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Monday, May 20, 2013

My bathroom sparkles.

I keep telling my colleagues in the news business there is more news to be reported in Timmins than they can imagine. Often they roll their eyes and smile at me. This past week was an example. Just after the flood threat was subsiding, we got word that a man near Cochrane was attacked by a black bear. I mean this was a really serious attack. The bear ripped off the man's scalp and chewed up some serious damage to the man's shoulder and back. The amazing part was that the man survived thanks to a couple of women from Timmins who were out camping for a Mothers Day getaway and they came upon the attack. They literally saved the mans life. I was pleased to get the first interview with the victim in his hospital room and then we followed up with an interview with the women. The first interview ended up in the Toronto Sun, so the story was picked up by the national media.
(Nick Ouellette Photo)
Then, on Sunday we got slammed, I mean really slammed, with a snowstorm. A Mothers Day blizzard. Go figure. Just as those stories were running their course, word came in that a diamond driller from Timmins was lost in an Arctic blizzard way up in Rankin Inlet.  So the whole town was on edge as the search was on. I say on edge because there was nothing anyone in Timmins could do. We had to sit and wait for the RCMP and rescue teams up north to do the work. Finally, after 65 hours of being lost on the tundra, the guy is found. He was wet and cold, but he survived. Great story.
So today is a relaxation day. Just thinking back... it was one year ago that the huge forest fire No. 9 broke out. Thank goodness,  no fires to report today.
I was housecleaning today and I just did the floors and the bathroom. I figure my Mom taught me right. I have purchased and used every type of bathroom cleaner out there, but nothing works better than a can of Comet and boiling water. I scrubbed and scrubbed. My bathroom is literally sparkling now.  I think I am gonna need sunglasses next time I have to pee!
I knew today the stores would be closed so yesterday I dropped by Pick Of The Crop and picked up a lovely ribeye steak. I was going to have it for supper yesterday, but decided to give it a bit more time in the marinade. Woohoo, can't wait to taste that sizzlin' slab o' beef! Jennifer has me thinking about being more choosey in the food I eat. So I bought some organic cherry tomatoes for my salad.

Saturday, May 11, 2013

Mom had boyfriends?

Our favourite Leafs seem to be nicely avoiding their tee off times this spring by staying in the playoffs.  Like all the leaf fans I know I am holding my breath and hoping for the best. Boston is a tough team, but we have to have faith. So let’s hope for a nice Mother’s Day treat on Sunday.
I enjoyed covering the Mine Rescue competitions this week. It was nice to see the fellows from Xstrata Kidd Mine, my old workplace, win the bragging rights for another year. I got a kick out of seeing a lot of the older mine rescue fellows show up to watch the competition. It was nice talking with them. Then I realized, I am one of the old fellows too.
A lot of folks do not realize it, but mine rescue in Ontario began right here in Timmins after the terrible mine fire in 1928. Somebody in government decided that it was not a good idea to have 39 miners die in the span of a few hours and so a royal commission was held and the government ordered that a mine rescue agency be created.
Had a quick chat with Melissa this week. She is planning a trip out west next week and says she plans to drop in to see her cousin Neil. So that will be nice for them.
Funny how things happen, but I was reminded of my mother twice this week. First thing,  I was getting some old clothes ready for the charity bin. I haven’t worn them in more than a year, so I went to the closet and my dresser to pull things out. Of course, I had to wash them again. That is exactly what my mom would have done.  Second thing was that the local navy cadets celebrated the anniversary of the Battle of the Atlantic. That reminded me of the many photos Mom had of her days in Halifax during World War II.  When we were kids we would look at the photos of Mom and all the people she hung out with back then. Of course, there were lots of pictures of Mom with sailors. It was funny because as kids we would say, hey Mom, that guy isn’t Dad, who is it? Mom always laughed and said she didn’t remember.

Sunday, May 05, 2013

Helpful people

May is always a busy month in Timmins for the news. Last year it was the forest fires that dominated the local issues and this year it is flooding.  Porcupine Lake and the Mattagami River are both running higher, wayyyyy higher, than normal.
So of course it means that most of my time is taken up chasing fresh stories on how the flood is impacting on the city. I think the best part was seeing how people come out to help their neighbours. I was so impressed with the sandbag filling stations set up at several places in town. People who were not in the flood zones showed up to grab a shovel and fill sandbags. Then they helped lug those heavy sandbags into different places where they could stop the rising water.
In any event the flood waters are now easing as the snowmelt is almost done. But there are still many areas around Timmins that still have snow and so the spring runoff will continue for several days.
Also had a nice chat with Jennifer Saturday and things are good at Chez Alexander in Val Caron. Her report card marks had just been posted and Jenn was pleased to report a perfect 4.0 GPA.  The boys are enjoying their new three-on-three hockey league too. It’s a new thing in Sudbury and quite popular I am told.