New Drupal Version

I upgraded drupal to the latest version (4.7.3) today as Kev was going to upgrade from 4.5 to 4.7.3. Things went fairly easily, and I chose this new theme to go along with it. Hope you like it :)

Smoke Lake to Louisa

Meg and I decided to spend a week this year camping, and I was quickly able to convince her (it didn't really take any convincing :) ) that we'd want to go canoing, rather than just car camping. So we made plans to spend a night in the Cannsibay campground (the day after my sister's wedding), and then head into the interior for 4 nights. We had burgers cooked over a campfire and some beer before turning in for the night.

As you can see from the map linked here, we travelled down Smoke Lake through a couple of mid-length, but all uphill portages. We spent Monday night on Big Porcupine Lake, enjoying what was a fairly short paddle (we left the put-in around 10:30 or so and arrived sometime in the early afternoon). We knew that the next day was the real test of our journey. It held the longest portage I've ever done, 1460 meters. While I'd been out in a canoe with Meg once before (at her aunt & uncle's cottage), I was suitably impressed with her paddling ability.

Jenn Is Wed

Well, my sister did it... two weekends ago, on July 29th, my sister was married. It was a fantastic day, my sister looked the part of the beautiful bride, and her now-husband, Darren had a smile on his face all day. I'm proud to welcome Darren into the family, and had the privilege of being one of his groomsmen.

The wedding was held at my sister's church, Holy Rosary in Belleville. Her choir (of which she is the youngest - by far I think - member) sang the hymns making it a beautiful ceremony.

Failure in the Middle East

You know, I can't imagine what it's like to live in the middle east. But man, I can't sit here and believe that those people can take it. I mean, how do they let such feuds continue? It's crazy... I mean, kiss, make up and move on.

Not only that, but this craziness now means that thousands of Canadian passport holders are stuck in Lebanon. And our government is seriously hamstrung in getting them out, and has certainly mismanaged this crisis. Normally evacuations are planned to go from air... this one is going by sea and it's not going well. Sad, just sad...

Do I Get the Tax Credit?

Well, I just got my final 2006 property tax bill... and it's actually nicely broken down. (If only the other levels of government did that) Anyway, I see that the order of contribution to things goes: City-Wide Service, Education, Public Transit, Police, Fire, Waste Pickup and Conservation Authority.

My biggest gripe I guess is that transit costs so much... I mean, third on the list?! Anyway, I pay between $400 and 450 a year for transit in my municipal property taxes. And that's more than I pay for the services of Ottawa's finest. Crazy... oh, and that component is only likely to go up by some 40% or something (5% to overall taxes) with the introduction of Ottawa's ill-planned lightrail system. 1,000 new people will take transit for $1 billion dollars... including an approximate $160 yearly addition to my taxes... stupid.

Cycling to Work

I rode into work for the first time ever in Ottawa. It was a decent ride. Meg and I had done a fair amount of it a few weeks back, but I needed to buy a lock and adjust the brakes on my bike. I still have to adjust the rear derailleur it would seem, as I discovered this morning that I can't reach my lowest gears. Not a worry, I rarely use them anyway. I mean, I'd like to build muscle so don't want to use those 'granny gears' as Kev calls them.

Leafs Trade for Belleville Native

Cool, at least that was my opinion when I got back from supporting Steve on his 48-Hour Quest for a Cure Adventure Race, the Leafs traded a prospect netminder (Tuukka Rask) for a recent Calder winner in Andrew Raycroft! Not only is it cool that the Leafs have traded up in terms of age (I mean, they've still got Justin Pogge as another net prospect) in the net, but this kid is a Belleville native. In fact, I went to St. Joseph's for elementary school with Andrew, who I believe is my brother's age. Pretty cool if you ask me... hopefully he

Should I buy a car in the US?

Well, I'm not quite ready to buy a new car... but I hope to do so next year. And I'm wondering if the Canadian dollar stays high and prices in Canada don't decline whether I should buy a car in the US and import it. Prices haven't declined in Canada as the dollar has risen against the US greenback, and as this Star article illustrates, you can get a better deal in the US. The average difference is actually 17%!

Pros:

  • Lower overall price - can be quite a difference, depends on model, and Cdn dollar.

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