I wanted to shake up my life and go sailing (or learn on the job, so-to-speak) so headed to Florida to crew on a catamaran. This is about how it went or, rather, didn't - and my life since. Hopefully it will lead to a catamaran on the clear aqua blue waters of the Caribbean Sea, watching the sunset, a coconut rum and coke in hand. You must START AT THE BEGINNING of the blog, April 2009, to get the whole story...

Sunday, October 30, 2011


There is a common grammatical error used almost constantly these days that really bothers me. It is particularly bad on reality TV shows when the contestants sit down for an interview. It bothers me so much that I have decided to write about it here today in hopes of educating a wider audience on the correct use of two small words; me and I.

Yes, it's all about the use of "I" when one should use "me" in conjunction with someone else in the sentence.

Rather than go into a long and confusing dissertation about subjective and objective pronouns let me make it super easy.

It is a very simple rule to figure out because there's a nifty way of double checking to make sure you are using the correct word:

"It took George and I just under an hour to finish." is wrong because you wouldn't say:
"It took I just under an hour to finish." you would say:
"It took me just under an hour to finish." therefore:
"It took George and me just under an hour to finish." is right.

"George and I finished the task." is right because you would say:
"I finished the task."

So, to sum up - you take away the other person with you and whichever word you would use without them, you use with them.

See how easy that was?

One use of "I" that really drives me crazy is, "George and Ises relationship is so strong right now." Really? Ises, or Is's, or Is' - there's no way to spell it because it's not a word! It makes my ears bleed every time I hear it.

And while I am on the topic:

Imply and infer are not interchangeable. Imply is what the speaker does; infer is what the listener does.

Wrong: Are you inferring that I am a fool?
Right: Are you implying that I am a fool?

Right: From what you are saying, I infer you think I am a fool.

IMPLICATION: what the speaker has implied
INFERENCE: what the listener has inferred

Now if there was just some way to get this to all of those reality 'stars'. But my guess is that most of them don't read.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011


I moved into my new little suite a week or so ago and I love it!

It is decorated in a Mexican theme and living here feels like being on a holiday.

From the door looking into the suite(I covered the windows with scarves for some privacy as there's just straw blinds on them - I will find navy matching ones soon to match the fireplace paint)

Looking towards the entrance and kitchen

Pretty bathroom sink

Unfortunately, it's not in Mexico so there isn't a gorgeous beach outside those French doors. Instead, I am way up at the foot of the mountains of the North Shore and right outside those doors is a rainforest. Not exactly my kind of environment.

One feature I really am enjoying is the king sized bed that is suspended from the ceiling with heavy ropes. I have always loved the motion of rocking to go to sleep to - on a boat or in a hammock; now I can rock myself to sleep every night! The only drawback is that it stops rocking too soon and I have to move a bit to get it going again.

Hanging king-size bed

Fireplace & TV across from the couch

The suite comes fully equipped with most everything I need; linens, towels, kitchen utensils and appliances, dishes, etc. I am finding that I would rather have my own can opener, knives, and cutlery as well as I'd like a rice cooker and a grill so come the spring, when I go through the SEVENTY boxes in my friends crawlspace, I will bring those things here and then it will be perfect.

Best part of all, I am friends with the woman who owns the house - we've worked in the same business for years and became good friends. If I have to live in a basement suite, I can only do it if I know the people I am renting from. So this makes me very happy.

Also, instead of 45 minutes from Langley, I am much closer to my daughter - the one who is having a baby in December. I thought she might think I was encroaching on her territory and not be too pleased but she told me that she is excited to have me so close with the baby soon here. Then if she really needs her mom, she can call and I will be there in 5 minutes. It makes me happy to know I will be needed again. The hardest part of the past 5 years or so has been the 'empty nest syndrome' and feeling like I had lost my purpose in life. Granted, I have been doing a LOT better with it all, especially in the past year or two. But I can't help but feel excited at the future and what it will bring.

Saturday, October 15, 2011


Sliding Doors is one of my all-time favourite movies. One of the reasons being, I suppose, that I often think of how our lives can take a completely different tack than the one we are on by what will seem at the time to be a rather insignificant occurrence. Sometimes it is an event that is far from insignificant but then, I believe, we often have more of a say in the direction we are about to head. I can think of several of those times in my life, but the insignificant ones can go unrealized for a long time.

I had my own 'sliding doors' experience this past week.

