Author: lizzymcfly

Great News!

Back in August, I lost my little co-pilot friend, Donkay.

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I can’t believe how much it has bothered me.  I guess it’s just all the great places I’ve flown with him.  He LOVES aerobatics too.  The “grieving” process was going a tad longer than I thought it would be.  I headed to eBay and went on the search for Donkay.  It had to be the exact copy.  Great news!  Mission accomplished!  I had him sent to my mother’s address, since I live in an apartment.  A couple days ago, I started getting great pictures of the awesome new arrival:

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She even put a nice little bow on him (the same colours as my plane) and fed him some Fiber One cereal.  She also watched The Big Bang Theory with him:

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The Young and The Restless:

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She even tucked him in at night.  (Now you know where my weirdness comes from):

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I have decided that he will take on the spirit and experiences from the original Donkay.  I’m looking forward to taking him on his first flight.  I have since got him ready to rock.  Squiggy, who let me know that he isn’t a big fan of aerobatics, decided to pass on his aviator scarf and goggles to his new buddy:

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Taa-daa!

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If I was feeling better, I may have taken him for his first flight today.  The weather seemed pretty good.  It looks like a cruddy weekend weather-wise coming up.  Ugh.  Although, Mike and I always seem to have an easy time amusing ourselves, even when stuck indoors on a dreary day.  Like take for example, the lovely flingable sticky green aliens I got him for Christmas.  It turns out they are quite sticky!  These little fellas have been hanging off of my gourmet ceiling for five days now:

How he is hanging from just one foot is beyond me.

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Really makes the place look more sophisticated and stylish!  Hehe!

Boo was curious at first but the thrill has since worn off:

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I had the day off and relaxed/recovered from some lousy MS symptoms over the last few days.  My little mother came up to visit me.  After Timmies and a short visit to the Fairview Mall, I came home to Mya using her sister Pinky as a pillow:

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After ohh’ing and ahh’ing over my little goobers, I gave Peanut’s tank a good cleaning.  He never is keen on  going into and staying in his meager holding tank:

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He’s quite content now.  And the crickets I took out of Peanut’s tank are now back with their folk in the breeding tank.  I wonder if when the ones that Peanut didn’t eat rejoin their cricket buddies, do the other ones say “Hey brother!  Welcome back!” or “Where have you been all this time?”  Hmmmmm……

Today’s symptoms: I have been dealing with a bad headache this week, plus another bout of weakness and increased fatigue.  It felt so good to get out today.  The extra rest will help me feel better tomorrow.  I think this headache can vacate my cranium as well….please and thank you!

Only 361 Days Until Christmas!

I hope everyone had a marvelous Christmas.  Only 361 shopping days before Christmas 2020 – better get cracking!

I had a great time again this year.  My little mother came over Christmas Eve.  She picked me up at work and we drove straight over to Fabio’s Pizza on Queenston St.  It was my first time there, but heard many great reviews.  We were quite impressed with our medium pepperoni pizza.  We will certainly be ordering from them again.  So far, the best pizza I have had in St. Catharines.

We had a great time until she went home on Boxing Day.  Of course, she was thrilled (insert eye-roll emoji here) to spend time with her wonderful granddaughters.  Abby and Mya were close by throughout our Christmas dinner.

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How can you say no to those adorable faces?  For some reason, Pinky and Boo are never interested in chicken or turkey meat.  Not only were they close by over dinner, but afterwards while I leafed through some flyers on the floor.  As you can see, every cat assisted me in this endeavor:

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Pinky really looks like a big ham, especially with her head hidden.  Maybe Boo ate it.  She looks guilty:

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I had to take poor Pinky to the vet on Christmas Eve day.  She’s been sneezing a lot, which is sad but incredibly adorable to watch:

Despite being a little under the weather, she was still thoughtful enough to dress up for the folks at the vet:

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I’m happy to report I was able to go for a flight  before Christmas.  I just went up by myself, flew around Niagara including down to Niagara Falls and past the Welland Airport.

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Over downtown St. Catharines on the way back:

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I spent the rest of the flight over the airport, doing aerobatics.  One of the first things I did was four loops in a row.  I’ve never done more than one before and I must say, the multiples were quite fun!  I did five consecutive after a bunch of other maneuvers afterwards.  As you can see, poor Squiggy ended up in the back of the plane while pointing straight up during a hammer head:

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Coming in for a landing, I was relieved not to see the huge flock of birds that were tooting around the airport when I first arrived:

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It was a great flight followed by a great Christmas.  I hope everyone has a rockin’ New Years tomorrow!

