2010年7月2日 星期五

Canoe Trip

This is our (Cherry, Honey, David and I) first canoe trip!!

David came to pick us up around 7:30 am on the Saturday morning… it was raining a bit just like the weather forecast said…

So off we got on the high way 401, then 400, then just keep on going north for a good 75 minutes or so. The further north we drove, the harder the rain became; the windshield wipers were pretty much wiping at full speed and we still couldn’t see the road very clearly with the pouring rain. We were worried about the trip going to be ruined, but the best things we could do were just pray and continue moving north…

We got to the McCrae Lake parking lot around 9:40 am; the rain finally stopped, so our hope index just shot right up. However, the rain made the trail all muddy and the water level, according to our guide Aaron, was the highest he had ever seen in the past 15 years he canoed there. We let the dogs off the car, off leash, and a good mud war in the puddle was just inevitable. Very quickly, other group members showed up with their dogs. 10 nice people and 10 nice dogs! After a brief group introduction, we were all equipped with life jackets (including the dogs) and given a paddle; we set off our canoe around 10:00 am. At first, Cherry and Honey didn’t know what to do in the wobbly canoe and wanted out…after struggling with them for a minute or two, we had to just let them go off in the water to save our own lives from almost tipped over canoe. Other dogs pretty much stayed in their canoes like a regular; and as you could’ve imagined, everyone was just waiting and watching us fighting with the dog and the canoe…lol. We eventually took off with David sitting in the front of the canoe, I sitting at the back, and the dogs swimming beside us. Very soon, Cherry and Honey realized that trying to catch up to the canoe by swimming in life jackets could be very tiring…so they started to swim toward the side of our canoe asking for help – wanted us to pull them back in. I exercised every muscle of mine and pulled 80lb wet dogs into the canoe from the water while trying to stabilize the canoe... Trust me, it wasn’t the easiest thing, but we did it! J (the guide helped us stabilized our canoe couple times too!)

Then we canoed to a small island, had some snack, then canoed a bit more, brute forced the canoe through some beaver dams, then had lunch, played some fetch. By the afternoon, the dogs were pretty tired, so they stayed in the canoe quietly with some occasional jumps left and right rocking the canoe just to freak me out. Due to the high water level that was brought by the pouring rain in the morning, the water current was pretty strong too, so we had to cut our itinerary a bit shorter and ended this exciting day around 3:30pm. By the time we got back to Toronto, it was around 5:45 pm… we were exhausted! Mom took Cherry and Honey for showers first thing when we got home… and after that, Cherry and Honey pretty much slept their way through till the next morning!

Overall, it was a good trip, my non-water-proof camera survived, I survived, David survived, Cherry and Honey certainly had a great time. Great job team!

2010年6月24日 星期四

I survived earthquake Ontario 2010

Can you believe it?! there was an earthquake yesterday around 2pm... or something like that...just in time for the whole G20 chaos too....

Well, our whole office building was shaking for about 10-15 seconds... The first thing that came into my head was...
Since there are no fault lines in Eastern America....then it must be the wind hitting the building's resonance?.... wait the wind isn't even that strong (looking at the trees outside)
So... what the heck...? Some co-worker suggested it was the construction in the building caused the shake....Anyways...
Most of the people in Toronto probably never experienced earthquake before; although it wasn't anything major.... it was a HUGE deal!!! LOL...

The Radio, the newspaper, and pertty much EVERYONE were talking about it....

Very soon, Grace sent over a link to the latest article on Globe and Mail...YUMP Earthquake it was... here are some hilarious comments were posted...

6/23/2010 1:52:23 PM
Wow, that was fast. The Globe had this up before my monitor stopped shaking.
6/23/2010 2:03:39 PM
The earthquake was a magnitude significant to cause a tsunami in the G20 fake lake.
6/23/2010 2:21:00 PM
I was actually sitting on the toilet rocking back and forth listening to talk radio when this happened. (I'm in the west Toronto area.) My house usually shakes every time a train passes by so I stopped to listen for the rolling sound ...only it was not there! My legs started shaking and I thought to myself 'wow, old age is sure taking its toll'. A few minutes later I heard the announcement on the radio. It made me smile ...good to know my colon is still in working order.
6/23/2010 2:13:09 PM
Quebec is finally separating
6/23/2010 1:55:58 PM
I`ll be selling ``I survived the 2010 Ontario Earthquake`` T-shirts for anyone interested...Only $35!
6/23/2010 2:22:46 PM
As we speak, Mcguinty and his Liberals are contemplating ways to implement an Earthquake Tax in Ontario.
6/23/2010 2:13:59 PM
Did the Leafs win the Cup?
6/23/2010 2:29:16 PM
Let no-one doubt Canada's willingness to go the whole nine yards to entertain our important visitors!
6/23/2010 2:05:52 PM
A billion in loonies and all the dead weight being imported into Toronto for the Summit probably kept the shaking to a minimum.

