No more film for me!

It is hell to get old! Gravity takes over, wrinkles set in, grey hair becomes harder to colour and your vision goes to shit! Um, I mean you wind up needing bifocals! I may have mentioned that I took photos of the first mattress with both the phone camera and the trusty old film camera? Well, it turns out that it is a good thing I have the phone camera!

I have not been taking a lot of pictures lately, so wasn't sure what else was on the roll of film in the camera and decided I would take the pictures and develop the roll whether I finished it or not. It seems the last time I had a roll of film developed was in 2004. I am thinking the first photos on the roll are from around that time. I know this, because the photo shop where I get them developed, well, when I was picking them up, the girl kept insisting that only one roll was back, that's because I only dropped one off - when was the other left here? Oh, 2004! So, she took that off the computer - I assume I did pick it up.

I have a half dozen good pictures and about 18 out of focus pictures of the bed with the dirt and the snags. Did, I mention you need bifocals when you get old? Did I mention that you also lose all common sense?

I couldn't look through the viewer through the bottom portion of my glasses, so I took them off! I do this quite regularly, sometimes I can just see better without the damned glasses. In doing this, it never occurred to me that if it is in focus through the viewer that the photo itself will be out of focus. I am so f*cking dumb sometimes! I guess my next purchase when I can afford it will be a digital camera. The quality on the phone camera is not that great, but it will do in the mean time. Oh and it's not as though I haven't been taking pictures, I have a Polaroid that I use to snap pics of the cat and other things. Frankly, I have taken more photos with the phone in the last few months than with either of the other cameras. I guess I am all about instant gratification.

How about you snappy people? I will need suggestions for a moderately priced camera in awhile, what do you use.

Good afternoon!


Three times IS a charm!

The third mattress just got delivered! It is clean and the couple of individual picks, I was able to smooth back into the fabric! I am so happy! It is the best bed yet, I think I will keep it and not tempt fate by rejecting it.

This is the only "happy" picture I have on my 'puter so far.

I think I was 12 maybe? (Don't bother to click, it is really out of focus! Old Polaroid!)

Good Afternoon all!


Catching up on sleep news.

I had a bit of trouble getting through to the store today, so I will try again in the morning and then post this. Maybe with names and manufacturers. I don't really want to go that way, if I can get satisfaction any other way.

Red will be the edit colour for tomorrow if they balk. So, this is what the first mattress looked like.

This is the pin pulled from the side of the first mattress they gave me.

The first dirt noticed.

The first snag noticed.

The other side of the bed:

Both of these are at one handle.

The other handle.

These are from my camera phone and as you can see, I still need to practice with it. I also took good old fashioned film photos. The snags on the top are really hard to see, so I won't post those.

By the way if anyone is looking for new pillows, I have been doing some looking on the web and the Latex pillows can be found for much, much less than $500.00. I think Sears has them for under $100.00, big, huge difference. I haven't gone to look at them to see if the quality is the same, but even so, huge difference!

So, I called the store and once again my salesman is not working. The fellow I spoke to gave me the number for customer service as they will have to send someone out to look at it and will have to order another mattress, which will now take two weeks to get as they are out of them. So, I call customer service, they actually close for lunch break, so I am still waiting for a call back. I have decided to post this as is. I can change it later, or do a new post.

Good Morning

Update: Customer Service called back - no, they don't have to send someone out, he will have a mattress inspected and sent out on Monday.


You can't rollerskate in a buffalo herd

The photo is of the Bison Herd at Elk Island National Park, located just East of Edmonton, AB. You can actually drive through the paddock and see them up close and personal, just don't get out of your vehicle. These are massive beasts and although they look slow and docile they aren't. Especially when they have their cute babies to protect.

For those that are not familiar with it, here is the RCMP crest, it features a Bison head in the centre and way back when they were the Northwest Mounted Police, they wore Buffalo coats in the winter.

The reason I mention this is because there is a real stuffed Bison head, mounted in a plaque hanging at the landing of the stairs in the RCMP S/Div HQ office building where I used to work. That was the first time I had ever seen one up close and they are massive! I think the stairs were the standard three foot width, therefore the landing would have been 6 feet wide. The plaque only had about one foot clearance on either side and it was positioned high enough on the wall that someone six feet could walk under the head without getting knocked out. I know this because I had to walk under it and this was back when I was still able to wear three or four inch heels and did - all the time. It probably stuck out from the wall a good 2.5 - 3 feet and was about four feet from chin to the top of the head. I am guessing at the measurements as I tended to avoid that stair whenever I could and I never actually measured it.