Today’s symptoms: I was rather fatigued and tired yesterday, but I’m sure it’s just from all of the recent excitement.  My biggest complaint today is a fairly bad headache and a lot of stabbing pain in my left hand and fingers.

 

I’m Trying To Catch Up!

I feel horrible for not posting in so long.  I have so many things on my To-Do list and not enough energy or time to do them all.  Getting there though.  Hopefully I can use my days off at Christmas to get all caught up!

I’m going to keep this one short.  Speaking of short, Mike and I took my little mother to Walmart Saturday to pick up her new microwave.  Today, we decided to have a little homecoming party for it:

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We had a sparkler in a cinnamon roll in addition to the glorious signage:

I sorta feel sorry for my poor mother, as I torment her frequently.  It’s all in good loving fun though!

After the festivities at my mother’s place, we spent the afternoon with the kitties.

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I’m not sure where Boo was at that time.

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We played Forza on the xBox then watched some tv and a movie.  Nice, lazy Sunday.

I hope everyone is all ready for Christmas.  It’s hard to believe it’s in less than two weeks.  I still need to do my wrapping, which I do with my best friend every year.  It’s always a great girls’ night.

Tonight’s symptoms: I felt quite good today, which has been an rarity lately.  I love and cherish days like these.  I had enough energy to fairly easily make it through the day.  Paws crossed I have more of these, especially on Christmas!  I still have a worse-than-normal (for me) headache, which decided to make its presence known a few weeks ago.  I told it that it needs to bugger off by 2020.

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I decided to have a birthday last week.  I was thinking of not having anymore but then I would lose out on cake.  I have my limits.  I got some nice pressies to boot!  My mother got me some nice new bedding, which I really needed since I’ve been using my old King sheets on my new Queen bed.  She also got me the awesome orange shoes that go perfectly with Vyctor (and are almost as big as him too!):

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Mike got me a great new shower speaker.  The colour sure is perfect.  When I installed the app on my phone, I was asked to name the speaker.  I decided to honour one of my favourite artists….introducing Ozzy Bosebourne:

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The sound is amazing!  Showers are much more enjoyable now!  I asked Boo what she thought and she gave me this look (which I’m yet to decipher):

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Pinky didn’t care at all as she was too enamored with her rainbow:

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This early start to winter hasn’t been enjoyed by the kitties so far, as it’s a little chilly in the apartment.  I can’t turn the heat up.  They stay snuggled under blankets, or suck the heat out of the baseboard heaters:

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I never get sick of looking at little Mya in her SpongeMya Squarepants shirt.  Just look how tiny and adorable she looks:

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Two of her sisters, Pinky and Boo, enjoy getting dual butt-rubs from Mike.  For some reason, Mya and Abby aren’t into butt-rubs:

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I sure love these little dorks.  I’ve been spending more time with them lately since I’ve been going through more frequent bad days health-wise.  I’m just hopeful that the next day will be better, plus the support from my family, friends and kitties helps me get through it.  Also, being able to go flying on my good days.  I was able to take someone up last week and he was a blast to fly with.  We flew over Niagara Falls a couple times and then I let him fly us back to the airport for some aerobatics.  He did great with everything, and I was able to show him all maneuvers in my aerobatic repertoire at least twice each.  It was a great flight!

I was all geared up for another great flight on Sunday morning.  Fortunately, I was feeling well enough and the weather that morning looked quite good.  I was going to fly my youngest passenger again.  She was up with me in August and was so much fun to fly with.  Unfortunately, by the time I got half way to the airport, the weather had already started to drop.  By the time I got there (the drive is only 15 minutes), the ceiling was too low to fly over Niagara Falls or do aerobatics.  I double checked the weather report with the tower and they certainly didn’t have good news.  I drove over to the Flying Club, and they were in the process of cancelling their morning flights.  Bummer!  Hopefully we can re-book for December.  At least I got to see cute, little Vyctor, who recently had his wheel pants removed for winter.  Look at his spindle-shanks:

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And, of course, snuggled with with Flying Club cat (I like to call Clubby):

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I got quite a bit down around home that morning.  I seem to get behind on things with these more frequent bad health days.  It makes sense since on many of these days, I’m stuck in bed for part or the whole day.  I still seem to be hit with weakness like I’ve never had before.  I can tell in the morning if it’s going to be one of those days, so at least I have warning.  It just makes it almost impossible to plan anything, particularly trips.  I’m aiming to have a better year in 2020!

