Day 15……

….I feel like a quarantined cruise ship passenger-rat.  So does Sal.  We are NOT yet stir crazy but we are moving in that direction.  Sal, of course, is better-tempered and nice to be around still (but still crazy after all these years).  I am getting grumpy…..well, grumpier!  But it is odd what is making me feel this way.

The first thing is the bloody physio regime at the hospital.  I could write books about that insanity but I won’t.  You are spared my lament.  I’ll save that frothy rant for the letter-to-the-Health Authorities (including Dix, the minister) and maybe to the admin at the hospital.  I will enjoy that.  My spleen needeth venting.

But, for the medical record, the surgeon was perfect.  Ab-so-bloody-lutely perfect.  More perfect than Trump’s phone calls.  This guy really did a great job.  I honestly do not think it could possibly be better.  Sal could walk normally, without an aid, for at least twenty steps after ten days.  She can walk maybe 500 with just a cane and she thinks of her walker as ‘just plain silly’.  She is way ahead of schedule.  So that is good and, quite frankly, that should be the message.

But, it is not.  This message is much more OTG than you might think.

It’s about acclimating.  It’s about change in attitude.  It is about style.  Most of all, it is about freedom.

When you move OTG, you are faced with enormous challenges.  Those with gobs of dough who have others build for them deal with the challenges using filthy lucre but the vast majority out here ‘do for themselves’.  And, in the doing, they gain a lot of hard-to-measure satisfaction, knowledge, skill, perspective and a huge appreciation for nature, wilderness, trees, ravens, whales and, most of all, blissful peace and quiet.  All of that is kind-of-to-be-expected.

What isn’t realized at the time is that you are also working and accomplishing to the beat of your own drummer.  You work to your own schedule, your own sense of logic, your own style.  You are actually also gaining freedom.  And you are shedding social constraints.

Where before OTG you had to ‘fit in’ with others (and play nicely), now you don’t.  Now you captain your own ship from getting water to making power, from food sourcing and prep to First Aid.  Very quietly Dave was put back in charge of Dave (OK, Sal is in charge but I think you know what I mean).

Living in town (even for just 15 days) means ‘making appointments’ and waiting on others and relying on others and dealing with others……and, in a small town, that is NOT horrible hell.  At least not at one town-day at a time.  But I am now even more ill-suited to ‘civilization’ and ‘their ways’ than I used to be.  I chafe at waiting for traffic lights, lining up to get past construction sites, lining up to buy crap and all the little ‘impositions of order’ that urban life requires.  I can do it.  But it is getting harder with each day.

Don’t get me wrong.  This is not a complaint so much as an observation that I have lost the veneer that was my previous and somewhat civilized social behaviour.  I am now a little bit wilder.  I now no longer fit.  I am quite clearly way out of my new-found comfort zone OTG and I am uncomfortable with the so-called comforts of the city.  Interestingly, Sal is feeling that, too.  “You’ve poisoned me!”

“How so?”

“Well, now I am impatient at what seems like a sea of common stupidity.  Even I want to scream at people who are NOT doing what they should be doing.  I used to just wait patiently and smile nicely but now I get irritated if the cashier is talking to her friend on the phone while I stand there with the money in hand.  I am annoyed that the nurse on shift has never worked that department before and doesn’t know where anything is or what she is doing.  I was there two days and I knew more!  I might even get belligerent someday if this continues.”

“I doubt that very much.  Tinkerbell unhinged is still a sweetie-pie.  You’ll always be nice.”

“Well, this belle is ready to go home.  Like, NOW!  I want squirrels!

And here is the weirdest thing: I am now somewhat off-put by all restaurant food.  I know, I know…what the hell?  But, you see, at home Sal and I eat what we choose, cook it the way we like and take the amount we think we need.  Restaurants don’t work like that.  Which is fine.  Really.  It is actually somewhat interesting once in a while.  But living in the moho means more ‘take-out’ and ‘prepared foods’.  And, after awhile, it kinda feels and tastes ‘all-processed’.  Yuck!  I ordered a medium-size pizza the other night (usually one of my favourite town-treats) and it came from CR’s best.  Almost unpalatable for us now.  Half was all we could eat.  Two people, HALF a medium pizza and even that was eaten out of duty.  We can no longer tolerate too many restaurant meals.  How did that happen?

OTG has obvious differences from urban life.  Everyone knows that.  And there are pros and cons to both.  But we have actually changed!  The change is deeper, more subtle than I previously knew.  It took two solid weeks of living ‘the life’ to realize that this is no longer good enough for me.  I gotta get out.  I’d like to get out NOW.  Sal wants out, too.

We’ll see how that goes.

9 thoughts on “Day 15……

  1. Hi Dave, how do you two manage living in the moho in the dead of winter? pipe frozen, no? what about toilet, water, heat. a Honda generator?


