The good neighbour Larry always gives me some plants. He starts them inside starting in February. To say he has a green thumb is an understatement.
I also start a few plants in March. When I have one or two that don’t look like they are going to make it, I let them convalesce at Larrys, and he breaths life back into them. It is like a spa for plants.
The plants he gives me must feel bad, because they go from a perfect environment to where they must survive.
‘Treat ’em mean, keep ’em keen,’ he says, is my motto.
When we were kids, the long weekend in May was the earliest you would even consider being in the lake.
Mom used to say get burned in May and it will turn into tan for the rest of summer.
The sun felt good back then. So did the lake. One would ease the other.
The sun made me sleepy back then. It was like being a garter snake coming out from the clay banks and laying on railway ties. Like everything was okay.
Busier than shit these last few days. It’s close to 100° out there and someone told me the pool was too cold. It’s 78°.
I told them the hot tubs are hotter and the river is colder.
The wasps are building their hives. I was called to take one down. I didn’t feel bad as it was over a doorway. It was a poor choice for the queen. She flew away and I hope she finds a spot underground where it is cool and nobody complains.
There are thousands of tiny grasshoppers out there. They are going to love the coming hot weather.
Lisa says we should get our firewood before they close the bush down. I agree it could be a hotter than hell summer.
The smoke has started. It could be a long summer. The smoke is from Alberta and Northern BC. Our forest fire season usually gets going in July. It could be a bad one judging from the heat we are experiencing.
Willow and I headed for the bush. I was looking for Yarrow to make a hot compress for my knee that is giving me grief. On the way we saw a female Black Bear and cub.
The Yarrow was up and I mixed it with some of last years dried flowers.
The Yarrow was boiled until soft, drained through cloth with the remaining leaves and flowers rolled in the cloth. Once cooled a bit it was put on my knee. It felt good. Hopefully it will do the trick.
A couple weeks ago I wrote about the District of Invermere (DOI) continued water woes. The water continues to be dirty intermittently, along with this, now DOI is having sewer trouble.
The smell of sewage, especially in the morning, fills the air concerning citizens and District officials.
The waste water lagoons are located in Athalmer beside Toby creek. The water is treated through a series of ponds and then seeps or is discharged into the creek. The water is continually tested at the discharge end to assure it is pure enough not to be harmful to the environment once discharged. This is the way most systems work, waste water is eventually returned to the ecosystem. Done right it works.
When sewage ponds start smelling it means the system is not working. Often it is because the micro organisms that purify the sewage have died. There could be plenty of reasons for this. It could be lack of oxygen. If you have ever seen a sewage lagoon you may have noticed a bubbling in the middle, almost like a fountain. That is a pump oxygenating the water for the bugs.
Of course there are other reasons why a system may stop working. DOI’s response is that the weather has changed and too many people are flushing sanitary wipes, designed to kill germs that are also killing the micro organisms in the wastewater ponds.
This explanation could be true. The result is an awful smell that is getting the attention and ire of residents. However a larger problem than smell may be happening. The waste water currently may not be treated and it is ending up in Toby Creek. If that is not bad enough. During May and June, the creek, during high water, flows backwards into Lake Windermere.
As mentioned previously regarding the quality of the water, DOI has ignored infrastructure for a long time. Choosing instead to focus on tourism, bringing more people to the valley and supporting business interests. In short, acting more as a chamber of commerce than local government. Our current mayor is a past President of The Columbia Valley Chamber of Commerce and it sometimes seems he doesn’t know the difference between the two positions.
I can’t count the number of times I have been told by DOI officials we need more tourists and second home owners, because they are the ones paying for badly needed infrastructure upgrades. I remember a past Mayor of DOI, standing on my doorstop, telling me he cared less for the people living here and more for the people, they are enticing to the area, for that very reason.
That’s fine. I get it. More tax payers, more services. But it only works if that money is used to upgrade services. In DOI case the extra money has been used to buy land to support more tourism, get more boats on the lake, and promote Invermere as Calgary’s ‘back yard’ where anything goes.
So now water and sewer problems are becoming hard to ignore and that can only mean one thing, higher taxes. There is no problem or incompetence money can’t fix.
DOI council has poor leadership, but good minds in supportive rolls. That’s important, weak leadership can always be swayed to do the right thing with proper reinforcement. The trick is to remind leadership what is good for most people is also good for them.
It is time for DOI to stop catering to tourists, second home developments and business interests and start serving residents as promised.
Rain today and we needed it. Work was a missed mash of issues. Most got the better of me. Lisa has a small white board where I get dressed that says, ‘Make good choices’. She knows I don’t always, but I’m getting better from my younger days where it didn’t take much for me to fly off the handle.
The birds enjoyed the rain, they chirped and sang and were grateful for the worms that came to the surface, making eating easy.
You could almost watch the grass grow. I fear a hot dry summer. We have been lucky the last couple of years. The tourists are coming, no longer slowed by Covid, and each will have a pack of matches and a few fireworks, not content with turning off the lights and watching the much more magnificent Milky Way.
Anger still bubbles in me. Deep down. Watching the destruction. The waste, pollution and noise. Nothing changes fast, I remind myself. It takes time they say. In the meantime I try to make good choices.
A very nice walk this morning with Kelsie, Cooper and Scarlett. Lisa and I are lucky to have them along. Willow and Lola ran through the creek and fetched rocks and sticks. Lisa and Scarlett brought back pussy willows.
This is what District of Invermere (DOI) water looks like. I still drink it because I am told it is tested and fine for consumption, plus, I’ve seen Willow drink out of murky mud puddles on the side of a slough and she has always been fine.
Infrastructure and utilities has never been a strong suit of the DOI. Historically to present, Mayor and Council, primarily made up of real estate agents and businesspeople, have been known to act more as a chamber of commerce, who’s primary goal is to attract tourists and figure out ways to fit more boats on Lake Windermere, all the while, and without fail, feathering their own nests. Welcome to a tourist town.
Not that this is anything new or specific to this town. It’s the way things work most everywhere. The best a person can hope for is what is good for a politician; local, provincial or federal, is also good for the majority. In Canada, most of the time it is. If it happens, the politician gets rich in the meantime, we should be happy they didn’t resolve to display further greed and incompetence to make more people worse off.
If one was to complain about the water quality to the officials of DOI, which I would never do (why present concern to deaf ears?), the answer would be, ‘get a home water purification system if you are concerned’.
We are lucky to have an abundance of clear fresh water in the Columbia Valley, it just doesn’t flow through the pipes below the District of Invermere.
Put some of the seedlings in bigger pots. They looked half dead and pissed off after I was finished, not much for starting plants inside.
Twitter labeled CBC “government funded media”. Which made me laugh. Of course they are. Most of their funding comes from the government. It doesn’t necessarily make the CBC bad. True the broadcaster endorses the Liberal Party agenda. But so what? I take heed when Chrystia Freeland tells us to buckle down and Justin Trudeau says everything is going swimmingly. There isn’t a news agency out there that is reporting without an agenda. That’s the way it is now. If you are seeking the truth, listen to a lot of news. The bullshit will come through. Of course it will be fucking exhausting and will leave you crosseyed, bewildered and, more than likely, worse off. I’ll take CBC any day, sometimes you have to settle for the least of the worst.
I think Orwell has me right. While the shit hits the fan. I am looking forward to tomorrow. I have a bunch of work to do. The work is going to make me happy, appliances fixed and running tickety boo. Grass mown. Looking good, for this time of year.