Today’s symptoms: I knew I was going to be hit with some yucky symptoms at some point.  The weakness kicked in around 4:30 this afternoon.  I’m just trying to finish up this blog so I can go crawl into bed.   I think three of the kitties are already there and will make some room for me.

No More Naked Kitties!

I live in an apartment where they keep the heat at the minimum allowed by law.  Needless to say, the naked kitties get cold quite easily!  Three of the four allow me to put sweaters on them.  Boo will have nothing to do with it.  Abby’s went on first:

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And I came to the conclusion that Mya walks so funny in hers because it goes back almost to her tail.  She needs one like Abby’s that only covers her core and no sleeves.  Voila:

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It’s a smidge big for her, but I don’t think there will be anything out there small enough.  She’s less than five pounds.  I want her to have a sweater on most of the time during the winter since she may lose weight if her tiny body has to fight the cold.  I still have to find a sweater for Pinky.  Right now, all she has is an ill-fitting Santa suit.

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I seem to still be recovering from my bout of weakness, which started over a week ago.  A few of those days were spent in bed.  Mike, my mother and I went out to do a little shopping on the weekend.  It was so good to get out.  I needed more pipe cleaners to tie up a bunch of cables and cords.  They make great cat toys as well.  I was over the moon when I found these ones with the rather fancy-schmancy name!

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Hehe!  I showed them to Pinky and I couldn’t tell if she was impressed or not:

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Yesterday, I had the pleasure of speaking at the Take Your Kids/Spawn To Work day event.  I do a tweaked version of my motivational talk I give.  I try to keep it interesting with tons of pics and videos, with a side of humour.  I had some very nice comments from people afterwards, which always make this experience even better than it already is.  I am more than thrilled if I touch at least one person.

Today’s symptoms:  I think my worst complaint would be a really bad headache.  My fatigue level was at around my normal, and the weakness was a bit better again today.  Things are slowly improving from the previous week – life is good!

Rough MS Patch

Sorry for the lack of blog recently.  Last week was not too fun, but I’m so glad it seems to be almost over.  I could tell on Monday morning that it wasn’t going to be the best day symptom-wise, but it became quite a bit worse than I expected.  I was in bed for much of the week because my body was hit with some of the worst weakness I’ve ever experienced.  It took all of my strength just to walk from room to room or hold myself up in the sitting position.  I think the worst day was Wednesday and into Thursday morning.  As quick as it came on, it started to improve.  I was so happy to be vertical again Thursday afternoon.  I saw my GP on Friday and she said my symptoms certainly sound like an MS flare-up.  I’m still feeling the effects, but big improvement today.  Mike and I were even able to get out and do some much needed shopping.  We weren’t able to stay out quite as long as I hoped, but I’ll take what I can get!  Tomorrow will be even better after a good night sleep.  Paws crossed!

On Sunday, I had the great pleasure of meeting with 434 Wing of the Royal Canadian Air Force Association.  I was a member a few years ago and have missed leaving ever since.  I went through over a year that was fairly rough health-wise, and making it to the meetings sometimes became too much.  I’m seriously considering joining up with them again.  They had an excellent guest speaker, Ted Barris who wrote The Great Escape.  The movie was unsurprisingly hugely Americanized, and Ted did an amazing amount of research to get the true story.  He gave a wonderful presentation about the book, and I’m amazed with the information I left with.  Left with a signed copy of his book too!

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I’m going to keep this one short, but I will certainly report back in soon!

Today’s symptoms:  The weakness is almost gone – woot!  A fair bit of nerve pain but that seems to be my norm anymore.  I’m so grateful for feeling better.  Things like this really make me appreciate my better days.

Sweater Season! Woot!

It’s a rather chilly and windy day.  I was home with the kitties, who certainly keep my spirits up when I get down.  I’ve been feeling so lousy with this cold for the last fifteen days.  My usual MS symptoms have been worse as well, but hopefully things will be at least a bit better tomorrow.  On a bright note, I always smile when I see my little goobers:

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Abby is often very googly and it’s exhausting:

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These types of kitties obviously get cold rather easily and I think we’re entering sweater season.  We’ll start out with Mya:

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Even when she’s all cuddled in her sweater, she still attaches her little heat-absorbing body to her ham-like sister Pinky:

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Three of them had the dreaded experience of a bath tonight.  Boo always scrinches up into a little wrinkly ball, like it’s going to keep her from getting a bath.