    • Winter in BC is usually moderate – at least on the perimeter of the Gulf of Georgia. And we are in Campbell River which is influenced that way. But THIS winter has been especially cold and even a bit snowy. Not the ‘usual’.
      This moho is NOT well insulated either so we have had a few chilly nights. Not so bad that we are uncomfortable but cold enough that we run the propane furnace a couple of times in the evening just to take the ‘chill off’ before snuggling under thick covers in bed to go to sleep.
      We are ‘hose’ connected to our friends house for water. And we are using an extension cord to get electricity (15 amp cord) from him as well. No real hardship. The hardest part is having virtually NO kitchen. I guess modern moho designers figure people don’t cook when on vacation. It’s crazy-making.
      No genset (out of consideration for the neighbours) and we access my friend’s place for showers and such – usually twice a day for ten minutes each time.
      Had we NOT had the ‘cancellation’ opportunity at the hospital that allowed Sal’s surgery date to be moved up, March or April would have been fine. But ‘now’ is much better than ‘later’ and so we went for it. We are both glad we did.
      You are in Ontario, right? The weather there is very, very different than here. If you have never been to the Salish Sea area (Gulf of Georgia), you really should consider a visit.


      • last time i was in BC was 2017, got off Holland America in Victoria and rented a Yaris, drove as far as Parksville and turned left onto highway 4 and to Tofino. so i guess i can say i visited half of strait of georgia, lol. i love BC, in the summer.


      • BC is more temperate than in just the summer. Spring and Fall are even more pleasant for me. It’s only winter when the weather gets a smidge harsh but, honestly? Compared to elsewhere in Canada, even winter is easy. To be fair, weather OTG is a bigger influence/challenge. I used to go from a car to a building and not even be outside when in the city. The weather was rarely an issue and never a topic. Now? Now, I ‘feel’ the weather shift, the wind shift, the waves change…I feel everything and I like it that way.


  2. My personal concern with living in an urban setting is that expectations are highly charged. I was in line to file an estate application for probate along with others was waiting in line. A gentleman came in and insisted that he advance to the head of the line. Much to this would be line jumpers dismay he was directed to take a number and get in line. Who was this individual with such an imperious attitude?


    • Well, you are right, of course. A line is a line is a line and it is line for a reason. I do NOT think I deserve to be served first. Not at all. Being considerate is required both in the country as well as the city. It is just that in the country, there is less consideration required, fewer rules and virtually no time pressures. Island time becomes your pace.
      But that was the point of the blog. In the city, you MUST line up. You must take a ‘ticket’ and wait to be called, you must stop at traffic lights, wait your turn and crawl down the road to get to the next mind-numbing delay. I just cannot muster that patience any more. As Sal puts it, “Life is NOW too short for me to waste any of it being a sheep, following a herd, waiting to be slaughtered. I ain’t never going back.”
      So, is that being imperious? Is that feeling ‘entitled’ and spoiled? I do NOT think so. I think it boils down to simply a choice for us. We had a choice to make and we made it. But our choice was made from desiring more ‘country’ and facing the challenge of building rather than rejection of the city. That came after. It TURNED OUT that the choice we made involved subtler changes as well. When you embrace country-style, you naturally shed some of the urban habits. It’s really just common sense but it came as a bit of surprise….some of it, anyway.
      I watched a recent to-the-Island-guy answer his phone today. This guy’s face is usually relaxed and smiling. He’s retired. But, when he answered his phone, he instantly went into ‘business mode’. His face went flat-affect. So did his voice. It was a visible change. When I laughed and pointed it out, he was shocked. He hadn’t noticed how he had already changed.


  3. Dear David,
    if you’d be so kind, I’d like to know who is CR’s best pizza, just in case I am in need there. Would you mind passing it along?🙄🤨🤔
    It would be much appreciated!🙂🤗😋 David.


    • Travel Advisor and the older locals say, “White Tower”. But we found it inedible and threw out half a medium pie. Very sad. Almost traumatic but, you know, I am mature…..(boo hoo). Younger folks say ‘Panago’ but younger folks are going on price. I’ll pay for a decent pizza. And there ain’t one. HOWEVER!!! The Quadra Island Pizza place (there is only one), the Clove, is much better than average and almost good. Say, B-. Maybe a B.
      And there have been unqualified reports that ‘Domino’s’ at Willow Point is at least edible. If you want good (fine dining) food, go to ‘the Dolphins’ just up the highway a mile or so. If you want a great (but pricey) breakfast, the Ideal cafe is good. There are several passable Sushi places (Sushi Mong) and there is a great little Syrian/Lebanese take-out called Baba Ganouj. Best Chinese take-out is Seawok. Dick’s for Fish and Chips. Basically, CR is really good for restaurants given its size. But, therein is the key – it is a small town and the ‘chains’ dominate.


      • Thank You.
        I believe we tried, and enjoyed Baba’s when we were last Home, and of course Dick’s is where we gravitate to (when I was last in there I signed the book saying how the wifey would be jealous I went without her, as she was on a plane home, and I considered buying her a tshirt to let her know I was there, but then rethought that plan as she’d be wearing a tshirt that said “I love Dick’s” so I canned that consideration), but I hope to get to a few of the diners in CR (and PMcN, PH and Comox in due time). I appreciate the assist.
        Take good care David and my Best to SS, may she be dancing SOON! D.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.