2010年6月23日 星期三


My weight (55.3kg) has been plateauing for almost 3 weeks now… maybe it is time to change my strategy? I guess I’ve been pretty laid back about my diet and exercise lately… only doing the minimum…oy...feel like such a failure!
Anyway, Christine is going to be back in a week with my new VITA prep 3 from the States, so I look forward to see some result from the liquid diet in the next few weeks!! (hopefully to reach my goal of 54kg by the end of July)

This Saturday, David and I are taking Cherry and Honey to canoe trip! I found this website online called Dog Paddling Adventure http://www.dogpaddlingadventures.com; they offer 1, 2, 3, and 5 days canoe trip for dog lovers and their dogs! They provide the all canoeing equipment and food for the trip, and the sign up fee is approximately 110 dollars per day per person.
Since I’ve never canoed, and nor do Cherry and Honey, I decided to join the one day beginner trip to McCrae Lake (70km north of Barrie) and just to get a flavor of what the trip is like. Cherry and Honey will get to swim in the lake and run in the woods off leash, and there will be also be other dogs to play with. I hope they’ll enjoy it. And I think it is probably a good opportunity to meet other people who also love dogs and enjoy outdoor activities. I know I’ll probably be exhausted by the end of the day paddling the canoe and yelling at Cherry and Honey…but I hope we’ll have a fun and safe trip!!

2010年5月26日 星期三

North York (Willowdale) is MESSED UP

Note: Pictures shall be included to illustrate the following FACTS.

So after the grocery pricing incident, the traffic signs and bus stop facilities are also messed up in the North York neighborhood recently…
This is really starting to piss me off; I think I’ll have to convince my parents to move out of that area soon. What multi-million neighbourhood? Thanks to the City, it sucks now!!

Let us start with the bus stop facilities. Last weekend I went back Toronto and found that both the bus shelter and garbage bin have been removed at the bus stop in front of our house…so Grace spilled the beans: the city first came to remove the metal categorized (recycle, paper and litter) garbage bin and shelter; a few days later, the city tied a single cylindrical garbage bin to the bus stop pole; a few more days later, the city came back and patched out a grass area beside the side walk and put the garbage bin there instead; then a few days later, the city came back and removed the garbage bin…..Wow….Seriously, is this where my tax money is going to? A side story is that there has been some metal scraps that other people put beside the original garbage bin, and when the city came to remove the garbage bin, they didn’t remove the metal scraps with it, but leaving it on our property. Grace e-mailed the city about this, and guess what, THE METAL SCRAPS ARE STILL THERE TODAY!!

Now let us talk about the new traffic lights and signs that have been popping up everywhere lately. About couple months ago, the city was setting up a new street light on Cummer Ave at St. John’s hospital in between Willowdale and Maxome – Com’on, we now have 3 street lights which are about only 500m apart from each other on a single lane street? Is it really necessary? I never knew that street lights could easily be purchased at a dollar store? If that is not the case, then our city simply just had too much money to spend on unnecessary street lights and not to mention about the installation costs. After that, the city decided to put up a sign to restrict traffic directions, i.e. can’t go straight or left turn during 4pm-7pm at Maxome and Steels…So what is the point of having the street light there anyway then?! This is like the northern boarder of Toronto, it’s not Downtown Toronto, traffic on Maxome is really not that bad. Just over the Victoria weekend, I found out that the city was being creative and spending tax payers’ money putting a few more new signs at Maxome and Bishop…. There is like minimum traffic on Maxome, they just like to make things so complicated and now I can’t even take the shortest route to go HOME which is in the neighborhood?!!!!! WHAT THE?!! Not only they are wasting money on poor planning, they are also creating problems for me to find my way home!! There is more. The city decided to put up no parking signs in front of our house too… Now there is like no parking on the quiet residential street...Wow, REALLY?! Is the population in North York becoming Downtown Tokyo soon?

