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October 13, 2008


Happy Thanksgiving and Oktoberfest!

Luckily I joined the beginner band because that's how I met Pauline, who is also learning how to play the flute, and that's how I got invited to Thanksgiving dinner and then to a very unique Oktoberfest.

Pauline has been many things in her life (including a caterer) and she lives between Sidney, BC, where she has a big old house and on Saltspring where she has a cabin that she is continually expanding or "pushing out" by adding one more room here, oh, let's put another there and you get the picture. It's really nicely decorated and has the most amazing bathroom with a big soaker tub and beautiful fixtures. At the moment, she's got Christian building her an office. Christian is a very cute, amazingly nice carpenter.

The two dinner tables set up in her small kitchen just fit and the guests arrived. A very lively Irish woman married a few years ago on Saltspring to a woman from Edmonton, a tilesetter, a carpenter, me, and Pauline's neighbours who are retired. The lively Irish woman regaled us throughout the meal with tales of working at one of the local vets. She could write a book about animal stories gone wrong. The animal sound effects she could make were beyond impressive.

Right after the turkey got pulled from the oven the power went out and everyone pointed out that having an endless supply of candles on Saltspring is an absolute must and that you don't believe it when they say it never snows here. In fact, sometimes we get snowed in they said but don't worry, neighbours look after each other around here they assured me. Pauline's pumpkin pie, made by hand of course, complete with a little pastry heart in the center was delicious. .

Maybe it's the country or something but I don't think I've ever seen people eat so fast and then leave. It seemed like the meal passed quickly and by 8:30 pm it was only Christian, me and Pauline still left and we spent a very enjoyable rest of the evening chatting in the sitting room while Maggie the black Scotty dog and Griffin the one year old Terrier took turns resting up beside me.

Then today, we (Christian, Pauline and I) head out to Miles' place. Miles is originally from Germany and I would describe Miles as a Rennaissance man extraordinaire. The guy has rigged up a solar powered electric fence because he used to have pigs and now only the turkeys are getting zapped back to middle ground. He lives in a creation that is part trailer attached to part house with amazing kitchen cabinets because as well as being able to cook he's a cabinetmaker. He's created this fabulous bath house with the hot water heater on the roof equipped with wood stove, big soaker tub and a window to look out at while bathing solo but big enough for company.

He served up warm pretzels with sweet and tangy mustard to dip them in, boiled white sausage with beers from a Saltspring microbrewery to wash it all down with. This entire weekend has felt like a gourmet extravaganza.

It has been great!

But, I have to say between the people who make their own pies and their own bread, their own cabinets, their own bathrooms, their own houses, I'm thinking to myself, oh my god, what do I do? I need to figure out how to DO something. Something USEFUL!

Thank god I've always been very good at being incredibly appreciative of other people's talents and not everyone can say that now can they?:-)

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