awaken me

The Edmonton Farewell Tour

So today I'll trust you with the confidence
Of a man who's never known defeat
And I'll try my best to just forget
That that man isn't me

Today I left for Edmonton to finish the final packing. After what can only be described as a herculean effort to catch up with my editing, I can proudly say that I am actually, honestly caught up as of this morning. I let my edits from the Cuba wedding render overnight - well, over early morning actually. Twelve hours of rendering in total - all time I would have had to just spend waiting. I can't wait to upgrade to a solid state drive for the speed factor. I was looking at the clock at 3am thinking, "I think I can, I think I can…" and at 4:30 I was finally letting the photos render.
The point of all this was in part late photos, and in part that I didn't want to take my computer with me (I'm writing this from a new user account on my Mom-in-law's computer.) I had something to prove to myself about actually being able to catch up with things and operate inside myself from somewhere other than Code Red panic mode. And I told myself, if I can just do this, if I can catch up, when I catch up, I can start rebuffing that part of me that's been projecting self-directed ire and grow into a place of confidence again. I used to have so much more, and I can get that back. 

I will now rise from the ashes
Don't call me pretentious
I'm sitting here making my own rules

I was warned that the roads could be bad in spots and when I looked up the information online about Canadian highways, there were light road warnings. Either someone is joking or not paying attention - the roads were the worst I have ever driven - and that was without the snow continuing! Driving snow had made the road either crunchy with ice or like a skating rink or some combination of the two. After hours of this, we neared Lloydminster and the sunset and Ruth turned to me and said we should find a place to stay in Lloyd. I'd just been thinking the same thing. $100 for a safe night or, as my parents were fond of saying back in the day, we could be dead in a ditch somewhere. One of those definite better safe than sorry deals.  After seeing multiple truckers parked by the side of the road and a bunch of rolled vehicles draped in crime tape, we were ready to hit the hay somewhere. Despite our definite preference of not staying in a dive, there's only like ten hotels here, and hundreds of motorists who were smart enough to make the same decision were staying in all the good ones. We ended up in one of the worst rated motels here - except that I set the bar pretty low and came out reasonably well. Hey, the beds are comfy, the only bug I saw was a spider, the hot water was plentiful when my companion showered, and there's a fridge, microwave, iron, coffeemaker, and a nice flatscreen TV with cable - plus the wireless is great. So nothing to complain about. I saw one review complain about the "outdated furniture." Glad I've lived as a pleb for most of my life and that stuff doesn't make the cut for things to complain about. 


Anyway, this place is also walking distance from the three main restaurants, so we had some reasonably good food (with bad but at least friendly service) at Original Joes on foot - I didn't have to brave the skating rink in the dark, yay. 


Free breakfast in the morning is good!


Yuletide carols being sung by a choir
And folks dressed up like Eskimos


I welcome the dump of snow despite personal inconvenience because it helps me to back up my assertion that it's time for Christmas music, because it makes the drab leafless world look pretty again, and because the sound of Paul squealing as the cold snow hits his neck is music to my ears. ;)


Paul was telling me that one of the things he loves about me is my enthusiastic embrace of all things Christmas. I feel as though Christmas and Easter are the most meaningful times of the year, and since I care so much about meaningful things, it seems an obvious choice for me to love those holidays. Of course, I love Halloween for the creativity and community, and I love New Years because everyone joins the night owls in staying up late, and I love Guy Fawkes Day because British people wear smug looking masks and burn effigies and say poems in a spooky voice on my birthday, so maybe it's just holidays in general that I embrace with wild abandon, I'm not sure. I think partly it helps me make normal days special for myself, and that's a great thing to be able to do. 


But about that snow. I didn't have a chance to make a snowman yet, and most of the snow we get is the wrong consistency for that. Bummer. Maybe the snow will stay until after we move in and I'll have a chance to make one on our new front lawn with Paul. We wanted to make a Snowsaurus actually. On consultation we both feel that the stegosaurus is probably easiest to make. 


Paul and I have been enjoying a bit more time together as we've both started to get a bit more caught up with work, a bit less stressed, and have had the pleasure of contemplating life in a house of our own. I can't help but feel like if I give it a chance, that home could help me break through some of the barriers to happy living that I've been imposing on myself. Sure, I take myself with me, but I think myself might be happier in a place like that, with a puppy and a happy husband (with a good boss who called him today just to congratulate him on doing a good job with work this week!)


Speaking of puppies, my husband and I went to visit a lady in Saskatoon who knows our breeder who is a whippet fanatic - she's got three and another dog and likes to work with them at events. It was Paul's first time meeting a whippet, and my first time meeting a herd of them. They loved me!


We both definitely left feeling like whippets are still for us! The cuddle factor is high, which is definitely what we wanted. They were very friendly towards us, and two of them had a little brawl on the couch beside Paul, who was a good sport about it. The lady said her whippet who is shyest with strangers took to me - he sat with me for about half of our chat. We talked a little about dealing with the cold for dogs and puppies, and about lots of general whippet behaviour things, martingale collars, and such. We definitely feel like we have someone we can talk to as new puppy owners, and she seemed okay with me asking to tag along with her to some flyball, and I will maybe invite her to watch some agility with me sometime. I think she'll be very helpful, and we'll definitely be taking the new dog to meet her whippets sometime when he's ready to meet some new friends.


The countdowns are on and today they have perfect date symmetry. House - 7 days. Whippet - One month.


Full measure of Happiness - when I get there. 


All this searching yet my destiny is still unfound
Makes me realize this world will always let me down
So it seems that the only hope I ever had
Was everything that You are