If We Were Having Coffee – Sept.14/2014

Scotland and Memories


Paul your Barista

Paul your Barista

Welcome to Willow’s weekly coffee and tea garden. My name is Paul and I’m happy to be here once again in the garden tending to your needs for a cuppa, and sweets. I must say, it’s great to see you all here in this relaxing atmosphere surrounded by flowers and butterflies. Have a seat where you choose, at a table in the sun or shade, and I’ll be happy to bring a pot of whatever beverage you prefer – we have a wide range of teas and coffees to satisfy our world-wide readership. We can relax while we discuss the affairs of the week both personal and/or worldwide. How has your week been?

It’s been getting chillier here – down close to freezing over night. Parts of Canada have already had snow this season – very early as that doesn’t usually happen until October. We can consider moving our winter tea to one of the wonderful tea gardens – like the one pictured above. It’s very beautiful, isn’t it? Makes me want to just sit right down and dig in with gossip and sweets. We don’t have such beautiful tea gardens in Canada – it makes me envious and yet happy that I get to be your barista here in Willow’s garden.



I followed with interest the continuing story of Scotland voting to separate. We have had what I think is a similar situation here in Canada with our province Quebec. The issue here seems to ebb and flow depending on the economy and political landscape. Like the Scottish and the English, our French and English have had a very turbulent history, Quebecers have voted a number of times to determine separation and the vote has always been close. The situation seems to be relatively calm right now, but still it boils beneath the surface. I know very little of Scottish politics and am wondering if any of our British friends could give me a thumbnail of what is going on. From over here I have always thought of Scotland and its people to be a distinct culture within Britain – but still within the British “envelope” so to speak. Here there is often an “arm’s length” relationship with Quebec that sometimes results in anger and even occasionally hatred. Does that happen between the Scottish and the English too? What is England’s official take on this? Do you personally think it is good or bad? Is there a possibility of healing the rift?

Would you like a refill? Perhaps a sweet or a scone? It’s all calorie free here in the garden you know.

Exterior of Peterbilt 379

Interior Custom Cab of Peterbilt 379

Interior of Peterbilt 80 inch sleeper berth

Here in Ottawa housing rental owners are not required to turn on heat to the units until October. So, it was cool in my room last night, around 6 Celsius (42 F). I love sleeping in a cool room, so I bundled up under the blankets and comforters and slept like a baby. It brought back memories of my trucking days. I always slept with the engine off if it was possible – it would burn about $10 of fuel per hour when idling. Some drivers would burrow into Arctic sleeping bags with the engine off at temperatures well below freezing but I drew the line there. Still I loved the cool air and the warm nest and always slept soundly in the truck in the fall. The memories came flooding back last night. These days highway trucks have auxiliary generators that provide temperature control for pennies per hour when parked. They are expensive but pay for themselves over the life of the truck. I would miss sleeping during the cool fall nights. Do you sometimes recall memories that you know the new generation will never have? Do memories sometimes cause you to pause and feel the emotions of the past?


Would you like another cuppa? Willow and I are honored that you dropped by the garden today to visit. I hope you’ve enjoyed yourself and the conversation and please feel free to look around at Willow’s other posts while you’re here. Have a great week. We look forward to seeing you here in the garden again next week.


IF WE WERE HAVING COFFEE:  I would  tell you how very welcome  you are  and how much I look forward to our weekly get together, and that I do hope  they continue for a while  to come.  I am so  sorry  that I have to dash  off now  but  please  stay  and relax  and eat  and drink whatever  you wish , here  in the virtual garden  everything is  guilt  and calorie free.   So  for now  be well and be happy.  😀

If we were having coffee I’d ask  you : would you like another  cuppa, or  a biscuit . I’d  tell you I have really  come to enjoy  these chats  and I’d  love  to hear  what you would  tell me , If we were having Coffee  Original idea  from  http://parttimemonster.wordpress.com/

28 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Trackback: IF WE WERE HAVING COFFEE.Home from Heaven | willowdot21
  2. Let's CUT the Crap!
    Sep 14, 2014 @ 11:54:35

    Indeed, the nights are growing colder but the trees are taking their time changing to their fall colors. I agree with you, there’s nothing like a cool / cold room with adequate bedding for a good night’s sleep.
    Thanks for the coffee and for catching up. Till next time, Paul. 🙂


    • willowdot21
      Sep 14, 2014 @ 12:24:54

      🙂 xx


    • Paul
      Sep 14, 2014 @ 13:06:51

      Hi there LCTC! It’s wonderful to see you here in the tea garden. Yes, the trees here are taking their time turning color, but oddly enough there are a lot of leaves starting to fall from the maple trees in front while still green. That’s a bit odd.

