Tuesday, July 17, 2012




I was in our front yard this morning trimming up some dead branches on our Sunburst Locust tree when I heard a familiar, yet unfamiliar to this area, sound. It was not a sound associated with the weather or anything on the ground. Yet it was a sound ingrained in my mind from a bygone era that was associated with fear & apprehension. And, because this sound was so familiar, I recognized it right away.  My mind immediately raced back to the early 60's. Most of us grew up in the cold war days when radio, newspapers & television news were filled with almost daily reports of our dreaded enemy at the time....the Russians. Remember the 'duck & cover' films in school or the push for people to construct bomb shelters in their back yards. Remember those tense & stressful days of the Cuban Missile crises!! We all knew the Russians were coming with their big bear high flying bombers & missiles loaded with atomic warheads.  We knew it would be World War III & the whole world was going to be destroyed. It was a belief & it was a way of life back then.  And in an instant, I was reminded of all that this morning.

I was growing up in the small town of Tavistock Ontario, which with the exception of television, radio, & newspapers, was pretty much sheltered from all the hot atomic bomb targets of the day like Toronto, or Detroit Michigan.  Tavistock, like Bayfield was not in line with any major commercial airports nearby so the sounds of jet aircraft in the skies were, & still are, very rare to non existent. The white contrails of commercial jets can be seen but the aircraft themselves are too high to be heard. Back in those days, & in this southern Ontario region, if a jet was heard overhead it was an instant sign of something amiss. Throw in several recurring military jets & for sure, we knew the Russian bombers were either overhead or soon to be upon us. We knew once the Canadian & American Air Forces scrambled their jets, WW III was underway.
The instantly recognizable sound I heard this morning was a high flying fast moving military jet. Been to enough air shows & have heard enough military jets in the southwest skies over the past 5 years to know a military aircraft when I hear one. My mind right away reverted back to the early 60's & first thought in my head was, oh oh, maybe I had better slip into the house & put on CNN to see what's up. Nawwwww, that’s silly so I kept on trimming, but minutes later I heard the sound of another jet & over the next 10 minutes 4 more high flying jets. Used the excuse of heading into the house to get a drink. Oh, & while I'm heading for the kitchen I might as well snap on CNN. Dum-de-dum-dum. Nope, no report of Russian bombers or missiles on the way. Nothing about an Alien invasion from outer space & no, North America is not under attack from Iran, North Korea, or Botswana. No terrorists setting off a nuclear device in Lost Angeles or downtown Bayfield for that matter. Nothing out of the ordinary. Whewwww, close call…….didn’t have to practice my old classroom ‘duck & cover’ routine.  But, I did find it interesting how deeply ingrained in my mind the events of the late 50's & early 60's still are.  Without a second's thought I had associated the sound of this mornings high flying military aircraft with ‘big trouble’. Some old thoughts, habits, & reactions, just never die.


Our weather forecasters had predicted possibly the hottest day of the year for us here in southern Ontario today & so it came to be. Records were broken with Toronto coming in about 102F & that's not including the humidity factor. We have a cool front bearing down on us right now so the weather could get a little exciting tonight.


I particularly liked Debra's post over at FIND AND OUTLET this morning. Kelly & I met Debra & Jim at the Ranch near McNeal Arizona last winter & we know the particularly difficult area they live in right on the Arizona/Mexico border. Some readers will remember Debra from her heroic efforts to save suffering animals in her neighborhood & surrounding area. Her post today is entitled, MY DESERT URCHINS & surprisingly, does not have to do with animals.


IVAN & HAILEY are on the loose again traveling somewhere in southern Saskatchewan. Methinks not even they are sure where they are going:))

Any mention of music generally catches my eye & I have to agree with THE GOOD LUCK DUCK on her feelings of 70's music. Seems so many people have pooh poohed that Disco era & I have never understood why. I thought the music coming out of the 70's was great. Lively, feeling good music that made even non dancing people like myself just want to get up on that lighted disco dance floor & get myself crazy:))

Someone asked what prescription sleeping pill I was taking. Zopiclone-5mgs. Sounds like some kind of Cyberborg space Alien creature but they sure have helped my irregular sleeping habits. Probably should have gone this route a long time ago instead of trying to deny & fight off 'the growing older factor.' Finally gave in & accepted the fact I needed help in getting my over the top cholesterol levels down as well so I'm on Crestor now too. Oh dear, & I remember the days not to long ago when I thought it was only 'old people' who had to take medications every day:((


Our coffee blow-out Monday night turned out to be one of our shorter ones with Jim & I bringing it in just over 3 hours. Unlike days of yore, we found the hard plastic seats in the new Tim Horton's coffee shop in Seaforth Ontario kind of hard on our over poundaged buns after awhile & we both kinda hobbled out of the there like the two old guys from the Muppet Show we have always likened ourselves to.....Statler & Hilton. You remember those two old white haired duffers in the balcony always harassing the shows players below. Yep, that's Jim & I:))


Good news from my Kidney Stone Dr. Bukala early this afternoon. Clean bill of health & no stones to worry about. I'm good to go in the Stones department. I asked him about the Cranberry Juice theory of keeping kidney stones at bay. He said no, best thing is a big glass of orange juice every morning & a big glass of water before going to bed. That's it!!


