The Daily EO: July 12th, 2012

Greetings from Winnipeg, Manitoba and the Sheraton Four Points!

Hours door to door:  13 hours (Wawa to Winnipeg)
kms travelled: 1212.9
Money Spent:  292.89

After training in the hills of Huntsville, running 4K through the flat streets of Wawa felt pretty easy.  Well, for the first 2 kms, anyways.  But I ran further than I ever had before without stopping.   Yeah me!

We had a later departure after partaking in a leisurely breakfast at the Empire.  The perfect small town diner replete with aging waitresses, casual service, and fried bologna.   (Emile says it just tastes like hot dogs – I didn’t need the experience)

The views yesterday were lovely, but there were more of the same of the sun shining over Lake Superior.  We stopped in Terrace Bay and listened to what I associate with the ocean – the tide.  It took us nearly 10 hours to drive half of Lake Superior’s rim – a large lake for sure, but dwarfed when you think of the grandeur of own country – Canada.

Our cell phones both were out of range and it was a liberating feeling to feel so far from our lives in Huntsville.

We purchased the most expensive per litre gas in Marathon 142.9/liter.  (we didn’t fill up – just a half a tank – we showed them!)

Emile and I were both embarrassed to lack details of Terry Fox’s Marathon of Hope.  We couldn’t remember if he started on the East or West coast.  Emile claimed to remember pictures of him running through the prairies, and I couldn’t tell him he was wrong.

We discussed him and Rick Hansen during our drive on the 100 km Terry Fox Courage Highway coming into Thunder Bay.  We tried to think of others of any nationality that have made such a worldwide impact in bringing medical issues to front of mind – and couldn’t.

We stopped for an urgent pee break and to educate ourselves at the Terry Fox memorial near Thunder Bay where he had to end his run shortly before he died.  In reading the plaque, it crystalized in my brain that he was running a marathon every day.  And I barely able to scratch out 4 km with two good legs.

Driving through Kenora and into Manitoba, we were treated with my favorite scenic view – dark blue sky just after dusk with black silhouette landscape.  Those skies were lit up with showy lightning, and we spent 10 minutes driving through an intense rainstorm reducing our speed to 30 km.  It was exhilarating.

We tested our odometer just outside Winnipeg and discovered that for all practical purposes it is accurate.  Seems like a strange government program to put signage up for.  Well, a load off our minds.

Our arrogant Ontario-centric selves thought finding a room in Winnipeg would be easy – but the first four hotels were sold out.  And we wondered if we should have brought the tent.  No matter, we found a wonderful newly renovated place – more than we wanted to spend though – and crawled into a fluffy dream bed.

July 12, 2012 Extra-Ordinary:   Emile and I both being so moved at the Terry Fox Memorial that we needed to pause our conversation to get a hold of ourselves.  (photo credit Emile)

Terry Fox statue near Thunder Bay, Ontario, Canada

The Daily EO: July 11th, 2012

Greetings from Wawa, Ontario and the Algoma Motel!

Hours door to door:  10
kms Travelled:  797.4
Money Spent:  $131.92

After a relaxed departure at about noon today, we barely made it 10 minutes out of town when the car (by itself I’m sure) turned into The Windmill Bakery.  It’s a wonderful bakery that is run by a Dutch woman out of her house.  Yes!  Another Dutch Bakery.  In Huntsville! That I had never heard of!  Wow.

We purchased 3 items for $5 and we got a free loaf of “mystery bread” – made with leftover dough.  Emile immediately ate his butter tart and declared it “one of the best he’s ever had”.  I managed to save my “blueberry star” until after dinner.  So Good. Windmill Bakery – We’ll be back.  Especially for mystery bread. (which was torn apart as we ate it in hunks during the day)

The roads are quiet with it being mid week, so it was an easy and relaxing drive.

July 11th, 2012 Extra-Ordinary:   (photo credit Emile)

Clouds over water in Lake Superior Provincial Park


The Daily EO: July 6th, 2012

What an ironic day.  At least I think it was ironic.  It could be Alanis Morrisette ironic.  I am not totally sure.

