All posts by canadianmamaontherock

I am a French Canadian mama of two living on a Rock. I am here with my husband and while he works all day I get to go and play on this beautiful island. Ours kids study in Canada so I also find myself visiting them as much as I can. Basically, I don't have time to get a job, I'm a Mama!

Getting Ready!

The turkey has been taking out of the freezer and put in the fridge. The brine bucket is out of the garage and getting washed in the kitchen. The house and ”Love Shack” have been cleaned, Daddy Cool and Mama are getting ready for Thanksgiving!



This weekend is not only Canadian Thanksgiving, it is also Round The Sound and Thing 1, Thing 2 and my niece a.k.a. Gougounes, are coming to the Rock for turkey dinner AND to swim the Round The Sound on Sunday.

Round the Sound is a annual event on the Rock. You can swim either 10 Km, 8 Km, 4 Km, 2 Km and 800 meters. In Open Water Swimming Magazine, it is ranked 15 out of 100 open water swimming events in the world.

I was supposed to swim the 2 Km but my ENT has said NO! So Thing 1, Gougounes and my Floatie will have to swim the 2 Km without me. Thing 2 is swimming the 4 Km.

I hope they will have a good swim, unfortunately, tropical storm Leslie has been going around in circle to our East and she just won’t go away. This means that it has been windy on our little Rock in the middle of the Atlantic. This is what it looks like in the Sound this morning. Yes it looks bad, but let me say, it is better than yesterday.


We have a pretty busy weekend on the horizon. The kids ( and I will include Gougounes in this), arrive today on Westjet. Then, Thing 1 will take my bike to TCD to practice the motorcycle circuit at TCD. Thing 1 is riding the Bermuda motorcycle test tomorrow at 2 pm. If she passes, she will be able to use my bike when she comes on island and I won’t have to rent one! But before she can pass it, she needs to practice the following:

Motorcycle riding test requirements

The Motorcycle Riding Test is designed to test your ability to control the cycle under many different circumstances including: 

  • making turns;
  • traveling in a straight line;
  • acceleration and braking; and
  • slow speed maneuvers.

Large Circle

You must make one complete turn both ways and return to the stop line. Correct posture and smooth throttle control is the aim of this exercise. While on the circle, look through the turn and lean slightly.. Return to the stop line using both brakes to stop.

Serpentine Ride

While moving forward and keeping both feet on the foot rest, you must ride through the serpentine/zigzag in a controlled manner during the test.


She is already. A very good and confident rider but she needs to practice this on MY scooter. I just hope ”Snowy Antilope” (My Indian name and what I call my bike) survives…

Anyhoo, must go. Am super excited my troops are arriving today. Can’t wait to get this Thanksgiving weekend extravagannnzzza going!



An Ear Update


Next morning post surgery. A highly medicated Mama takes a bad selfie! I actually don’t remember taking this one. Found it in my phone…

Just came back from my latest ENT appointment and I have good news and bad (not so bad really) news.


Let’s be positive and start with the good news shall we? I CAN GET BACK IN THE POOL!!!!!!YEAHHHHHHHHH!!!

Of course, I promised to wear my ear plug, cover it with vaseline and put my bathing cap on. In fact, I put two bathing caps on. One to make sure the plug stays in and one to make sure the other cap stays on.

Dr. Bell proclaimed that my ear was looking healthy, that it was healed properly and that I could resume all activities such as rowing, kayaking and swimming. Just to take it easy for the next two weeks but I can get back in the POOOLLLLLLLLLL!!!!!! I am SOOOOOOO Excited, you have no idea!


Again, it is not so bad really. He doesn’t want me to swim in the ocean just yet. Wants me to wait at least another month before I go and do some open water swimming. He doesn’t want me to take any chances with ocean wave water pressure and catching any bug from the ocean. When I tried to mention the upcoming Round The sound swim, he just shook his head and said, ”I would rather you didn’t”. I asked him if he was a swimmer, (He just moved here from Belfast and looks like he could be a swimmer), he replied that actually, he was. I told him since he is new to the island, he should swim during the Round The Sound on October 7th. He replied, ”I’ll tell you what, I just moved here and I don’t think I am in any shape to swim the Round The Sound. Why don’t you get your ear under control and next year, I will swim it with you!”

Well my friends, that did not fall on a ”deaf ear”! (Just one with 50% less hearing!) I plan on making sure this ear is healthy next year and I will hold him to it!

Till then, sorry to Thing 1, Thing 2, Gougounes and Floatie. You will have to swim the RTS without me but fear not, I plan on following you on my kayak and take photos!

And Floatie, what time shall we meet at the pool tomorrow morning?


