Archives for March 4, 2021
Farewell My Friends
Excerpt from the book
RUSSIA: A JOURNEY TO THE ARCTIC
Wednesday May 25
I am quite tired today. I must have worked hard getting pictures and observing. Many of the tests finished up today. I also beat the computer two of three. I played a few games of chess with Anton. They were all very good games. It was one win and one loss, although Roman helped me a lot in winning. I must sleep now. There is total daylight at this time of night.
I realized what a difficult life people here, live in. Basically, these are army barracks (living quarters) with no running water and no toilet facilities. There is an outhouse with a hole in the ground. Life with democracy is getting worse. There is 12% inflation/month. The man next door ate Tatyana’s dog. No cats here, they are all eaten by dogs.
Thursday May 26
Today, Thursday, is my last day here at the laboratory with my wonderful hosts. I will cherish forever the fine times I had with them. It was nice to share their meager lifestyle, and break bread with them. I enjoyed their fellowship and simple meals usually consisting of oatmeal porridge and tea for breakfast, and fish soup, a boiled egg, two cookies, and tea for lunch and supper. It was like a home away from home. I think these days I spent with them perhaps has given me the best reflection of what Russia and her people are really like. I experienced its hospitality, generosity, and soul. I found so often of those I met in Russia, that the poorer they are, the more they have to give, especially from the heart.
The days spent here are in stark contrast to that night when I first met Roman at the hotel, then walking silently alongside him, down that desolate road leading to nowhere. Now, instead of wanting to be “anywhere but here,” I found it hard to leave, knowing that I was going home to a land of luxury, while they had to remain behind.
This evening, hidden under my bed blankets, I left them some canned food, small tools, souvenirs, playing cards, gifts, and about US$10.
Tatyana gave me her home address in Moscow. I showed them pictures of my relatives and family. It’s kind of sad to think such wonderful people have to live in such poor conditions.
As so often is the case, when I got back home to Calgary, Canada, I once again became absorbed with the daily rituals of our fast paced, modern society and with the lavish entertainment it offers us. Although Tatyana gave me her home address in Moscow…I never did write her.
Dammed if you do and dammed if you don’t that is the position the BC Government has been in making a decision on the future of the Site C dam. The original cost estimate in 2010 was 7.9 billion. Construction delays, safety and structural concerns and some public opposition has seen the estimate now reach 16 billion. Many were hoping the government would shut it down but the Premier announced it will be built.
Yes the Liberal Government at the time took some costly short cuts that proved to be expensive decisions however before wagging a finger remember the NDP were opposed to it but they made the decision to continue.
In the end, god knows how much we will shell out before completion. This project can be described as a political hangover that spans two governments. The intent to build it was as a revenue generator from the power and not primarily for our domestic use.
Instead of ending the project the Horgan government had a study done to determine the safety of construction and it turns out the project can be salvaged with additional costs to shore up weaknesses. The reason to continue was not for the jobs alone according to the government. If the project ended BC Hydro customers would face utility hikes around twenty-six percent and the ability to finance future projects could be in jeopardy. The pull the plug price tag would be around ten billion dollars.
I have never favored this project I want you to know that as the writer of this column. Although not over joyed I understand the reasons for continuing with the project. It should be remembered the project saw great controversy when started by the former government. Also consider every project started by any BC government has seen opposition.
I remember some of them including the Mica Dam on the Columbia River for US Flood control. Yes it effected the overall environment but it also proved to be an economic generator and it still benefits two countries.
Like every other project – history will be the final judge.
RCMP are looking to identify a suspect who allegedly assaulted staff at an Oliver cannabis store, before stealing cannabis products.
TEN DAYS AGO – On February 22nd, 2021, at 11:00 a.m., staff at the BC Cannabis store in Oliver, BC, reported a male entered their store, and after being denied a refund, assaulted a staff member. The suspect then proceeded to steal several cannabis products.
