Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Accesses to Hamilton's "Mountain"

The Ups and Downs of Having a Mountain
No One Injured in Mudslide as Crashing Escarpment Wall
Covered the Claremont Access Roadway!

In January 2012, I published “My Homeland...The Golden Horseshoe” describing the Niagara Escarpment, I commented that Hamilton (my neighbouring city) 
is physically two-tiered. The Lower city is on the water level of Burlington Bay (also Hamilton Harbour) and Lake Ontario. The Upper city is accessed by 6 routes to the top of the you can imagine...with fabulous panoramic views from the rocky edge of its precipice!

One of the accesses...the Sherman Cut... (a 60 metre high-cliff-hugging-access-route) was closed for three months last fall for emergency repairs due to drainage problems. 

The following article was submitted a few days ago by Spectator Editorial staff.

The Niagara Escarpment, formed in the bedrock of the Great Lakes basin, 
is a large part of what shapes Hamilton as a community. It is both a blessing 
and an ongoing challenge. Most of the time we take it for granted...unless the mud starts sliding, reminding us that managing the geography of our city 
is a long-term process, not a single act.

We do not live in a part of the world where mud slides frequently kill people 
and flatten communities. But the collapse of the Claremont Access retaining
wall last Wednesday (February 22), is a strong reminder that despite all our metal and concrete and asphalt, we are much less powerful than the geology 
that defines our city.

In Hamilton, downtown really is down. The escarpment delineates the upper
 and lower components of our city. Some of us live below the escarpment, 
some of us live on the Mountain ~ and woe betide the outsider who smirks 
at the use of the term “Mountain”.

The escarpment is a steep band of green through the city, home to trails
 and wildlife. More than 100 waterfalls flow over it, leading Hamilton to be characterized as the City of Waterfalls. For generations of children, the escarpment has provided a wilderness within steps of home, a place where imagination reigns.

The challenge has always been moving people and goods from lower to upper and vice-versa. Trails, plank roads, incline railways, winding two-lane drives 
and multi-lane mini-highways have contributed to our ability to be one city 
on two levels.

But that comes with cost. For example, it has long been difficult to find an accurate budget comparator for the Hamilton Street Railway because getting buses up and down the escarpment ~ without adding paying customers while doing so ~ adds costs that don't exist in municipalities of similar size. 
Millions have been spent on engineering and constructing the infrastructure 
that connects our two-level city.

When the mud and rock slide burst through the Claremont retaining wall last week, a quick-thinking motorist left his car and walked to the top to direct 
traffic away from the debris. There were no injuries. The retaining wall was
 built in 1971 with an expected lifespan of 40 to 50 years. The access was last inspected by engineers in November 2010, when only minor repairs were recommended. It's likely this winter's mild temperatures contributed to the 
wall's collapse.

From all evidence, the city is wisely being cautious and thorough in its assessment, cleanup and repair of the mudslide damage. Given our unusual winter, the other accesses, large and small, must be examined for potential weakness. We need to have confidence that we are safe as, bus,
bike or walk up and down our part of the escarpment.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Access Roads
(all with major road repairs as deemed necessary).
                                   Queen Street Hill (Beckett Drive)
                                   Built 1894 with daily traffic 12,000 vehicles.

                                    James Street Mountain Road (West 5th)
                                    Built 1844...daily traffic 10,000 or less.

                                   Claremont Access
                                   Built 1971...daily traffic 16,000 vehicles

                                   Jolly Cut (from the downtown core area of city)
                                   Built 1873...daily traffic 18,000 vehicles

                                   Sherman Access Cut
                                   Built 1932...daily traffic 15,000

                                   Kenilworth Access
                                   Built 1958, replacing the Ottawa Street Access
                                   and its dangerous S-curve...daily traffic 14,000

(The foregoing source from Spectator Files)

Fact of Interest: The World Road Championship (for cyclists) was held in Hamilton in the autumn of 2003. The event featured wonderful warm sunny October days, Ontario's dramatic coloured leaves and the superb challenge 
of the scenic roads. The Queen Street Hill was the up-climb. As cyclists 
crossed the escarpment top, their views over the City, the Bay a-float with numerous sailboats, the Skyway Bridge and the vastness of Lake Ontario 
... were locked into their memories forever.