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She pretty much stays that way throughout the entire bath, which makes the process quite a bit longer.  I can’t seem to get that into her adorable head though.

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She only hates me for a little bit during and afterwards.  Same story with sister Pinky:

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All seems to be forgiven and it looks like we’re going to have a peaceful night.  At least I’ll have grease-free cats to snuggle with.

Today’s symptoms: Felt very weak and fatigued with tons of nerve pain all over.  It was one of those day where by 2:00, I had absolutely no idea how I was going to make it through the rest of the day.  Clean paws crossed for tomorrow being a better day.

Air Rally – Heading Home

I left off in my last blog that my mother and I were heading home from Killarney.  Continuing our flight along the east side of Georgian Bay, we stopped in Orillia for fuel.  This was my first time landing here.  They accommodate land and water landings here.

It was fun to come over the water on final, then a patch of trees just before the runway:

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We taxied over to the fuel tanks, and tried to figure out how to get the pumps started.  Every airport seems to have a slightly (or majorly, in some cases) self service station.  Fortunately, my mother and I must have looked really clueless, as a nice young man came over to see if we needed help.  In all fairness, my mother had started crying and I was repeatedly banging my head against the pump, so that may have tipped him off.  Hehe.  Anyway, he kindly walked me through the process as I got Vyctor all fueled up for our final leg home.

We walked over to the terminal to use their facilities.  We went in the wrong door and noticed this cutie nearby:

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They had a nice gift shop in the terminal and we managed to pick out a few items. We also chatted with a couple of guys that worked there while paying for our loot.  Everyone we spoke to was so friendly and helpful.  I also hear their restaurant is amazing and is very busy (due to it’s awesomeness).  We’re going to have to go back and try it out!

On the way back the plane, I noticed this one parked.  Mike and I see him all the time at various fly-ins and airports around Southern Ontario.  I wonder if he notices my Aerobat?

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One thing we did notice was the abundance of goose poop.  Here is some flinging off of my wheel or prop on landing:

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So we trudged back out into the great poo abyss, and made it back to the runway:

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It was a really nice, smooth flight home.  The entire flight, all three days was very smooth, or as I like to call it, Jan weather.  My little mother does not like flying in even the slightest turbulence.

Mike came to pick us up at the St. Catharines Airport.  We were all smiles as we unpacked the plane and loaded up Mike’s car.  Despite not being able to complete the Gold Cup Air Rally, I have nothing but positive thoughts about the entire experience.  Both my mother and I had such a great time.  It was a wonderful trip and I’m so glad I had such an awesome copilot!

Today’s symptoms:  I’m still getting through a cold that I got back almost two weeks ago.  I still felt congested this morning but no earache anymore.  Woot!  Started off with a pretty bad headache, but still had a decent and productive morning.  It wasn’t until around 3:00 where everything took a sharp dive and I felt like a big blond turd.  Paws crossed for a good sleep tonight and waking up all bright eyed and bushy haired tomorrow!  🙂

Air Rally Day Three

The last mention I made of the Air Rally was being grounded in Killarney due to weather over our next leg to Wawa.  As everyone else was doing, I checked all the weather forecasts and related info for the trip north east.  It was really looking iffy and people had all different potential routes they were going to take.  I was thinking of sleeping on it and checking everything again in the morning before making the decision.  However, I decided to….decide, that night.  I made the decision that we were going to head back home the next day.  It was a real bummer, as we weren’t even half way to the final destination of Thunder Bay.  But my mother and I had such a great time.  Up until that point alone, we had memories we’d likely never forget.

We just chilled for the rest of the night.  Made some new friends:

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We checked out the schnazy wine cellar they have at the Killarney Mountain Lodge:

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I was actually relieved I made the decision that night on what we were doing the next day.  It eliminated the stress I would have experienced, thinking about it all night.

The next day, we packed everything up and got ready to leave the lodge.  It was a nice stay:

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The Lodge folks were kind enough to tote our loot and selves back to the Airport, on a rather dreary morning.  Fortunately, all the planes seemed to still be there.  People started getting everything checked and packed for the next part of their journey.  Then a nice surprise – my mother and I were presented with our certificates and patches:

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It was certainly sad to say goodbye to everyone.  What a great group of gals!  Some asked for Jan and I to pose for farewell shots:

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Some flying mascots gathered on my elevator for a final parting pic:

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Just before starting up, the folks next to us huddled under their wing to wait out the rain:

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Certainly an advantage of a high wing.  Except for my little mother, who fits under both low and high wings with no problems….hehe!  (I’m so going to get a backhander for this one.)

