Friday, February 14, 2014

We still miss you, Linda

Yesterday a group of us went out to lunch. La Favorita on Preston Street -- Linda's favourite restaurant.  Pizza was eaten, and wine drunk in her honour. It's been four years since Linda passed away from breast cancer on Valentine's Day 2010, and the annual memorial lunch is a happy time now, rather than sad. We remember her vivaciousness, her energy and good humour. We toasted her memory and kept track of the score of the Canadian Olympic men's hockey team's game against Norway.  Linda would have been cheering along with us.

A Moment in Time
(originally posted in February 2010)

The Hacienda Hotel, Old Town, San Diego. A warm November night. Two friends and colleagues, their hair still in wind-blown disarray from a shoreline geology field trip of San Diego Bay on a boat, full and happy from margaritas and a wonderful Mexican dinner, are heading to their respective rooms.

So, your talk is right after lunch tomorrow?

Yep. The start of the second technical session.

And you have a Powerpoint presentation?

Nope....  Linda, I *know* this stuff. I can give this talk with just speaker's notes. I don't need a slideshow.

You need a slideshow. Come on, we can make one right now.

[sort of pouting] But I'm tired.

Come on, Alison....I'll bring the laptop out to the table in the courtyard in front of my room and we'll work on it outside. [wheedling] I have a bottle of wine....Let's see if these California reds are anything to write to you about.

'Write home about'.

Merci. 'Write home about'.

[sighing] OK.

Some night-blooming flowers are scenting the air. The fountain on the courtyard wall splashes softly in the background. A lot of laughing accompanies the work on the laptop. The wine is very, very good.

Thanks, Linda. The talk will be better with a slideshow.

No problem.

You know, I could get used to this.

Which, Alison? The working out of doors? Or the wine? [grins]

All of it. Seriously, this is the way to live. Very civilized. Could you imagine doing all our work outside, with a glass of wine? We'd either be super-productive, or very liver-damaged.

[laughing] We couldn't do this in Ottawa though. I don't know if you would get people to participate into meetings outside in November.

Probably not. Here. Fill me up. [giggles] Hey, let me take a photo of this: "Linda, working hard at her laptop."

You are too funny. Wait, let me hold the bottle up. For effect. [grins]

Linda Guay
Tu me manques, mon amie.

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Going for it in Sochi

Well the Olympics are here again (yay!) and we are off to a good start, what with sisters Justine and Chloe Dufour-Lapointe winning gold and silver in moguls, and Charles Hamelin earning gold in 1500 metre short-track speed skating.

Not to mention Canadian feel-good stories like the speed skater who gave up his spot in the finals to a team-mate, who went on to win silver; and the cross-country coach who gave a ski to a Russian competitor who had broken his. 

At noon, I'll be at a memorial lunch for my friend Linda, who passed away during the last winter Olympics, and won't be checking in on our boys as they meet Norway in men's hockey, but my heart will be with them.  

This post, from the last Olympics in Vancouver, kind of sums up our feelings towards the Olympics and Olympic hockey in particular.


I'm not sure, I think they might be cheering for Slovakia
(originally posted February 21, 2010)

I wrote this blog last week, long before anyone knew that Canada's men's hockey team would be playing Slovakia in the semifinals. I was just looking for a country whose national colours are sort of similar to Canada's. You know, for comic effect. No one at our house is going to be cheering for Slovakia tonight. Really.

We've been watching a lot of Olympics at chez Party of 3.

It's been amazing. While we are cheering for Canada, of course, we have been blown away by the awe-inspiring performances of the Americans, the Swiss, the Germans, the Norwegians, and the Koreans, to name but a few.

It has been a dream come true to watch the best athletes from all over the world compete and win gold here in Canada.

But fair warning: when it comes to hockey, the women's and the men's, let us make one thing perfectly clear -- it's our game.