Pearl of Wisdom”
To succeed, we must first Believe that we Can.
(Michael Korda)

Merle Baird-Kerr . . . written February 29, 2012
Comments Welcome...scroll down (may sign in as “anonymous”)
or e-mail ...

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

God's Pharmacy

This is really interesting.....and most amazing!
It has been said that God first separated the salt water
from the fresh, made dry land, planted a garden,
made animals and fish...all before creating a human.
He made and provided what we'd need before
we were born.

These are best and more powerful when eaten raw.
We are such “slow learners...God left us a great clue
as to what foods help which part of the body!

A Sliced Carrot...looks like the human eye. The pupil, iris and radiating lines
look just like the human eye...and YES, science now shows carrots greatly
enhance blood flow to...and function of the eyes.

A Tomato...has four chambers and is red. The heart has four chambers 
and is red. All of the research shows tomatoes are loaded with lycopine and 
are indeed pure heart and blood food.

Grapes...hang in a cluster that has the shape of the heart. Each grape looks like
a blood cell and all of the research today shows grapes are also profound heart
and blood vitalizing food.

A Walnut...looks like a little brain, a left and right hemisphere, upper 
cerebrums and lower cerebellums. Even the wrinkles or folds on the nut
are just like the neo-cortex. We now know walnuts help develop more than
three dozen neuron-transmitters for brain function.

Kidney Beans...actually heal and help maintain kidney function and yes,
they look exactly like the human kidneys.

Celery, Bok, Choy, Rhubarb...and many more look just like bones. These
foods specifically target bone strength. Bones are 23% sodium and these
foods are 23% sodium. If you don't have enough sodium in your diet,
the body pulls it from the bones, thus making them weak. These foods
replenish the skeletal needs of the body.

Avocados, Eggplant and the health and function of the womb
and cervix of the female ~ they look just like these organs. Today's research
shows that when a woman eats one avocado a week, it balances hormones,
sheds unwanted birth weight, and prevents cervical cancers. And how
profound is this? It takes exactly 9 months to grow an avocado from
blossom to ripened fruit. There are over 14,000 photolytic chemical
constituents of nutrition in each one of these foods. Modern science has
only studied and named about 141 of them.

Figs...are full of seeds and hang in twos when they grow. Figs increase the
mobility of male sperm and increase the numbers of sperm as well as to
overcome male sterility.

Sweet Potatoes...look like the pancreas and actually balance the glycemic
index of diabetics.

Oranges, Grapefruits and other Citrus Fruits...look just like the mammary
glands of the female and actually assist the health of the breasts and the
movement of lymph in and out of the breasts.

Onions...look like the body cells. Today's research shows onions help clear
waste materials from all of the body cells. They even produce tears which
wash the epit helial layers of the eyes. A working companion, Garlic, also
helps eliminate wast materials and dangerous free radicals from the body.

(I am grateful to Sherrie who forwarded to me this vital information.)

          I further comment that...Some people Live to Eat...Others Eat to Live!
Whichever...Choose  Healthy!
Merle's “Pearl of Wisdom” ~ Soul Food

There are people who make things happen.
Those who watch what happens;
and those who wonder what happened!
(unknown source)

Merle Baird-Kerr . . . written January 19, 2012
Comments appreciated...scroll down (may enter as “anonymous”)

Notation:  Next posting will state the benefits of 2 other excellent household
foods that greatly benefit our human frailty.  These 2 in combination will cure
most, if not all diseases...if consumed daily...amazing results!

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Marketing Humour

The “buzz word” in today's business world is Marketing.
However, people often ask for a simple explanation of “Marketing”...
well, here it is!

