The Daily EO: September 10th, 2013

It’s fleeting sometimes: has been painted over.

I pulled up behind this vehicle off Highway 1 at Hastings the other day:


I thought to myself, another crazy Jeep owner, so proud to be part of the Jeep Cult. . . ure.  But I looked closer. . .

September 10th, 2013 Extra-Ordinary:  Love it!




The Daily EO: July 15th, 2013

I recently decided to refresh our living room.  Well…. actually that is not true.  I decided to refresh my living room about 2 months ago, and only recently did something about it recently.  Which was posting our existing furniture on Craig’s List.   A nice young couple decided they wanted our coffee table, but didn’t have a car and asked me to deliver.

Well, considering I asked $100 for a table – ad they agreed to – that I thought I would only get $50 for, I didn’t have a problem dropping it off.  It was only across downtown a bit.  So, after they came to our place to see it, we agreed we’d meet at their house in half an hour.  They took the bus, so we beat them there.  Just for the record – we couldn’t drive them because the car was full of coffee table.  We aren’t bad people!

Anyways, while we sat in our car outside their apartment in the West End (where there is no parking), we noticed a couple standing on the sidewalk eating grapes together.    They looked a bit impatient but were just generally chilling eating their grapes.  It seemed weird.

As we watched them a little longer, we realized they were waiting for something or someone.  And then it finally dawned on us what they were doing there.

July 15th, 2013 Extra-Ordinary:  We aren’t on the ferry, people!   Leave a little space.

photo 1 photo 2.

The Daily EO: May 9th, 2013

I wake up early.  Not as early as some, but early.  As the summer season starts to swing into action, tourist season begins.  As someone who recently was cruising, seeing the cruise ships sail in and out of the port is pretty cool.  They are usually pulling in when I get up.  And then pulling out after their port of call in Vancouver when I get home from work.There is something special living in a tourist destination.  Sometimes I hate the crowds, but other times, I feel smug that I live somewhere that people pay money to visit.

May 9th, 2013 Extra-Ordinary:  I am somewhere people want to be.  That’s worth remembering.

Early Morning Docking.
Early Morning Docking (super imposed with my reflection)

The Daily EO: April 30th, 2013

Today I am thinking about summer.  It’s been so sunny – but cool – hints of what is to come.  A summer of possibilities and reasons to go places.  I’m looking forward to this summer, and the hope to see more, and promises of friends and family to visit.

I’m talking about possibilities a lot, I know.  I’m getting into my grove finding my place, feeling better, getting to see the light often.

On the West Coast, Ferries represent freedom, isolation, destined to somewhere special.  I love riding one, with the wind whipping at my hair, watching the kids walking against the wind.  The seasoned travellers who have a routine.  We’re all going some place together.

View from a Ferry

April 30th, 2013 Extra-Ordinary:  A ferry to any where is a good day.  And I am going places.

The Daily EO: April 6th, 2013

I like riding the sky train on weekends – when you can find a seat and its not so crowded.  I had a whole day planned.   From Waterfront to Edmonds – to accompany my grandpa to the bank – he was opening a TFSA and wanted moral support.  After lunch and things, I was going to take the train from Edmonds to Metrotown (I was considering not paying for those two stops – I’m a bad person) for a little shopping because I desperately needed some more shoes.   Then I was going to go from Metrotown back to Waterfront.

The first segment of my trip worked out perfectly – I managed to reduce my unread emails on m phone from 189 to 77 during the ride.  Then I got a bit of exercise walking from the station to my grandpa’s place.  Off to the bank – where the gentleman helping us was great and spoke to my grandpa, not to me.  Then Emile decided to join us for lunch.

This is where things went off the rails.  I was going to take the train back to Metrotown, but instead decided to get Emile to drop me there.  So, as I bent into our car – our low car – I felt loose and breeze.

April 6th, 2013 Extra-Ordinary:  My nice tight skinny jeans split right up the back!

The Daily EO: April 1st, 2013

It’s April – and I remember the old adage of “April Showers brings May Flowers”, but April 1st was beautiful.  So beautiful and inspiring that more people were out on their bicycles.  I don’t own a bicycle for many reasons that mostly sound like excuses, but I respect that I have to – and should have to – share the road with them.

But I have a problem – bicyclists tend to be of split personalities.  If it suits them at the time to be a pedestrian, they use crosswalks and sidewalks.  If it suits them to be a vehicle, they are in the bike lanes and signalling.  But worst of all, they switch back and forth making it difficult for a driver like me – who really doesn’t want to hit a bicyclist – to predict how the traffic is going to move.

