Korean Fusion BBQ

Gill is back with a restaurant recommendation.

I went downtown today for something different to do. My friend Natasha and I were searching for a good lunch spot, and we found just that. Bul-Gogi looks and smells like a traditional BBQ place, but once you step inside it dares you to dive in to its warm atmosphere. The food there is described as Korean Fusion BBQ, which in regular terms is Korean Japanese food.

What You Get

It’s always best to order the bento box. This is a variety pack of things such as tempura vegetables, rice, salad, a spring roll, and your choice of meat. Not really being much for meats but wanting something both filling and long on flavor, I chose the sweet and spicy fried chicken. Unlike some restaurants, this one had the perfect balance between the sweet and the spicy. The tempura definitely tasted a lot like more, and the rice wasn’t too bland or salty.

Conclusion

I would definitely recommend this restaurant not just for the food, but also the price. You get a whole lot of delicious for $10.

It’s A Neighbour Thing


Hello again, Gill.

This time she comes bearing bad neighbour stories and wondering about our own.

For us, that’s easy. There are these ones and these ones and these ones and these ones and these ones and these ones and these ones and these ones and probably a few I’m forgetting. Yes, we’ve had good neighbours too, but a good neighbour is a neighbour you don’t often have to write about. To paraphrase myself in one of these old posts, a good neighbour is one that’s either friendly or stays out of the way.


Fortunately, I grew up in a neighborhood filled with wonderful people who were more than happy to lend a helping hand. Whether driving my sister to skating lessons, bringing a casserole to a bereaved person down the way or gathering at someone’s home to welcome a new baby, my neighborhood took care of and cared for its own like family. Depending on when and where you grew up you might have had a similar experience to mine, but here’s hoping you didn’t have one of these neighbors.

  1. Redneck dreamin – A British lotto winner barely out of his teens moved in to an upscale neighborhood and quickly made enemies. He created a crash derby park where at any given time day or night he’d have people over to race cars.
  2. Disgracefully hateful – Last year I wrote about a Missisauga Ontario Canada woman screaming for a white doctor to treat her son’s chest pains, but it turns out there’s a touch more racist venom to this story. Living in a racially diverse city like she did, you would think that she would have enough brains to keep her hate at the doorstep. No, no such luck, local law enforcement was called after she was heard hurling racist abuse at a black neighbor.
  3. Dear neighbor – Apparently another Canadian in the Toronto area didn’t get the memo about inclusion. A woman with an autistic son received a disgusting note telling her to move away or have her son euthanized. The letter also contained a lot of other vile, hateful stuff that hurts my heart to even think about.

Question

What are your best and worst neighbor stories?

Keeping An Eye On Things

Gill has a quick update on last month’s hospital saga.

Hey there friends! You know how I told you of my harrowing experience in the hospital last month? It appears I must go under the knife in September. The doctor said he didn’t like the fact that the lump from the infection is still there, however he told me he would remove it when he goes in to unblock the tear duct. After the procedure I will have dissolving stitches that will disappear in a week or so and I will look like I’ve been in a fight, but it’s going to be worth it. Thank you all for your thoughts and prayers.

Question

What’s the most interesting surgical procedure you’ve either had or heard of?

When Fun Went Wrong

Gill is back to wish us all a happy amusement park season. If you’re heading out to enjoy some fun over the next few months, hopefully you don’t wind up suffering the same fate as any of these poor folks. We need readers. We also care about your safety. Yes, we most definitely care about your safety. Over and above anything else, to be sure. There. You can stop punching me now, Carin.


For much of the world’s population summer’s here, and often that can only mean one thing. Time to go for thrills and chills at the amusement or water park. Most days spent there are fun with little more to show than sunburns, family and friend memories made, and even the occasional vomit off a high speed ride. Sadly, some of these trips end in ambulance rides or fatalities.

  1. Take Her to the lightning – At a Massachusetts amusement park called Revere Beach a ride called the Lightning got a reputation as a quick abortion device in the 1920’s. This predated safety standards, and many a fun day an unwanted pregnancy was ended here with its many bumps and jars.

    Note from Steve: It was part of a group of rides known as the Giant Cyclone Safety Coasters, a name it kept even after taking its first victim by day two.

  2. Banned after 1930 – On July 24 1930 a ride called The big Dipper crashed killing four and injuring seventeen. After the accident, the Omaha city council banned wooden roller coasters from the city, a ban which stands to this day.
  3. Curse of the big dipper – We hop across the pond and jump ahead four decades to West London England. Some of our older British readers may even remember Battersea Park, opened 1951 closed 1974. On what was supposed to be a day of fun and frolic in May 1972, a ride also known as the Big Dipper carrying dozens of children lost control and slammed into another section of train, killing five and injuring many more.
  4. Three Dead In Edmonton – In the mid 1980’s, at one of the most amazing malls in the world, the mindbender, which had been declared safe just one day earlier, jumped the tracks in front of a horrified concert crowd. Three lives were lost, and many more changed.
  5. Traction park and grave pool- From 1978-1998, Vernon, New Jersey’s Action Park got a reputation for fatalities, broken bones, and lawsuits. Action Park saw three drownings in what would come to be known as The Grave Pool, one electrocution, and two deadly events involving the slides. The employees were often drunk, high, or otherwise unqualified.