You're a woman and you see a handsome guy at a party. You go up to him 
and say, “I'm fantastic in bed.” That's Direct Marketing.

You're at a party with a bunch of friends and see a handsome guy. One of your
friends goes up to him and pointing at you says, “She's fantastic in bed!”
That's “Advertising”.

You see a handsome guy at a party. You go up to him and get his telephone number...the next day you call and say, ”Hi, I'm fantastic in bed.” That's Telemarketing.

You see a guy at a party, you straighten your dress. You walk up to him
and pour him a drink. You say, “May I?” and reach up to straighten his tie,
brushing your breast lightly against his arm, then say, “By the way, I'm
fantastic in bed.” That's Public Relations.

You're at a party and see a handsome guy He walks up to you and says, “I hear
you're fantastic in bed.” That's Brand Recognition.

You're at a party and see a handsome guy. He fancies you, but you talk him
into going home with your friend. That's a Sales Rep.

Your friend can't satisfy him, so he calls you. That's Tech Support.

You're on your way to a party when you realize that there likely could be handsome men in all these houses you're passing. So you climb onto the roof 
of one situated towards the centre and shout at the top of your lungs, 
“I'm fantastic in bed!” That's Junk Mail.

You are at a party, this well-built man walks up to you and gropes your breast
and grabs your “booty”. That's the Governor of California! You like it, but;
20 years later your attorney decides you were offended. That's America.

(Sherrie may not recall that she sent the foregoing to me in March, 2004)

Pearl of Wisdom”
Success is getting what you want;
happiness is liking what you get.”

Merle Baird-Kerr . . . written January 18, 2012
Comments appreciated ... scroll down (may sign in as “anonymous)
or ...

Friday, February 24, 2012

Handy Household Hints

You may wonder ... even question ... the correlation I see between household chores (plus remedies to correct some of these challenging tasks) ... to my blog theme. These are common activities which we might consider 'drudgery' ... often jobs unappreciated. My “Pearl of Wisdom” concluding this article may offer a new perspective
to happily tend to these problems that occasionally beset us.

There can be great satisfaction in the accomplishment of certain tasks:
         like laundry ... the clean and pressed garment, a pleasure to wear
         the preparation of delicious meals ... a family enjoyment
         the cutting of grass ... creating a manicured velvety green lawn
         the garden weeding ... protecting the beauty of flowers
         even the mending of a sock ... extending its wear time
                                          ... a just reward for all!


Some may be old...some may be new.
These current hints...from a bridge acquaintance,
I've arranged alphabetically for easy reference

ANTS, ANTS, ANTS...everywhere? Well they are said, never to cross a chalk 
line.  So get your chalk out and draw a line on the floor or wherever ants tend 
to march. See for yourself.

ARTIFICIAL FLOWERS: To clean, pour some salt into a paper bag and add the
flowers. Shake vigorously as the salt will absorb all the dust and dirt and leave your artificial flowers looking like new! Works like a charm!

BLOOD STAINS: Not to worry! Just pour a little hydrogen peroxide on a cloth and proceed to wipe off every drop of blood. Works every time!
(Now...where to put the body???)

BURNT ON FOOD: To easily remove from your skillet, simply add a drop or two of dish soap and enough water to cover bottom of pan, and “bring to a boil” on the stove top.

CANDLES: They will last a lot longer if placed in the freezer at least 3 hours prior to burning.

CELERY: Wrap in aluminum foil when putting in the refrigerator...will keep for weeks.

CORN ON THE COB: When boiling, add a pinch of sugar to help bring out the corn's natural sweetness.

CRAYON MARKS: On walls? This worked wonderfully! A damp rag, dipped in baking soda! Comes off with a little effort (elbow grease...that is!)

DRAIN: To unclog a drain, clear the sink by dropping 3 Alka Seltzer tablets down the drain, followed by a cup of Heinz White Vinegar. Wait a few minutes...and then run hot water.

