Thursday, December 23, 2010

Season’s Greetings



                                                                  “Azure Window”, Dwerja Bay, Gozo Island, Malta

Another eventful year draws to a close and we are considering what highlights to share with our friends and family. As always we have been traveling – two trips to Winnipeg to visit Wilf’s Mom as well as the usual Stoneman get together in Bigfork, Montana during the summer. This was the centennial year for the Department of Geological Sciences at the University of Manitoba, which provided Wilf with a chance to meet up with former professors and fellow students for some reminiscing. They also had a chance to marvel at all the attractive young women in the current program – some things have changed since way back when!

This fall we made a return trip to Europe, meeting up with our friends Nan and Greg in Germany, then moving on to Malta. We spent a week exploring Malta and the neighbouring island of Gozo, before flying to Sicily. A few more days with Nan and Greg, after which we continued our explorations on our own. This meant the added adventure of driving, which was, indeed, an adventure. Fortunately we had our GPS with us, otherwise we might still be wandering the back roads of Sicily. Sharon had an opportunity to unleash her inner Italian and learned to be more aggressive in her driving.

Back here in staid slow Victoria she has had some unlearning to do. Sicily was quite different from the other parts of Italy that we have visited. We enjoyed the food, the wine, the sights – it was great. We finished off with a few days in Milan for a Northern Italian perspective.

We continue to be well – Wilf flyfishes and gardens. He also completed renovations to our second bathroom this summer. Sharon is still quilting and knitting and attended several retreats and seminars. We’ve been on the West Coast now for 10 years – a fact that rather astonishes us – how the time flies.

We both wish you all much happiness in the coming year.

Friday, December 17, 2010


So I don’t do the texting thing. Mostly because I don’t have anyone to send texts to. The people I know (and this includes me) either don’t have their phone with them, or don’t have it turned on. The only texts we get are from our phone service providers and the response is usually ‘Why is my phone making that funny noise?’

That said, this summer I got an IPod Touch (oh, IPod how do I love thee? Let me count the ways….), which has been my introduction to the world of autocorrect. I have learned to double check before hitting send or save because of that feature. In the speedy give and take of texting, however, people don’t always check before sending.

The phenomenon of autocorrect errors is beginning to creep into popular culture, too. We were watching an episode of Sherlock  and he received a text message – the sender called him a cork stuffer. He read that out – they all thought about it, then nodded and agreed ‘Autocorrect’.

If that is an example of autocorrect in Britain I must say that the British software seems to differ from the American. How do I know this? Today I stumbled across, a site that captures hilarious examples of autocorrect gone horribly, hilariously wrong.  It seems that given the option autocorrect will substitute the most profane, ridiculous or embarrassing words possible. I don’t know what’s funnier – the horrified sender or the bemused recipients of the message.

And you know how they it is difficult to express tone in electronic communications? I’d say that frustration comes through loud and clear in the text world…..