Thursday, August 15, 2019

Getting Back into Familiar Routines

I have been home for two weeks at 1:00 am this morning.  I flew Calgary to London with my youngest daughter, then continued on to Kyiv, arriving about 6:00 pm Kyiv time.  Two young men help me by putting my bags on a trolley so I didn't have to lift them. Andrey and Tania were waiting for me when I cleared customs and we headed for Zhovti Vody. The road was actually not bad most of the way and in Kirovograd Oblast had been recently upgraded. Andrey could travel at 100 to 120 kmph.

When we hit the border between Kirovogradska Oblast and Dnipropetrovska Oblast, the bottom fell out of the washtub. It was 25 or less and constantly dodging around holes in the highway. You can imagine what this does to truck traffic of which there is a great deal between Dnipro and Kyiv on this highway. Some things never change. Where did the money go for highway improvement?

Even Zhovti Vody had a few streets that had been resurfaced, though how well remains to be seen. At any rate, I was home by 1:00 am and Tanya had borsch waiting for me. My daughter went to Edinburgh for the weekend and I slept. Being young has advantages.

First on the agenda was getting my phone and computer set up and improving our internet service. We are still at it. Every year or so we laid out about $100 for an improved wireless internet receiver and transmitter with in-home Wi-Fi. This year we bought the best they had with an antenna add-on and changed our IP for the umpteenth time. All was great for a week but then this past week it really slowed down for some reason. Maybe the company has technical problems or maybe they get help from external sources, so to speak.

My 22" monitor calved on me within a week.  It has been repaired and I pick it up today. $25.

When you abandon ship in medias res, some things get left undone. My printer had not been used for two years and I feared the worst. In 2014, because I was sick of buying a new cheap Canon every year or two and paying so much for ink cartridges, I splurged on an Epson L355 for $350. The thought of having to buy a new one did not appeal to me. Tanya's computer tech ran the cleaning program a few times and got it working sort of.  I have run is more than a dozen times since and am quite happy with the print quality. Colour is perfect and the black leaves a smudged line or two on a page which I can live with. I just bought my first ink refills, $40 for four bottles which will last at least another couple of years.

Bonya, Tigritsa, Vovo
The critters were happy to see me.  Bonya jumps onto the nearest table so I can pet him. Tigritsa soon returned to trying to sleep on my arm on the keyboard tray. Even stand-offish Vovo will come to be petted once in a while. The dogs were glad too, as it meant walks for them on a regular basis though it has been so hot here (30C+) which is typical August. I love my kitties (6 years old) and puppies (Volk is 12 and Kashtanka is about 6). They will always be kitties and puppies to me. Volk seems to have learned better behaviour while I was away and actually returns home if he escapes, which he still does from time to time. Tanya started piling concrete blocks against the gate to their run so he could not open it.  The latch is a bit flimsy and if a 15 kg dog hurls itself at the gate often enough it will spring open.  I just hope that cats and chickens don't hold the same appeal they once did. He is a hunter. Kashtanka should have been a house dog but she is good company for Volk and they have a warm place to sleep in winter.

My good dogs, Kashtanka and Volk
Dill pickles
Tanya has been busy all summer with the garden. The corn, peas, and beans are done and quite a few beets, carrots are in the freezer, with much still in the ground We have jam from our own red and black currant bushes, plum tree, and raspberry and strawberry patches. Apricots were poor so she bought some.  I lost count of how many three-liter jars of dill pickles have gone down into the root cellar.  We have no end of fresh tomatoes to eat and Tanya has frozen a bunch for soup next winter.

Purslain seems to have taken over the garden. Apparently, it is edible but Tanya has no interest in that. Controlling it is next to impossible. I figured if we started eating it, that it would die out on its own.

Cucs and Jam

Squash and Zucchini

Red Currant Jam
Late summer means the garden has dried off and so have many of Tanya's flowers. The climbing roses are done.  The long stem roses are starting again, with daisies and other fall flowers just beginning. Tanya has replaced many flowers with shrubs. Less work in a big yard.

Today is Tanya's birthday and we are going for supper to a good restaurant.  Will have pictures for tomorrow, I hope.


Debra She Who Seeks said...

SO glad to hear you're safely back home with your family, pets and garden! What a long haul you've had to get the medical treatment you needed and to recover. Best wishes to you all and Happy Birthday to Tanya!

Unknown said...

Birthday wishes Tanya even if a wee bit late. What beautiful flowers you just have a bit of paradise there. Hope your day was great and how I miss my homemade dills. Probably one of the healthiest foods including sauerkraut a home could have. God keep you all Safe in His care!

Shammickite said...

You sound really happy to be home at last. You've had quite an upheaval but everyone survived it and now normal life can resume! And I bet tany's pleased to hve you back at home again.

Ol'Buzzard said...

Look forward to your future post.
the Ol'Buzzard

The Blog Fodder said...

Thank you. It is good to be home. I'll pass your greetings on to Tanya.

The Blog Fodder said...

Thank you. No name makes it hard to know who I am thanking but I think it is Edna?

The Blog Fodder said...

Thank you. No name makes it hard to know who I am thanking but I think it is Edna?

The Blog Fodder said...

Back in the (former) USSR. Yes both of us are glad this ordeal is over

The Blog Fodder said...

I'll be more regular now. And catch up on other's blogs too.

Diane Henders said...

Tanya's garden is beautiful as always, and I'm glad to hear you made it home. What a relief that must be! Enjoy... :-)

Raven Onthill said...

Good to hear you are home.