DRESSER DRAWERS: Place fabric softener sheets in them...your clothes will smell freshly washed for weeks to come. You can also do this with towels and linen.

HEADACHES: Cure ~ Take a lime, cut it in half and rub it on your forehead. The throbbing will go away. (I prefer to soak the lime in Gin and rub it on my tongue first).

ICY DOOR STEPS in freezing temperatures: Get warm water and put Dawn dish washing liquid in it. Pour it all over the steps. They won't refreeze. 
(Wish I knew this 40 years ago.)

LIGHT BULB: Spray a bit of perfume on it in any room to create a lovely and light scent in each room when the light is turned on.

MIRRORS: Use air-freshener to clean mirrors. It does a good job and better still,
leaves a lovely smell to the shine.

MOSQUITO BITES: To get rid of the itch, try applying soap on the area and you will experience instant relief.

OLD WAX: To remove this from a glass candle holder, put it in the freezer 
for a few hours. Then take the candle holder out and turn it upside down. 
The wax will fall out!

PERMANENT MARKER on appliances or counter tops: try rubbing alcohol on paper towel.

S.O.S. PAD: Whenever I purchase a box of these, I immediately take a pair of scissors and cut each pad into halves. After years of having to throw away rusted and unused smelly pads, I finally decided that this would be much more economical. Now a box of S.O.S. pads last me indefinitely! In fact, 
I have noticed that the scissors “get sharpened” this way!

SPLINTER: When you get a splinter, reach for the scotch tape before resorting 
to tweezers or a needle. Simply, put the scotch tape over the splinter, and then pull if off. Scotch tape removes most splinters painlessly and easily. True!

THERMOS BOTTLE: to clean? Fill the bottle with water. Drop in 4 Alka Seltzer tablets and let soak for an hour (or longer, in necessary).

TOILET: to clean? Drop in 2 Alka Seltzer tablets; wait 20 minutes; brush and flush!

TUPPERWARE: Spray your Tupperware with nonstick cooking spray before pouring in tomato-based sauces and there won't be any stains. I do this all the time and it works great!

VASE: To remove a stain from the bottom of a glass vase or cruet, fill with 
water and drop in 2 Alka Seltzer tablets.

WINDOWS: Use vertical strokes when washing windows outside...and horizontal
strokes for inside windows. This way, you can tell which side has the streaks.
Straight vinegar will get outside windows clean. Don't wash windows on a sunny day...they will dry too quickly and will probably streak.

WINE: Don't throw out all that leftover wine! Freeze into ice cubes for future
use in casseroles and sauces...even drinks! Left over wine? What's that?

                               After reading these 26 Household Hints...
does it make you wonder...about ingesting Alka Seltzer???


Pearl of Wisdom”
The trick to blending work and play
lies not in what you do,
but in how you view what you do.
See work as play ... and see play as important ~
super, very super, very important..
(Message from the Universe)

Merle Baird-Kerr . . . written January 28, 2012
Comments welcome...scroll down...(may sign in as “anonymous”)

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Forty Five Lessons

The 45 Lessons ... Life Taught Me

Regina Brett, at age 90,
claims this is the most requested column she's ever written

           Life isn't fair, but it is good.

           When in doubt, just take the next small step.

           Life is too short to waste time hating anyone. Change the way you think.

           Your job won't take care of you when you are sick.
           Your friends and family will. Stay in touch.

           Pay off your credit cards every month.


           You don't have to win every argument. Agree to disagree.

           Cry with someone. It's more healing than crying alone.

           Release your children when they become adults; it's their life now.

           Save for retirement starting with your first pay cheque.

           When is comes to chocolate, resistance is futile.


           Make peace with your past so it won't screw up the present.

           It's OK to let your children see you cry.

           Don't compare your life to others.
           You have no idea what their journey is all about.

           If a relationship has to be a secret, you shouldn't be in it.

