The Aftermath

Wow. It’s been a very hectic few months, my apologies.

For the eviction fiasco in Halifax, we had a hearing. In that hearing, we basically just pulled out of the lease. We didn’t give the roommate a chance to even talk, because we knew she was simply DYING to bash us to anyone who would listen. So we shut that down, said we’d be out by the beginning of August and that was that.

We packed up everything we owned, rented a U-haul (thank you for your donations, that really helped!) and made our way out to Pubnico, South Western Nova Scotia, where my partner is from.

A few weeks after we left, we were accused by the roommate and our idiot landlady, that there was cigarette smoke in her bedroom closet. What in the actual fuck? Yes Lynne, you unbelievable tool of a human, we intentionally went into your closet and smoked. Rolling my eyes, I told her this was a ridiculous accusation. It was all just a way for the idiot landlady to avoid paying us our damage deposit. Which she won’t. (and frankly, not hearing from these people ever again is worth the price). She didn’t like being called an idiot. Poor idiot landlady (and I use the term lady, lightly). I ended up having to block the Landlady from emailing me anymore, it caused immediate stress just seeing her name in my inbox.

It was bad. The landlords used to park their Escalade in the parking lot behind us and watch us. Not sure what they were looking for, but needless to say it was creepy, as well as a violation of our privacy. We never did anything but keep the place clean. We never had a single party (unlike the roommate), rarely had people over. We’re not involved in any gangs or organized crime, we weren’t running any illegal lotteries out of the home nor were we charging admission for any live bands and we weren’t cooking anything but food, so I’m not sure what they were watching for, but it was super annoying.

So everyone ended up getting what they wanted, (except us) which was us out. Sure, we are still homeless but who cares right? Lynne got her way, crying wolf. She couldn’t let it go or give us a day or 2 to cool off. Nope. Had to get us kicked out with her fairy stories. I used to respect this person, hard to believe. Now, I have absolutely ZERO respect for her. She’s a liar and a manipulative douchebag. Good luck to you.

And yes, I can say that Lynne. Trying to use my blog against me, like I’ve used your last name or published our address. In Canada, we have freedom of expression so, stuff it. My blog, my rules.

In the meantime, while we search for housing, I have been enjoying my new full-time job. I’m making good money now. Basically, that crazy landlady kicked out the ONLY person with full-time employment. Good move Melodie. Melodie. The craziest fucking tune I’ve ever heard. Again, no last names. Suck it.

I’ve been enjoying my time here in Southwest Nova. I’ve gone swimming, gone to beaches, spent time at cottages on the lake. Ate a shit ton of seafood. Went for a ride on an inflatable sombrero being pulled by a jet ski. Enjoyed countless breathtaking sunsets, were avoided by Hurricane Dorian, (we didn’t even lose power). So all in all, I’m glad we’re not living with Lynne, her obnoxious rectum clenching laugh, or her constantly barking chihuahua mix. I’ve been able to sleep again. My back doesn’t hurt as much from sleeping on a tilt in that crooked slanty shanty, nor do I have vertigo anymore. That house was seriously crooked.

Working full-time now means I don’t have as much time to dedicate to my blog as I used to. I’m exhausted by the end of my days and just want a shower, food, and bed, but I wanted to give you all an update. We’re currently seeking housing in town nearby as everything is miles away here and we don’t have a vehicle.

I’m still in shock of how the roommate manipulated the landlords and how they never spoke to us, our numbers were both on our lease. A simple phone call may have cleared things up, but instead, you made 2 people, one of which disabled, homeless. Good job.

But in the end, things are working out. We may have a house lined up. Less than what we were paying in Halifax to live in a bedroom. A backyard, a nearby trail, a deck. A whole house to ourselves. This is what we want. I will never live with a roommate again.

I’m doing well with my job, my partner is actively seeking another, we will prevail.

Here a few of my summer highlights.

 

at the shore
Hanging out at the shore

 

beach walking
Beach Walking

 

sombrero_LI (2)
Being pulled across a lake on the Sombrero

 

sombrero pt 2
After the ride. I had to pry my left hand off the handle lol

 

La Village
Le Village with the Fam Jam

 

chuck mangione
Yacht Rock ALL DAY #ChuckMangione

 

lobster supper
I’m in seafood heaven down here!

 

Honorable mentions go to:

“La Creamy Treat” for having the best ice cream treats in Nova Scotia. I will miss you Driftwood. (Waffle cone dipped in chocolate with soft serve vanilla, caramel and pretzel inside- so delicious! So fattening, my pants are tight!)

The Sister in law and Brother in law for their famous cottage hospitality.

The Mother in law for her famous baked goods. #Dawnscookies.

Giant unused ballfield next door where Lucy enjoys running leash-free chasing sticks and balls.

My buddy in town and our occasional “safety meetings”. (This means we get together, dish, and smoke pot).

Quiet. Halifax is SO noisy, we do NOT miss the dynamite blasts and constant carnage, er, I mean construction in the North End.

Nature. It comes right in your yard! Deer, bunnies, there’s a giant toad we call Geoffrey, chipmunks that come right up to you, and LOTS of butterflies and birds.

All in all, Lynne, you did us a favor. We hated living in Halifax and didn’t enjoy living with you. You were controlling and juvenile. I didn’t sign up to live with a Mrs. Garrett…

Mrs-Garrett
Mrs. Garrett

(Girls, girls, girls). I ended up with full-time work for the first time since 2011, we’re going to have a nicer bigger space to ourselves for less than what you pay. We’re going to start our life, finally, after four and a half years, together.