This whole kidney stone thing which began last December in Tucson Arizona has left me with a few unanswered questions though. Why did the Ultra Sound technician lady at the Tucson hospital tell me 3 times I was a 'special case?' Told me I had 'a lot going on in there,' meaning my abdomen.  Had a lot of kidney stones she said.  Was this lady new at the job or filling in for somebody's lunch hour. The words of that technician sat in the back of my mind for months & I remember writing about it in the blog back then. Anyway, Dr Bukala says everything is looking good & he’s the Urologist guy who oughta know....................& that's good enough for me:))


GROANER'S CORNER:((  And you know what….I really don’t approve of political jokes much because too many of them end up getting elected.

- Tourists see the world, travelers experience it.
- Home is where your pet is:))

- "If having a soul means being able to feel
love and loyalty and gratitude, then animals
are better off than a lot of humans."
(James Herriot)

- The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails -William Arthur Ward

- The only thing better than right now will someday be the memories of right now...AL.


  1. Happy about your clean bill of health.

  2. If I were you, I'd drink the orange juice in the morning, water at night, and a big old glass of cranberry juice at lunch time! Can't hurt, can it? Congrats on your good news, and now you can set your mind at ease when you travel to Arizona this year.

  3. Excellent news on the medical front!

  4. Yaaaaaaaaa!!!!! Way to go AL,,,,3 cheers for Al....
    Hopefully that the end of that worry....
    Glad no bombs were dropped.....

    Do you remember the "black outs" we had back in WW11? Your probably to young......but I remember, everyone had to shut off their lights at such and such a time......As a young boy, I was startled by it all.

  5. Thanks for the name of the sleeping med. I've tried a couple and after a week or so, they don't really work any more. I know you'll let us know if that happens for you. Hope not. A sound night's sleep is wonderful is it not?

  6. I too remember those days of thinking WW III would be with Russia and was about to happen any day. Today I have a lovely Russian daughter-in-law who we love very much. Times do change.

  7. I remember hiking in the Burr Desert out of Hanksville, Utah when a military jet came over so low I actually hit the ground. Scared me to death.

    My uncle actually built a bomb shelter out on his ranch in NW Colorado in the late 50s. He also was into UFOs, and I think if the Russkys didn't get him he was convinced a UFO would.

    And congrats on the missing kidney stones (as per the Tucson ultrasound gal) - good to know they won't show up. :)

  8. great news Al...love the shot of the patio!..looks so inviting!!

  9. I do indeed remember the Cold War days. The threat was pretty big in our everyday thinking. For some reason, by the time I was six I knew about nuclear weapons, and my heart stopped whenever I heard those screaming jets overhead. And the Emergency Alerts on TV freaked me out every time. The SSTs were still SS in those days, and a big BOOM was not uncommon.

    Thanks for the shout, and the great music suggestions! I've been looking all the music up off an on all day - mellow!

  10. All of us kids from the 50s did the duck and cover routine, but in Des Moines Iowa we were so close to Offitt AFB in Omaha that we routinely had military fly overs so we didn't automatically cower at the sound of a military plane.. The schools did leave you with the impression that all hell was going to break out at any minute though...

    And Yea for Doc Robot!!! Now, if you can just get Kelly out of Bayfield, you might be able to come back down to Arizona!!!

  11. My Dad was in the Air Force in the early 60's and we were at a SAC base. I remember him having to go to work at all hours and sometimes for days. My best friend and I decided that if the US was attacked we would ride our horses 60 miles to a camp we knew about. We weren't worried about ourselves or our families, we were going to save our horses.

  12. Sure glad to hear that good news about your local inventory of kidney stones. Keep up with the doc's suggestions, and you shouldn't have to worry about those again, eh? Nice!

  13. So glad you got good news from the
    Dr. I remember air raid sirens in
    some of the parks, they used to test them several times a year.

  14. Glad you got good news on the medical front.

    I remember "duck and cover." Always wondered how much protection a little school desk would provide in the event of an attack!

  15. No stones in sight is good news indeed. You have about 2 years before it rears it head again, possibly more.
    That pic of your porch is one to envy. You would think you lived in Costa Rica not just North East of Detroit Mi. Happy days are ahead.

  16. Statler and Waldorf, Al. ;)


  17. A clean bill of health is always excellent news!!!
    One of my sons is dealing with kidney stones so I know he can feel your pain.