           Everything can change in the blink of an eye.


           Take a deep breath. It calms the mind.

           Get rid of anything that isn't useful, beautiful or joyful.

           Whatever doesn't kill you, really does make you stronger.

           It's never too late to have a happy childhood.
           But the second one is up to you and no one else.

           When it comes to going after what you love in life, 
           don't take no for an answer.


           Burn the candles, use the satin sheets, wear the fancy lingerie.
           Don't save it for a special occasion. Today is special!
           * (see notation at end)

           Just because you believe you are right, doesn't mean you are right.
           Keep an open mind.

           Be eccentric now. Don't wait for old age to wear purple.

           The most important sex organ is the brain.

           No one is in charge of your happiness but you.


           Frame every so-called disaster with these words, 
           “In five years, will it matter?”

           Always choose life.

           Forgive everyone everything.

           What other people think of you is none of y our business.

           Time heals almost everything. Give time, time.


           However good or bad a situation, it will change.

           Don't take yourself so seriously. No one else does.

           Believe in miracles.

           Your job is to love your children, not choose who they will love.

           Don't audit life. Show up and make the most of it now.


           Growing old beats the alternative ... dying young.

           Your children get only one childhood.

           All that truly matters in the end is that you loved.

           Get outside every day. Miracles are waiting everywhere.

           If we all threw our problems in a pile and saw everyone else's, 
          we'd grab ours back.


Envy is a waste of time. You already have all you need.

                      The best is yet to come.

     No matter how you feel...get up...dress up...and show up. 

                      Yield when necessary to maintain peace and happiness.

                       Life isn't tied with a bow, but it's a "gift"!


                 Many thanks to one of my readers for sending the foregoing.

*Notation: When my parents were living in Brantford, my father working at his garage frequently came home late for dinner. Mother would always have dinner still warming on the stove or in the oven. She would wait until he arrived home, before showering and going to bed. Knowing this, I bought her a beautiful ice blue satin dressing gown so she could bathe or shower, then lounge comfortably while chatting with him.

Unfortunately, he passed away six months after I was married at the young age of 56. Mother stayed at the home tending her garden, participating in church activities and socializing with friends. At age 74, her life was no more.

When my sister and I sorted through household items and personal apparel,
I discovered Mother's beautiful blue satin dressing gown hanging in her closet...never having been worn.
They were married during the “depression years”...thus she was accustomed
 to “saving things” for special occasions...or for a rainy day!

Merle's “Pearl of Wisdom”
Select any of the 45 that is most meaningful to you.

Merle Baird-Kerr . . . written January 9, 2012
Comments appreciated ... scroll down (may sign in as “anonymous”)
or ...

Monday, February 20, 2012

Numerology for Seniors

How to Stay Young ~ 10 Instructions

As you read these...use your imagination:
picture a suitable scenery behind each.
Each instruction then becomes more profound.
You might even hum a piece of music to be truly uplifted!

Throw out Non-Essential numbers. This includes your age, your weight, your height. Let the doctors worry about them. That is why we pay them!

Keep only Cheerful Friends. The grouchers pull you down!

Keep Learning: learn about the computer, gardening, crafts, whatever...
never let the brain “idle”. An idle mind is the devil's workshop!
And the devil's name is Alzheimer.

Enjoy the Simple Things!

Laugh often, long and hard. Laugh until you gasp for breath!

The Tears Happen. Endure, grieve and move on. The only person who is
with us our entire life, is ourselves. Be Alive while you are Alive!

Surround Yourself with What You Love...whether it's family, pets, keepsakes,
music, plants, hobbies...whatever. Your Home is Your Refuge!

Cherish Your Health. If it is good, Preserve it. If it is unstable, Improve it.
If it is beyond what you can improve, get Help!

Don't Take a Guilt Trip. Take a Trip to the Mall, even to the County, to a
Foreign Country...but NOT to where the Guilt is!