You are probably asking "Why is she going on about Bison today?" Well, we had roast Bison for supper Monday night. Bison is very lean meat, so lean it needs to be marinated before you cook it or you wind up with shoe leather. This was a first attempt on the part of my friends to cook Bison and other than being less well cooked than is our preference for roast meat it turned out rather well. They found the recipe on the web, just picked one at random that sounded good. Next time they try it though, I think they will opt to cook it a bit longer. There are a few Bison farms in AB and they picked up the roast at the local farmers market. It is rather more expensive than beef, so it will not be something we do often, but it made a nice change.


In other news, I got my new mattress today, it is clean this time, but there are a few pulls in the fabric on the top of the mattress, so I have to phone again and see what they will do.

So, what adventures in food have you experienced?


I feel good...na na na na na na na

The bed arrived yesterday! The guys set it up and then, well, pulled a two inch pin out of the side of the mattress! Then I noticed that it was dirty, right where the handle is. Well, it was obvious that the dirt was not new, it just came out of the plastic! The delivery guys, while not immaculate didn't appear to have dirty hands. I signed off after he wrote down that there was dirt there and they left.

I let the cat out of the bathroom, he is very afraid of everything and his hiding place is under the bed. Then I went and laid on the bed, just to reassure myself that I was right in that it was comfortable. It is - sigh! I rolled onto my side to see the cat and noticed that there was something fuzzy on the side of the bed. I tugged but it was attached, the fabric on the side of the bed has been horribly snagged. So, I start examining, there are two or three spots where it is pulled, another nasty snag and both of the handles on the other side of the bed are filthy. This is not acceptable, so off the bed, into my office (ooh, that makes my apartment sounds so big - it isn't) and I phone the store. My salesman isn't there, he is by the way the area manager, but will be in on Saturday. I explain to the fellow on the phone what is wrong and that I want a new mattress delivered post-haste! He checked to see that they had one at the warehouse and they did, and they could deliver Sunday or next Wednesday. Well, I work Sunday and need the money, so I opted for Wednesday. I also told him I wanted it examined at the warehouse before delivery and it should be immaculate. For the amount of money I'm paying - damned right it should be!

This has to have come from the manufacturer this way, so I looked at their website and they go on about how quality is their first concern and all this shite. Um, hello? How then did this mattress make it out of your facility? I of course can't examine the box spring, for one thing, I have a sleigh bed, so most of the box is hidden. Secondly, the two guys that moved it had trouble lifting them into place, there is no way, that I will be able to lift the mattress on my own to examine the box. I could barely shift it to dress the bed!

My old bed was high, regular mattress set, but the frame made it quite high, this set makes it a lot higher - 30 inches from floor to top of mattress! Good thing I am tall! The other new thing in mattress these days - they have found a way to eliminate the hard edges so you can "utilize the whole mattress area" - yeah, I can see me falling off the bed, something I have only done once in my life.

The bed is fantastic though! It is infused with the scent of green tea to help you relax. So, far I don't seem to be allergic to it so that is good. I had the door closed while the bed was unmade in order to keep the cat off and every time I opened it, wow, it smelled so good! It is not overpowering either, just a gentle smell.

I had the best nights sleep last night - hence the James Brown title. I will admit that I was very tired though, so we will see how tonight goes. I didn't wake up with pins and needles in my hands and arms or across my back and my neck feels really good too. I will be so much happier when the clean mattress arrives though. And I am the kind of person that will make them exchange it until it meets my satisfaction, I don't care what their policy says - a dirty mattress is not acceptable.

So, how about the rest of you, do you make a noise until it meets your satisfaction?

Good Afternoon All.


Oh My....How Much?

Well, I guess I won't be getting a car anytime soon!

The other night, when I couldn't sleep, I thought to myself, gee I wonder if I need a new bed? The next night I pulled out the foam mattress that my sister slept on when she came down for my chemo treatments and.... had a really good sleep. For the first time in a long time.

Well, there goes buying a car! I knew mattress sets were expensive. I started looking around on the internet to get an idea of what price I would be looking at and some idea about the newer designs and so forth. Well, one of the latest is latex filling rather than memory foam. Oh, it sounds great, hypo allergenic, which for me is important, provides all sorts of support, it is cool, it has this and that and the next thing good about it. Wow, I wouldn't mind that, I wonder what the price is? Yikes! and a foundation to go with it? Oh well, maybe in my next life, so I continue to check out other mattresses.

Now it is time to go and actually try them out, my head is stuffed with useless information, but, only my body knows if it is a good mattress or not. I had decided to head for a specialty mattress store first as I figured they would have the largest selection. That they were having a sale was a bonus.