With no issues with weather for our planned route home, we headed southeast along the shoreline of Georgian Bay.  It was recommended we head this way as opposed to back west through Manitoulin, for change of scenery.  Also, to make a fuel stop at the Orillia Airport.  I’ve never been to this one before.

Farewell Killarney Airport (CPT2):

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Here are some photos from our trip heading home:

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I’ll give you something to look forward to – seeing the conclusion of this wonderful trip!  Stay tuned!

Today’s symptoms: I’m recovering from a cold so I’ve been feeling much more lousy and MS’y than usual.  I think I picked it up at an event I helped out with recently.  It only makes sense that someone with a depleted immune system is going to pick something up being inside with over 180 people for the day.  No complaints though because while it was annoying and made my other symptoms worse, it certainly wasn’t the worst cold in the world.

 

Just a Quick One

I have only been to Starbucks twice in my life.  The second time was a couple weeks ago.  Knowing that they often get names wrong, I made sure I used the shortest name I go by (Liz) and focused on my annunciation.  Hmmmmm……

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Today’s symptoms: I was able to help out at a wonderful annual event today.  I had to take some pain meds and a couple wake-up pills (prescription) but made it through the day.  And what a great day it was.  I’m still smiling but my body is making sure I know that I may have overdone it – again.  Oops!  (Totally worth it though!!!)  Experiences like this certainly make it a bit easier to get through the rough MS bouts.

Air Rally – Day Two Continued

So in my last blog, we had just landed in Killarney with the rest of the women pilots.  I missed putting this pic in my last blog, with thirsty planes lined up to fill their tanks:

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I mentioned that we were taken to the Killarney Lodge for lunch.  We were greatly anticipating the fish, and we certainly weren’t disappointed:

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I think it was the best fish I’ve ever had.  It was super fresh and cooked perfectly.

After our awesome lunch, we continued to discuss the next leg of the flight that day, from Killarney to Wawa.  The weather was not in our favour and it was only getting worse.  Therefore, we made the decision to stay in Killarney for the night.  Not the worst thing in the world – this is the view from our room:

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Before the rain picked up too much, we wandered up the above rock and found some chairs nearby.  I thought it would be the perfect opportunity to show off my recent pressie (and early birthday gift from my mom).  Her, Mike and I saw them in Zumiez at the Pen Centre.  We thought they would go great with Vyctor.  They had orange laces, but I ordered some sparkly ones from Amazon.  Voila:

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It’s always nice to match accessories and clothing to one’s mode of transportation.

I was really hoping to get through the trip a bit more in this blog.  I’ve been going through another rough spot with my MS, and it’s left me pretty useless during the evenings into the night.  Thus, as my body is telling me to stop for the night, I must bid thee all adieu!  I will hopefully be able to continue the saga soon.  Cheers!

Today’s symptoms: The last couple of days have been part of a bad spell, where I’m becoming very weak starting mainly in the evenings.  At that point, the effort to physically do just simple tasks is exhausting and painful.  This has been happening on and off for a few weeks now.  😦

Air Rally – Day Two

Continuing on from my previous blog about the 99’s Gold Cup Air Rally I just participated in.  As I left off, we were staying over in a hotel in Collingwood, prior to starting the rally with all participants the next day.  Unfortunately, the breakfast at the hotel didn’t start until 7:30 and our ride was picking us up at 7:15.  I’m glad we had lot of extra time to get things ready with my plane, and get some coffee.

Everyone arrived around the same time, after a good breakkie at the house they stayed at.  Jan and I were lucky that we had purchased a few Tim Horton’s Smile Cookies, which made for a very yummy, albeit slightly unhealthy breakfast.

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I was able to be in the first group to take off and complete a touch-and-go for the spot landing contest.  I’m really upset with myself.  I knew this is the only part of the Rally I could do really well at.  Unfortunately, I have never landed Vyctor so heavy before (full fuel, passenger and luggage).  I was just coming up on the line, but I gently set him down prior to it.  That meant I was disqualified.  I was so bummed – very disappointed in myself.  Oh well, I tried and it was a learning experience.

