Whelbourns in Canada

• Sunday 9 October 2011 - Reasons to be Cheerful - Part 1

No this isn't the start of Ian Drury and Blockheads song (thats part 3 ), but if you want to listen click here

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Nearly a month has passed since my last post and a lot has happened in that time. In September I did my now annual(4th year running) volunteering as an MC at the Fredericton Harvest Jazz and Blues Festival. This year I was promoted to the HooDoo tent  where I opened up Thursday night show, great night had by all. Friday I was back on the Queen Street Acoustic stage introducing a band 'Freisia and the Offsprings' a Father and son and daughter band. I am not sure if you remember but I introduced them about 3 years ago and my observation is that most of the show I open the stars are older, greyer and shorter than last year, but this group are taller, hairer and still young. Very impressive performances by all.

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I am not sure if you are aware but the Harvest Jazz and Blues Festival (a 5 day event) is manned by volunteers. Over 1200 in total and they do everything from security, driving, stage managing, bar tenders, door / ticket sales, sound dudes and MCing. The performers love to come because of the volunteerism makes it very different.  This year a couple of UK bands came over and BBC Suffolk also attended and put together a report broadcast a week after the event.

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Family are busy as bees, the big news is that Kathryn was given a place on the Nursing Programme and now she is busy studying to become a Licence Practical Nurse  Julie and I are so happy! (putting it mildly), we had kicked up quite a fuss when she was turned down AGAIN. I thought 'sod this' and called our MLA (similar to MP) and complained. He intervened and I made lots of noise about complaining to the Population Growth Secretariat (truly it does exist) regarding how can they encourage immigrants and then their children not get the educational opportunities. Any she started and life is much more settled.

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Gemma is busy starting the third year of her applied arts degree and participating fully in the autumn flu season!

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Jules is designing like crazy, perfecting her own designs, pattern and dressmaking skills.

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Final reason to be Cheerful - we had a backed up sewer problem, i.e. flush toilet and it goes nowhere infact fills with water. After investigation and some calls to Steve at "Ready John" (honestly that is the septic cleaning service name) we came to the conclusion the pipe between the house and septic tank was blocked! so I remembered my UK drain rods  (I knew I brought them over for a reason). I waited overnight to let as much as possible drain away before using a rubbermaid plastic storage bin as a collecting container and slowly undoing the inspection hatch on the septic pipe. The challenge is that all other drainage pipes are higher than the inspection hatch (see below). This means once you unscrew the hatch all the waste water empties out

Anyway to cut a long story short, I successfully dealt with the spill (without too much mess), and cleared the blockage! So saving a couple of hundred dollars and proving that drain cleaning is the same in the UK and Canada .

Tomorrow is Thanksgiving and we have a Turkey dinner with all the trimmings and I'm (yes me) making a pumpkin pie. I will be taking a list of things to be thankful for and getting the others to contribute theirs.

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One final note on the veggies front. We had a -6c Frost on wednesday night which finished off the cucumbers, peppers and squash plants. I will be sure to position the peppers and tomatoes in a better place next year, and start cucumbers early. On the bright side we will be eating our own cabbage with Thanksgiving dinner (must be saving us a couple of dollars ). Like the UK we are having a bit of a heat wave, today is wall to wall sunshine and 27c feeling like 29c and the forecast tomorrow is sunny 21c.

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About Me

free hit counter David, Julie, Kathryn and Gemma emigrated to Canada on Nov 5th 2005. Now living in Island View New Brunswick.

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