Enjoy your cat.

S.

 

 

Image Credits

Mrs. Garrett  http://www.947wls.com/2018/08/06/r-i-p-charlotte-rae-tvs-mrs-garrett/

All other images are my own*

Move to Halifax They Said.

Welcome to Homelessness

Renting in Halifax, Nova Scotia has become dire. The city is currently sitting at a 1.5% vacancy rate. Making it not only difficult for people to move here for job opportunities, but it’s also pushing the residents of Halifax out of their homes.

Recently a friend of my partner’s was basically “rent evicted” from her apartment. She received a notice that her rent was increasing by $800 a month! Which is not illegal for landlords of rental properties. The landlord simply has to give you 4 months notice at which point you can choose to not accept the new terms. The information can be found here. Click on the guide.

Prior to returning to Halifax, we lived in Saint John, New Brunswick for 3 years. New Brunswick has far better measures in place to protect renters. In Nova Scotia, we have far better measures in place to protect landlords.

Since landing Halifax almost 11 months ago, we have been searching for suitable housing, settling on shared accommodations for now, which is not going well. See my piece about our recent eviction.

When I was younger, students in this city, (Halifax is a University town) would maybe have 3 or 4 students sharing a house. Now you’ve got kids in sleeping blankets on floors, 8-9 in a house just to complete their education.

Another huge problem is the overabundance of Air BnBs. It seems everyone is jumping on the Air BnB bandwagon, including property owners who are buying rental units and turning them strictly into Air BnB. Why rent to tenants when you can make $140/ night? So far, no regulations have been put into place regarding Air BnBs, despite residents demanding it, but I’ll tell you this-

Halifax renters are fucking sick of Air BnBs. Not only are you losing out on rental opportunities, but you have different people coming and going, often causing destruction at neighbouring properties. You never know your neighbour anymore. This is not a new concern for residents in Halifax.

I may have tweeted the Mayor of Halifax today.

We are getting so frustrated trying to find apartments here. Apartments that just a decade ago were $800-$900 are now $1500-$2000 a month! This is Halifax not Las Vegas for fuck sake. And even though my partner, our dog and I lived in a 400 square foot, 1 bedroom apartment in Saint John, think again about sharing a 1 bedroom in Halifax. Most places don’t allow it. Most places don’t allow dogs. Here’s a brief sampling of apartment ads near me from Kijiji.

2 Bedrooms
1 Bedroom
Apartments Wanted

Who can afford 2- $3000 a month on rent? Buy a house if you can pay that. What the hell are you doing throwing your money away like that?

In the fledgeling economy of the Maritimes, Nova Scotia is getting slammed by rent hikes, new rules, (all in favour of the landlord), a high unemployment rate, despite statistics showing growth, I know an awful lot of people who are either out of work, can’t find work, or disabled.

Many fear this will increase the homelessness rates in the province. Halifax’s shelters are already at maximum capacity.

Something needs to be done. Renters need to take back the power from the landlords. I suggest writing your MLAs, MPs, Halifax Mayor Mike Savage, Premiere McNeil and any of your local city councillors and raise the concern of housing and Air BnBs.

If we don’t raise our concerns, lower-income people, the elderly and the disabled will end up displaced. They’re already pushing us all to the outskirts of the city. Can’t see the crisis? Then I guess there’s no problem.

How is rent in your city? Are you fed up with Air BnB yet?

Live Humbly, Be Charitable, Live Graciously,

S.

Further Reading (older, but still relevant)

https://acorncanada.org/metro-news-halifax-tenants-group-calls-return-rent-control-wants-it-become-election-issue

Images

Homeless Woman https://insp.ngo/american-students-provide-homeless/

Other images from Kijiji.ca

ARGH.

Stressed out womanWe were served one week ago with an eviction notice. For one week I have been unable to sleep more than three or four hours at a time. Unable to eat more than one small meal a day. I’ve had migraines. I’ve vomited, and I’m in a flare up. I’m having some pretty bad PTSD nightmares. My speech is slurred and I can’t stay out of the loo.

Thanks so much for this.

The vacancy rate in Halifax is 1.5%. There was just a piece published in the Chronicle Herald yesterday about how young people aren’t able to come to Halifax anymore because the rents are not only ridiculously high, but you’re lucky if you can even find housing.

So you tell me in what world two decent tenants are facing homelessness by the word of one person?

How can one person have the power to throw our lives into such upheaval? We had been nothing but kind and considerate since we moved in. If this individual didn’t like us, she had three months while we sublet, to change her mind about signing a lease with us. Yet she chose to.  She had ample opportunities to tell us if she had a problem with us, but she didn’t.

Every time I asked, (and I asked multiple times because I am not an asshole, and certainly didn’t want to disrupt anyone else) whether or not we disturbed her, or bothered her, we were told, “No, I never hear you guys.”

Any time she was rude to us, which was frequently, we took it on the chin and just went upstairs. Throughout ten months of incessant barking, we said nothing. Her girlfriend practically lived here, contributed nothing, but again, we said nothing. Why? Because we honestly liked these two people, we thought we were friends. But now I see we were just being taken advantage of.

Even though we did ALL the cleaning inside and outside (except lawn, that was the roommate’s only job), we said nothing because we wanted to live in a clean home whether she pitched an effort or not. We are not dirtbags.