      Yep, sleeping in a cold room is awesome. However when you have a spouse who likes it warm it can become a point of contention Ha! Back when I was married, I awoke at 2am one morning in February with the outside temp at about minus 30 degrees and inside it was close to 90 degrees F, The sweat was running off me and my wife was in seventh heaven under all the blankets with a big smile on her face. I turned on the light and told her I was going down to check the furnace. She had to ask “Why? It is so comfortable in here.” Ha! I reset the furnace it the temp dropped to the normal 72.

      Thanks again for dropping by LCTC, I hope your week goes well.


    • Paul
      Sep 15, 2014 @ 14:52:51

      Hi! I completely agree LCTC – my tolerance for wider temperature changes has lessened as I “mature” Ha!

      Willow Canuck is a slang term for a Canadian. it is generally taken as an affectionate term. It was first used in the mid 1800’s and no one seems to know where it came from. One of our professional hockey teams uses it in their name – the Vancouver Canucks


  3. tesscol
    Sep 14, 2014 @ 13:03:50

    Hello again Paul
    So nice to be invited to your garden again.
    I simply couldn’t’ t comment on the Scottish Referendum…..
    It has been the subject of every newscast on every TV and radio channel for the past 2 weeks………the ayes and nos are almost neck and neck. I have never been aware of animosity between the Scots and the English.
    I visited the Cinema this week with a friend.We saw a lovely movie entitled ‘The one hundred foot journey.’ Starring Helen Mirren and a wonderful group of supporting actors. I was alerted to it by a friend in Toronto so I know it has been showing in Canada.
    I really could do with another cuppa……
    Perhaps a mint or chamomile tea? I am suffering badly with a really cold.
    I don’t know where I picked it up!!!!!!!!
    This morning my daughter visited and brought me a beautiful bouquet for my birthday tomorrow.
    Well that’s all from me for today


  4. Paul
    Sep 14, 2014 @ 15:14:31

    Oh Tesscol I’m so sorry that you are not well. Chamomile tea for you today for sure. Please sit and relax and chat for as long as you feel up to it. Hey, Happy Birthday! Another year wiser. That was so thoughtful of your daughter to bring flowers.

    The producers have been publicizing that movie over here quite a bit. I haven’t seen it yet but it has received rave reviews. I love Helen Miron – she’s a wonderful actress. I’m so glad you enjoyed the movie – I’ll have to go see it.

    It sounds like your Scottish referendum is becoming tiring just as our Quebec one did. So many talking heads that just say the same thing over and over in different words. And it’s all the same as a discussion on the length of the Emporer’s nose – no one has a clue as it depends completely on what’s in the hearts of the voters and that’s unknown until aftfer the fact.

    Well, Tesscol, please stay and I’ll keep your tea topped up. Thank you so much for dropping by, Happy Birthday, and I hope you feel better very soon.


  5. simon7banks
    Sep 14, 2014 @ 15:42:41

    OK, well the Scottish independence referendum is on a knife-edge. When the campaign started there was a sizeable anti majority, but after a while it started slipping and then there was a lurch to Yes which left different polls predicting different outcomes but all by small margins. Since then the Yes momentum appears to have stopped, but with no movement the other way.

    I should be cautious about giving views on a political matter on a non-political blog and there are arguments both ways, but one Yes argument that does not impress me is that “Westminster” politicians are cunning and mean (and this includes the immediate previous Prime Minister and his finance minister, both Scots) but Scottish-based politicians are not cunning or mean. Hmm. One No argument which has had little coverage is similar to the argument against the U.K. leaving the European Union: if you have a small population unit next door to a big one (in Scotland’s case, its only land neighbour) the small one will be affected willy nilly by decisions taken by its big neighbour. At present Scots have a rather more than proportionate voice in the U.K.’s decisions (many of their parliamentary constituencies are small by English standards, for good reasons I won’t explain here). A Scottish exit would push U.K. politics well to the right because very few Scots are right-wing by English standards and the U.K. government would be very unlikely to see eye to eye with the Scots on most things.

    Of course one difference with Quebec is that Scotland was not a province of a founding power across the sea, but an independent country for nearly a thousand years. On the other hand, it was not conquered by the other lot, but ceded its independence through a mixture of bribes and deep, bitter divides in Scotland; and the language differences are not so great except in the small Gaelic-speaking fringe.