You can’t use a crosswalk to the sidewalk and then make a sharp left in front of me to turn into a bike lane.  Well, you can, but you better hope that I am paying really really close attention about what you are doing.  And while that helmet may be colourful and stylish and somewhat protective, it’s going to take a pounding if I hit you.

April 1st, 2013 Extra-Ordinary:   Trying to save the earth too, one bicyclist at a time.

(sorry for the gross generalization, but it can’t be too offensive if it seems to hold true)

The Daily EO: March 25rd, 2013

I am usually in my car at 7 am every morning to head to work.  Maybe a little later, but around that time.  I have spent a lot of time in my car in the last 12 months.  Mostly reading maps and and figuring how long we were from our next stop in Saskatchewan.

And now I spent about an hour a day in that car as I commute to work.

Of late, I have spent too little time in bed before getting into the car again, so that has caused me to spent too much time wasting money in the Starbucks drive-thru line at Cordova and Powell.

I hate sitting in that line for 3 reasons:

  1. I am wasting money on tea that I could easily have made at home, but was too lazy to do so
  2. I am burning minutes that I could be in transit to work which is why I got up so early in the morning in the first place
  3. My car has an annoying rattle when it idles, and I am embarrassed by it

On this Monday when I got in, I blearily mentally reviewed what I was tackling when I got into work this week.

Despite my best intentions, my occupied brain didn’t notice when my hands turned left into the Starbucks.  Again.  Sigh.

March 25th, 2013 Extra-Ordinary:  No rattle in my car because my husband fixed it on Saturday.  Ah, the Sounds of Silence.

The Daily EO: February 21st, 2013

Do you remember when gas $.59/litre?  Do you spell litre as “liter”?  If no to both, then you’re probably not Canadian or you’re too young to be up this late reading a blog.

I have never commuted far distances in my life, so in the last six months, I have visited the gas station much more frequently then I have been accustomed to.  And I drive a Honda Fit, so really my stops there about once a week, but that is about 3 times more than I normally used to go.

I remember when gas was $.59 and $.49 and $.39 even.  For the $.39 I wasn’t legally able to drive, but I remember seeing the numbers.  I also remember when gas hit $.99/litre.  Unfortunately, I was in automotive industry at the time – making vehicle accessories for credit happy Americans driving gas sucking behemoths.  When gas costs $.99/litre, people tend to stop driving Hummers, huge trucks and other type vehicles.

But they adjusted and the truck market somewhat recovered.  And like you all – I’d abruptly stop and make a u-turn if I saw a station advertising $.99/litre.

February 21st, 2013 Extra-Ordinary:  How many things that seemed outrageous just a couple years before become desired and mainstream?  I ponder these things while I sit at the pump paying a $1.29/litre celebrating my good deal on gas.

The Daily EO: January 29th, 2013

I get riled up over certain types of injustices.   And I recognize while writing this, that the “injustices” in my world that I get riled up over are minor and not worth considering when compared to the injustices suffered by much of the world.  I do get that, but when something is in my face, impacting my family, friends or team members, I get nuts about it.  And if it affects my husband – watch out!  I become absolutely insane.

When I returned to BC – after being born and raised here – I had to get car insurance.  Unlike other provinces, car insurance is only offered by the Insurance Corporation of British Columbia (ICBC).  Privatization versus government agency?  I don’t know which is better really – but the drawback to ICBC is that you cannot “take your business elsewhere” if you don’t like the costs, options or service.

In purchasing my car insurance here, I was able to provide 7 years and 8 months of claims free history from my insurance companies in Ontario.  As well, I had 7 years of claims free history prior to my move.  This claim free history – which I have EARNED – resulted in getting the maximum discount of 43% (and 53% of the “optional portions” like comprehensive, etc).  That is good, because I live downtown Vancouver – the highest insurance zone in the province.

My car was broken into at the end of December:

This cost me = $300 (window deductible for ICBC) + $500 (tenant insurance deductible) + ~$150 (increase in tenant insurance due to losing my 10 year claim free status) = $950

This cost the insurance companies:  $170 (balance of window deductible for ICBC, much of which is HST that is going to the government anyways) + $500? (because Intact insurance STILL has not settled my claim) – ~$150 (that Intact is going to be getting from me through higher premiums) = $520

To recap:  Criminal Activity that WAS NOT MY FAULT resulted in me “sharing” the cost with the insurance company 67%/33% – that doesn’t even factor in the premium I paid in the first place.  And 1 month later, the Intact Insurance still can seem to figure out how much an LG Optimus cell phone is worth.  (um, google it, people, they have the internet on computers nowadays).

During this whole thing, ICBC sent me a letter saying that my premium was miscalculated and I now owe them $370 more dollars because I am a “new resident”.  No, I was born and raised here, but happened to live in Ontario for 10 years.  But no, now my insurance discount can only be 40% both mandatory and optional regardless of my risk as a driver.