My Experience

I was born with a congenital heart condition, but on a sunny day in 1991 that did not seem to phase me. My sister, who belonged to a local figure skating club, was gifted tickets to an amusement park called Canada’s Wonderland. Opened in 1981, it boasts water slides, roller coasters, and loads of other fun stuff. My sister and I each brought friends from the neighborhood, and since my dad had to work that day my mom was running the show. My friend and I rode several rides, and were having great fun. She suggested we go on this one ride called Saloco. It looked alright from what I could see, just several cars going around a track. I was so very wrong. It started going up. No problem yet. But then it got to maximum height and started turning on its side. Needless to say, when I got off I was white as a ghost, shaking, and feeling pain in my chest. Now, for the most part, my amusement park experience involves holding people’s stuff and a whole lot of walking.

Thought

In researching this article I have come to the conclusion that although safety standards have improved and people seem to have a better understanding of hiring practices, one must always follow something my mom says. “If it doesn’t feel right, don’t do it.”

Question

What’s your scariest water slide, amusement park, or carnival experience?

In Memory Of Grandma

Gill has a few words about her grandmother on the anniversary of her death.

Doris Mildred Jean MacMurchy-Hewgill Aug. 31 1923-June 22 2003.

Thoughts

In Asian cultures the grandparents are placed in high regard, but here in the west elders are often pushed aside in favor of more modern thinking. If we just took a moment to remind ourselves of the impact a grandparent can have on our lives, we would be more willing to recognize the wisdom of a life.

Who Was She?

My grandmother was born August 31 of 1923 in Hagersville, a town around half an hour away from where I live now. She was the second of three daughters. I am not overly certain when they left that area and moved to near where I grew up, but my great-aunt Mae was born in 1936 at the Collingwood Maternity hospital.

Something Rare

After the stock market crash of 1929, most children rarely went very far in high school. My grandmother had roughly an 11th grade education. When I spent a Sunday afternoon with her she showed me her high school tribute book and told me her favorite subjects were Latin and literature.

Helping Hand

When I would go to her home she was almost always doing something, whether it was knitting socks or hats for less fortunate children or cooking or baking one of her famous delights. This generosity stretched back to when her family practically raised one of their neighbors. In the early 1980’s she was a member of SEARC {Southeast Asian Relocation Committee”} helping people restore lives and hope in a new land.

A Little Faith

Sadly in her last years she had several rounds of cancer. I never heard her complain. She was also very private, only allowing family, some very close friends, and above all her pastor. I admired and respected the fact that she kept herself grounded in something much more powerful than the cancer.

Final Thoughts

Today marks 15 years since she’s been gone, and in all I try to do and accomplish I keep a special spot in my heart for her. She would be very happy to know that I have accepted Jesus, and am putting my heart in to church things. She would be proud of my sister Heather for accomplishing so much.

Fearing The Yucky Stuff

Gill is thinking about stuff she didn’t like as a kid, particularly as it relates to beach season. The sand part I understand since it can be really hot and it gets into and sticks to everything, but grass? That’s interesting.

Depending on where you are in the world, you might be heading into or blessed to live in a place that has summer like conditions year round. Those hot days are meant to be spent somewhere cool, like an air conditioned mall, by a pool or on a beach.

Many Years Ago

Growing up I was blessed to live in an area with beautiful beaches and lakes. Although going to the beach was loads of fun, when I was a child I freaked out over having to walk on either the sand or the grass, which felt moist and gooey to me. My mom would have to pick up four-year-old me to avoid the possibility of me touching what I would come to refer to as “the yucky stuff.” I eventually outgrew the fear of my toes touching the sand or grass, but my mom and I still sometimes talk about how I couldn’t handle that part of the beach.

Question

What is a strange thing you wouldn’t do, eat, or touch as a child?

My Quandary

Gill needs a little bit of help deciding on a gift for her mom. I think all of these sound nice and she’d be happy with any of them, more likely than not. But most of all I’m sure she’s just glad you’re ok and would tell you she doesn’t need anything beyond that.

Hi readers! I hope all is going well for you.

I have spent the last just over a week trying to decide on something. You know how I said I felt like I owed my mom something after she spent those three days in the hospital with me? Well I am going to ask you guys for some suggestions of things I could possibly do for her. Here are a couple of things that have crossed my mind.