The backyard is piled up with items that don’t belong to us. A bio composter of some kind, prior tenant. A wooden flower bed, prior tenant. Coffee table, roommate, stool, prior tenant, wagon, roommate. Pallets, roommate.  You get the drift.

We have spent the better part of 10 months living in a room together. The couple of times we attempted to use the living room (after we cleaned downstairs for hours) we were kicked out and ended up retreating to our bedroom.

We have felt disrespected THE ENTIRE time we have lived here. It’s not a good feeling. Again, we never involved the landlord because this was not a long term solution for us, and you DON’T INVOLVE LANDLORDS IN ROOMMATE DISPUTES in Halifax.

I’m going to have to schedule an appointment with my doctor because I’m having difficulty coping with all the stress this has brought on. I’m in menopause and I suffer from PTSD and Fibromyalgia, so that means I go from angry to crying in a flash. A hot flash. yuk yuk.

One thing I do to cope is clean, but this place is sparkling and I have run out of things to clean now.  I have begun packing, in case we are tossed out on to the street after our hearing.

Who needs this shit? Honestly.

I feel like I’ve been bullied my entire life, but none more than being a grown, disabled woman.  From constantly having to prove my disabilities, to narcissistic abuse from family and a few friends. I have taken so much shit from so many people over the years, that I have finally reached full. The shit runneth over.

I just want to lie on a beach with a book and forget all this ever happened. Including moving to Halifax.

To address our need for immediate housing, we have started a Go Fund Me to assist with moving costs, utility hookups, damage deposit etc. If you are able to donate, it would be greatly appreciated, if not, a simple share or prayer helps. Thank you so much for your kindness. I really appreciate my online friends and the blogging community.

 

Live Humbly, Be Charitable, Live Graciously,

S.

 

Image Credit

http://www.clker.com/clipart-634242.html

Step Out & Step Up

..can’t sleep

Well, hello old friends.  It’s been a while since I’ve logged in and touched base.  I have been working harder than I have in years, hence my absence.  Between the radio show I host with my partner 5 days a week, I have also added a Saturday radio show to the roster that I host alone.  I’m broadcasting 6 days a week.

“C” has begun a new job in another city.  We will be leaving Saint John New Brunswick.  I am currently staying in Halifax, Nova Scotia- where I’m from.  The city has changed a lot in the three years I was gone.  Some areas I barely recognize due to gentrification.  Thanks Hipsters for driving up rental costs in the city.  Much appreciated.  I have some questions though.  How many micro breweries does one city need?  What’s the big deal with craft beer and Hipsters anyway?  Why the man-bun?  I’m just gonna say it… Craft beer= glass of farts.  There I said it.  You’re all thinking it but I said it.  “C” and I are frantically searching for a suitable rental.  I say frantically because ALL the apartments have been taken by students.  Damn university town.  Guess we know who’s really drinking all that extra gassy craft beer.

On another front, I have somewhat kicked up my medical cannabis activism game.  I’m a newbie; no where near as experienced as many of my peers, but I see injustice.  I hate injustice.  I see people suffering with a plethora of illness ranging from chronic to terminal flailing around a medical system hell bent on prescribing this and that only to manage symptoms, never addressing the cause.  Pharmaceutical tyranny I call it.  I see a void in our current system and I feel like I have just as good of a voice as anyone else.  I have partaken in a video that’s going viral, standing with other patients addressing how invaluable dispensaries are to us.  I have also given an interview with a local paper- it just came out today.  Change doesn’t happen without fight; without discord.  I am stepping out of my comfort zone and stepping up.  I think more of us need to do this in our everyday lives.  Step out, step up.  A little tip?  We won’t die nor break as a result of stepping out of our comfort zones.  As a society, we have become complacent much to our detriment.  We allow ourselves to be distracted by things that don’t affect us, don’t matter or don’t serve us, and when it’s suggested we put forth an effort, suddenly, many people simply “don’t have the time”.  It’s true that there are many demanding professions and careers out there, but let’s be honest; you have time, you just couldn’t be bothered and you’re not a cardiovascular surgeon.

“Leave it for someone else”

“So and So will take care of it”

“Surely the government will step in”

No.  These are incorrect statements, and they stink of naivete.

Your government doesn’t care about you.  You know why?  Because democracy is a misconstrued notion.  It’s a dead sentiment.  Countries are run by corporations.  Money and lobby groups dictate policy and laws.  The FDA?  A laughable organization.  It’s about who can contribute how many dollars.  It’s bullshit studies done by the very same drug companies trying to patent their poisons medicines.  “Surely there are drug trials and tests” you might retort.  Yeah there are.  Two.  Two tests.  Often performed by the drug companies’ own teams.  That’s not biased at all.  You know what else happens in government?  Nepotism.  Look at how many Trumps are fucking up running the White House.  Here in  Halifax, Nova Scotia, the city police chief is our Premiere’s brother.  You can’t make this shit up folks.

