Feb 23, 2010

Young Glory!!!

Susan is a big figure skating fan. For years she has followed all the main competitions going at least as far back as Toller Cranston. (you know we saw his house in San Miguel de Allende, where he lives now and does his art?) The Kurt Browning years were transcendent, and we lived and died with Sale & Peltier, and their drama at the Salt Lake Olympics.
So last night we stayed up ‘til near midnight to catch the Free Dance finals where our couple, Tessa Virtue & Scott Moir had a chance ( they were 2nd after the compulsory dance, and had a narrow lead after the original )
How wonderful! It was magic! It was perfection! The young elfin couple, who had skated together since they were 7 and 9 years old twirled and glided like feathers on a breeze.
Their scores were a resounding first, and we were clapping and cheering as though we were there.
Some of you know that I was a pro photographer for our years in Vancouver, where I covered many events. Just capturing a few images off our tv screen, brought me right back to the feeling that I was there.
Yes, our hockey teams have a chance, and both our men’s and ladies’ curling teams are leading the round robins, but Susan says we can relax now. It may not get any better than this.

Feb 17, 2010

Paamulians go for Gold...

The Yucatan got into the Olympic spirit Monday as the Paamul Olympics joined the Games of Vancouver 2010.
Our IOC organizing committee, Dale, Sue, Ron, Sandy, Dave and Brenda put in many hours devising and designing the afternoon of competition and fun. In addition there were another dozen volunteer IOC officials who kept scores, and tried to keep the order.
In all there were 80 players divided into 8 “countries”, along with several cheer leading squads.  Each team had a t-shirt colour and a came up with a fictitious country name such as Rango Tango (orange), Thongo (white), Turtleonia (green), ROOF - Republic of old Farts (pink), Principality of Merlot (red), Blue Paradise (blue), Terra Nova (yellow), and our team the Pirates of Neverland (black).
As well each team added to their costumes, designed a flag, and brought an anthem or cheer.
The Games began with the arrival of the torch, carried by Richard, one of the oldest residents of Paamul, who then led us on a parade around the park, and then to the events:

1. Snow Plowing Relay Race (grabbing a handful of sand from your bucket, racing back and passing it hand to hand, then back to try filling your wine bottle)
2. Harpoon throw (with those spongy swimming noodles)
3. X Country skiing (in tandem groups of 5 strapped to long 2x4 boards)
4. Snowball Toss (a snowbird rv park classic - golf balls on a string tossed at the ‘ladder’ - they always fly off)
5. Hockey shot (another snowbird classic - washers toss)
6 Curling (with bumpy coconuts)
7. Icicle Melt (a team effort to run a frozen balloon on a string through all your team’s clothing, top to bottom, and all the way out again)
8. Aerials (throwing and catching small balloons filled with water, oops- splash)

All afternoon the park was ringing with chants and cheers as team spirit, fueled with a little of the other spirits swept through our participants and fans. The competitions were mostly on the silly side -- I have spent many hours on a curling rink growing up in Saskatchewan, but was dismayed when my rock (triangular coconut) did not reach the rings. Well, we had no sweepers, eh.
Can you imagine trying to get distance with those flimsy curved swimming floats in the Harpoon Toss?  Even the “classics” like the golf ball toss and washers take way more luck than skill, I’m convinced. ie. I scored no points on those.

The Icicle Melt brought our team closer, as we ended up tied together running a single string through all our shirts and shorts -- just following the rules, ya know?
The cross country skiing was a challenge, but a little planning and good team coordination with our coach calling out the ‘left’, “right” our Pirates easily prevailed in our heat. A couple of our members who had never played washers before tossed in 5’s adding big points to oour score. I think we won the Harpoon Toss and placed in a couple others too. Which brings us to the Finale and Awards.

We gathered back at the Centre for BBQ and more fellowship as the Ceremonies. Somehow each team got a congeniality award, as in best song, flag, costume, cheer, most enthusiastic, most obnoxious, etc. All good fun.

And now for the real hardware, the medals for total team scores:
    Bronze: Rango Tango
    Silver: Principality of Merlot
    Hey, that was us!
    “We never give up! We never lose! We never grow up!  We’re the Pirates of Never, Never, Neverland!” “-- Arrgh, Argrh, Arrrgrh!!!”

Feb 14, 2010

We're in the movies...

This little film was made about a year ago. It shows a fair picture of our winter home. Yes it is a lovely beach, a good pool, restaurant, and they didn't include our well-regarded dive shop.


If the above link doesn't go through, go to YouTube and search for:
Paamul Rv Park

Feb 8, 2010

Measure twice, cut once...

I have chosen to build the doors for the cabinets and drawers. A bunch more work, but -- in for a penny...etc. 
It actually came down to style. We spent a morning touring several of our neighbors’ kitchens to get a few ideas and inspiration. Then I was reading out Ikea catalogue and realized that what we wanted was different to anything we had seen. So a few sketches and after more visits to our local lumber yards, I built a sample and we were off.
Once again learning on the go, especially about careful measuring, and accurate cutting. Measure twice, etc.
My little cordless circular saw did great service, but the key tools came borrowed from our handyman neighbors, Bob, Guy, Dale and Don. It could not have happened without their contributions of clamps and straight edges, sanders and especially Guy’s new chop saw. Adding the thin strips of border each of the 23 doors could only happen by being able to cut the precise lengths on each of the strips of wood. Yay, chop saw.
Susan has been away for a week, in Ontario visiting the kids and new granddaughter. Most of the mess will be cleared up for her return tomorrow. We hope.