Tell People That You Love Them at Every Opportunity!

                                                       A Little Truth:
If you've never been frightened, embarrassed or hurt,
you have never taken a chance ... which means...
you probably have missed a great deal that is exciting in life.”

How to Love Retirement ... some Do's and Don'ts

Retired? Here are 5 strategies by people
who have gone through life's biggest challenges
and have insight to share.

Don't Dress Old!
If you start dressing old, you are old. “No matter how old she got, my mother never started dressing like my grandmother. She never dressed like an old person. I'll never stop wearing jeans and sneakers no matter how old I get.”
 (L. H. from Ohio)

Enjoy Your Partner!
Enjoy your spouse. My wife, Molly and I have a lot of fun...we fish and do things
together. Discover new activities that you both enjoy ~ it will keep you young at
heart.” (J. K. from Texas)

Take Time to Indulge!
Indulge yourself. Enjoy listening to old time jazz, read two newspapers a day
and spend a whole afternoon with a juicy mystery. Do all the things you never
could do before.” (T.S. from Florida)

See Old Friends!
Make plans with old friends. Recently, the girls from my high school graduating
class got together for a reunion. You have to do things like that just to keep excited about life.” (J.P. from Iowa)

Stop Worrying about Death!
While you are alive,worry about life. You'll have plenty of time to worry about
death when you are dead.” (O.R. from Michigan)

My advice to Seniors who are reluctant to play Bridge...
If you can count to can play this game!"

Smile ... Confusion of Numbers

The OPP Officer was concerned when he noticed a car driving very slowly. He pulled the car over and said to its elderly driver, “Ma'am, do you know that driving slowly can be just as dangerous to other traffic as speeding? You were only going 20 km.”

But,Officer,” she replied, “I was following the speed limit,” and pointing to a sign.

That's the sign for Highway 20, Ma'am,” he said.

Then he looked in the back of the car at two older ladies and a gentleman.
They looked frozen with fear.

What happened to your friends?” he asked.

Oh,” she replied. “I don't really know. They haven't said much since
we got off the 403.”

Pearl of Wisdom”
You miss 100% of the shots you never made!
(Wayne Gretzky)

Merle Baird-Kerr . . . written February 11, 2012
Wish to comment? Scroll down (may sign in as “anonymous”)
or e-mail ...

Friday, February 17, 2012

International Humour II

Three Wishes

A Canadian farmer, Osama bin Laden and an Aussie are all walking together 
one day. They come across a lantern and a Genie pops out of it. “I will give each of you one wish, which is three wishes in total,” says the Genie.

The Canadian farmer says, “I am a farmer and my son will also farm. 
 I want the land to be forever fertile in Canada.” POOF! With the blink of the Genie's eye, the land in Canada was forever fertile for farming!

Osama was amazed , so he said, “I want a wall around Afghanistan, Palestine, Iraq and Iran so that no infidels, Americans or Canadians can come into our precious land!” POOF! Again, with the blink of the Genie's eye, there was a huge wall around those countries!

The Aussie says, “I am very curious. Please tell me more about this wall.”
The Genie explains, “Well, it's about 5,000 feet high, 500 feet thick and 
completely surrounds the countries. Nothing can get in or out. It's virtually impenetrable!” The Aussie sits down on his Harley, cracks a beer, lights a cigarette...smiles and says ... “Fill the sucker with water!”.

The Desert Trek

A fleeing Taliban, desperate for water, was plodding through the Afghan desert when he saw something far off in the distance. Hoping to find water, he hurried toward the oasis, only to find a little old Jewish man at a small stand, selling ties.

The Taliban asked, “Do you have water?”

The Jewish man replied, “I have no water. Would you like to buy a tie? 
They are only $5.” The Taliban shouted, “Idiot! I do not need an over-priced stupid tie. I need water! I should kill you, but I must find water first!”