Two days ago, my best friend’s dispensary was robbed in broad daylight by police raided.  A lot of people are left without medication now and two people who volunteer their time to help other patients, one- a single mother of three- are now facing charges and court appearances.  Is this necessary?  Is this fair?  This friend  has given me medication at no cost many times so that I am not sick, so that I can function at a reasonable level and enjoy a reasonable quality of life.  (It’s not illegal to give or trade cannabis among patients- just an FYI) Do you know how grateful I am?  This friend has given medication and has offered a compassionate ear to virtually anyone truly in need.  There are thousands of patients that rely on Higher Living Wellness Centre.  Thousands of people have been made to feel safe, welcome, listened to, and many have developed life long friendships, and enjoy a peaceful sense of community with other like minded individuals.  We harm no one.  We bother no one.  We have medical prescriptions for cannabis.  No one is served without a prescription and ID.  The patients they serve range in ages all over the board and the cases range from things like cancer, MS, Parkinson’s, to Fibromyalgia, to rheumatoid arthritis, to PTSD and other painful life altering conditions.  Conditions that many doctors simply give up on.  It becomes a game of “let’s try this” “let’s increase that” ” I heard good things about this drug”  Doctors are in the game of symptom management.  Although here in Canada, doctors can’t accept “kickbacks” they CAN accept training in places like the Bahamas for 2 weeks or a nice golfing vacation.  Doctors are still bought here in Canada, they just accept a different currency.

For many of us, we have come to rely on communities like this.  Let’s not forget, the fast approaching legalization debacle was built on the backs of compassion clubs and dispensaries just like Higher Living Wellness.  It’s infuriating to me that the people with all the knowledge, the care and understanding of this plant; this GOD GIVEN plant are being locked out of an entire industry.  It’s infuriating to me that the government thinks it’s OK for a stage 4 breast cancer patient to get in line at the liquor store behind two twenty year olds looking to enhance their bar game that night.  It’s infuriating to me to tell someone dying of cancer that he has to log in on a computer with a credit card to a faceless entity for his legal medicine?  There’s no one you can ACTUALLY speak with when dealing with LPs.  It’s all email.  There no recommendations, there’s no teaching moments between an LP and a patient.  This is access for sick people??  Are you joking?  This must be a joke.  No one really treats the ill like this do they?  They do in Canada.  They do in Halifax Nova Scotia.  The Nova Scotia government doesn’t care about us, they don’t care about you.  I have already lost faith in doctors, I have since lost faith in my government, I have now lost faith in the police.  It’s become clear to us that we are nothing in their eyes.

We can’t have that.  I can’t have that.  I cannot foresee a future where all my rights have been stripped and I am forced to live a bed bound isolated life again and not have at the very least TRIED to fight back.

I have always been a fighter, I will always be a fighter.

Maybe cannabis is not your fight, that’s fine.  But I bet there’s something you need to be fighting for.  Don’t let your hesitation fester in to a life long regret.  Don’t be caught off guard and steamrolled; governments are notorious for silently removing rights while you’re playing Candy Crush or taking the latest Facebook quiz.  Take action.  There is SO MUCH wrong in this world right now, pick your battle and fight for it.  Fight with everything you have.

Step out, step up.

HLWC shirt

Live Humbly, Be Charitable, Live Graciously,

Sam

Can I Borrow a Spoon or Two?

Bzzzzzzzz the anxiety is high today.  Bzzzzzzz It rings in my ears, vibrates through my bones, reverberates through my skin and echoes through my lungs as my chest tightens in around itself like a nervous armadillo.   Bzzzzzz  my eyes lose focus and my train of thought ceases.  Bzzzzzzz I forget how to breath and here comes the tears.  It’s getting dark.  It’s a panic attack.

This is how I started my morning.  The last few days I’ve been physically and mentally exhausted.  I’m wide awake all night long and unable to fall asleep until almost lunchtime.  I get a few hours of snooze and then I’m up again.  Not quite awake but not asleep, I’ve been drifting through the last few days like a ghost.

I’ve had a lot of pain in my wrist/arm which I am now convinced is broken but I loathe hospitals and rarely have a drive so I haven’t gone and gotten it checked out.  What the hell am I gonna do with a cast on my arm? I got shit to do.  I usually have to feel like I’m physically dying to justify going to the Emergency room.   With all the pain in my wrist, back and neck, the only way I’m comfortable is lying down.  I’ve gotten nothing done around the house, I haven’t blogged or been on Social Media, other than brief lurking and Gif viewing.

I’m just tired.

Tomorrow, we travel home to Nova Scotia for Christmas.  We have to take the ferry.  It wouldn’t be as bad if we had a car but lugging all our suitcases and my little dog and standing outside in the weather until boarding time then all the walking you have to do once you board just kills my body.  I have to drop my dog off at the kennels and then go up stairs to find a place to perch.  It’s the holidays so I’m guessing the boat will be packed with people.  Ugh. It’s usually cold on the boat so I’ll have to bring a blanket.  The whole thing is a pain in the ass.  I look forward to the day when we can just pack up our car and drive there, avoiding all the noise, hassle, pain and cold of the ferry.  I usually need a day or so to recover from the travel.  It’s embarrassing.  

It’s a week of visiting and dinners and family and friends and food I’m not supposed to eat.  I’ve mentioned before how I’m not in the Christmas spirit at all this year, so it’ll be a week of acting, watching my language and making sure my dog doesn’t poop anywhere in the house.  My mother in law’s house is really large so it’s a lot of walking and stairs.  At some point, my legs will go out and I’ll be stuck in the basement for a day crying out of frustration and humiliation.   