Turns out that ICBC says if you leave for more than 8 years, your BC heritage is erased.

Does that make me upset?  No, it makes me CRAZY!

I called them.  I escalated my complaint.  I told them that I was being geographically discriminated against!  I am a Canadian citizen that has lived in Canada my whole life!  Apparently “in a couple of days” they will send me the link to send a letter to the “Fairness Commissioner”.  That was 2 weeks ago.   Thanks so much, ICBC.

And what can I do about it?  Nothing – because it is fiscally irresponsible to not have insurance and there is only one company for car insurance.   It just takes one distracted moment to severely injure someone and one random event to lose my entire home.   So, I will fight this “I’m not a returning resident” classification with ICBC, but continue to pay premiums.

Insurance companies are in it to make profit.  And it is in their best interest to delay claims, build loopholes, and increase premiums.  It doesn’t matter if it is private personal firm in Ontario, a governmental agency, WSIB, WorkSafe BC, pet insurance, health insurance (when was the lat time that your glasses only cost $200?) etc – if you are paying a premium, there is some sort of loophole to maximize the premium.

January 29th, 2013 Extra-Ordinary:  I’m fighting this – I am not paying ICBC extra.  They don’t get to make arbitrary rules not based on actuarial data.

See G.? – I didn’t write about it.





The Daily EO: November 23rd, 2012

We have 3 elevators in our building.  Coming through the lobby I found a line about 20 people waiting for the elevator.  Turns out, 1 was in service for someone moving out and the other had broken down.  Leaving one – albeit high-speed – elevator for a building with 43 floors.  Our building is very secure, many of the floors cannot be accessed by the stairs.  I live on the 41st floor and I can access my floor from the stairs.

The longer I stood in line waiting the elevator, the more I felt guilty for not taking the opportunity for a workout.  But I had been out and about all  day already probably walked 15 kms.  I didn’t want to take the stairs – and the shower that I’d need afterwards.

So I stood there.  And listened to each new person who joined the queue to ask what was going on.  The poor concierge was beside himself trying to appear like he was doing something, but of course, there was nothing for him to do, other than opening the door for the stairs for those of us who were not lazy (and could access their floor).

One of the residents was standing in the lobby with his Dominos pizza order – including cheese bread – and the smell wafted out to hungry people who were just trying to get home.  The elevator arrived and a bunch of people piled on to it.  When the elevator left without taking everyone in the lobby, the mood shifted suddenly and what was truly only a minor inconvenience began to stretch into a major problem.  People had places to go, things to get to and they wanted to go home.

At one point, the in service elevator stopped on the ground floor by accident.  The poor sap who was moving – with an elevator of his things – had to stand and stare at us for 10 seconds while the door remained open.  He smiled, half shrugged and then casually hammered on the close door button.

Another 10 minutes of waiting and finally the elevator returned to the lobby level – but this time carrying one man destined for the parking garage – it was going down.  But nobody was willing to let the elevator journey on without them and jumped on.  I was about 5th in line and as I saw people filling it up, decided that I too needed to get on this elevator.

In a span of about 5 seconds, 15 different floors were pressed and the system couldn’t handle the inputs and reset.   But it started moving and we were on the 5th floor before anyone noticed what had happened.  For those of us on the upper floors, it didn’t matter, we just simply repressed our buttons.

But for the girl who lived on the second floor, the gentleman (I used that term loosely) who was trying to get to the basement and a visitor who didn’t have scan access to get where we was going.. . . .  They started to lose their minds.

Second Floor Girl says “I hate everything and everyone”

Garage Guy says  “All you people f*cked me!!”

Visitor Girl says  “Please press 18!  18?  Anyone on the 18th floor??  TRY 18!!”

And it went downhill from there.  Second floor girl starts telling off garage guy.  And everyone in a full elevator is trying to help out need hysterical visitor girl, but none of us have access to that floor.

Garage Guy “All of you people need to consider your actions on others.  You f*cked me.  All of you”

Second Floor Girl “None of us did it on purpose!!  Do you think we wanted this to happen? I’m trying to get to the 2nd floor!”

Garage guy “Whatever.  You need to wait.  This is crap.  You need to consider your actions.”

Visitor Girl “Oh my god!  What am I going to do?  Can I get off somewhere?”

The rest of us:  Do not make eye contact, do not speak.

Hurry, hurry, elevator.

November 23rd, 2012 Extra-Ordinary:  We are only 30 minutes away from Lord of the Flies, people.  Lord of the Flies with only 1 large pizza and cheesy bread to share amongst.