OK,” said the Jewish man, “It does not matter that you do not want to buy 
a tie and that you hate me. I will show you that I am bigger than that. 
 If you continue over that hill to the east for about two miles, you will find a restaurant. It has all the ice cold water you need. Shalom!”

Cursing, the Taliban staggered away over the hill.

Several hours later, he staggered back...almost dead and said ...
Your idiot brother won't let me in without a tie!”


(Thanks to a personal friend who forwarded the above incidents to me.)

Pearl of Wisdom”
If you can find a path with no obstacles,
it probably doesn't lead anywhere.
(Frank A. Clark)

Merle Baird-Kerr . . . written October 30, 2011
Comments appreciated ... scroll down (may sign in as “anonymous”)
or e-mail ...

Sunday, February 12, 2012

"Picture Postcard" Property

(7th and final in series ~ “Real Life” ... in Real Estate:

A Common Verse ... from Olden Days

                                     They wandered down the country lane.
                                     No love was on their brow;
                                     for he was the farmer's hired hand...
                                     and she was the Jersey cow.

                                  I take the privilege to re-verse the above to:

                                    They wandered thro' the countryside
                                    desiring acres of rolling land ...
                                    a pretty house and double garage...
                                    numerous trees and a babbling brook.

Carlo and Sylvia have been looking for over two years for this “postcard-type-property”, yet affordable to them based on their incomes. This is their “dream”, but probably not realistic! Yes, the acreage was of foremost importance...even compromising for a lesser home needing TLC!

I relate this true experience because it exemplifies
the “Spirit of Service” for anyone in Business dealing with the public.
Try to identify “Maxims” (or stratagems) employed
that come into play through the progress of this experience.

Carlo and Sylvia, both 31, have been together for 5 or 6 years, renting an 
old house off the Service Road in Winona. Both have jobs and enjoy their 
2 dogs and 3 cats.

In my office, I maintain a list of clients looking for specific properties. 
Daily, when computer searching MLS for new listings, I keep them in mind. 
For Carlo and Sylvia, it has been, it seems, a “forever search” through Flamborough, Ancaster, Glanbrook, Lincoln, West Lincoln,  Smithville, 
Grimsby and Stoney Creek rural areas. They were patient and would 
wait for the "right property to become available."

A couple years ago, we found a 16 acre property, cornering two country 
roads; it had an old house (that had seen better days)! We entered into negotiations to purchase the property; however, during “signbacks” Carlo's younger brother was tragically killed in a car accident in Stoney Creek. Devastated with this loss, Carlo was unable to focus on further search
for a property. Unfortunately, this one sold to another buyer.

Later, we started looking again. Often it was Sylvia who viewed potential properties with me; one was worthy of Carlo also viewing it, but had an 
offer prior to his available time. During the winter months of 2001,
his hours  of shift-work were limited due to plant cut-backs; so for the 
time-being, plans were put on hold.

In November, we arranged appointments on a Sunday to view 6 or 7 
possible locations. On Friday, I discovered a new listing that sounded 
“perfect”, but higher priced. Located in West Lincoln, it had 23 acres 
of gently rolling farmland along a paved country road, an attractive brick 
ranch home and an oversized 2-car garage. The rear of the property was
heavily treed bordering Chippewa Creek (called the Welland River 
on the old survey).

It was “Love at First Sight”!!! They contacted me that evening to prepare
an Offer to Purchase. Presentation of Offer was scheduled for Monday 
evening at 7 pm when the owners would be home. At 6 pm Monday,
a call from the Listing Sales Representative notified me of other offers to be presented at same time. I consulted with Carlo and Sylvia providing them 
their options. We retained only 2 conditions and giving the Sellers a flexible
closing date and upped the purchase by $1,000 above the list price. 
Five offers were on hand and all turned aside for a re-presentation on 
Tuesday evening at 7 pm.  We now increased the offer to now $4000 over 
list price! We LOST to a buyer with ...No Conditions and offering $5000 
over the asking price! My couple was DEVASTATED beyond Description!!!