I was in a toy store shopping for a gift for my nephew’s upcoming birthday when I received a call from a recruiter.  It’s weird to have a conversation like that in a toy store.  It was a recruiter I’d worked with before – he wanted to know if I would be “too angry” to talk to a certain company about a Materials Manager job (in Markham) and the company had asked for my résumé.  Yes, that is a funny question, but here is a back story:

About 6 weeks ago, a job posting come up on Workopolis.  The job requirements matched exactly to my education, experience and skills – with one exception, they prefered a candidate with pharmaceutical background.  But seriously people – I’ll tell you now:  Manufacturing is Manufacturing.   Good practices are the same regardless of what industry you are working in.  Obviously if you are making pacemakers versus inexpensive pens, your levels of quality control, government regulations and testing are adjusted.  But don’t let anyone bamboozle you into thinking the underlying principles are different.

Anyways, I applied to this position.  I got no response – which given how many resumes postings get when on Workopolis, I can understand.  It’s pretty easy to get lost in the crowd.  Later that week I received 2 calls from 2 different recruiters about the same job.  I told you my background matched the description!  Well, when the feedback came back from the company, I was told that I didn’t appear to have any “MRP/MPS experience”.  Huh??  I’m a Materials Manager!  If you are in manufacturing, you know what this is.  So, I’ll give you examples of what this means to say to a Materials Manager.

To a teacher:  You don’t seem to have child interaction experience.
Electrician:  You don’t know how current flows.
IT Technician:  You don’t how to put together a home computer.
Accountant:  You don’t know how use a spreadsheet.

MRP/MPS is the basis of any materials role.  If you have worked manufacturing, you would know that you cannot run your department without it.  MPS = Master Production Schedule.  MRP = Manufacturing Resource Planning.  That sounds fancy pantsy.  But really, it means having a plan, knowing what you need for the plan, and knowing what you’ve got for the plan.  If you have ever planned a dinner party, you have done MPS and MRP.

Anyways, I’m not angry – I just thought it was funny.  Their loss and I moved on.

But now, they are back. (And so you’re back! From outer space!  I just walked in to find you here! With that sad look upon your face!) And the recruiter thought I might be too angry.  Angry??  This is what all Richard Marx listening break-up victims dream of.  Ha ha!  Oh, I’ll interview alright, and you’re going to see I look fabulous, I’m thin and I so do know what MRP/MPS is!   Ha!

Later that afternoon, I got another call from a recruiter for another position (Mississauga).  One that I think they copied requirements directly from my résumé.  They want to know my interview availability.  What??

Why is this ironic?  Several reasons:

  • I haven’t received a call from a recruiter/company in about 6 weeks.
  • Emile has been working on landing a position in Orillia with his former company after deciding that perhaps Toronto is not the place for us.
  • We are leaving on Wednesday (or perhaps Thursday) for a long sojourn across Canada and the USA.  We have so much to do to get ready!
  • Our car needs an oil change and check-up before we head out.  The car will be out of commission in either Monday or Tuesday.
  • Emile is working Monday and Tuesday for a friend.  So he will not be available during the day to assist.

So needless to say, these two calls fly in the face of short and medium plans we have finally been able to put together.   And I’ve had ample time over the last couple of months to do these things – yet now I have to try to perhaps to fit in 2 city interviews and all the prep for being away into a short period of time.

July 6th, 2012  Extra-Ordinary:  Do I really have to say?  2 calls in 1 day?

PS – Yes, we are coming to a city near you, so you west coasters, we’ll be there soon!

The Daily EO: April 24th, 2012

I’m going on a cruise!  To celebrate my mother-in-law’s 65th and my father-in-law’s 75th birthday, we are taking a vacation together.  Everything is booked – flights were done today.  And in December, me, Emile, my in-laws, my sister-in-law and family we’ll be lolling around the Caribbean.  I think that will be okay, don’t you?

I’ve never been on a cruise, I am looking forward to it.  Better yet, I will be able to see land for most of the journey, which means that I have a flawed perception that I could always swim to shore come any problems with the ship.  We all have our hang ups people!

April 24th, 2012 Extra-Ordinary:  Cruising in an ocean that doesn’t have icebergs.

PS  Sorry about my late post, so tired last night.