The White Cottage

MY DAYS IN RETIREMENT

From The Darkness We Arose

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Third period. Toronto Maple Leafs vs Tampa Bay Lightning. The game is looking pretty dismal for the Leafs, but they’ve managed to at least score a couple more goals to get caught up to Tampa Bay. Suddenly, the room turns dark. Lights out everywhere – all around us, across the street, down the street – we’re in total blackness. Then, here it comes – we can hear it starting up. Yes, there’s the engine starting – and on one turn of a key. Ah, the humming begins, and within 20 seconds, it said “let there be light” – and light there was! We were back in the swing of things. We could see our hands in front of our faces again, the lights were on, the digital clocks were flickering, the satellite was reloading and we were born again! Whew!!! The Generator kicked in!

The darkness all around us lasted for over an hour and a half, but we were snuggled back in our comfy chairs during the whole process and watching the hockey game, having only lost 20 seconds of the third period. In the end it didn’t matter much – it was a lousy game and it looked like we wouldn’t have missed much – but we didn’t know that at the time. We sort of sat there feeling somewhat guilty – as every house around us was in total darkness and we could envision people grabbing for their candles to light their way around before they tripped over something or banged into a door they forgot was there. But suddenly the guilt left us. We were free. We told ourselves, “Hell, we paid good bucks for that generator and we deserved to have light”. So when the lights came back on we never missed a beat. The generator just wound itself down and the motor went silent. What a treat!! Even the new sump pump never skipped a beat, it ran in relative silence doing what it was built to do.

For the first time in years and having endured enough power failures, we were relieved and gratified that we did the right thing. Those 90 minutes alone were worth every dollar spent and we can now have peace of mind should the Gods decide to descent us into darkness again!

With peace of mind from last night still making us smurk a wee bit, we headed into Burlington this morning. Thought we’d wander around Ikea to see what was new. While driving down Soddom Road we hear the phone ring, and it was loud. I mean really loud. I know I made adjustments on the Cell Phone but didn’t remember it being that loud. So Nat pulls out the Cell, hands it to me and I flip the lid and say “Hello”. Much to our chagrin, the phone is still ringing – and loud. Sounds like it’s coming from the doors. Good God, we suddenly realize its OnStar. So Nat presses the button and we hear a voice – a woman’s voice from above wherein she begins a little spiel on the warranty. “Press One to say Yes”, “Press 2 to speak to a representative” for your warranty. This is where the fun begins! Where in hell on a van’s dashboard do you “Press One”. We look at each other. Then suddenly this woman disappears from above as quickly as she appeared. I guess we didn’t “Press One” or “Press Two” quick enough – pissed her off, maybe?? What the hell we didn’t want it anyways and really not too sure exactly what warranty she was talking about. We now realize that the “recorded messages” have now reached the Van. So we shrug it off and continue on our little trip.

Ikea was busy, as usual. Seems the economic downturn hasn’t hit that little corner of the world yet. We did our usual tour – followed the blue arrows down that little vinyl road that led us to the warehouse where we could spend our hard earned dollars on doodads, napkins, kitchen wares, fancy stuff, build-it-yourself stools and cabinets. I grabbed some napkins (which is what I was really going for), along with a couple of “new” vases and candle holders and we were out the door before they could start the lunch menu in the cafeteria. (Breakfast smelled amazing, however, when we arrived.) I had at least managed to pick up a couple of things that helped to shake off some of the “winter blues”. You begin to feel dull and dreary in the lone month of February and every now and again one needs to “just pick up a thing or two” to make yourself ready. Ready for the Spring thaw that is hopefully falling all around us and to get your spirits uplifted. Afterall Spring cleaning is just around the corner and you’ll need those extra doodads when you decide to re-arrange your decor while your cleaning!!!! It’s called “multi-tasking”. Get that “spring in your step” and go to Ikea or somewhere else to buy a doodad or two. You’ll feel good and you’ll do your part for boosting the economy. You win on both fronts!

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Author: Twila

Born and raised in a small town in Ontario, Canada, with 5 sisters and a brother. Now retired, my husband and I travel, play golf and am slowly renovating our new (old) home. After my kidney transplant in 1999, we've learned to enjoy life to the fullest. Nat and I have driven across Canada, taken an Alaskan cruise and drove home via the Northern United States. We've also been to Mexico, the Caribbean, the East Coast of Canada and Cape Breton. We've done the "Snowbird" thing, having lived in Destin, Florida for a couple of months of the year. In 2007 we changed our travel plans in order to move into and renovate our new "old" home, but hope to someday get back on the road again. We also love returning to Scotland (Nat's origin of birth) to visit his family and tour the Highlands and surrounding Isles.

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