Welcome to my New Home!

I have moved back to my birthplace - a town of about 1800 in rural New Brunswick, Canada.

I have been gone for 20 years working in various cities, but not a lot has changed around here. People still leave their keys in their cars and their front doors unlocked...people still walk into your house without knocking and help themselves to a cup of coffee....and neighbors are both nosey AND some of the most helpful and wholesome folks you will ever find!

I am not sure if I will fit in here. I am used to "breakfast, lunch and dinner", not "breakfast, dinner and supper" which leads to all kinds of confusion when my friends show up at noon for a meal I was making at 6pm. I am also used to wearing $100 Lululemon yoga pants not $15 WalMart specials. (Not that there is anything wrong with WalMart!).

I have a convertible, which is completely inappropriate for a town that has snow 6 months of the year. I loved it when the old-timers would say, half-smiling, "So, you gonna be driving that car this winter?" like I might have just fell off the turnip truck the night before. I'd make my big blue eyes as big as I could as I would sweetly reply "Do you think I could....?"

Well, I WILL adjust, I WILL! One way or another, I want to be part of this town. I want to "be the me I was when I was child", not the one I created while living in the city.

So, let me share my experiences with you, as I adjust to this new, but old, environment.

Friday, October 21, 2016

Piggly Wiggly

I've hit the wall. As it turns out, there is such a thing as TOO MUCH COUNTRY!

I have been very proud of myself these last 5 years. I arrived back in my hometown all full of energy and confidence as I embarked on my journey to become a country girl. And now I figured that since I have been home for 5 years, I have seen it all.....camps, outhouses, 4-wheelers, fishing, campfires, porch-sitting, peeing in the forest....what else could there possibly be? In fact, I think I got complacent, and way too cocky, so the Universe decided to demonstrate to me I am not fully country just yet!

Last week-end, our friends decided to have a pig roast. I have been to Hawaii several times, and I have been to a luau where a pig is roasted in the ground for many hours. When it is done, the meat is served along with salad, veggies and poi, a Hawaiian dish made from the fermented root of the taro, which has been baked and pounded into a substance like mashed potatoes, but way more gray and tasteless. Roasting the pig was all a very civilized process, mostly because all I really got to see was roasted pig meat (ie pork, as we like to call it in the city), on my plate.

Cut scene to a pig roast in rural New Brunswick. I SAW IT ALL! I didn't just see pork on my plate, but I saw a little piggly wiggly with his front legs up in the air like he was saying, "I don't want any trouble, please don't shoot!" I saw the little piggly wiggly as he (I assume it was a he, since surely some mean old farmer wouldn't kill a girl pig, would he?) was turning round and round on a barbecue spit. It was like he was on one of those rides at the fair that turns round and round and makes your stomach twist all up, but he didn't have a stomach anymore! Instead, it was making my stomach twist all up, and I was neither on the spit, nor on a ride at the fair.

And then there was the turkey. Well, what can I say about the turkey? The barbecue spit is only so long, so in order for the piggly wiggly and the turkey to fit on it at the same time, the pig's nose was shoved up the turkey's bum. I am sure that in the world of barnyard etiquette, it's politically incorrect for a pig to stick it's nose up there. The turkey surely has rights, and in my opinion its rights were being violated terribly!

About 10 hours later, we ate.

I have not been the same since. All I see in the background of my brain is a rotisserie with a pig and a turkey, both waving at me. The turkey is looking frightened, trying to get away from the pig, whose nose is in the turkey's no-man's land. 

I have been eating a lot of toast and cheese whiz since last week-end. Cheese whiz doesn't have eyes that will haunt you for weeks.

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

What Not to Say

When I have an "interesting interpersonal experience" with someone, it always makes me want to write. Simply put, when someone acts like a -butt- in my presence, it makes me want to ponder how this person's brain operates. I enjoy analyzing people's behaviour....including my own.

Since I LOVE lists (just ask my husband, who may not love lists as much as I do), I have come up with 6 of my least favorite things people have talked about at the dinner table. My advice is to -not- talk about this stuff with strangers, near strangers, acquaintances, friends, family, or any other human being. 

I have compiled this list using my experiences from the last 47 years, so if you think you see yourself described, it is surely pure coincidence. Really.

Top 6 things NOT to talk about at the dinner table:

6) Body parts on yourself or others that aren't working up to snuff and what needs to be purchase at the pharmacy to make sure there are no "accidents".

5) How you were at this really cool ethnic wedding once where guests were eating parts of animals that typically are discarded into the dumpster.

4) How you wish you had known your date had such handsome friends, because if you had known, you would have attended the dinner with one of them instead of your date (who is sitting beside you).

3) How you are not sure if your teen son is old enough to have lustful thoughts and take lustful actions (see an earlier blog I wrote for more gory details).

2) How great you are. Surely, you are the very best at what you do. It is obvious by the way you carry yourself in the world. But please do not attempt to entertain us with details of your terribly successful (and yet terribly boring) career. We all think we are the very best at what we do, but it is all a fanciful illusion.

1) Who has died in your family, what they died of, and where they are buried. 

In the event you are at dinner with someone you never want to see again, start at #1. You may not even make it to dessert. 

Sunday, October 9, 2016

5 Years!

It has been 5 years since I " officially"  moved back to P-A. I know that because it is 5 years since I met Greg. I am not nearly so city-girl-ish anymore. In fact, I think I may have reverted to being a little bit country! Here are 5 things I have done recently to convince you I am truly getting back to my country roots!

1) I made pickles. I have always been such a pickle snob! In the city, I would buy the expensive kosher deli pickles like I was all-that. I am not Jewish, so I have no idea why I felt it necessary to buy kosher pickles. I don't even know what that means, but whatever it is, makes the pickles worth $7 a jar. Greg planted the garden and brought the cukes into the kitchen for me to "process". Sounds very sophisticated. I boiled up the pickle juice, put everything in a jar, and hoped for the best. Costs about 13 cents a jar, by my calculations.

2) We bought a tiller. Back when I was a kid, my Dad didn't have enough money to buy a tiller, so he McGyvered up an alternate solution. He took a square piece of wood, nailed some giant spikes into it, attached a set of handles and then hooked up the motors to it. By motors, I mean my little brother and I. Dad fashioned a harness around our waists, and we pulled while he bared down on the handles to till the soil. Since Greg and I don't have kids to harness up, we had to buy a proper gas powered tiller. (BTW, this is one of my favorite childhood memories! What fun to be little plow ponies!)

3) We have a 1976 trailer parked in our yard, like true billies from the hills. Ok, so it is not ours, we are storing it for a relative, but every true country-girl dooryard needs a hoaky camper trailer in their yard!

4) I was involved with cutting wood, straight from the forest. So.... Let me rephrase that. I helped throw a few pieces of wood onto a trailer. The other people I was with got really dirty and sweaty while I more or less watched. I didn't want to mess up my hair.

5) I had a rhubarb social on my porch. You may ask, "what would a rhubarb social be?". It was an idea I got from our honeymoon in PEI several years ago! I made 6 or 7 home-made desserts using the rhubarb from the patch in our yard. One Sunday afternoon, invited everyone I know to come and eat sweets, drink tea and socialize on my porch. Who the heck does something that wild on a Sunday afternoon?

I wish I was able to add a 6th thing to my list of country-escapades, but I am not able to at this time. I tried to convince Greg to let me buy 2 goats and they could live in the garage. He said no. I am actually somewhat relieved, as the only goats I have really been around were on my plate at the Indian Restaurant on Queen Street West in Toronto.