The salesman was the kind of quick witted smart-alec that I tend to be myself, so we got along quite well. He was knowledgeable and was by no means pushy. He started me on mid-price range sets, then went lower range and then he gave me a latex pillow! Wow, those are nice! Then he showed me the latex bed! I have to admit it was the most comfortable of all of the beds - for me. It was also the most expensive that he showed me. I had indicated early on in our conversation that I couldn't afford a whole lot, so there were beds we didn't even look at.

$2400.00 plus dollars regular price for this bed! Yes, you read that right. With sales tax on top! I think the last bed I bought cost about $600.00 - yeah, it was kinda cheap, but still!

Did I mention they had a sale on? The top end one was on sale for $1400.00, the next one down on sale for $1200.00, but there had been a delivery muck up somewhere, so there was a $200.00 rebate available for the top end set. Of the other six I tried, the two that were comfortable were 900 on sale from 1200 - that was the bottom end one and 1200 from 1600, but was the more comfortable of the two. I figured as I would have spent 1200.00 anyway, why not get top of the line? My Latex bed gets delivered tomorrow - Valentines Day! The best part? If I don't like it within 60 days, I can trade it for a different bed.

I would have taken a latex pillow as well, but I cannot justify spending $500.00 on one pillow even if the 2nd one is then 1/2 price - it is just too much money. If I find I need to replace the pillows I have, I can go back in a month or whenever and still get the same deal, just by mentioning the bed purchase and can get the same on sheet sets, buy one get one 1/2 off.

All-in-all, I think I made a better deal on the bed than I would have been able to make on a car, so I will just have to suck it up and continue riding the bus for awhile longer.

This link shows how latex mattress are made and the benefits, but of course is not the brand I got.

Good Afternoon All.


Where was that again?

The second time I worked for the RCMP, I was a Telecommunications Operator - Civilian Member even. This meant I was no longer paid by the city, I was paid by the Feds and much better I might add.

This job was in a different town, a bit north of home, much smaller place, but it was designated as sub-division headquarters. I have attached a picture of AB, I added a red line about where the subdivision boundaries are. If you follow the hwy up from the green city to where there are two dots side by side, headquarters is the dot on the right - Peace River. It is somewhat central to the s/div so it makes a kind of sense, until you realize that the town only has about 6000 people.
Yes, it takes up about a quarter of the province too - the green dot and the bottom three red dots were all answered by the people at the detachment in GP (green dot) all of the rest went through Peace River. Thirteen detachments, only one of which did not have either a reserve or Metis settlement. The rest made up for that one by have multiples though. We only had two phones with dedicated lines so we knew where those calls were coming from, the rest came in like on an 800 number - anonymously.

My job was to answer phones from all of these places and to advise the cops where they were needed by radio. Usually during the day, the larger detachments had someone in the office, so it was mainly evenings, nights and weekends that we were busy. The other part of my job was to make sure I knew where the cops were, what they were up to and get them help if they needed it and check the computer for warrants etc.

So, you needed to wade through all of that to understand my level of amused frustration about this call:

Me: RCMP how can I help you?

Caller: I need the police for ... (I can no longer remember - maybe a b&e - nothing urgent)

Me: where are you calling from?

Caller: Home

(yeah, thats helpful!)

Me: I'm sorry sir, what town are you calling from?

Caller: I don't live in town.

Me: What is the town nearest to where you live sir?

Caller: Oh, I don't live near town, I must be at least 20 miles out of town.

Me: I'm sorry sir, I am in Peace River, at this hour all the local detachments transfer their calls to me. I need to know what detachment or town you live near or I can't send anyone out to help you.

Caller: Oh, okay, you head west 4 miles then .....(gave me complete directions except the town name)

Me: Sir, are those directions from Peace River?

Caller: No, why would I give you directions from Peace River?

Me: As I just said sir, I am in Peace River and I need to know which detachment you usually call if you require assistance.

Caller: Oh, well, I am outside of ***** where the hell do you think I am? Why am I talking to Peace River?

He then hung up. I had taken the pertinent info, name and what the problem was prior to trying to find out where he was thankfully, so I was able to dispatch a cop out. Thank goodness it was a quite night across the rest of the s/div though.


How do you ...?

Alright, you all want a story. Well, I'll start with this one.

I was still in the training stages at the RCMP office, learning the ropes and trying to figure out the archaic telephone switchboard that they had (a step above cord & plug). I had already had a few odd calls that had nothing what-so-ever to do with police work which I had found very strange. Why are you calling the police for this? But, I would shake my head and then direct them to where they needed to call. For example: Your power is out? Call the power company at 555-1234. (I can see where they would mistake power for police, can't you?)