Saddened by this experience, we waited until January, 2003. From this date, 
I telephoned, faxed or e-mailed them any properties that might be of interest. They would drive by them and report back to me...but to “no avail”.

Then on April 1, researching New Listings prior to leaving my office that 
Tuesday evening, was another property on Chippewa Road with “acreage, a ranch home and garage”. No picture was yet shown (due to being a new 
listing). The price seemed reasonable. Immediately, I called my clients leaving messages to call ASAP. Carlo was working a 16-hour shift and unable to view 
this property until Thursday at 4 pm (April 4).

In checking their file, discovered this was the SAME PROPERTY they had 
loved So Much! The listing Sales Reps advised me that “circumstances” 
prevented the former buyer from closing on the transaction the end of 
March. The owners had already moved to Grimsby and the country home

As you recall, Thursday and Friday were the ICE STORM DAYS!!! 
Remember those bad weather days? But, “Come Hell or High Water,
Blizzard  or Ice” I was definitely meeting them at the property at 4 pm! 
Someone else had viewed the listing Wednesday evening and another
Realtor in ahead of me that blustery, snow-driven day. I was prepared with Purchase papers for Carlo and Sylvia to sign. EXCITED with this Second Opportunity, they did not want to LOSE it again! From the house, I called 
the Listing Sales Rep who also lived in West Lincoln requesting an 
Appointment to have this signed offer presented TODAY!
It's Horrible Weather!”, they stated and suggested we delay a day.
I INSISTED upon presenting this Offer tonight, regardless of the blizzardy 
conditions. I waited at the house...and one hour later, came their call 
on my Cell Telephone that the owners were out grocery shopping and
having a Birthday Party for their 5-year-old son in early evening. 
Then stated that I would “get off these icy roads” while still a bit of 
daylight and drive down the escarpment into Grimsby for dinner.
I would wait there for their call...8:30, 9:30, 10:30 or whenever!

The owners agreed to meet with us at 8:30 in their Grimsby home,
especially knowing that the Offer was from the Burlington Realtor's clients
who had competed in the November auction...and Lost!

Being “burned” by their previously accepted offer, the Sellers did not want 
to sign anything without their lawyer's review and approval of the Offer. 
I was Most Hesitant to hold over the Offer to Friday, fearing a competition-situation again...suggesting they include a clause based on THEIR Lawyer's approval. We stressed this was a good offer at “Full Asking Price” ... early closing...with conditions only on financing and water testing.
It was agreed that they would not consider or entertain another offer 
until resolved with their lawyer and us.

Friday's weather was Worse than Thursday! It was mid-afternoon when the Listing Sales Rep communicated with me. I consulted with my Buyers and 
they with their Sellers agreeing VERBALLY with all terms and conditions. 
I gladly drove to Grimsby Friday evening ...also had my clients there, so all paperwork with any changes could be initialled and signed copies distributed. WHEW! What a Great Sigh of Relief!

Would it surprise you to know that 2 other Realtors called the Listing Office 
on Friday with Offers to present?

This truly was a “Picture-Postcard-Property” to Carlo and Sylvia.
They waived their conditions within the designated days.
They closed on the transaction end of April, 2003

The additional Good News is that within the year, they plan to marry in a 
country church near Lake Erie...and Guess Who is Invited to their Wedding?

Actually, with several friends, they met in Jamaica the following April,
to honour the event of their wedding. Under a flowered arbour
on the island's tropical white sand beach, they were married...
complete with wedding gown and bouquets of tropical flowers.

(Note: names have been changed to protect their identities)


I could write about several other Real Estate Experiences.
One of Unimaginable Interest
was a private island in the St. Lawrence River
with a “turn-of-the-century” castle.
(at that time it was Jorstadt Castle)
You may see the current Singer Castle, as now known, on Internet.
Have a'll be Fascinated!

Merle Baird-Kerr . . . rewritten December 19, 2011
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