Don’t get me wrong, I love my in laws.  They’re wonderful people and they’ve been very kind to me.  I love to see them and the little nieces.  It’s just me.  My body doesn’t always cooperate.  I get tired fast.  I just run out of spoons.  It both depresses and frightens me so I cry.  I’m peri menopausal so I cry.  I’m grateful for their kindness so I cry.  I cry over everything these days.  It’s embarrassing and I don’t want them to think less of me.

I’m a bumbling, Pajama wearing mess.

But I have to try to be normal for a week.  

I have a ton of shit to do today to prepare for our trip, I just want to crawl back in to a warm bed and sleep.


How do you handle all the activity during the holiday season?

What do you do when you just don’t have enough spoons?

I love reading your comments!

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The Blog Broad Tag


Sam

New Traditions and Eating Your Face Off (Blogmas #1)

So I see that people are well in to their Blogmas traditions of writing Christmas inspired posts each day leading up to Christmas.  

I’m not going to give you my favorite cookie recipes, because I don’t have any.  I’m not going to tell you the best places to go or shop because, I’m poor.  I don’t Christmas shop because I can’t Christmas shop.  This is the third year in a row I can’t shop.  I only earn a little bit of money each month from blogging and doing my neighbor’s laundry.  It doesn’t equate to much.

Why don’t you make something for Christmas?  Well, you see I am short materials to do any of the crafts I typically do.  I need yarn (and frankly I am not a gifted knitter), I need paints and canvases as I am out of all those.  I don’t have ink in my printer, so homemade cards are out, I don’t have any construction paper either so.. Crafts are out.

To be honest, I kind of hate Christmas now.  I have no contact with my family.  They don’t want to see me.  My illness has inconvenienced them where I owe them money for an old loan.  They don’t even believe I have an illness, I’m simply lazy.  I have a lot of resentment towards my family now.  I don’t care if see them anymore.  To lose control over your body at a fairly young age and NOT have any support, love or compassion from your parents is miserably lonely and I’m so angry at them all (my parents are divorced and remarried so I have 4) for never being there for me.  Ever.  Any time in my life I have needed help from my parents, they’ve ignored me.  Just like when I lived with my father growing up, he ignored me.  I felt invisible.  If I cried in my bedroom- he simply turned the volume up on the TV.  I took myself to the hospital and paid for my own medications and pads.  He wouldn’t even buy me pads.

My mother hasn’t spoken to me in years banning me from ever calling her house.  I guess I was a little too happy the last time I called, it seemed to offend them somehow.  Oh right, they’re negative assholes.  All of my parents are negative narcissistic Nellies.  

The new Christmas tradition with my partner includes us travelling via ferry to Nova Scotia and driving a couple of hours to her family home to spend Christmas with them.  Her mom always has a beautifully decorated tree that I sit and admire.  We get together Christmas morning and open gifts with the little nieces, a.k.a the cutest little girls in the world.  Watching their excitement as they tear open presents is pretty adorable.

Everyone down home makes fantastic foods and sweets.  My sister in law makes this to die for lobster dip that really is a gift in itself.   I can almost taste that velvety creamy delectable dip piled high on a salty ripple potato chip.  I also really look forward to my mother in law’s cooking, particularly her stuffing.  The brother in law is a lobsterman so there’s often fresh lobster which was always a tradition for my father as well.  Lobster for Christmas Eve.  I LOVE SEAFOOD.  I usually try to fill up on as much as I can we go back to Nova Scotia. 

Yeah, so I guess Christmas is about food to me now. 

And the Doctor Who Christmas episode of course.  That’s a tradition.

I love homemade cookies, shortbread, gingerbread, fruitcake, squares, pie, and cake.  I love hors d’oeuves and finger foods.  I love turkey dinner and more importantly, the Boxing Day Turkey sandwich.  This is a sandwich that combines leftover turkey, gravy, dressing, and cranberry sauce (homemade not canned) in to a sandwich that I literally think of ALL year long.  I begin anticipating it heavily as I help package up Christmas dinner and do the dishes.  You think I’m helping, but I’m really surveying what’s remaining for tomorrow’s sandwich rubbing my hands eagerly together like some kind of holiday sandwich fiend.  

So even though I don’t spend the holidays with my family, I am grateful for my partner’s family.  Who really are better people anyway.  I just wish I could buy presents for people.  The fun part of Christmas is giving people gifts.  Not getting but giving.  I usually get really stoked when I have found the perfect gift for someone, it just makes you feel good.

We don’t have a tree in our apartment although we would love one.  There isn’t much room for one and we really don’t have the money to buy a tree, the lights and ornaments and stuff so it doesn’t really feel like Christmas for us until a couple of days before when we arrive at her mother’s house.  It won’t feel like Christmas for a while yet.

The Blog Broad Blogmas
My beautiful fiancée, the Blog Broad & Lucy the dog

What are your traditions?  Are you participating in Blogmas this year?


Live Humbly, Be Charitable, Live Graciously,

Sam

Halifax Hauntings…

creepy girlYesterday I wrote about a creepy encounter I had at home.   A Ghost Sat on Me .  It received such a good response I thought I’d regale you with another haunted tale.

The year was 2006, it was fall and I was living on Tobin Street in Downtown Halifax, Nova Scotia.  I had fallen asleep reading a book.  I woke up around 3 am and saw something.  To my right, in the small space between my bed and the wall my window was on, stood a little girl.  She looked to be between the ages of 6 and 8.  She had long stringy, dirty wet looking hair that clung to her dirty white nightgown.  She looked like she had been in a fire as she appeared charred with scars on one side of her face.

