In April, Latté (the gerbil) finally died. It was sad, in
a way, but in another way I'm really glad he's gone; not because
it means I don't have to spend money on food and wood chips and I
don't have to nag Kathleen to clean his cage and feed him (though
there is that!), but mostly because I always hated seeing him trying
so desperately to scrabble his way out of his little cage. I can
absolutely guarantee that we are NEVER getting another animal that
has to be kept shut away.
Spring passed in a busy, happy blur, then it was time to get ready to go to New Brunswick. That brought on my first-ever anxiety attacks - what a horrible feeling! Nonetheless, I did manage to get myself packed, get Kathleen and the cats arranged for and get myself to the airport in time to catch the Saturday red-eye to Toronto. Had a few hours wait there, then another flight to St. John - first time I've ever been to the Maritimes. Terry Adair, of Adair's Lodge, where most of the workshop is held, was there to meet the plane, then it's just a half hour drive from the airport to the lodge. Arrived around noon Sunday. The weather was fairly poor, at least for the first few days, but even that (and the bugs!) couldn't ruin the excitement of actually getting to meet Freeman and work with him and the other photographer who jointly runs the workshops, André Gallant. It was a very intense experience, but extremely rewarding; the other students also helped to make it particularly enjoyable - the participants were a wide-ranging group (geographically, as well as in age, gender, profession and photographic experience). When I got home, I spent quite a bit of time putting up pages on my website with pictures and information from the workshop; of the place and the people as well as of the photographs I'd taken for the exercises and assignments. I still keep in touch with a number of them via the Internet - email is a wonderful thing!
Got back in mid-June, just in time for my birthday ('Thank You' to the friends who gave me several lovely evenings out!) and the end of school. Kathleen didn't have any special plans for the summer; mostly she just lounged around, though she did manage a couple of visits with some old friends from our Vancouver days (and had her 15th birthday - where do the years go!).
I struggled to get at least some of the garden in, but it certainly never got finished to the extent I usually manage. As well as being behind because of being away, I also spent a lot of time working for a client in Point Roberts (just across the border in the U.S.) who wanted to produce an online newsletter - that was a really interesting experience. We did a couple of editions; hopefully he'll be doing more this year. Also continued teaching myself new things about creating websites and surfing the net, as well as doing a number of 'spec' sites for potential clients. I haven't managed to convince any of these people to employ my services yet (salesmanship is definitely NOT my forté), but even if I never do, they provided a great learning experience, as well as templates for future projects. So, if you've ever thought you might need a 'webmaster' (as people who do this are called) to create a site for you, or know of anyone else who might be looking for one, give me a call and/or pass on my name!
September and October were, as usual, lovely. Did find some time to enjoy the good weather, as well as work on Version 2.1 of the website of my Saskatchewan clients (talk about telecommuting!). In November (also as usual, unfortunately), I got down into my standard funk. I'm only just coming out of it now, which is why these cards are so late getting done. Oh well, as they always say, better late than never! Hope all is well with you and yours ...