Happy Birthday to you…

July 1, 2003. Tuesday.

I won’t start with the whole idea of giving us a Tuesday off and what a mess that made of two work weeks, most people taking advantage and having 4 and 5 day weekends followed by 2 or 3 day work weeks. This is the strangest country sometimes.

I will start with some excellent news that Bob, my junior right hand man and go-to guy and his wife had a bouncing baby boy on June 28th. Apparently Squishy-Head as we have come to know him had some minor problems and was taken to Sick Kids as a precaution but I am happy to announce that he is now healthy, happy and residing under the bun warmers in the pediatric ward at Sick Kids. In fact, he should be home by now if all has gone according to plan. Sadly though, the circle of life has closed around Bob with the passing of his Grandmother just days after his baby was born. Life in all it’s complications is sometimes cruelly simple.

After a rather uneventful month in June, things seem to be picking up with a vengeance early in July. We have dropped a level at work finally, we now are rated a level 1 facility however this still means that we have to wear masks and get screened every day, an exercise which is increasingly wasteful as the days pass. With well over a thousand employees every day being required to fill out a paper form stating the blatantly obvious I am astounded at the waste that is being generated. I doubt very much that anything happens to those forms once they disappear from the front desk, mostly illegible writing, the same checkmarks in the same boxes on every single one, I would not be surprised in fact if there is a dumpster out back filled with reams of paper used to confirm that the NYGH employees have been at work every day since the SARS outbreak began. Once again, the simplest and least efficient methodology won out in the end and with noone willing to take the initiative to change things it will no doubt remain that way to the end. Until, of course, we are recruited to implement a digital solution by which time no doubt screening will have become obsolete as a tool.

But anyway…. Our first social event of the year has rolled around, until now we have been severely restricted by the effects of my surgery, but it is now time to get back into our social calendar and start mingling with the family again. The Pickering July 1st Pool Party is becoming somewhat of a tradition now, and a great time to touch base with the younger crowd of relatives that Nicole grew up around and who are close enough to make the trip into town.

Oh.. and of course there were the dogs…
Nicole and Molson

The last time we had seen most of the people was Thanksgiving last year, meaning that there was a lot of catching up to do and much story swapping to be done. Of course, the guys took 30 seconds to complete that part of the program and continued on discussing the various merits of 2Fast 2Furious and a lively discussion about whether or not the Aztec was the ugliest car ever built. We had some fantastic Quesadillas courtesy of Jason on the grill while waiting for the foot-thick burgers to cook. Among other things, the party was to celebrate the marriage of Jason and Judy who are getting married this month at a beautiful Golf Course resort out East somewhere. There was a gift opening and of course the requisite cracks about getting tied down and trying in vain to escape at the last minute. The gift Nicole and I had chosen was a very nice vase vaguely in the shape of a cala lilly and two glass flowers to go inside when the fresh variety are not available… I was quite happy with our choice and I think everyone was suitably impressed.

Very nice I think,,,

The weather was fantastic, even though it had been stifling heat when we left home, the shade and the proximity of the forest meant that it was very pleasant at Nicole’s parents place. They back onto a small forest that is a greenbelt I think, but that provides lots of shade and a very effective cooling mechanism during the summertime. The afternoon was long, but not long enough to make us impatient to leave. Lunch/dinner was BBQ followed by cakes and fruit and I think we all ended up pretty much stuffed to the gills as per usual.

all of us, all of them

Happy Birthday Canada…