I was in shock.  Thinking surely I was just dreaming I was seeing this, I quickly pinched my arm while looking at her.  Ouch!  She was still there.  I reached out my right arm to touch her.  Her eyes met mine as she shook her head No.   It took me a second to get it out, but I screamed and she disappeared.  I told my roommate about it the following day.

Halifax Explosion
Chronicle Herald Headline

A big History nerd, I hit the archives to find out more about where I lived.  I discovered that during the Halifax Explosion, the land where my apartment building now stood once serviced military officials that helped in the search and recovery of bodies after the explosion.

I believe that little girl was a victim in that explosion.  her nightgown was the old cotton style they wore in the early 1900s.  They may have brought her back to the station where she most likely died.  I’m not sure why she reached out to me, maybe I seemed friendly, maybe she liked my cat at the edge of the bed.  At the time, I was obviously frightened but now, I feel honored that she felt safe enough with me to show herself to me.

Halifax Explosion
Halifax Explosion Aftermath

I also lived in one of 3 high rises that border Barrington Street in downtown Halifax.  That was directly in the original blast zone of the 1917 explosion that leveled parts of Halifax.  That apartment unnerved me.  It was common for the bathroom light to turn itself on and the bathroom faucet to start running in the middle of the night.  Another curious thing that frequently occurred was one of our cats, (Kaizer) would hop up on the key table in our front entrance and sit there with his tail swinging while he chirped at the ceiling.  He did this every night.  I never felt comfortable in the living room or bedroom.  We hung out in the spare room which was converted in to a record/bar room.  I couldn’t wait to leave that place.  I was there less than a year.

 

Do you have any ghost stories?

 

Live Humbly, Be Scared, Live Cautiously,

Sam

 

Images

Creepy Little Girl  https://www.pinterest.ca/tonysnguyen/alice/?lp=true

Halifax Explosion  http://www.thecanadianencyclopedia.ca/en/article/halifax-explosion/

Halifax headline  http://www.redcross.ca/history/artifacts/halifax-explosion—halifax-herald-front-page

New Fall Writing Project

Medical cannabisCannabis.  A personal favorite topic of mine.  I suffer with a few chronic pain conditions (Fibromyalgia, Arthritis, Degenerative Disc Disease and Endometriosis) and after trying dozens of prescription medications that offered far more negative side effects than actual relief, I discovered cannabis through a friend of mine.  It worked.  It worked far better than the numerous pills- opiates, benzos, anxiety and sleeping medications, anti inflammatories, Gabapentin, Lyrica and high doses of antidepressants that were slowly killing me.  All I did was sleep.  I was dizzy with vertigo, nauseous and just numb.  At one point I even ballooned up to 260 pounds.  I was also starting to have problems with my liver.  I learned over time that the more cannabis I used, I didn’t need the Gabapentin, the Lyrica, the Amitriptyline,  the benzos and I was even able to reduce my dosage of antidepressants.  I laughed more.  I lost weight.  I enjoyed things more.  I hurt way less, I threw up less, I just felt better.  It took years for me to finally convince my doctor to prescribe it to me legally.  I brought her articles and Post Its with websites and video suggestions, my documented evidence that it indeed worked well for pain without all the side effects.  I have been pro cannabis (used responsibly) for many years.  

A couple of years ago, one of my best friends opened a dispensary in Nova Scotia and I have been a big proponent of hers since.  She helps patients who are dealing with cancer, long term illnesses and chronic pain disorders.  She believes that people have the right to alternative health care and the right to medicate with cannabis.  I tend to agree with her.  We are in the midst of a large scale opiate epidemic that is not only destroying lives, but destroying families and creating a large burden on our health care system.  That epidemic has some sinister roots all leading back to profits.  In all, opiates tend to be over prescribed. Positive features of cannabis

Although here in Canada, we are on the brink of Legalization of Marijuana, there are still many kinks to be worked out, policies to be devised, laws to be developed and bills to be passed.  In the meantime, patients are being left at the mercy of the large corporate Licensed Producers (LPs) who deal in mass quantities, at higher prices and in many cases, poorer quality.  There have even been mass recalls where toxic pesticides were discovered during random testing on crops that were advertised as organic.  These LPs deal in online sales predominantly.  I can’t help but wonder;

Annual Deaths MarijuanaWhat if you’re sick or elderly?  Maybe you can’t afford Internet or don’t have a computer or smartphone.  What if you’ve never tried cannabis and have questions about what strains would work best, or how you can expect to feel?  Maybe you want to try alternatives to smoking.  Maybe you’d prefer to ingest oils and edibles.  What about these people?  This is why the role of dispensaries should be considered a crucial part of Legalization.  To make sure people are being educated on what they are buying.  To make sure there are plenty of options to medicate that don’t include smoking.  To service people who can’t afford large quantities.  

These are the things my friend fights for and why I both support and admire her.  Recently we discussed starting a blog for her shop featuring patient stories so I’m happy to say that is my new job.  Tonight I interviewed my first patient and designed the blog site.  I’m hoping to have it finished and published no later than Friday.  I plan on sharing it once I’m finished and I really hope that some of you check it out if that’s something you are interested in.

Having a new (paid) project gives me a sense of purpose and a pep in my step.  I am really looking forward to doing to the best job I can for her to make it successful.  I am very grateful for the opportunity.

 

Have you tried cannabis?  What’s your story?

