I actually had a day of accomplishment in Vancouver, as I opened a bank account in Canada. Was it easy? Was it ever! Was it ever easy in London? NEVER. At Lloyd’s Bank I had to make an appointment a week in advance, then dealt with relatively surly personnel. Here in Vancouver, there is no appointment necessary, and I get to enjoy interacting with Tracey-the woman in the bank that assisted me. She was so wonderful to me and we had such fun (we even talked about the Saskatchewan Roughriders.) Therefore, I now have an account at the Royal Bank.
Any news of London? Well, yes. Dolphin Square sends a bill charging me 344 pounds for a couple of holes in the wall, which I paid them to create and remove, of which they promised not to charge. Do I have a remedy? Absolutely not. Am I happy? Absolutely not. But here is the good news: I am out of there, never to return. But, other news from Dolphin Square; I got an email from Neil Miller-Chalk (or Chalk-Miller-never could get that straight. He’s the previously unnamed general manager,) about the incident on Westminster Bridge. Thanks Neil, I moved out about ten days ago and got the news of the incident from cousin Gail ten minutes before. This is all too typical of the management at Dolphin Square. A little late, and a little irrelevant, and a little unnecessary and extremely inefficient.
Onto more important things. ’Sister’ Adele sent me an email with a link. She said, “Reminds me of your writing Alexis.” The link was to Jimmy Breslin’s column on Donald Trump. I sent back the following response: “Great to hear from you! Thanks, but I think I am better. (joke.) I definitely see the similarities but I also write like Carrie Fisher (her funny stuff in Princess Diarist,) and probably most strangely like my uncle. I plan to include one of his columns in my blog. Just thought of it this morning.”
On February 14, 2017, Cousin Carol-Ann and I emailed one another about Uncle Dave’s possible reaction to my ‘world famous’ blog. I said to Carol-Ann: “I do have to agree with Uncle Dave in that I don’t understand the concept of blogs. I followed no one and nobody’s blog, and felt they were a form of conceit. But, in a strange way I am seeing that it mimics his daily column. He spoke of something – sports – but in a way he was speaking of greater things, like fair mindedness, fair play, an ordered existence, a predictable outcome if one played by the rules and tried one’s best and put one’s heart and soul into it. I wrote the other day that the thing I admire most about our uncle is his integrity. I am not sure where he got it, although most of his brother’s had it – most but not all.”
I am traveling to Regina to finish the book In April. I spoke of feelings of trepidation to Carol-Ann, about being in the same city with his memory and his grave. “I do wonder how Uncle Dave is going to feel when I am in Regina, invading his privacy. He may head for the hills, but that is real hard to do in Saskatchewan. You and I have spoken of Gladys Arnold, a woman that worked with our uncle on the Regina Leader Post. All of her papers are at the University of Regina. Hence, I am hoping to get a first hand glimpse of what it was like to work with Dave Dryburgh. To see him through another person’s eyes, the eyes of a woman I intensely admire. So, I will get to know her a little better and I will get to know Uncle Dave a little better. I cannot wait for those moments.”
I attached a ‘Dave Dryburgh’s’ column. It was penned days before his untimely death. The group of six Niece’s Nexus hunted down its missing member-the eldest of Uncle Dave’s nieces. The sheer persistence in finding her was exhibited by Cousin Gail. We found Janet alive and well in Oshawa and told her of the project: to restore and enliven the memory of Dave Dryburgh. She had given her daughter a Karen box of memorabilia and one was entitled ‘Dave Dryburgh’. Karen, at the direction of her mother, seized the day and scanned everything in the box and sent it to all of Uncle Dave’s nieces. It is from that treasure trove that this column is reproduced. That man can write. That man is brilliant. That is why I am honoring him, and eventually will be finishing his biography: Dave Dryburgh: A Relative Found, A Family Born.
Tomorrow in this blog? Probably the pithy ending to Mind the Gap.