4:20 to Fuma/High H***/Tokin’ of My Frustration…..

….. Well, at least the titles were easy for this post. ūüėõ

The other day I was relaxing in my condo, just watching TV, when I noticed a smell. It was mild at first, though strange, so I opened my balcony door to see if it was coming from outside. That’s when it hit me: the stink of marijuana. I looked over, and sure enough, my neighbour was toking up out on his balcony chair. Hating the smell myself, I went back inside, and shut the door.

The problem is, my vents never shut off. I can turn my heating/cooling system off, but even doing that will not stop the general air flow. I really don’t know why the builders of this building thought this was a good idea. Why not be able to block smells from outside? Or filter out smells that are coming from inside the apartment? Anyway, I can’t close it. I called my concierge to let them know, and they were surprised, but said they’d send someone to look into it.

Close to midnight, I smelled the skunk again. Disgusting, but more than that; my throat was sore by the end of the night — I’m pretty sensitive to smoke smells. I called the concierge again, getting another person who recommended I call the property management office.

So the next day, I call the property management office, and their suggestion was to call the front desk concierge each time it happens, and they’ll make a report for each time, then when they have enough reports, they’ll send the perpetrator a letter. I reminded them that this wasn’t just an annoyance because of cigarette smoke, this was marijuana, hoping to elicit a more speedy measure of dealing with this. I was transferred, had to explain it all again, and was assured they would receive a letter. I asked what I could do in the meantime, because I live in a bachelor-sized condo — meaning my only two options are to leave my apartment, or hang out in the hallways. She said to call the front desk and let them know. *sigh*

So today, I come home early, excited to have time to clean my place and excited because the weather was warm and sunny. I open the blinds; I open my doors. Beautiful afternoon!

You don’t have to be a rocket scientist to know what happens next.

I call front desk, he says he heard about the situation, and that I could call Tobacco Enforcement (though he didn’t know the number anymore, he said he used to work at a mall and that’s who they would call to handle similar situations), and that he’d let management know again. I call the number I found online for Tobacco Enforcement, which brought me to Toronto Public Health and a not-so-happy receptionist who, after my wait, told me I shouldn’t call them; I should call the police. “It’s not tobacco you’re talking about; it’s marijuana.” Thanks, public servant, you really helped me out. *double sigh*

I call front desk again, to update him that they’re not helpful, and he apologized, saying he talked to management and asked if I’d received their letter. Having just checked my mail, I knew I hadn’t, so he suggested I talk to the management lady herself.

I went downstairs, asked her about the letter, which was “sent” yesterday, and she walked me to the concierge. She found both my letter and my neighbour’s sitting on the desk, and gave it to me, telling me it contained alternative strategies for keeping the smoke from entering my condo, as long as my landlord was supportive of them. I thanked her and went to read my letter.

Basically, it tells me how I can find and seal any gaps in my unit. Later, it states they can only send out letters to my neighbours asking them to be courteous when partaking in their daily activities. Still later, it says, “Should this persist, you may have no alternative but to approach your neighbour(s); not in a confrontational tone, but one of doing you a favor; explain how the smoke is affecting you. Hopefully, you can both work something out together without making this a bigger deal than it has to be.”

What I’m struggling to understand, is why the burden is on me to remove the illegal smoke that is unwelcome in my condo unit. It would be one thing for it to be tobacco — I could understand the need to jump through hoops because it is their private property and all. However, I would have thought there would be more options when it involves a technically illegal activity that is negatively affecting another resident (and possibly others who aren’t complaining). Could they at least SPEAK to the neighbour? It should not fall on my shoulders to do so, thereby identifying myself as the complainant and creating an awkward situation for any future encounters.

Believing myself to be in the right here, I will wait a few days, until I am sure the neighbour has received the letter. If I notice it after that point, I will call the front desk and insist they come speak to the person about the activity. If they don’t (and I’ll know, since I’ll hear them arrive at my floor), I will call again to let them know I have no choice but to report it to the police. I know I’ll probably be laughed at, considering the relative importance of the complaint versus all others, but honestly I don’t know what else there is left to do. Toronto Public Health won’t take issue with it because it’s not tobacco, my concierge won’t deal with it because it’s on private property, and management can only communicate in typed letters (apparently). I really don’t want to confront this person myself.

