You’ve all heard of the Alberta Clipper, the Arctic air mass that descends from the Canadian Rockies to chill Southern climes… well, we were happy to be the recipients of an Air Canada delivery of two delightful, warm Albertans from Calgary, Marla Simpson and Mike Finch, for a brief visit to sunny, warm central Florida. We met them while stopping to get my computer repaired in Calgary last summer; because our cell phones were turned off while in Canada, My Lovely Bride had been on her computer at a Wendy’s (thank you for free Wi-Fi) looking for a repair shop. There were many listed in the search results, but her guides told her to go to one in particular, MicroTrends. (We have learned to listen to Suzanne’s guides.) We drove there, and while I brought my useless computer inside to be fixed, Suzanne walked the puppies… about 30 feet, where she discovered Self Connection, a really cool metaphysical book store. They allowed dogs, so MLB, Rudy and Gretchen were chatting with Marla and Mike when a shriek came from the back of the store. Seems that a little girl had almost fallen over Briggs, a 140 lb. German Leonberger that was the real owner of the store. Leonbergers are known as Gentle Lions or Gentle Giants, and the girl was unhurt, only shaken by stumbling into the canine version of a Sherman tank.
Suzanne was so impressed by Marla and Mike (hereafter called “the M&Ms”) that she invited them to visit us in The Villages, and when they called to say that they would be stopping by, we were thrilled. We borrowed My Good Friend Bob’s 4-seater golf cart, and took the M&Ms on a driving tour of America’s Friendliest home town. They were particularly impressed by our two polo fields and grandstand; I had to look up the actual dimensions (300 yds x 160 yds, each). They laughed when I described the half-time tradition of “divot stomping” while sipping champagne, and I suggested they return next year to try it out. The M&Ms were also impressed by the reasonable home prices here, about half of what they might be in Calgary; but then, when you have to pay for 11 months of serious snow removal up there, your amenities fees have to be astronomical. We would like to see the M&Ms move south to TV; barring that, we expect to see them next summer in Calgary, where Suzanne will have an event at their store. See their web site at www.selfconnection.ca.
After a grilled salmon dinner, cooked but regrettably not caught by Your Faithful Correspondent, Suzanne held a small Sanaya session here at the house. It was a good opportunity for our Heart Circle to meet the M&Ms and enjoy their company. After Sanaya’s messages, we sat and chatted and laughed for an hour; I have to relate the following quote from one member of the Heart Circle who shall remain anonymous – it produced some raucous laughter – “I play better in the dark…” she was actually referring to an annual golf match played under the stars with glow-in-the-dark balls, but the way it came out was a thinly-veiled double entendre. (Thank you, Donna, for the best quote of the evening…)
Okay, the Photo Quiz the other day was correctly identified by several readers as a frozen strawberry. The earliest email came from Steve Jasper, so Steve and Carole will get lunch with Corvette Chick and The Bruised Bicyclist. Thanks to all of you readers across the country (especially my Navy shipmate Dale from La Otto, Indiana) for your submissions, and also to Dr. Elsa, whose “marks left by edible bivalve mollusks on colored grated ice” wins Honorable Mention (and lunch!) for scientific creativity. Lady Sharon of TV gets the Impertinence Award (and lunch) for her answer of “looks like YFC’s boo-boo with one of Suzanne’s fingernails in the wound”. Sharon, really…
One of the neat things about this contest for MLB and I is getting to meet/renew acquaintances with so many great people!
On a w-a-l-k in t-o-w-n with Rudy and Gretchen, our two little fearless Dachshunds treed this specimen of Sciurus carolinensis, the Eastern Gray Squirrel. It was particularly gratifying because the encounter was in Sumter Landing, just over two miles from the house. Now that trees in our area are maturing, more wildlife (okay, rodents) are moving in. The puppies love chasing squirrels! And for the PETAphiles in the audience, “No, we do not allow our Rudy and Gretchen to catch and eat the rodents in question…”
While getting a cup of coffee in Spanish Springs the other day, I observed one of Lady Lake’s finest motorcycle officers writing two tickets to grandmothers who had not brought their golf carts to complete stops at stop signs in the town square. While fully supporting traffic safety, I also suspect that the income stream provided by nabbing retired folks in golf carts making “California stops” has become more rewarding to our local constabulary than reducing serious crime like drug sales, meth labs and car theft. It’s certainly easier for the fearless officer involved, because all he had to do is sit on his bike at the intersection and pull over senior after senior… raking in fines and meanwhile saving scarce fuel dollars for the Lady Lake Town Treasury… sheesh!
Another unbelievable sight was this lady sitting in her car calmly reading her newspaper… in the middle of the parking lot of our mailboxes! I very politely asked her if her car had broken down… she looked at me rather condescendingly and replied, “No, I’m reading my newspaper.” Okaaaayyyyy….
Finally, I had a comment from Jan Smith related to our sushi event in Orlando. Seems that Jan, while out for dinner on March 17th, ordered a St. Patty’s Roll at a local sushi bar here in The Villages (NOT our favorite, which is VKI, by the way). Jan reports that the roll was “pretty bland”… Jan, really, Irish Sushi???? I’m trying to imagine the ingredients… potatoes, turnips and Guinness? I can’t imagine anything less appetizing, except maybe Haggis sushi on Burns Night… yuck!