool is that?!

    PS. Weird. Up here in Trenton and Belleville they call them walleye too. I’ve heard of pickerel, but didn’t know they were the same. They have the walleye derby on the Trent River here every year. It’s a huge deal!

  2. Steph Says:

    I love the look of pike. My first fish ever caught was a big pike at Balsam Lake.

  3. Friar Says:

    @Steph

    Thanks! (Nope…I didn’t mention anything about my birthday until just now). Only because it made for a good blog post.

    My Mom never fished, until two years ago. I’m trying to teach her. (She still needs me to fix the hook and the worms, like a little kid). But she does all right.

    I once fished around Hay Bay (near Belleville) with my buddies. It’s supposed to be the “Walleye” capital of Ontario. We each took a day off work, I came their from Montreal for the day…and we got SKUNKED.

    (I am the worst walleye/pickerel fisherman in the world).

    Pike is pretty cool. They’re aggressive and ferocious, with razor sharp teeth. But they’re pretty tasty.

    People here are snobby, they don’t like them. They’re considered garbage fish.

    Fine with me. This is why I have these lakes to myself! ๐Ÿ™‚


  4. Happy birthday Friar! Why did you wait so long to tell us?

    Mmm, two of my favorite foods in the world are fish and blueberries. I think only cheese wins out over those.

  5. visionpoints Says:

    Friar,

    Not much time left in Cancer so I’ve been waiting, and here you sneaked your birthday right past us. Happy belated birthday!

    Is the Deep Friar Polish, or is this translation another of your many talents? (I have an aunt who married a Czaja. You’re Polish if you can say that without phoneticsโ€”it’s CH EYE-ah. How’d you like to be in kindergarten in Poland. Help!)

    Aww, the Mom part was so nice. That’s what everyone should do on their birthday if they can. Spend it with the lady who had the best day of her life 44 years ago.

    The Sweet Friar. ๐Ÿ™‚

    Regards,

    Kelly

  6. Friar Says:

    @Kelly and Melissa

    Thanks! Well, I was a bit shy. I didn’t feel right about announcing to the world “Hey, it’s my birthday, everyone write in and congratulate me”.

    But it fit so well with this post about fishing and the blueberries that I just threw it in.

    @Melissa
    Yeah, that was a good evening. For at least one meal, I “lived off the land”, and could feed myself with what I caught and picked.

    Wild Blueberries and/or Ontario Strawberries. ….They’re my faves.

    @Kelly
    My dad was Polish, my Mom is Canadian but was raised by Polish parents. So that was my first language.

    But after age three, we moved to a different neighforhood, and we stopped speaking Polish at home. So I pretty much lost the language (But I can understand a few broken sentences).

    Like “Please Grandma give me a cookie”. ๐Ÿ™‚

    PS. I’m glad you like the Mom part. I was worried that I’d come across as a “Mommy’s Boy”.

  7. Allison Says:

    Happy belated birthday! I think it’s wonderful that you spent the day with your mother. ๐Ÿ™‚

    Those fish look absolutely delicious! You’re making me so hungry.

  8. Friar Says:

    @Allison

    Thanks! (I finally convinced Mom to give up a day of cycling and come and visit me). I’m glad she came.

    The fish and blueberries just made the day that more special.

    (Now I’m hungry too!)


  9. Happy Birthday, Friar! Hope this year brings you many blessings.

  10. Kelly Says:

    Friar,

    Nope, not Mama’s boy, just remembering the lady who thinks of it as her special day, too.

    If you want to get her to cry, ask her to tell you about the day you were born. Works magic on most Moms. (Except mine, who looks at me without an ounce of interest, waves her hand and says, “I don’t know. That was a long time ago.” Thud. No sentiment at all in my Ma.)

    If I can spend the day with my 44-year-old in another 35 years, I’ll be pleased as punch.

    You speak Polish, French and English, huh? Must be one confused accent. ๐Ÿ˜‰

    Until later,

    Kelly

  11. Friar Says:

    @Rebbecca
    Thanks…I hope 44 goes better than 43 went.