We flew by the ski slopes on our way west around Georgian Bay:

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Some of the other pilots headed around the east shore.  During the flight, I took some shots of other airports we flew by:

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Mike and I have flown to Manitoulin Island a couple of times for vacations.  I was looking forward to Jan experiencing the flight over water from Tobermory to Manitoulin.  I knew she would enjoy it as she loves being near (or over) water:

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As you can see, the view was amazing.  Around the time we arrived at Manitoulin, we started hearing other members of the Rally entering the area.  We headed East and all were very attentive on the radio at this time, due to the extra traffic.  Once landed, we all got in line for fuel.

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Everyone helped each other move planes up the line toward the fuel pumps.  Once our planes’ thirst was quenched, everyone tied down on the apron:

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The kind folks from Killarney Mountain Lodge picked us up and drove us to their establishment.  Everyone was looking over their quiz’s that we were to complete on route.  Everyone had at least one, up to three other pilots with them.  My mother is not a pilot but was still able to help out in certain ways.  It didn’t leave me any time to worry about the quiz, as I was flying, navigating, communicating and eating a darn good cookie!

I look forward to writing the next blog for the continuation of this wonderful trip we were on.  Please stay tuned – the saga continues.

Today’s symptoms: I was a bit more weary than “normal” today (my normal, not normal people’s normal!   Hehe!)  Lots of pain and crawly sensations in my legs and feet today.  Not particularity pleasant, but it till hopefully not linger too much longer.

Air Rally – Collingwood

Soooo…..I decided to do my second Gold Cup Air Rally.  This decision was probably much tougher than it appears.  My main issue is my health.  My average week is a mix of good days and bad.  The thing is, I never know which the next day is going to be.  What happens if I wake up the next morning in another city, having a bad symptom day?  I would initially have no way home or onward other than to fly.  I would just have to stay until I had my next good day and then head home.  There are other factors such as having one of my days where I’m able to function as normal, but “just” feeling very blah the whole day.  Picture the last time you had a really bad flu.  Think of experiencing all of those symptoms but still have the strength and endurance to function normally.  That’s what it’s like for me on those types of bad days.  It’s great that I can function but feeling so lousy doesn’t make anything I do pleasurable.  The worst “bad days” are where I can’t function AND feel like caa-caa.  I’d be stuck if that happens.  Here’s the next huge factor I had to consider – I must have another female with me (all planes must carry two or more women).  If I offer my right seat to someone I hardly or don’t know at all, how horrible am I going to feel if I ended up with one of my bad days and make her miss the rally?  So then I came up with the brilliant idea – I’d invite my little mother!  She’s flown with me plenty of times and obviously knows all about what my MS causes me.

As you have guessed by now, I made the decision to attempt the Rally and my mother accepted my invitation!

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I must tell you, the last almost two months have been brutal.  Every day, I would flip and flop from “This is going to be awesome!!!” to “What the hell are you thinking, you #*@$!”  At least now, my mother would totally understand my limitations and not be as inconvenienced as someone else would be if I have to quit early.

On Wednesday, Mike took Jan and I to the St. Catharines Airport to load up Vyctor and head into the sort-of sunset in Collingwood.  It was very smooth air, which is perfect for Jan.  While flying through Toronto, the Tower let us know that there was an A380 passing ahead of us.  He mentioned he wasn’t ascending as anticipated, so had us descend a bit.  He said “That must be quite the view!”  It sure was!  I which I grabbed my camera, but only had time to snap a quick one with my iPhone.  This picture does no justice to the double-decker giant:

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In a little over an hour, we arrived in Collingwood.  This picture wasn’t taken that day as I was too focused on the landing.  The airport is at the base of the slopes on the left:

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We were sure to fuel up before heading into the Terminal Building to meet up with everyone:

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In total, I think there were twelve planes and around 25 pilots.  Here are a few of us:

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I got Vyctor all ready for his night out with his new buddies:

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After meeting up with everyone else who flew in that day, we had a delicious pizza dinner at a nearby hangar:

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Jan and I stayed at the Mariner Motor Inn.  Another Rally member, Diane, was kind enough to drive us from the airport to the hotel and back again in the morning.

Needless to say, it was a great day for both my mother and I.  It was wonderful to see so many of the pilots from last year’s Rally.  Stay tuned for more on our adventure!

Today’s symptoms: I’m still recovering from my trip, but things are getting better every day.  I had a bad headache for most of the day and lots of nerve pain on my left side.  Thinking about the last week has helped keep me positive while feeling cruddy.

Another Air Rally!