If you, dear reader, has any other idea as to what I can do, please let me know. The issue really.. wait for it.. stinks. ūüėČ

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Day 3

Gorgeous day today.¬† It started off cloudy (my dad and I were going to go fishing but since it was cloudy, they decided to let me sleep in instead haha), but it was still fairly warm, and then the sun worked its way out and it became quite warm.¬† We went and did a few errands while it was still a bit overcast, and my mom and I played some tennis.¬† The sun came out during our 15 minutes (we’re both still coughing up a storm), so my mom decided it was too hot out for her and walked to the library to reserve the new Sue Grafton book.¬† (She later told me she was 123rd on the reserve list….. I’m not even kidding.)¬† So I went and hit against the wall…… man, it was¬†relentless.¬† (joke courtesy of¬†Mitch Hedberg ūüėČ )¬† I love hitting against the wall though.¬† I can serve and not have to go pick up balls for every minute of serving, if I make a mistake it still comes back to me….. it’s¬†just a good practice tool.¬† I did that for a bit, then we went back to the condo for lunch.¬† I went for a long walk along the Pass, well, many trips back and forth anyway.¬† Then I visited Julio at his cr√™perie and chatted a bit with him.¬† He’s still the one making the cr√™pes….. I don’t know how he’s managed all year, unless there is someone else trained and they just weren’t working.¬† I have a feeling the guy with him helping him prepare the stuff may have been there last year too.¬† I’d normally wonder if they were related but by the pale (in comparison) looks of him, maybe not!¬† The cr√™pe — strawberries and Nutella — was wonderful.¬† I wandered the Pass eating it, and saw many eyes drawn to it — one hispanic lady asked me what it was and where to find one….. after I’d passed I heard her say, “I want one of those!”¬† So Julio, there you go, some more business for ya!¬† Last year it was the same story — we’d walk around eating them, and would usually get stopped at some point with inquiries….. especially if my parents were also having one, because they’d usually have one with whipped cream which of course makes it look even more sumptuous.¬† I even got to hear Julio singing a little as he prepared it…..¬†quite the lungs, and not a bad singer either!¬† Elvis, of course ūüėČ ¬† After he’d finished making the cr√™pe, he thanked me for coming back and wished me a good trip if he didn’t see me before then,¬†at one point calling¬†me “princess” — which, from anyone else, might’ve been seen as strange or even sarcastic, but you just know he’s sincere.¬† He’s just¬†the type of person¬†who always makes you smile.¬†¬†¬† ūüôā

¬† After finishing my treat, I walked the beach for a bit, through the water one way, then on the water’s edge the way back.¬† Here’s my daily list:

  • Maddy!¬†and friend(?)
  • fishermen
  • fisherboys(?) with a net of little fishies they’d just caught, intending to use them as bait
  • 2 whistling construction workers ūüėé
  • again, not too many shells of interest (there haven’t been high winds lately, so that makes a difference)
  • a few butterfly shells appearing to be occupied (thrown back)
  • several sand fleas (dead)
  • 1 large crab — live!¬† He was in my path, scuttling around….. man was he cute.¬† I walked cautiously closer, and I guess frightened him because he lifted one of his front claws a bit above his head, threateningly….. it was hilarious and adorable at the same time.¬† I love crabs.¬† Anyway, I didn’t want to scare him too much but at the same time I didn’t want him to wash ashore and die (he appeared to be old….. I am aware they can come out the water normally haha), or stay in the shallow water to attack/get attacked by little kids, so I tried to usher him back towards the deeper water, even though the waves made me lose sight of him and I had to avoid getting pinched, myself!¬† He was definitely the highlight of my beachwalk.
  • 2 kids trying to bodyboard (again, waves <1 foot high…..)….. quite funny actually.
  • seagulls, herons, egrets, pelicans, skimmers, the little tiny birds that run around the shore…..
  • dolphins (well, that was when I was on the Pass — they were quite active today, almost jumping right out the water, splashing around playfully)….. actually I saw a few schools of them….. and moronic seadoers trying to get close and in the process frightening them away……¬† Seriously, let this be my one and only message to boaters: if you want to get close to dolphins or any sea creature for that matter, PLEASE turn off your engines!¬† If they want you around, they’ll swim TO you, you don’t have to be 5 feet away at all times.¬† Enjoy the scene, but don’t ruin it by scaring them or, Heaven forbid, hurting them.¬† Sure, you may have seen them following boats, but that’s up to them!¬† You¬†certainly are not going to tempt them by having¬†5 boats speeding toward them every time they surface.¬† The people on the Pass enjoy seeing them too, so have a little respect for the other viewers, as well as¬†the creatures themselves.¬† There.¬† I’m done.¬†¬†¬† ūüėõ
  • not many jellyfish today, maybe 2 little guys washed up
  • generally not much debris washed up either, actually….. good thing once in a while!
  • 1 gorgeous sun¬† ūüôā

Day 2

Today was Christmas!  Merry Christmas everyone!