    (It’s a multiple of 11..if that means anything!) ๐Ÿ˜‰

    @Kelly
    Well, even my Mom commented that maybe I might not want to write about her visit (in case the Blog “Ladies” thought I was a Mommy’s boy).

    But heck, I didnt’ just have a Mom, I also had a fishing buddy to hang out with on my birthday (How cool is that?)

    Oh, and she’s often told me how cried the first time she held me. (I was the first-born).

    I’m fluent in French…but I wouldn’t exactly say I can speak Polish. Mabye a few sentences and a few dozen words.

    But being Canadian, Amercians have accused me of saying “Aboot”. ๐Ÿ™‚


  12. Friar,
    It doesn’t get much better than that. Okay, those organic blueberries in my fridge are coming out for lunch.

    You know I love this don’t you?

    Bonne anniversaire, Monsieur le Friar. ๐Ÿ™‚

  13. Friar Says:

    @Janice

    You just can’t beat wild hand-picked berries!!

    (Yeah, I was thinking of you when I wrote this!) I know you like the outdoor stuff.


  14. You said it. Used to pick blackberries with my grandmother. I think I ate as many as I put in her pail. ( I am looking at those scales and seeing silk colors to paint too. Iridescence ya know.)

    Smiling here . Although what about the bears? Maybe you are in THEIR patch? ๐Ÿ˜ฎ

  15. Friar Says:

    @Janet
    Didn’t see any bear poo….

    (But bears have been a nuisance in our area!). I don’t think they discovered this patch yet.

  16. Karen Swim Says:

    Friar, HAPPY BIRTHDAY! Next year you’re in for it because we are plugging the date into our calendars. ๐Ÿ™‚ How you cope sounds like paradise to me. My mom was an avid fisherwoman. She loved fishing and was always out on the water. My dad fished too but I think my mom was more passionate. Fish, berries, zen gardens, we could all use a little more of that.

  17. wendikelly Says:

    Friar,

    Happy birthday you old bear, lets throw you a party!
    The Pole Dancers can dance and we can get balloons and cake and more blueberries and fish. I love fish and blueberries. I ate an entire pint of them for lunch yesterday and then just got in my car, drove to Lake Michigan and put my feet in the icy water. 90 degrees here and the waves are still icy cold.

    You don’t come across as a Moma’s boy. But I’ll tell ya something, I’ve learned that if a man doesn’t know how to respect and care for his mother, he doesn’t know how to respect and care for any woman. I think you are a good man, Mr Friar. ๐Ÿ™‚

    I don’t know why some good woman hasn’t scooped you up. It’s a good thing I’m already taken or I’d come up there and get you. hehehehe….

  18. Friar Says:

    @Karen
    Thanks for the birthday greeting!

    Yeah, the fishing and outdoors plays a huge part of why I put up with all the crap that I do.

    My Mom hardly ever fished in her life (except with a pole and string, as a kid).

    She only started a couple of years ago, when I moved up here. I didnt’ think she’d like it, but she’s suprisingly into it! Especially, a couple of years back, a big pike got away and she’ll never be happy until we finally go back to that lake and catch it.

    @Wendi
    Oboy! The May-Pole Dancers!

    Now THAT makes my day!!! ๐Ÿ™‚ ๐Ÿ™‚ ๐Ÿ™‚

    You round up the ladies, I’ll get the blueberries and cake and ice cream.

  19. wendikelly Says:

    @Melissa,

    The boy wants the Purple Pole Sisters for his b-day! Lets go get our purple costumes on! Any of you other girls want to come and join the Purple Pole sisters and dance around the May-pole for Friar’s birthday?

  20. Friar Says:

    @Wendi

    You could use the blueberries to make the purple dye!

    (Very natural and organic…, you know!)

