Friday, December 22, 2006

Passport to Nowhereville, or I am Not Worthy

For a number of reasons, I think I should acquire a new passport. Therefore, I read about the requirements on the Passport Canada website. According to them, I don't know anyone living in Kitchener or maybe anywhere else, who is worthy enough to be my guarantor.

Before this, I had no idea that I lived on the fringes of upright society. I thought I was quite a civilized and worthy person but apparently, I'm not. There are a number of professions listed as appropriate for guarantors but I don't know anyone who is a "professional" in this city (they need to have known me for two years), and I may not be able to find one in Toronto either. The list includes doctors, (don't have one), dentists, (don't have one) judges, magistrates and police officers (I haven't made the acquantance of any) lawyers, (don't have one) ministers of religion, ( I've know several, but none are around now - was it something I said?) and so on. If only social workers were still eligible to be guarantors my problem would be solved. Or what about writers - why can't writers be guarantors. Never mind - we know why. It's because we lie in the service of the truth.

The guy at the passport office was very kind and polite, especially considering that the office was filled to capacity. People were lined up just to get in the real line-up, probably the crowd was bigger because the U.S. is going to require Canadian visitors to have passports before the end of January 2007. The man give me an In Lieu of Guarantor form at my request, but he also warned me that since I'm a Canadian, it would seem odd if I didn't have a guarantor and would really slow the process down.

Oh well, at least I don't need a passport to travel inside Canada.

I'm staying close to home for now and I plan to enjoy my green Christmas.

Monday, December 18, 2006

Seven Days Until Christmas

And Ho Ho Ho to all of you!

There are no stockings hung by the chimney with care - because there isn't a chimney. And anyway, stockings wouldn't be hung until Christmas eve. I don't know if my grandsons will put Christmas stockings on their bedroom doors. But since it's their tradition, likely they will. I enjoy certain traditions too, and I plan to institute some new ones.

The first new one was a family party I hosted last Saturday in the condo party room. There's more space and a billiard room too. All went well, if one doesn't count blowing on one's fingers to keep warm while playing pool, the party was a time of warmth and frivolity.

It's been a challenge shopping for teenage boys, my son-in-law, and the man in my life. My shopping is finished, or at least I think it must be, since I've overspent my budget (another tradition). I'll worry about that in January.

I've found some time to practice my Christmas music and to play some of my old Christmas records. Every year I think I should buy a new and bigger print version of the Messiah sheet music, and every year I squint at my 40 year old tiny note copy instead. That's become a tradion too, I guess.

I tend to get senitmental at this time of year so here's my mushy stuff.

Whether your Christmas is green or white - may it be a time of joy for you.

Thursday, December 14, 2006

Three Long Cheers for My Friend!

My friend and fellow writer, Lori Hahnel, has had three of her short stories accepted for publication in the last month or so. Her fiction is wonderful. It's original, sometimes quirky, and highly readable; and I recommend everyone run right out and buy any journal her work appears in.

The best news is that her short story "Leading Men" will be published in Prairie Fire. PF is one of the best literary journals in Canada. Her fiction is also going to be published in Rags, Southern Alberta's Creative Writing Journal and one her short stories is now in Menda City Review. Here is the link:

It's great when talent, passion, discipline and persistence are rewarded. Here's to acceptances for all of us in 2007 - Cheers!

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Even Cats Can Nag

My daughter has three cats and I've had the opportunity to be educated by them this week since I am staying at her place while she and her husband are on vacation. Two of the crritters are quite vocal when their wishes have not yet been granted.

Dopey expects to have his water dish, which is located away from the other cat dishes, filled as soon as anyone is mobile in the morning, and he complains until his wish is granted. Emma is fairly laid back and quiet, but I've discovered that she expects my daughter's bed to be made, at least by mid-morning, so that she can take her cat nap(s). I had no idea what Emma was going on and on about as I prepared to take my shower, after the boys were off to school, and after I'd done the dishes and read the paper. When I descended the stairs to collect my clothes for the day. There was Emma, standing beside the bed and complaining vociferously. As soon as I made the bed, she hopped up and settled down for what she seemed to think was a well-deserved rest.

I plan to have my well-deserved rest Friday evening, and it will not be interruped by cats, though I'lll miss them.