The White Cottage

MY DAYS IN RETIREMENT

Everything In Threes

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Last week saw my favourite Uncle pass away after a major stroke and this week life’s reality hit my husband. His sister-in-law gave up her fight with Cancer. She and her husband moved to Florida years ago to live the good life in a small community while their two sons remained back home in Connecticut with families of their own. Nat took it hard. This was the sister of his deceased wife and I’m sure his mind was flooded with memories of times long ago. After his wife’s death, he took his two girls to visit his sister-in-law and her family in Connecticut a couple of times. Both girls also remember fun times from those trips and they, too, were devastated at the news.

I’m really, really not superstitious but I am a huge believer in the theory that these things come in 3’s. It happens so often with Hollywood stars – as it’s happened this past month with Robin Williams, Lauren Bacall and James Garner – whether by coincidence or not, it just seems that way. Hopefully our “third” thing will be the bad luck Nat and I have been having of late.

After all of the ups and downs with his sister, Jenny, (which are still ongoing), the wasps we’ve been detecting around the living room floor vent, and the crappy family news on both sides, this will be the last of it. I know the wasp thing isn’t exactly dire, but it is to us, as  it’s been very frustrating to detect where, exactly, they’re coming from.  This has been happening for a few months now, off and on and in small spurts. You could also say our bad news has added up to 4 things – the 4th being the Regional ditch running across our front yard, which has become loaded with algae and a bit of sludge and has become a breeding ground for all kinds of buggy, bugs!

As Nat and I are relaxing in the evening or even on a weekend afternoon we’ll notice a wee little black thing lying on the floor somewhere around the floor vent. Now and again we’ve spotted one or two nearby at the same time. They’ve all been baby-like wasps and they’re all dead (or close to it) by the time we spot them. Lately, however, we’ve found a couple of active ones around the transom part of the window and along the window ledge. We’ve both looked in, around, underneath and outside of the fairly new windows and nothing can be spotted that would lead us to believe the wasps are getting into the house that way. Our only conclusion, and by coincidence, is the living room duct vent. Thus our belief that there may be more inside the duct work of the house. We’ve never had the ducts cleaned since moving in, and we felt this would be a good time and hopefully confirm our suspicions that this is, in fact, where the wasps are coming from. We’ll find out in a week when the cleaners arrive.

The ditch thing is becoming frustrating. Nat has an extremely hard time trying to mow around and along the damn thing. A Regional rep came out and informed us that the sump pump was illegally placed (as is everyone elses along this street) as is the eaves trough pipe, and the Region won’t be cleaning it out any time soon. The Rep advised the ditch was built for water run-off from the main road and that he was willing to turn a blind eye to the pipes being there. It was an obvious conclusion the Region won’t be helping us in any way to try and clean or dredge the ditch.

With the past couple of weeks being a bit dreary, I’ve had to encourage Nat to keep up his golf games to at least get out of the house and talk about other things with his buddies. I can see it in his face – the frustration, the “not knowing” right away what is going on, and the fact everything is out of his hands. He worries or thinks about everything and it especially bothers him when he is left in the dark. His impatience can also get in the way at times. A few more bumps in the road for the two of us to get over.

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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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