Don’t even get me started with the crazy traffic on Yonge from Sheppard to Steels...there is like traffic ALWAYS! I feel like I am in rush hour every time I am on Yonge in North York. It stresses me out when I want to drive home from anywhere… not only I have to deal with the frustrating traffic, now I have to remember all those nonsense traffic signs!!! And the city, please, I know you guys are trying to create job opportunities, but that does not mean wasting tax payers’ money on meaningless facilities or removing meaningful facilities and making your citizens’ lives so miserable. Lastly, please…..please spend some money to fix the goddamn potholes and remove the metal scrap from my lawn for god sake!

ALSO…Toronto is like the typical EASY city in SimCity with flat terrain and clearly divided residential, commercial and industrial areas… even the roads so straight that they only go N,W,E or S…and the city urban planning still manage to screw it up. That just tells us how incompetent the people are running the city….


Grace's letter to the elected rep HallFindlay.M@parl.gc.ca since the letter to the city obviously didn't do anything...

To whom it may concern,

As a resident in the willowdale neighbourhood, I am sadden by the recent development in the area.

Whether it is due to the great "action plan" or what not, I would need an explanation as to the following:

1) Why street signs were put in place which created great inconvenience for commuters trying to get to Finch station and vice versa to go home? Which made no sense to everyone to our neighbours and ourselves.

2) Why is it that the real estate agents in the area keeping on leaving their rubbish behind after the open house and and requested to have the city coming to pick them up over a month ago, NOTHING HAS BEEN DONE?

3) Why is that the "new" rubbish bin at the 42 bus stop on Cummer and Maxome moved from right to left within two weeks when it got set up, then taken away altogether after less than 2 month. Not to mention the bus shed were taken away and now there's RUBBISH EVERYWHERE.....which obviously the city has no plan to do anything about.

4) This might have been a TTC issue, but the city ultimately owns TTC and it appears that the buses are always late. I am sure traffic in the area is a cause (thanks to your great team of urban planning for the congestion...), but another main reason is that the busES would park in the station for at least 10mins and would not move while all the riders are waiting in the cold or heat. Although it has almost becoming a routine thing that we fellow riders are getting use to and accepting as a norm and laugh about it, it is quite unacceptable that we have a 3rd world-class transit system in this DEVELOPED country.

I would sincerely appreciate the above questions answered. Thank you for your assistance in advance.


She is obviously more civilized than me.

2010年5月23日 星期日

Discovery Everyday

I discovered something crazy today!!!

As many of you know, flipping through weekly grocery flyer is one of my many important routine and hobby. Unfortunately, after the 59 cents broccoli event about two weeks ago, there has not been any decent deals lately. Last Friday I picked up the flyer on my Brampton house door way as usual, I carefully read them one by one, finally saw something that grabbed my eye at No Frill - watermelon for $1.88 each... pretty good deal! Since I was planning to stay at Toronto over the long weekend, I decided to go to the No Frills in Centre Point North York to pick up the watermelon.... So finally on Saturday when we got there, the watermelons were 2.88 each?! i was like...hm... I was pretty sure i remembered it was 1.88... could it be my Alzheimer acting up? but i am usually very good with prices... I still picked a watermelon up, but I wasn't feeling all the great, i swear i saw 1.88....anyway, after i got home, the greatest mystery was solved by comparing the two No Frills flyers side by side.... the one in Brampton is DIFFERENT than the one in North York?!!!! WHAT!!??? is the like a discrimination or what?! ridiculous!!! Now i'll have to get grocery from Brampton and bring them back to Toronto!!lol..

By the way, thanks to Isabel, the tea selection in my house has increased by about 500%...