I was heading to Yaletown from New Westminster, where I am housesitting for a week, to have my hair done. I had plans to meet a friend later in the afternoon, once my hair was restored to it's preferred state. My friend lives across False Creek in what was the Athletes Village from the 2010 Olympics and if she wanted me to meet her there, I would take my car downtown. If, however, she would meet me in town I could take the skytrain. I called her and she wanted to meet downtown. I still hesitated at taking the skytrain as I really don't like being without my own transportation but, after thinking about having to pay $15 to park for the day, I decided to do the smart thing.

When I got to the New West skytrain station the train was already there so I just walked on with another lady and the doors closed right behind us. Just made it. But then imagine our surprise when the train headed off in the other direction to Surrey instead of downtown! I thought, for a moment, that my infrequent use of the train meant that I had inadvertently walked onto the wrong side of the station and thus onto the wrong train. But I was sure I had seen the sign that said "TO WATERFRONT STATION". This was confirmed when the other woman exclaimed that we were headed the wrong way and was agitated about it. When we arrived at the first Surrey station, we disembarked to find a lot of skytrain employees standing about. We approached one and asked why the train headed the wrong way. He was rather rude and asked "There were employees at the station to tell you that only one line is working so the trains are alternating on that line. Didn't you listen?" I informed him that the train was there when we arrived and we walked on with about three seconds to spare so there was no time for anyone to tell us anything.

We caught the next train and headed off down to Vancouver. I figured the delay had cost me about fifteen minutes, but I had left with plenty of time to spare so I wasn't worried. When I got to the Waterfront station, I got off and boarded the Canada Line which would take me to Yaletown. At the next stop, a gorgeous tall black man boarded. It did not pass my noticing how good looking he was. He sat on the seat next to me and I said hello and he returned the greeting. I was dying to ask him if he was from the Caribbean but didn't like to so, instead, I toyed with my Tortola Caribbean Hook bracelet hoping that if he recognized it he might say something. He didn't. I got off a couple of stops later and as I climbed the stairs to the street level I thought, "Well that was a missed opportunity. I will never see him again."

When I got to the street, I walked around the corner from the exit and stopped to dig my phone out of my purse. I had not had anything to eat or drink yet and wanted to see if I had enough time to go to the Starbucks across the street. I did. I noticed that I had a few new emails so, for some inexplicable reason, decided to read them right there. I was almost done when I saw someone approach me and stop. I looked up. It was the man from the skytrain!

"Hello," he said, smiling, "I was sitting beside you on the skytrain."

"Yes, I know." I said.

"I hope you don't think I am crazy or stalking you but when you got off of the train I thought 'I need to know this lady' and got off right before the doors closed."

I was somewhat taken aback but replied, "That's interesting because I wanted to talk to you on the train but didn't. I wanted to ask if you are from the Caribbean."

"No I'm not but I get asked that a lot," he said. "I am from Nigeria." He had a lovely British/African accent.

"How long have you lived here?" I asked him.

"Eight months but I come from Toronto where I lived for several years."

I asked him what he did here and he told me that he worked for a downtown law firm. He was impeccably dressed for a Saturday so I wasn't surprised to hear he was a professional.

He asked me what I did and I told him. We chatted for a few more minutes and then he said that he would like to get to know me and would I be okay with him calling me sometime for a date. HA! Would I??? I handed him one of my cards and said I would like that.

He called last night. We are going to meet up next week.

So by my reckoning, here's all the things that happened from my side to line this up:

~ decided to take skytrain over the car
~ caught the right bus from the condo to the skytrain station (no small feat as I have no idea of the bus schedule)
~ caught the skytrain running in the wrong direction
~ sat down in the right car on the Canada Line
~ no one sat beside me before he boarded
~ I stopped to read my emails on the street instead of going straight into Starbucks where he would never have seen me and probably walked away thinking I was gone

Here's to Sliding Door moments in our lives!!!

Sunday, October 9, 2011


I have been rather neglectful of this blog as of late. I have had a busy month.

I was in Kelowna for the entire month of September, working on Flicka 3, and spent an extra few days there with my daughter once the show ended. I had a fabulous time.