  1. Take her for coffee or lunch – she loves going for coffee and nice meals.
  2. Gift card for a spa day – Let’s face it, she needs some spoiling!
  3. Making a meal together – Last year for her 70th birthday I, along with her help, brought Southeast Asia to her in the form of a noodle dish.

Question

Which one of these ideas do you like best, or do you have suggestions of your own?

Be Careful, Part Three

And now, the last part of Gill’s hospital story.

I spent the better part of three days in the hospital, and in that time I had some visitors. One was the friend who took me to the revival, the others were people who had kind of adopted me as their “daughter.”

Thursday and Friday I was less groggy and miserable, and was able to take a walk around the ward.

Blurs

On Saturday morning I went to see the original eye doctor who saw me Tuesday night/Wednesday morning, but I really don’t recall that. Clearer in my head is the annoying empty IV bag beeping, and the anti-clot medicine injected into my stomach at night. I also kind of remember snapping at a medical student for assuming I had to have someone help me go to the bathroom.

Mother’s Help

Friday night when I got home, I needed to wash the hospital smell off of me. The doctor said I should cover my eye to keep from exacerbating the infection. That night I had my mom wash my hair for me. That in itself was a humbling experience, because I’m not one to ask for help often. She also helped me apply the ointment that night and the next morning.

Shout Out

I’d like to thank all the nurses, medics, doctors, etc. I also owe a huge debt of gratitude to my mom, and everyone who called.

Quick Thinking

There’s an old saying that if something doesn’t feel right, look in to it further. I am on the road to recovery because I didn’t listen to the first doctor. I also believe that God had a hand in this, placing the right doctors and people at the right place.

Sign Off

I am about to go take my medicine now, and like I said, if something really isn’t feeling right, don’t ignore it.

Be Careful, Part Two


Here’s Gill with part two of her hospital stay. She’s slowly getting back to normal, which is nice.

When I left you guys, I was riding an ambulance speeding toward a hospital. When I got there I spent a good two-and-a-half hours laying on a gurney in the hall waiting for a room to come available. The medics wheeled me in to an intermediate care room. This, for our readers in other places, is a mid-level trauma room. I spent the next several hours in and out of sleep, having my vitals checked, and being looked at by doctors. At this point I still held a glimmer of hope that I’d be released.

Admition and Hallway Medicine

Early Wednesday morning one of the doctors came in and told me I was being admitted to a ward. By this point I was now on IV medicine, so I kind of figured I wasn’t going anywhere anytime soon. A few hours later someone took me from where I was to a ward. Unfortunately my room wasn’t ready just at that point, so it was hallway medicine for me for several more hours.

Mom Came By

Around ten Wednesday morning my mom, who lives about a hundred and fifty miles away, showed up. She found me in all my previous day’s clothes and doped up glory laying on a gurney in the hall.

The Room

About one that afternoon I finally was allowed in to the room where I would be staying. I was the baby of the four people in the room, and realized that I probably wouldn’t get much sleep.

Sign Off

Don’t be mad. I have to run along, but I will tell you more very soon.

Be Careful, Part One

Gill is back to tell us about her recent medical misadventure, or at least part of it. You can tell she’s still not quite right by the way this ends. We certainly wish her a speedy recovery.

Recently I had a health scare that got me to thinking about things. I will explain how in 48 short hours I went from thinking little of an issue to being on my way to the hospital. Though I’m not quite 100% Gillie, I’m working my way back from a rather frightening experience.

Before

Like any good timeline we must start prior to the issue. It was a cool Saturday when I went with some friends from my church to a revival meeting in a town about an hour away. Lunchtime came around and my friends and I decided to enjoy God’s creation with a picnic in a nearby park. We fellowshipped, ate, and enjoyed the beauty of a sunny day. Everything was perfect, until my friend’s fourteen-year-old son noticed a bug on my shoulder. He shooed it away, and I thought nothing of it.

Sunday Morning

I woke up at the usual time, and noticed the area surrounding my right eye was swollen. I didn’t think it was much more than either allergies or that pesky bug from the picnic. By that night, however, it was more uncomfortable than anything, and sleep was elusive. I still didn’t think anything was seriously wrong.

Monday

By Monday my right eye, a prosthetic, was painful and pretty much swollen shut. I scheduled an appointment with my general physician, and she suggested that it was just a minor infection and gave me some medicine.

Tuesday

Tuesday morning I woke up feeling worse than before, and someone pointed out to me that the swelling had started marching across to my other eye. I also became sick to my stomach, and said to several people that I felt like “death.” I postponed a Project Fun Weekend, and told my dad that I needed to go to the hospital. Tuesday night I went by ambulance to a local hospital.

Sign Off

Friends, I am tired. The medicine, of which I will speak later, is starting to work on me. So more soon.