 

Live Humbly, Be Charitable, Live Graciously,

 

Sam

 

Images

One of the many exceptional features of cannabis is… https://illegallyhealed.com/millions-of-cannabis-patients-are-frustrating-jerry-are-you-one-of-them/

Annual Deaths  http://medicalcannabiscultivation.com/medical-marijuana-pain-relief/

“Medical Marijuana”  http://lasvegasreleaf.com/nevada-legalized-marijuana-now-faq/

Looking For Love in All the Wrong Places

 

I have been looking for true love for a long time.  I grew up in a home where everyone made fun of queers and fags and dykes.  I had also always believed in God and the Bible;  a belief I shared solely with my paternal grandmother. At age 18 I began attending church, I was christened Roman Catholic so I attended a Catholic Church and sometimes Anglican with a friend of mine, and later on, United Churches, just really seeking The Word and guidance.  I believed that if I admitted to anyone that I had crushes on girls (as well as, girly boys) not only would my family hate me but God would too.  It took me until age 34, several churches and much praying before I eventually came out as a lesbian; I dated men until the age of 34.  I was never truly happy with any of them, I did what was expected of me.  I looked for a husband.

Hockey Guy/Stripper Fan

The first serious boyfriend I had was at age 20.  He was obsessed with hockey, Wayne Gretzky and stats so we’ll call him Hockey Guy.  I was never really physically attracted to him but he had a good heart.  I had originally planned on waiting until marriage before committing The Act but it didn’t work out that way.  We were best friends for more than 8 years, we even got engaged much to his reluctance, after being together for 7.  I was a heavy set girl at that point in my life.  From ages 20-30 I peaked at 260 pounds.  I think he kept looking for something better to come along.  He found it on the Internet.  What broke the deal was when he confessed to me that he had met up with this stripper he had developed a relationship with online, while on business trips to Toronto.  I felt betrayed.  It wasn’t the only the only time I had felt betrayed by him so I did what any scorned woman does at age 27.  I went to Newfoundland and slept with another guy, ending my relationship.

 

The Peeping Tom

The second relationship I had was with a guy in Newfoundland.  We’ll call him, the Peeping Tom.  This is the guy I cheated on Hockey Guy with.  I moved to Newfoundland to live with one of my best friends, and to get away from Hockey Guy so the break up would take.  I didn’t want to cave like I had the last time. This guy, (Peeping Tom), was purely a rebound.  I never loved him.  I liked him and enjoyed his company but..  I wasn’t over my prior experience.  In addition to his ever increasing ass size; seriously, this guy had the biggest ass I have ever seen on a man; I discovered he was a peeping Tom.   I packed up my cats and 2 duffel bags full of stuff and moved out to Edmonton, Alberta with a friend of mine leaving behind all my belongings.  He sold everything of value on EBay and threw out the rest.

 

Drunk Ass Man Child

At this point I have turned 29, I’m back in Nova Scotia feeling like a failure, and I am very much overweight.  I have zero self esteem and I am incredibly lonely.  I end up meeting this next guy through a mutual friend of ours.  We’ll call this guy Drunk Ass Man Child.  I noticed he drank a lot before we moved in together.  My lease had ended with a roommate I had and didn’t want to live with her again because she just wasn’t very stable.  I was quickly looking at having no place to live so I moved in with him.  Within a month I learned that he was a hard core alcoholic.  He would spend his entire paycheck on booze, and things like comic books and action figures and DVDs and CDs.  When it came my payday, it was time to pay the rent, the bills, buy groceries.. Yeah, you see where this is going.  I also learned he was abusive.  After waking up to find this asshat urinating on the wall in the bedroom one night I banned him from the bedroom period.  I learned to loathe this guy.  He’d yell at me and call me names and throw things at me and try to choke me.  The last time he put hands on me I left him.  He went to work one morning and I quickly grabbed the boxes I had hidden around the house for two weeks while I secretly found another apartment, threw all my belongings in said boxes, moved to a different address and changed my cell phone number.  I never spoke to him again.

 

The Booty Call Guy

By age 30 I had begun to lose a lot of weight and started exercising and eating healthy to try to lose the rest.  I started to feel pretty again and even had the nerve to ask out a guy from work who I had a crush on.  We’ll call him.. The Booty Call Guy.  We would get together once or twice a week but he didn’t want a relationship nor would he go out with me in public..  It turned out, I was simply a long term booty call.  The back burner girl.  He preferred younger skinny girls.  After a while, I came to my senses and stopped that.  He would continue to try and get me over to his house for a couple of years after that.  I declined.

 

Angry Little Girly Man

I then dated someone that I had liked for a long time.  We liked each other initially but we were both in other relationships.  (Hockey Guy).  We’ll call this fellow, Angry Little Girly Man.  Needless to say I was pretty excited when he called me out of the blue saying he was single and blah blah blah, we ended up dating for seven months.  I called it off when I got tired of his tantrum fits.  I got sick of him saying things like “you should wear less makeup” or “Don’t wear that, men will stare at you”.  At this point, I had lost 130 pounds, the real way.  I worked really hard to get that weight off and get in shape to gain back some confidence and I wasn’t going to let this little man with his own confidence issues take it away.  I moved on.  Every so often this guy still tries to contact me and I’m like, “Yeah, still gay, not interested.”