My car wouldn't start again - on the trip up. I stopped about an hour and a half into the journey to get some lunch. When I left the restaurant and got into the car - nothing. Just a click when I turned the key. My car was loaded down with not only all the stuff I needed for the month away, but extra clothing and items that I couldn't leave with friends (I had to move out of my place and don't move into my next place until October 15th). I sat there not knowing what I was going to do but thankful I had the foresight to leave the day before the show started just in case something like this happened. I called BCAA and then waited for them to arrive. I got out and opened the hood, had a look under it even though I don't know a thing about how cars run so it was futile effort - or so I thought. But what that did was help the engine cool down faster and, about half an hour later, the car started. I canceled BCAA and continued on my way. The next time I had to stop, to use the gas station loo, I didn't turn the car off. I locked it up and used my spare key to get back in as I had determined that the car did not want to start when it was hot - no idea why. But I was planning to take it to my friends brother who lives in Kelowna one of the weekends I'd be there to have him look it over anyway, as the mechanic I bought it from said the muffler needed a small weld to seal up a leak and I wanted him to check to see if there were any other issues. When he heard about the starting problem he said it needed a new starter motor, so that was replaced (so far it seems to have done the trick). And the muffler needed a whole lot more than a weld - like, replacing. But now the car rattles under the hood when I step on the gas. I was told that this could mean the car needs a higher grade of gas but I tried that and it hasn't worked so I need to take it in to have the timing reset. Or at least I hope that is all it needs. I also found out that it has three different types of tires on it so I will have to replace them and the CV boots are cracked and the hand brake cable is pinched. Sigh.

On a much happier note....

I loved staying at the Delta Grand Okanagan Hotel. The staff there were so happy to have all of us as guests (all department heads and producers were at The Grand, the rest of the crew were down the highway at the Days Inn) and treated us very well. The key makeup woman, Lisa, was in the room next to mine and I had worked with her before so that was fun. There was rarely a time I went down to the lobby that one of our crew or actors wasn't there as well. Several of us took to congregating in the lounge after work most evenings for a glass of wine. Our first two weekends in Kelowna were HOT (the hottest it had been all summer) and so several of us spent the day at the pool, tanning, swimming, yakking and napping. I have to say that I could really get used to living like that - hotel life suits me very well. When it was time to leave I was loathe to go.

Day at the Hotel Pool

The movie itself was a lot of fun. The cast were amazing; so friendly and nice to be around. Clint Black and his wife Lisa Hartman are just the nicest and cutest couple. One of the cast who played the kids trainer, Teryl Rothery, will be a life-long friend. The young people that comprised most of the cast were so much fun and really eager. I LOVED the crew and made some more life-long friends (Mark Noda, Neil McBride - fabulous sound team). The director, Michael Damian, and his wife Janeen were lovely, lovely people and I can't say enough as to how much working with them made me happy. The producer, Connie Dolphin, is fantastic and she assured me that we would be working together again in the future. Michael and Janeen told me that the position of script supervisor had been their achilles heel for years, that they had never been able to find one who could actually do the job - but now they had finally found me and they were so thrilled that they want to find a way to take me on their next film, which is to be shot in Romania and Bulgaria. The whole experience was fabulous but not only that, it was very validating after going through a horrible time recently with the producers of Mr. Young. I won't be returning to that show.

The Stars of Flicka 3 and Me

Fun Bunch of Cast and Crew on Our Way to Shoot a Scene in the School Bus

Pretty Flowers in Kelowna - I am Lagging Behind Teryl and Susie on Our Way to Dinner Because I Want to Photograph the Flowers

I can't go into details here, but suffice it to say that I was treated very unfairly - and this is not just my opinion as I took the situation to the union and the shop steward was horrified at how I had been treated. I was never fired, just kept being given excuses as to why I wasn't coming back for August, for September and then for 'the foreseeable future' and I'd finally had enough. It was glaringly apparent to me that I wasn't ever going back but that they had no valid reason to give me as to why, so I sent an email to the producer PM saying basically that and a few other choice observations, and one to the director who started it all. I knew I was burning a bridge rather spectacularly but I didn't care. One of the things that bothers me in this industry is people like me never speak truth to people in charge because we are afraid it means we won't ever work again; thus the ones that aren't the good ones get away with horrible behaviour and practices all of the time. Anyone who knows me knows that I have a strong sense of justice and will speak out when I see injustice, whether it be against me or someone else. I have held my tongue, for the most part, when it comes to my career. I did have a conversation, and just a conversation, with a PM once about an injustice I thought was occurring in the show I was working on and she has never hired me again. This time, I knew there was no way I would ever have closure or feel satisfied walking away if I didn't express exactly how I felt about the events of the past two months. If it meant I wouldn't ever work again in this business, so be it. But I have to trust that the reputation I have built for myself over the past eight years as being good at my job and fun to work with will stand on it's own. And so far, that is proving to be the case. I not only secured a lot of favour with the people I just worked on Flicka with, I have another show at the end of October with one of my favourite people in the world, director Ron Oliver.

I Will Miss the Cast and Hard-Working Crew of Mr. Young

Life is good!!
All photographs are mine and not to be copied without express permission from me (click on them to see the large version).
Some names have been changed to protect my butt.

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