It started with me waking up late, daydreaming myself awake.¬† Kinda lovely to do sometimes.¬† I got up, had a small breaky, sat on the balcony.¬† We’d already exchanged gifts beforehand (since my sister couldn’t come with us, we had our celebrations last week), but my dad still had a couple gifts to give to my mom, so after that we sat on the balcony and took in some sun with our coffees.¬† After a nice morning walk around the Pass with my mom, we went back to the condo for bacon & eggs and cleaned the place up for our dinner company….. then another walk …… and another….. then friends came over for Christmas dinner and we had a blast.¬† Such fun people.¬† I hope I’m that fun when I’m their age.¬† Of course, they’re my parents’ age too but umm…… no, I really don’t have a way to get my foot out of my mouth there.¬† New topic!

So today on the beach I was walking mostly in the water to search for the bigger shells, so I didn’t see as much interesting stuff today, but here’s the daily list anyway:

  • dolphins several times, lots of them including the mutant one!¬† In years past, we noticed a dolphin with a sliced dorsal fin….. we suspect it was from a boating encounter.¬† There very well could be hundreds like that, but we like to think it’s the same families that stick around the area, with his sighting meaning all is well with them.
  • several decent-sized shells with their residents still alive inside…… I threw them back into the ocean to hopefully have a few more days (or more!) of life
  • a large shell with resident inside…… I’m gonna research what kind he was, because I’ve seen the shells before and they’re beautifully decorated, so I’m curious anyway.¬† I’m told I found a sunray venus shell….. go here to view and learn: http://www.shellmuseum.org/Sanibel/shells_nimbosa.html¬† I had seen it near the beginning of my¬†walk, and was dumbfounded when I couldn’t find it after the¬†initial sighting (I’m a pro at shelling…… I don’t often lose a shell to the waves¬†once I’ve seen it), especially since it was so large.¬† Anyway, after giving up (doesn’t come easily to me), I continued my walk, well, shelling session anyway haha….. and on my way back I was about to leave when I saw it again.¬† I’m sure it’s the same one I’d been searching for earlier because it was like a rose in a field of thorns — nothing else had been that large, and that particular type of shell wasn’t even found in pieces anywhere where I’d walked….. so I went to get it, and sure enough I lost it two more times before I finally grabbed it.¬† The problem was that it was so heavy it only strayed to the visible area on occasion — otherwise it stayed where the waves were crashing (hence the water was sandy and I couldn’t even see my feet in less than a foot of water) and there¬†his colours blended in.¬† But I got him.¬† And of course threw him far into the ocean again.¬† I have to admit, there’s something¬†kinda humbling about holding an entire creature in your hand who created this beautiful piece of art to house himself….. used to living almost entirely at the hands of the ocean.¬† He really has no defenses besides his shell….. anyway…..
  • Maddy and another heron!¬† …… they weren’t hanging out though.
  • fishermen
  • seemingly more people…… I think partially because it was a fair bit warmer today, plus everyone’s done their Christmas shopping!
  • (earlier, by the Pass) ~12 foot tall bird of paradise plant!!!!¬† seriously incredible.¬† I vaguely remember discovering it last year but boy is it impressive.¬† The flower parts are different colours from the regular bird of paradise wild oranges and purples….. I found out from here http://www.mgonlinestore.com/Juncea/¬† that it’s the white variety…… much larger than the regular orange kind.
  • 2 dogs in motorboats, 1 laying down for a nap, and 1¬†riding at the bow of his boat.¬† It’s not that uncommon really, but I always find it amusing.
  • 1 dude paragliding?¬† I’m not sure the term for it.¬† Yup, turns out that’s it.¬† Only this dude was motorized.¬† And boy was he flying LOW!

Well that’s all I can think of right now, mostly because I’m tired!¬† If I remember more, you can be sure I’ll get back to you with it.

Again, happy holidays to you, and I hope you all had a Merry Christmas¬† ūüôā