2010年5月21日 星期五

Victoria Weekend

It’s the Victoria long weekend!
Friday is sunny, Saturday is rainy, Sunday is cloudy, and Monday is sunny again… Not a bad combination.
Don’t have any plans really at this point. So let’s have a quick brain-storming session…

New York: Flight ticket is crazy around $650…
Shopping: Can’t think of anything to buy… (rare moment I know)
Casino: Don’t have extra cash to dump away right now; I got a house and a car to pay…
Movie: Shrek and Sex and the City are not coming out until next week, nothing good to watch…
Food: My #1 priority right now is losing weight; this option is like digging a grave for myself…(deeply inside I long for a decent angus beef burger…) P.S I am 55.6kg now...KEEP IT UP XENIA!! Don't let the devil talk you into the burger!!!
Karaoke: This one may be feasible except the fact that everyone is pretty much out of town…
Study: Don’t have much to study; my course just started about 3 weeks ago…
Watch TV: Not following any drama right now; don’t have the urge to start one either… (omg, something is wrong with me)
Friends: Maybe meet up with Henry? Kenny? Alice? If they are even available…Liz, Susi and Sarah are all out of town.
Organize Closet: Swapping summer and winter clothing…no excuses this time; have to do it this weekend…
Upload Pictures: Yeah... I can probably do some of that too...missed my desktop

In conclusion, I will be sleeping, cleaning, jogging and be cranky with an empty stomach for the long weekend!

2010年5月19日 星期三

I often wonder...

So…I often wonder…

One day I was driving down a highway and I saw a rainbow, so I wonder: I know that the rainbow colors are from light reflection in water mist causing the white light to disperse into its 7 color components, but why does the rainbow always form a semicircular shape, but not any other shape?
DW: Check this link video for rainbow tutorial http://www.phy.ntnu.edu.tw/ntnujava/index.php?topic=44

One day I was eating and there were various kinds of meat on the table, such as pork, beef, chicken and lamb; just by tasting, I could pretty much tell which kind of meat I was eating, so I wonder: how does human meat taste like? Does it also have a distinct taste and texture which I could tell the difference from other kinds of meat?
JB: Oh, I really don't want to know, thank you Xenia, thank you...

One day I was at work and a very funny incident happened during lunch, I was laughing really hard, and I wonder: is human being the only animal that has a sense of humor and knows how to laugh? Animals have sad, happy, lonely, boring moods, but I am not sure if they could actually find things funny from the bottom of their hearts.
DW: Additional features of human: humour, sarcasm, logic, and ability to be evil?

One day I saw a man with a beer belly, it was a huge round one; the belly looked pretty tight and stiff...not sagging at all, so I wonder: What exactly is in it?! if it's fat, how come it's not sagging but firm and tight? and why does it all accumulate in the belly, and not anywhere else?

One day I was at Juzhaogou China admiring mother nature’s creation; the mountain, the water, the trees together assembled an incredible view, and I wonder: Everyone in this world has a different point of view about almost everything, especially the definition of beauty and arts. Doesn’t matter how ugly the shoes are, there must be someone who would find them attractive; so the question is, is there anyone in the whole world doesn’t appreciate the magnificent natural sceneries? Even the greatest designer/artist of all time would not be able to impress everyone, so how does mother nature able to unite everyone’s interpretation of beauty?

One day I was watching a documentary on Sharks, the movie described the phenomenal impacts of rapid Shark population decrease; they include messing up the food chain leading to global warming and global oxygen reduction and a whole bunch of other disasters. It’s like butterfly effect theory which encapsulates that a small difference in the initial condition may lead to large variations for the whole system. So I wonder: if human beings are extinct today…what effects would that have? I think if it is not nothing, then only better i.e. no pollutions, no excessive depletion of natural resources. I can’t imagine why the human beings are essential in the bio food chain either…and the earth lived happily for a longtime without human beings there before… so…why are we even necessary here? We are not even as important as a tiny butterfly, yet we are killing everything we find and see. Now that is all making sense…let the most pointless character destroy everything essential…I mean, doesn’t THAT make you wonder?
DW: I think human beings didn’t evolve to last forever. So anyone trying to have kids today are crazy. You’ll see your grand kid having to clean up after our trash
PZ: http://www.history.com/shows/life-after-people

One day I wonder, if I was a religious person who believed that the answers were all in God (regardless logical or not), would I be a less successful person because of a less critical mind?
DW: No, there are lots of ignorant and successful people. You just need to be good looking and be at the right place at the right time, and maybe know how to act… (think Tom Cruise)

One day I wonder, if I didn't wonder about things happening in this world, would I be a happier person?
GK: Back to the basics!!! that will make you happy.. ;)
If you don’t believe me, just transfer all the money in the a/c below and you’ll see the magic.. #123456789…