I can’t believe I decided to attempt this but I’m so glad I did!  Last year, I was copilot in my first Gold Cup Air Rally from Ottawa to Summerside, P.E.I.  This annual event is hosted by the 99’s, which is an international organization of female pilots.  I went up with a friend in her Cessna Cardinal.

This year, the Air Rally started in Collingwood and was to end in Thunder Bay.  Due to my MS, I wasn’t sure if I could actually fly that far in two days.  However, I made the decision to give it a try.  Worst case scenario was I wake up one day during the rally with bad symptoms.  I would just wait it out there until I was able to fly home.  Obviously it would mean I wouldn’t finish the rally, but at least I would have tried.

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I’m going to keep this blog short for tonight.  I’ll leave with with posts from the P.E.I. Air Rally last year:

Epic Journey!

P.E.I. Trip – Day 1

P.E.I. Trip – Day 2

P.E.I. Trip – Day 3

P.E.I. Trip – Day 3 Continued

P.E.I. Trip – This and That

Stay tuned!  I will post Day One of my recent trip soon.

Today’s symptoms: I was very fatigued today and spent much of the day in bed.  I hope I’m much spunkier tomorrow!

Epic Snowbirds

A couple of days ago, the amazing Canadian Snowbirds came back to the Niagara District Airport to perform. I was asked to have my plane set up by noon as part of the ground display.

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We certainly had a nice view of the DC-3 which flew in from the Canadian Warplane Heritage Museum.

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As we got everything set up nicely, the Snowbirds got themselves all ready to rock:

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The gates to the general public opened up at 2:00.  Right away, kids started seeing “Dusty” and ran up to take a closer look.  For over an hour and a half, I lifted dozens of kids into my plane.  There were actually line ups!

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It was a lot of fun and it felt great to see so many smiles.  I was very impressed that most of the parents were very good about making sure their kid(s) didn’t touch anything they shouldn’t.  My best friend came by with her parents and they sat under Vyctor’s wing and watched the stream of kids pass through.  I got to wave at her now and then but didn’t have much of a chance to sit and and chat.

Starting around 3:30, the Geronimo Skydiving Team were the first to perform.  I never get sick of seeing our flag:

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Once the jumpers were down, the Snowbirds started up and the sound was magnificent.  I took a slightly higher view up on Vyctor’s step to watch them start up:

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Just like their show here in 2017, they were amazing….it’s unreal how close they fly to each other and stay in such perfect formation:

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It was amazing to watch and we are certainly hopeful they come back here within the next couple of years.

Once everyone had headed out, we pushed Vyctor back to the hangar for the night.  I’m going to have to go to the airport this weekend to wash all of the little kid shoe prints off of Vyctor’s door.  Hehe!

Today’s symptoms: I did really well over the last two days.  Today I woke up with a bad headache and quite a few aches and pains.  I’m fairly fatigued today too.  I’ll hopefully get a good sleep tonight and wake up all bright-eyed and bushy haired tomorrow!

First Virtual Reality Gaming Experience

Mike and I played our first virtual reality game.  We went to VR Wonderland at the Pen Centre in St. Catharines.  Since we’re both into zombie fighting games, we picked Zombyte.  The staff were very bubbly and motivating, which made the experience even better.  They explained everything and hooked us up.  We played for ten minutes and it was a blast!  They also have a room with a different VR gaming system that has over 70 other games.  We had a great time and I strongly recommend the experience.

Back to my other experiences I started mentioning in my previous blog.  I recently had Vyctor’s annual inspection done.  I flew him into Welland and my mother met up with me.  We went for a coffee and then wandered around the Seaway Mall for a bit.  Unfortunately, Vyctor needed a bit more work this time so he had to be kept overnight.  I was able to pick him up the next day, at which time, I introduced Donkay’s reincarnation (or at least one of them) to her first flight.  Introducing Squiggy:

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I got her probably 20 years ago.  I have no idea why I bought her but I did.  She was just a “plane” (tee hee) starfish, so I pilotized her with goggles, a hat and scarf and now she’s ready to hit the runway!  She was all smiles before taxiing out onto the runway in Welland:

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Is was a nice ten minute flight back home, and my new copilot (or at least one of them) was born:

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I may have another one to join Squiggy coming soon.  Stay tuned!

Today’s symptoms: I actually felt decent for most of the weekend.  I had a really bad couple days on Thursday and especially Friday.  I had a dentist appointment and wasn’t even well enough to drive there.  My little mother had to pick me up and take me over.  I’m glad the bad days didn’t last too long.  

So Much Has Happened!

