12 May 2008

Ten Things That I Have Done That Others May Not Have

I've been thinking about my “10 Things that I have done that others probably haven’t” list. At first I couldn’t think of anything, but then came up with the following:
  1. I once operated one of those huge bucketwheel machines used to scoop up tar sand in Northern Alberta, Canada. They are monster size. A six-foot man can easily stand in just one of the buckets. I worked as an assistant for an oil company and on my last day of work, I went on a tour of the plant site and they asked me if I wanted to operate the bucketwheel. They quickly took over the controls after a few minutes, but I had my moment to feel that power as I manoeuvred the controls. It was awesome...
  2. I met a little girl whose heart was on the right side instead of the left. I was so amazed at this that I had to put my hand over her heart, just to feel it beating on the wrong side. I worked for a lawyer who was on the board of a charity organization that sponsored children to come to our country for medical procedures they couldn’t get at home. He was hosting this little girl at his home until she could have heart surgery. I will never forget the experience of meeting her. She eventually had her surgery and it was a success.
  3. When I was young we had a pet crow named "Jacques". He was a thief however and was spotted by the neighbours flying down Main Street with the janitor's glasses. I have always wondered where he kept his stash. That would have been an interesting find.
  4. I met Kirk Cameron of the Growing Pains show when he visited Ottawa. A friend and I knocked on the window of his limousine to say hello and ask some questions. He is a very nice person and graciously put up with us.
  5. I once misplaced my friend’s car. I was driving it for the first time and obviously wasn’t paying enough attention. I parked at a supermarket and when I came out I couldn’t find it. The only thing I could remember about the car was that it had a black interior.
  6. I once drove a Mercedes Benz and took the long way home. My boss's wife phoned me and asked if I would drive her husband home as she was concerned about him because he was experiencing chest pains. I lived in Ottawa and he lived in Montreal which is about a 3-hour drive. I agreed and picked up my 4 year old daughter from the daycare and we drove him home in a very nice Mercedes Benz. My boss ended up being fine and arranged for our trip home by train the next day. While we were there his son who is an artist sketched my daughter's picture, which we still have today as a reminder of this adventure.
  7. I live in Canada's capital. As I was driving into town I noticed the Concorde jet circling our local airport. I had never seen the Concorde except in pictures as it had never landed in Ottawa. They made an exception because the Queen of England was in it and came to visit.
  8. My very first time skiing was at a work function. I hadn't mastered how to stop and was madly going downhill with people yelling ,"Runaway, Runaway". When I got to the bottom and finally slowed down my co-workers gave me a trophy pin, "World's Worst Skier".
  9. I once took on a mountain and lost. Some co-workers and I went on a ski trip to Banff, Alberta. I took the chairlift to the top of the mountain, but when I got off and saw how steep the mountain was and realized how inexperienced I was, I took my skis off and slid down the hill on my backside. Embarrassing, but at least I came out alive. I think I should give up sking altogether?
  10. I once met a wolf face to face. When I lived in Northern Alberta I decided to bike home from work. It was a 20 mile ride on a highway with only forest on each side. As I was biking I looked up and noticed a wolf watching me. My first thought was "Don't wolves run in packs?" My next thought was "I hope they don't chase bikes like dogs do". We stared each other down for what seemed like a long time and then he ran off. I never biked home alone again.

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