So, one evening, I was doing the bulk of the work, my trainer was feeling pretty good about just being there if I needed her, when I get the strangest call. One of the rural areas that our detachment covered was south of the river and was home for a lot of Indians - pardon me, First Nations People. (Back then they were still Indians) A resident of that area called as was his habit on a Friday night, except that this time, instead of his usual drunken ranting, he sounded reasonably sober. So, I asked him what I could help him with, after all, he hadn't sworn at me yet, so far all he'd said is hello.

He was quite for a minute, then said, "Well, I want to know..." I made that non-committal umhum sound that you make to keep people talking, "I have a steak!" Okay, good for you. What can the police do for you tonight? (all the while thinking, whoopee you have a steak - so go eat it!) "Can you cook it?" UM, no, I am at work and it is not a police job to cook your steak. "Can you tell me how to cook it?"

I put him on hold and I turned helplessly to my trainer (who is by this time laughing her ass off in the corner) and asked her what to do with this guy. We even checked the office to see if it was one of the boys playing tricks. How do you get to be 80 some years old and never learn to cook? Anyway, I get back on the line with him and with the trainer talking to me between her fits of laughter, we managed to tell him to fry it in a pan on the stove with some butter and that he had to cut it open after a few minutes to see how well cooked it was.

Now, I am not sure if the trainer was laughing harder at the old geezer, or at me for not knowing how to cook a steak either. Of all the people to ask how to cook a steak, he had to get me! Of course, I was 18 and was still living at home.

So, what strange phone calls have you made to the wrong authorities?

I once dialed the fire hall's alarm number by mistake. The last digit was the only difference between it and our home number and I was using a touch tone payphone and the 3rd number stuck so I got 2100 instead of 210? I was mortified! Yes, this was when touch tone phones were just new too, I am that old that I know what dial phones were like.

Good Morning all. Hope it was sort of funny.


Once upon a time

the naive young girl that I once was applied for a job with the City. They arranged for my Social Insurance Number to be assigned and sent to me and then sent me over to be interviewed. The job was as a municipal worker at the RCMP office answering telephones. Well, I didn't get that job, so I decided maybe I should get some further education. About 6 months later - hating school and ready to drop out, I received a phone call - "would you like to come in for another interview?" So I did, I got that job, packed up my school books and headed home to start this new job.

One of the first things they had to do was to fingerprint me. They had to be one file in case ... whatever might happen and they would need to ID the bodies left over. I couldn't start work until this was done, so I trotted right over and the Cst. on the desk took me down and printed me. I got a phone call the next day - prints were no good, could I come down again? This time the Sgt. printed me - still no good, next time one of the guys whose job it is to analyze things like fingerprints did it. Still no good! This time it was going to be done right - the S/Sgt was going to do it himself! No luck!

Now each time I had been down to be fingerprinted, I had to go down to where the cells are and past anyone who might be incarcerated for whatever reason. This was my first job - I was maybe 18 and had not really given up my shy tendencies and was actually a very sweet innocent young thing. So, I get another call to come back and this time, I am being printed by a real pro! This guy got prints no matter how cranky or uncooperative the person was. He knew his stuff! He got a beautiful set of prints, everyone was so happy - me especially! What was so special about this guy you ask? He was a volunteer guard. The cells in a police station at the time (not sure about now) were watched over by retired men (& women when necessary) that volunteered to do the job (I think they did get a stipend, but it wouldn't have been much). They had a panic button if any ruckus started and they pretty much just made sure that no-one choked, or hung themselves, fed them and helped get them booked into the cells, by helping with photographing and printing.

He must have been about 80 then, a thin wiry fellow everyone called Cowboy, he took me into the bathroom and told me to put my hands under hot running water and leave them there until they had warmed up. (I have always had cold hands) I was not to wash them with soap, just warm water. I came out and he held my hands for a minute and sent me back in - not warm enough yet. When I came out the second time, he declared that they were good now and with his gnarled rough hands ever so gently rolled my fingers through the ink and onto the paper and got a great set of prints. Then he had to take my mug shot - he had his own photo album with mug shots of all of the people that had worked there in the years that he was there. As RCMP members transfer every few years that was a large photo album.

I learned a lot about the idiocy of the general public in that job, lost my shyness, met some life-long friends and no-one would call me sweet or innocent after having worked there. I have some funny stories from those times which I will pull out from time to time and share with you. I was only an ME for about a year, but I did go on to be a CM (civilian member) for about 4 years at a different detachment, I will include some stories from then too.

Cowboy, where ever you are, you took good fingerprints! My thanks.

Good Morning All.