Police patrolled the area, and collected video surveillance of the suspect.
“We’re releasing video of the suspect to the public as we hope to identify him, and prevent him from committing future offences of this kind in the South Okanagan,” said Cst. James Grandy.
A Caucasian male, with a French-Canadian accent, wearing a navy blue baseball cap, black jacket, dark pants and shoes, with short light blonde facial hair.
The suspect is described as:
· Male, Caucasian
· French-Canadian accent
· 5’10 inches tall
· Short brown hair
· Light blonde facial hair, short
· Blue baseball cap
· Navy blue jacket
· Blue pants
· Dark shoes
If you witnessed this incident, can identify the suspect, or have any other information, you are asked to call the Oliver RCMP at 250-498-3422.
Or remain completely anonymous by calling Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477.
I just got an entertaining call from someone in a foreign country that struggled her english
She told me some unauthorized activity on my Visa card recently
Do three things:
Hang up Never give out any info
Check your computer and the Visa card account in a normal fashion
If you want to play along – ask them to give you the CC number -and the name on the card
or the number – you can say
Above a collage of pix of persons who died supplied by the BC Coroners Service
Following a record-setting year in 2020, the BC Coroners Service reports 165 suspected illicit drug toxicity deaths in January 2021, the largest ever number of lives lost due to illicit drugs in the first month of a calendar year.
͞These figures are heartbreaking, both in scale and for the number of families who are grieving the loss of a loved one,͟said Lisa Lapointe, chief coroner, BC Coroners Service. ͞In the fifth year of this public health emergency, there is virtually no community in the province that has not been touched by this devastating loss of life.
An average of 5.3 lives were lost each day in January due to the toxic drug supply in B.C., a death rate of 38.1 per 100,000 residents. January is also the 10th consecutive month in which more than 100 deaths were attributed to suspected illicit drug toxicity.
Almost one in five of the suspected deaths (18%) in January noted extreme levels of fentanyl concentrations (greater than 50 micrograms/litre), the largest number recorded to date. Additionally, there were 14 deaths in which carfentanil, a more lethal analogue of fentanyl, was detected, an increase from the December total of nine and the largest monthly figure since May 2019.
The report also notes recent increases in the presence of unprescribed benzodiazepines and its
analogues, including etizolam. Since July 2020, etizolam has been identified in 31% of illicit drug
toxicity deaths where expedited testing was performed. In January, benzodiazepines and its analogues were detected in nearly half (49%) of all samples tested. The addition of etizolam to fentanyl increases the likelihood of overdose due to the combined respiratory depressant effects. Etizolam is not licensed in Canada.
We are particularly concerned about the toxicity of the drugs detected in many of the deaths recorded in January said Lapointe.
The findings suggest that the already unstable drug supply in B.C. is becoming deadlier, underscoring the urgent need for supervised consumption options, prescribing for safe supply, and accessible treatment and recovery services.
No deaths have been reported at supervised consumption or drug overdose prevention
The male was located outside of a bank on Main Street, with a second male, and both were immediately taken into custody for possessing a firearm.
A sawed off shotgun, with no ammunition, was located in an adjacent vehicle associated to these two men. They were both cooperative with police and transported to the Oliver RCMP detachment for further investigation. A search of the vehicle found no further weapons or ammunition and nothing to indicate any criminal intent.
“I have been in contact with the financial institution and a local business operator and verified that at no time were there any threats nor violence associated to this incident.” advised Sgt. Don Wrigglesworth,
“This high risk matter was responded to and controlled with public and police safety at the forefront of our minds and thankfully the incident was resolved peacefully.
Any time a prohibited gun is possessed by an individual, and carried in their waist band, I presume that the intent to do so is not for any good reason.”
A 33 year old male resident of Oliver was released later in the day on firearms related charges with an April court date. The second male was released without charges. The matter remains under investigation.
Sgt. Don Wrigglesworth
NCO i/c Oliver RCMP