    • willowdot21
      Sep 14, 2014 @ 18:29:27

      I do agree Paul it will be a close run thing…. lots of ancient grudges coming to the fore! It is too close to call in truth I think it will run for a while yet!! 🙂 xxx


  6. Paul
    Sep 14, 2014 @ 19:43:32

    That’s excellent Simon. Thank you very much. Most of that I had suspected, except that I had forgotten that Scotland was a country for over a thousand years. Politicians suck – the more powerful, the worse. i once heard a quote from the Australian parliment (or whatever they call it) where a member said that: “Politicians are like bananas – they start out green and straight and end up yellow and crooked.” I thought that was pretty typical of politicians everywhere .No doubt also true of the British politicians re:Scotland,as well.

    It happens that here the Quebec members seem to keep our government from going too far right as well. This one province once put so many Quebec “separatist”federal politicians in the national government that they made up the official opposition. That was a head scratcher for sure: the federal gov’t opposition being separatists – the same guys whose job it was to support the nation. The really funny thing was that when that happened, the actual number of Quebeckers who wanted to separate fell dramatically/ It seemed all they really wanted was more say in the federal government.

    All that to say thank you Simon for giving me a thumbnail picture. And I appreciate you dropping by here and leaving a comment. Please feel free to come by whenever you please – Willow’s posts are excllent.


  7. markbialczak
    Sep 15, 2014 @ 17:54:06

    I’ve always felt a little nervous down here about the Quebec recession talk, Paul. I don’t want my neighbor up north becoming divided for any reason. I’ve felt it’s the Franco-Anglo division, but that’s just a guess from an American. It probably goes way deeper than that.

    No heat needed from landlords until October, huh? It’s odd to me that they draw a calendar line to it and not a temperature line. You’re fortunate that you do not mind bundling up under comforters and 42“ F.

    When I was young, my parents gave me a bedroom on an unheated upper floor in our first Long Island house. I slept under a huge comforter that my great grandmother hand-sewed. In winter, it got down below freezing. My father bought a little electric heater for me, but that didn’t warm the space up much! I hope kids these days don’t have to go through that.

    Thanks, Paul, for the cuppa coffee and stimulating conversation.


    • willowdot21
      Sep 15, 2014 @ 19:01:27

      Burrr! I can remember icicles on the inside of the bedroom windows when I was growing up!!


    • Paul
      Sep 16, 2014 @ 03:24:19

      Hi Mark! Thanks for the read and comment. Yep, the Quebec thing is basically about French/English but more specifically the differences in culture. Even their legal system is different from ours. Personally I doubt they will ever separate because of the money. Here in Canada, the federal gov’t does fund transfers from the have to the have-=not provinces. Quebec has always been a have-not and consequently gets literally billions in fund transfers yearly. Their taxes are already very high and if they had to replace the transfer, they would likely go bankrupt. And that doesn’t include all the costs of running a country: like customs, currency, taxdept., etc.

      I think we’re safe Mark.

      Your childhood room sounds chilly — same as Willow’s. I was lucky that way -my Dad built a new house and my room was toasty.

      Thanks again for dropping by for a cuppa Mark, We are honored to have you here,


      • willowdot21
        Sep 16, 2014 @ 05:21:22

        Yes your always welcome.

      • markbialczak
        Sep 16, 2014 @ 11:44:04

        There will forever be skirmishes about culture that turn on currency, Paul. Here in New York State, it’s often between the city and upstate. Those who live on the east side of the George Washington Bridge feel they have nothing in common with those of us up here. And that their tax money floats the rest of the state. I think we have the space they need for the state university system and agriculture to educate and feed the masses and keep that money in-state. Forever interesting to me. Thanks for always observing and relating hot topics, my friend.

        Personally, when we moved between my seventh and eighth grade years and I got a bedroom with full heat, I thought I was in heaven. I stopped getting sick in the winter, too!

      • willowdot21
        Sep 16, 2014 @ 13:29:36

        That’s a very interesting insight to City/ State politics. Thanks Mark and yes thanks to Paul for keeping the blog topical. 🙂 xx

      • markbialczak
        Sep 16, 2014 @ 14:30:08

        Thanks, Willow. I’m glad to share on your great U.K. blog!

      • willowdot21
        Sep 16, 2014 @ 14:57:21

        It’s great to have you visit!!

      • Paul
        Sep 16, 2014 @ 15:33:22

        yep, I used to haul into NYC – they have quite a high opinion of themselves and yet they are one of the most dependent cities in the world. There is a steady stream of trucks that haul food and other necessities evry hour of hte day. the skilled workers, the food, the building materials, the power, the water – every thing comes from outside their borders with the help of an army of workers every hour of every day. If we were all to tun our backs on their mighty city for 24 hours, they’d be on their knees crying and begging for help.

        Mind you I love NYC – I try to overlook their snootyness. ha!

        Thanks again for dropping by Mark, it is always a pleasure.

      • willowdot21
        Sep 16, 2014 @ 18:25:03

        I ❤ NYC I have only been the once but I shall never forget it!

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