Sunday, August 03, 2008


July 31 at 3 p.m. I left the Winnipeg Free Press, where I was employed since June 1, 1985.

On August 1 at 7 a.m. I flew out of Winnipeg, heading for Vancouver,

My challenge for the day was getting from the Vancouver airport to Nanaimo, where I would be staying at a bed and breakfast called Eagleridge.

I had too much luggage to take the sea plane.  The first time I took a bus across to Vancouver Island it was a nightmare because I had to transfer in downtown Vancouver, which meant waiting a very long time and putting up with the  unfriendly people who work for Greyhound Canada.  Making the adventure less appealing was the fact I couldn't get a decent meal at the Greyhound bus depot, nor any help from the staff as to where I might find one

I decided my best bet was to rent a car and drop it off in Nanaimo.  The trouble was, none of the car rental places had a car that I could  rent and drop off  in Nanaimo.

Low and behold, when I went to the bus line, where I could purchase a ticket that would take me to the downtown Greyhound bus depot, I discovered just the very day before, Pacific Coach Lines had begun transporting people from the Vancouver airport to Nanaimo.  I was dropped off a ten minute walk from Eagleridge.  All for an introductory price of $39.  

Luck shone upon me.

I'm staying with an older couple who are from South Korea, and I wasn't unemployed for very long.  I miss teaching and was thinking I might look for work here in Nanaimo, perhaps substituting.  But I also thought it would be very doubtful that I could find a part-time temporary job for the month I'll be here.

 I was offered a tutoring job, teaching a little girl who's family is also guesting at Eagleridge.

I purchased a city bus pass yesterday, forgetting to tell them I'm a senior.  Silly me, I paid $60 when I could have paid $39.  That's two meals worth of money down the tubes for no good reason.  I've got to remember that I'm living on a pension.

Walking and busing are now my major forms of transportation.

I went downtown to find out where the library is and low and behold I met up with my father.  He wasn't expecting to see me and when I said, "Hello dad," he turned away.  Then he looked at me once more.  "It really is you,"  he said.  I think he thought he was hallucinating.  

There we were; two old people sitting on a bench watch the boats and the ocean.  Then one of my dad's friends from "The club" came by. (The club being the place my father spends a great deal of his time, hanging out with other old people)  I invited his friend to join us.  Then there were three old people sitting on the bench watching the ocean and the boats.  Soon another acquaintance of my father from "Timmy's", which is the nickname they give to their Tim Horton's coffee shop, came by.  Then there were four old people sitting on a bench watching the ocean and the boats.

It felt good to be an old person sitting there with my even older father with the cool ocean breeze, blue sky and warm sun.  

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