Since my last blog, which was forever ago (my bad), I have had the following great experiences.  I’m only going to share a couple tonight and will continue the saga soon:

I had my youngest passenger ever!  She was only seven!  My previous youngest was eight.  And she did aerobatics!  And she flew the plane!  I was so impressed.  She wanted to fly more than anything.  I couldn’t believe how forceful she was with the controls.  She had us doing steep turns!  I’m glad I made sure her seat wasn’t far enough forward so that she could adjust pitch too!  What a great experience it was for both of us.

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Within a week I had another aerobatic victim……errrrrr……passenger.  His spouse was the winner of one of my flight gift certificates I donated to a local charity.  After circling around Niagara Falls, we came back to Niagara District Airport to do some aerobatics.  We did a bunch of maneuvers, with his wife watching from the Flying Club.  We all had a nice chat before they left and it certainly sounds like it’s a flight she would like to try.  She said that she had to psych herself up first.  I mentioned that usually when people try to psych themselves up for something, they end up psyching themselves out of it instead.  She seems like she would be fun to fly with so I hope she goes for it.

On a sad note, as you may have seen through FaceBook, little Donkay has gone missing.  I stupidly brought him into the Seaway Mall in Welland, and he must have come out of my pocket.  I’m so mad at myself for this.  I tried calling most of the stores we were in and no one had seen him.  My mother even went to a few of the places we were today, but no joy.  Here he is enjoying his last meal with me at the Fonthill Tim Hortons, within an hour before going missing:

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Hooves crossed we get him back!

More to come soon regarding my good month (minus Donkay!)

Today’s symptoms: I did not have the greatest night, but actually felt pretty decent today.  My energy has been all over the place, as usual, but my lows haven’t been quite as low lately.  I certainly hope this continues!

Annual Edenvale Flight

We had pretty decent weather on Saturday, which was great as it was the annual Edenvale Gathering Of The Classics.  I have been to the event for most of the last twelve to thirteen years.  The number of fly ins has dropped a fair bit, but that’s the same everywhere you go anymore.  Still one of my favourite events to attend.  As always, the unicom (radio) operator was so cheerful and pleasant to speak with.  We got Vyctor parked and prepared him (sun shield) and us (sun screen) before walking over to the apron.

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Because of a couple events of parents allowing their kids (grrrrr!!!!!) to climb on other people’s property, I attached these signs.  I thought about them at the last minute, so that’s why they look sloppy.  I’m going to print a couple and put them in protective sleeves, so I have them in the plane at all times.  They do bring some peace of mind.  I know not everyone chooses to read and or follow instructions….

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Speaking of reading and following instructions:

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Such a rebel, I know!  Actually, I know the owner and actually ended up seeing him two days later.

We had a great time wandering around the static displays of both planes and classic cars.  The replica Avro Arrow was also there:

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I was hoping to see a Ford Fairlane there to send a pic of to my mom.  She had a Fairlane Fastback that she really loved.  I didn’t see one, so sent her a picture of an old Fairlane ad I saw there:

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After touring around, we got some food and sat under Vyctor’s wing, in the shade on a blanket I brought.  And of course, the blanket had an airplane on it.

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It was a nice bumpy flight home, which always makes it even more fun.

When I got home, I figured the cats would be thrilled to see me.  I couldn’t have been more wrong:

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At least Boo gave me the courtesy of waking up:

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There was an interesting event at my building recently.  Someone’s car caught on fire:

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Apparently faulty wiring.  I’m glad it happened up top rather down in the underground parking:

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Yikes!

Today’s symptoms: I actually had a decent day, despite having three short flights last evening (to a local meeting, some aerobatics, then home).  I really didn’t feel a significant drop in my energy until around 5:30.  Really bad pain in my hands today, though.  

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I took Thursday off of  work and took my friend and his daughter to Safari Niagara.  My father volunteers there and showed us around.  We had a nice, guided tour in a golf cart.  Here are some of the animals we got to see:

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I had not been able to see the hippos during the previous trips to the zoo.  They were hiding.  I’m happy to report that they were both out that day:

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Yikes!  I was waiting for his head to go completely inside out.

It was a very nice visit.  We did get a bit wet during a fairly big storm that went through.  We were able to find shelter while it passed.

I came home to my own little zoo:

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Today’s symptoms:  I had a pretty good weekend.  I have a neat flight to discuss in my next blog.  After a long day yesterday, I feel better than I though I would today.  My fatigue level is much less than what it usually is after flying.  Woot!