 

Creepy Dinner Guy & Ladies’ Panties

After Angry Little Girly Man and so many experiences ranging from disappointing to downright terrifying, I went on a dating expedition.  Online dating was getting really big so I decided to give it a try.  At one point, there was Creepy Dinner Guy, who took me to fancy dinners and then said he could communicate with Wolves.  The Psychoanalyst, (not really) he just always liked to say things like, “You know what your problem is..?”  My problem was that men just seemed annoying and pointless.  I was never really into any of the men I dated.  There was always a million things wrong, that annoyed me, that drove me crazy, that turned me off, that grossed me out.  I wanted to date women but was still afraid of being shunned by my family.  (Little did I know that would happen later over money anyway).  So I kept looking.  There was Music Guy who was really into music and collecting vinyl.  He was pretty cool and I enjoyed his company.  He wasn’t all hands either.  He was respectful.  After meeting Sweaty Guy and The Guy Who Wore Ladies Panties, I decided to give Music guy another shot, although I was pretty sure he was an alcoholic too.  We broke up after 3 months and I started seeing someone new.

 

Phoenix the Poet Crackhead

Phoenix. That was the guy’s name, swear to God.  He had entrancing eyes and his words were simply beautiful.  He was a published poet and always said all the right things.   He was a mess.  He had horrible teeth (what was left).  He was a crackhead AND alcoholic.  Double whammy.  That didn’t last long and we never slept together so, thankfully no harm done.  

 

Music Guy

Music guy in the meantime, cleaned up his act a bit.  We had kept in touch.  We lived on the same street so…  I ended up going back out with him.  At the time I remember thinking, “Well, if I have to be with a man, it may as well be Music Guy.”  We dated for three years.  We lived together but didn’t sleep together.  He slept in another room on a futon with the cats.  I came out of the closet to him at age 33.  I ran back into the closet, out of fear, for another 8 months.  I prayed more than ever before.  

“God, would you hate me, if I loved a woman?” At this point, I had met a woman and I knew I felt way more than just friendship for her.  It was intense.  Nothing I had ever experienced with a man.  During my months of praying I encountered a bright orange display of books at a local Chapters called “Bulletproof Faith: A Spiritual Survival Guide for Gay & Lesbian Christians.  A light went off in my head. You can be gay AND Christian!?  I took that as one of several signs that kept urging me to just be myself, whoever that was.  Stop pretending to be something you’re not.  You will never find true happiness until you live your life as your true self.  I found groups of other gay and lesbian Christians online.  I came out at age 34.

LGBT Christians

The Ex Wife

I dated my ex wife for two years before we were married.  On my wedding day, my father pulled me aside and said, “Are you sure?  You really want to marry a woman?”  I glanced across the street where I saw a group of guys taking turns jumping into a sinkhole that had formed on the side of the road.  Noticing the idiocy of that act prompted me to respond, “Uhhh, yeah.  I’m sure.”  I did love my wife but our relationship always lacked the passion and affection I had hoped for.  She wouldn’t sleep in the same bed as me claiming my night terrors kept her awake.  We were very different people.  I wanted to work on our marriage and building our life together; she was consumed by gossip and money and talking to other women.  She cheated on me after about a year of marriage.  Then again and again.  We split in 2014.

 

The American

The American was introduced to me through a mutual friend.  We had some things in common (namely we were both nerds) and we were both going through divorces so, we bonded.  We dated for a few months before moving in together, which I didn’t really want to do.  I wasn’t in love with her, I was still grieving the loss of my marriage but I needed a place to live and neither of us could afford our own place.  After being together for 7 months, again with the separate bedrooms, her visa was going to be revoked as her ex wife was beginning their divorce proceedings.  I think she knew I wasn’t in love with her which probably played into her decision to go back to the USA early.

 

My Soulmate

At this point, I’m 40, disabled and a soon to be divorcee.  What a catch.  I really had given up on ever finding love.  I’d tell myself, It doesn’t happen for everyone.  My time has passed.  My looks are going, I see wrinkles.  I’ll just live with my dog and hopefully find roommates along the way.  Whatever.  Then I met this girl.  She was cute and confident and funny and sassy and sexy.  Well shit.  She probably won’t be into me though.  I was wrong.  Our first date lasted four days.  I didn’t want her to leave and she didn’t want to go.  It was weird.  I was absolutely hooked on this broad.  In turn, she seemed to be pretty sweet on me.  She got a job in a different province a few months later and the thought of losing this woman… Killed me.  The first time she experienced my night terrors she simply spooned me until I drifted back off to sleep.   We talked about everything.  We liked the same things, we laughed A LOT.  There was passion and affection.  She was loving and thoughtful.  She listened to me and rubbed my body when it hurt.  It got so I couldn’t fall asleep without her.  THIS was what I was looking for.  Nope.  Not losing her.

 

We moved to Saint John a little over two years ago and we’re still going strong.  She is my absolute best friend in the world.  I love being with her and am happier with her than I’ve ever been with anyone.  Ever.  We are such a great match; she is truly my soulmate.  We got engaged a while ago and hope to get married next year.  As you can see, I looked for her for a very long time.  I had to kiss A LOT of frogs to find my princess.  I have to laugh at that because she is the farthest thing from a princess.  She’s a tough little broad with a sarcastic wit and a sharp tongue who likes heavy metal and war games.  She’s definitely a keeper.

 

How many duds did you go through before you found your soulmate?

 

Live Humbly, Be Charitable, Live Graciously,

 

Sam