May 19th, 2009


But where was Tiny Tim?

Yesterday was the last day of Ottawa's annual Tulip Festival. I could bore you with all the historical details, but the Cole's notes are: we got a gift of 100,000 tulip bulbs from Holland's royal family after WWII and we like to look at pretty flowers. Hubby and I packed V in the van and headed out bright and early and I don't think things could have been more perfect. We were early enough that they didn't have the barricades up yet, so we parked right beside the park, there was hardly anyone out yet, so we could actually see the flowers and get unobstructed pictures of them, there was a bit of a breeze, so any bugs that hadn't frozen to death in the night were keep away, and the sun was shining but it was only about 6C so perfect with a light jacket.

There are now 6 sites for the official festival, and somewhere around 3 million bulbs blooming in those parks. It's a pretty impressive display to drive past, and this is the first time I actually got out of a car and walked (or tiptoed) through them. We stuck to the major park as I knew flowers would only hold hubby's attention for so long.

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I continue to be less than thrilled about living downstream and down wind from a leaking, creaking, past it's expiry date, old nuclear reactor. It was found to be missing safety measures, it lost power and it leaked a teeny, tiny bit of heavy water - twice! And that's just in the past two years.

I may not (yet) know all the ins and outs of the dangers and concerns surrounding this facility, but I'm pretty good at math. And I know that a 57-year old facility that had a scheduled life of between 20 and 40 years is old. Damn old. And I also know that if the nuclear regulatory group told them to shut it down and make safety changes two years ago, and some asshat politician just decided to overrule them, adding two years to the equation doesn't make it any safer.

Am I the only one that thinks it's strange that the primary reason for keeping it around is that it provides medical isotopes for screening for cancer and other illnesses? Isn't that kind of like manufacturing your own customers? (Okay, the primary reason for keeping it running is that they're making money, but they're doing it under the guise of saving lives)