  21. Amy Says:

    Happy belated birthday, Fried One. As your future wife, I feel obligated to offer to pole dance for you. However, I also feel obligated to warn you that I am the clumsiest person on the planet and will likely accidentally mame or decapitate you in the process. ๐Ÿ˜

    On an unrelated note — Kelly, are those shoes in your avatar?

  22. Friar Says:

    @Amy
    No problem, I’ll just keep my distance till you learn the proper Pole-Dance steps.

    I think Wendi could help you with the dancing lessons.

  23. Amy Says:

    Here I thought Wendi was a good little girl. Kelly, now. I could imagine her pole dancing. In a business suit.

  24. Friar Says:

    @Amy

    Well, it’s not actually the nasty pole-dancing you associate with stripper clubs.

    Rather, it’s like a bunch of maidens dancing around a May-pole to celebrate some kind of pagan festival like the Solstice.

    There was a big discussion on this on Brett’s blog months ago….they still speak of it to this day.

  25. Amy Says:

    Kelly would do the real thing. I’m pretty sure. ๐Ÿ˜‰

    Are you pagan too? Or are we just doing the maypole dance because of Brett’s fierce power of suggestion? LOL

  26. Friar Says:

    @Amy

    Even though I used to be a nice Catholic Altar Boy…I consider myself a Pagan now.

    Let’s drink some alcohol. Light a fire. And feast on some kind of roasted animal (Yes, I admit, Brett has had some influence on me!) ๐Ÿ˜‰

  27. Brett Legree Says:

    Will the purple pole sisters return?

    Well, Lammas is approaching (August 1-2), the first harvest, also called the festival of first fruits.

    (Hey, it ties in with the blueberries.)

    Everyone is welcome at my house – there will be a fire, oh, will there be a fire. And much merriment.


  28. Hey you Polish nutsky. Happy belated Birthday. I remembered but wasn’t in range of a computer.

    I like the sausage.

  29. Friar Says:

    @Ellen
    Yeah, I knew you knew my birthday! It was only a matter of time before you got back from your vacation…

    Which sausage are you referring to? (Kielbasa, I assume!)

    (DON’T get Janice or Kelly started, now!) ๐Ÿ™‚

  30. Friar Says:

    @Brett

    See…?? YOU started this all…way back last spring ๐Ÿ™‚

    Now we have a bunch of howling Pole Sisters. ๐Ÿ™‚

    Look the door, close your windows.

    There is a full moon tomorrow, I believe.

  31. Kelly Says:

    Amy,

    Yes, those are shoes. Someone complimented me on them a month or two ago and said that they’re called spectators, I think. I didn’t know there was a name for the style but I love them.

    A designer has to draw the line somewhere, and I draw it at shoes. I don’t care about them. I buy beautiful classics, very few, VERY infrequently, then I wear them until they have holes. The pair above is still gorgeous after fifteen years.

    I hate having my picture taken, so I decided on my feet for my avatar. They never make faces. Side benefit, I’m getting known by them, since everybody else has… a more conventional shot.

    Pole dancing? Too old for Maypole sillyness (in RL, anyway). Nasty pole dancing I’d try. Probably just about the right age to take a pole dancing class, and I do think it looks like fun. Must be something that happens to you when you have to admit you’re quite nearly past it. *sigh*

    Kinda silly though, taking a class… who has a pole in their house? Well, some basements, but eeww.

    Later,

    Kelly

  32. Brett Legree Says:

    @Kelly,

    I don’t think you’re quite nearly past it (hey, you’re still moving, right?)

    Oh, and the pole – no, that goes out in the back garden, near (but not too near!) the bonfire. Otherwise you’d have collisions between the pole dancers and the fire jumpers.

  33. Friar Says:

    @Kelly
    Yeah, I saw that on TV. Fitness classes to teach women to “Pole Dance”.

    Heh. Any fitness gimmick to try to lose weight.

    @Kelly and Amy
    Difficult for me to comment on the shoes! (They’re only about 20 x 30 pixels in the Avatar Box). Besides, guys just don’t notice these things (A woman can walk into a room, and I would have no clue as to what she’s wearing on her feet).

