Sunday, June 28, 2009

a day in the life 2

alarm clock! oh noes!

i've got into the habit of taking my coffee into the garden in the mornings; pottering round the tomato plants eases the pain of waking up.

sometimes i get too distracted, though. this morning i had to book it to work. here's my "riding fast" face:

here's part of my commute (not that i stopped to take photos when i was running late):

it was a kind of cold and rainy day, strange after a few weeks of lovely vancouver summer sunshine.

i got to work not too too late.

our first job of every day is too hang all the display bikes out front and lock them up. we have to do this while beating off the customers, who don't appreciate that we physically can't fit them in the shop til all the outside bikes are out!

after that it was life as usual.

cos it was a bit cold and wet the shop was pretty quiet. i spent some time in the bat cave, restocking the tubes and rearranging the locks.

brake pads confuse the hell out of me!

i also spent some time hanging out back with the mechanics, because they are cool.

the tools one needs to assemble this bike.

(a mallet isn't one of them)

i spent my lunch break right there, under that tree.

that's leftover pizza from my dinner party the night before. it was the first time i'd tried cornflour in the dough. an excellent choice.

i'm reading a book by jane rule, who was this local lesbian activist type who academics keep mentioning. the novel isn't doing it for me so much, i have to admit, but i'm ploughing on.

i also contemplated buying new boots. do i look unprofessional? or kind of DIY-biker-hard-core?

business stepped up a bit in the afternoon, selling bikes and helmets and so forth. working with customers on these things is an oddly intimate experience. i spend a lot of time staring at people's earlobes, and the sides of their knees.

i also spend a lot of time removing pedals and turning handlebars, so we can file the bikes without mashing them up. i'm a dab hand with a pedal wrench and tri-al.

these run bikes are a real hit with the under-4 set. they're tiny bikes without pedals, the idea being that the kid learns balance on them and then can go straight to pedalling a bigger bike without training wheels.

it was about this time that we heard the news about wacko jacko, and cranked the stereo in sympathy.

i ducked out to get a cup of coffee in the afternoon. it was sweet to get a break from being nice to people. on the whole, our customers are fabulous hippie, punk, DIY, queer, friendly types, and the staff likewise, but a girl needs some alone time sometimes.

there i am, back hard at work.

at the end of the day we pull all the bikes and stack them inside again. it's how i get my biceps, baby.

i spent some time hanging round w a mechanic friend after we closed the shop. we discussed our unicycling experience. i wasn't so good at stilt-walking at circus, but i can ride a mini-bike okay. the mechanic learnt when he was a kid, but has been too scared to try as an adult.

then i biked over to kate reid's album launch. she's another local dyke-y type who writes very entertaining songs. she sung "co-op gurlz", my favourite song of her's, and a bunch of stuff from her new album. (kate, incidentally, tried to buy my shop shirt off my back when i was working last summer. dyke-chic?)

it was a sweet gig, but i was pretty wiped by the end. long day on my feet!

safety first when biking home after dark, especially after beer!

when i got home mr fix-it and i knitted and watched the X-files.

we saw an entertaining episode with mulder and scully running around in lighthouse park (where we biked to last summer) claiming to be hunting weird alien bugs in washington DC.

then a little reading,

then hand-cream and arnica balm (see above re. biceps), then sleep.

aunty beryll says goodnight!

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

we'll have lots to eat this winter

grow your own

spring onions in beer bottles and bubble tea cups (the beer is le fin du monde!)

salad greens, to make into salad:

can your own

eleanor and i biked thirty k out to ladner and picked strawberries for a couple of hours, loading them all up in yoghurt containers in our panniers for the trip back.

we froze half of them, and canned the other half. now we have strawberries for winter!

eleanor also cracked it one day and announcing she was quitting all her activist positions and staying home and making all our bread, cheese and yoghurt. so we joined a cow co-op (we're still on the waiting list - i'll tell you more when the milk appears) and ordered a bit of flour and grains:

her bread is delicious:

we also made lemon tart one day:

(and here's some cake from a 60th bday cass and i went to last week, which i neither grew nor made, but am very fond of anyways:


Sunday, June 21, 2009

not quite straight

i have curly hair! or bits of curly hair - my random long bits are sort of turning into ringlets.

my hairdresser (of fabulousness) suggested this divergence from my always-dead-straight hair might be due to vancouver's damp climate.

reckon i should grow my hair out over winter and see what it looks like?

Monday, June 15, 2009

outdoor plants

the outside garden is still a source of joy.

the east bed has strawberries along the edge, massive amounts of salad greens up the back there, spring onions and garlic off to the left, various herbs, and root veggies in the middle-ish. it also has the poor sad tomato plants, which have repaid all my careful nurturing with lack-lustre growth:

(the wire is to stop the neighbourhood cats from pooing in the garden - they dig up plants when they scratch.)

the western bed has upstairs-neighbour-S's flowers, and the cauliflowers.

there's also broccoli, nasturtiums, the peas climbing up the bed-frame against the fence, corn that a random woman across the alley gave us, capsicums (grown from dinner!), cucumbers, potatoes, swiss chard and about a million zombie-squash plants which came out of the compost.

the five of us (three in my household, two upstairs) started out planning the beds so carefully, with tall plants up the back, and some companion planting rules in play (tomatoes and basil! broccoli and thyme!). then we got into it, and now there's random stuff everywhere. we also discovered that you can dig random holes in the gravel and just shove stuff in. look! artichokes!

there's also a rhubarb plant up the back, near the compost bin.

here's roomie-M's raspberry patch. we found out that garlic and raspberries grow well together, so we put some garlic cloves in there too, and they're doing fine. (also a zombie-squash.)

we also planted some lemon seeds one time when we were making lemon and poppyseed cake. it took them about three months to germinate, but here they are!

i found out that lemon trees are considered exotic here, like something that you saw one time when you were a kid on holiday in california.