    But I’ll take your word for it that they’re nice shoes! ๐Ÿ™‚

    @Brett
    Mabye we should combine the the two: Fire Dancing and Pole Jumping.

  34. Amy Says:

    Fried One — I am probably more pagan than anything else, in the most basic sense. I don’t do any spell casting, as some of my witchy friends do, but I do believe in energies and all of that. I figure the earth is probably a better god than anything we’ll find in a building built by dead men… Here’s an ignorant question, but what is an altar boy?

    Kelly — I think you need to do a blog post on proper design considerations for pole placement in the home office. Hehehe. (Or at least, the W hotel should have one in the lobby. Maybe tap into the missing-chair budget?)

    Re shoes, I prefer to be barefoot. And I won’t wear anything that scrunches up my toes like that. i walk around the neighborhood barefoot, and people laugh at me. I do have a few pairs of shoes, but no fancy ones anymore. My favorite ones DO have holes. I still wear them though, even in winter.

  35. Friar Says:

    @Amy

    Hahah! Obviously you weren’t raised Catholic! ๐Ÿ™‚

    Altar boys are the assistants to the priest when he gives the mass. They hold the crosses, ring the bells, hold the napkins, ssist with giving out the Holy Communion….etc. It’s all very good and wholesome and very Catholic!

    However, that was a while ago…:-). I’m not quite like that anymore.

    Being a Scientist/Engineer, the one thing for sure that I truly believe in the 2nd Law of Thermodynamics. Which basically means that in a Closed System, all moving parts and mechanical gizmos eventually wear down and get dissipated as heat.

    It’s a Fundamental Law of the Universe! ๐Ÿ™‚

    @Kelly and Amy

    During the summer I just love my Crocs and/or bare feet.

  36. Amy Says:

    Oh oh oh! I want a job where I can hold crosses and ring bells. Is this a paying position? ๐Ÿ™‚ (I don’t know what a Holy Communion is, but I’m not going to ask about that in case it’s kinky.)

  37. Brett Legree Says:

    @Amy,

    Are you sure you want to marry Friar, what with the whole barefoot thing and all, we’d get on pretty well (sorry Friar, I’m stealing your future wife… yeah yeah, I know I’m already married, but she likes to go barefoot!)

    Holy Communion shouldn’t be kinky, if it is, the priest isn’t being a good boy…

  38. Friar Says:

    @Amy
    No…altar boys are purely voluntary work. DEFINITELY no money involved!

    Holy Communion is eating the wafer that’s supposed to be the Body of Christ. (Sorry to disappoint you…it’s nothing kinky!)

    @Brett
    Well, Amy seems open minded enough. Mabye we could share her! ;-). After all, polygamy is good enough for the Mormons.

  39. Kelly Says:

    Friar,

    For a larger photo of the shoes click here. Not that you have to critique them or anything.

    On t.v.? Then I’d definitely need a pole at home. There’s never a good pole around when you need one…

    Amy,

    In the W lobby would be SO funny.

    Later,

    Kelly

  40. Friar Says:

    OOOooooh Kelly!

    What LOVELY shoes! They go SO WELL with your skirt!

    ๐Ÿ™‚ ๐Ÿ™‚ ๐Ÿ™‚ ๐Ÿ™‚

  41. Kelly Says:

    Pants. But okay, nice fawning.

    You should see the jacket. The whole magilla is my “power zoot suit.” Trรฉs chic.

    You had me at OOOooooh, but the four smileys was a cool touch.

  42. Friar Says:

    @Kelly

    Well, the photo reveals quite a bit of ankle. I just assumed it was a skirt.

    Looks good, anyway! ๐Ÿ˜‰

  43. Kelly Says:

    Friar: Long woman. It happens. ๐Ÿ˜ฆ

  44. Friar Says:

    Oh, I don’t see anything wrong with that . ๐Ÿ™‚

    Ankles look good!


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