Took Over a Year…

But I finally finished it! I started this when we were in London. I wanted to see if I could needlepoint a 3′ X 5′ rug. Turns out I can but man it took a while.

I kept on seeing these rugs in my Erhman needlepoint catalog and I kept thinking, I should do one of these. The one I just finished was on sale, (they are not cheap! Now I know why a good rug is so expensive), but I liked the funky design and thought, ”Hey, let’s try it!”



The rug has traveled. Last February I brought it with me from London to the cottage. I worked on it there and left it there thinking I would work on it every time I went to the cottage and eventually finished it.

Since I couldn’t swim, kayak or paddle board after my operation, I took it out again and started the last little bit I had. When Peter went back to Bermuda and I chilled in Montreal, I brought it back with me to the city and worked on it every minute I could.

When it was time to come back to Bermuda, I only had two little parts left to do. I thought, I am bringing this baby back home and getting it done once and for all!

Well, now it’s done but the canvas was all stretched diagonally. It doesn’t really look like a square rug. I researched what to do and what I found out was that you had to stretch it by stapling it on a piece of wood. Peter helped me put some plywood together and he stapled it while I held it. Now, everyday I am ironing it and hoping slowly it will come back to a square. Once that is completed, I will be able to take it somewhere (don’t know where exactly on this island but I am researching) and have a backing added to officially make it into a rug.

Now that this is done, I can continue working on my skier pillow! At least this is smaller and I won’t have to stretch it once I am done.



Happy Birthday Thing 1!

Now that I am back in Wi-Fi zone I can finally share the video I made for Thing 1’s birthday. Thing 1, You didn’t think you would get away with it did you?

23 years ago today, Thing 1, (a.k.a. Moron)  came into this world roaring and she keeps on grabbing life by the horns every single year.

Happy Birthday kiddo! Don’t ever change. Keep on doing what you do. You are an amazing young woman.

Je t’aimais, je t’aime et je t’aimerais toujours.

Mama and Daddy Cool XOX


Gig vs. Scull

I have been rowing a lot lately.

First, I started ”Gigging” with my friend Lorrie back in May. Definition of a Gig boat is as follows;

In general, during the era of wooden ships, it was smaller and lighter than the longboat, barge or pinnace. It was usually crewed by four oarsmen, and a cox. Generally the oarsmen sat one to a seat, but each only rowed a single oar on alternating sides. The gig was not as sea kindly as the longboat, but was used mostly in harbors.

The Gig boats we used comprise of 6 rowers and a cox man. The seats are stationary, the oars are wood and heavy and it’s a good workout.

I row either out of St. George or Spanish point. Here are some photos of the boats in St. George and what a boat looks like when its being rowed.





I gig about once a week, weather permitting of course.

Then, at the beginning of July, I started the rowing camp out of White’s Island with my Sole Sistah, Summer. TOTALLY different rig. Light boat, sliding seat and VERY TIPY on the Hamilton Harbour waters.

This is what the ”Scull or Shell” boats look like.


The row is very different from the Gig row but it’s also a great workout and I love it.

Question is, which one do I prefer at this point? I don’t know, ask me again in a couple months, and I may have a better idea. For now, I just like the way the oars go into the water and when it catches properly, either in the Gig or the Scull, you can feel the boat responding in a certain way. And, when I am on the water sometimes it gets very ”Zen like”. It’s mesmerizing and I love it.

Asbestos = No Criminal Background Checks

There are times when living in Bermuda is a bit frustrating and funny and all you can do is shake your head. Yesterday was one of those days.

A Little Background

My friend Maria is a substitute teacher on the island. Couple months ago she was talking about it and I thought, that doesn’t seem so bad. This could be a way for me to spend a few hours out of the house during the fall and winter months. I asked her how do you become a substitute teacher in Bermuda? She told me it was really easy and explained the process about filling out the paperwork, getting a criminal background check, getting all your personal id papers notarized and applying. We met, she even showed me her papers. Didn’t seem too complicated, but I forgot I was in Bermuda…

Sunday I was by myself on the island, Daddy Cool was still in New York with Thing 1 so I started to put all my paperwork together. Made copies of everything that will have to get notarized by a local attorney: my passport, my Visa, my birth certificate, my college transcripts and my marriage license. I even sent an email to Thing 1, to ask her to look in Montreal for my diploma. It would seem I will need a copy of my University Diploma. I don’t even know where that is? In a box somewhere in Montreal???

Yesterday I thought it would be a good idea to start with the criminal background check that is required. Maria had told me where to go request it and she said it would take about a week. Since everything has to be handed by August 1st, I thought I better get this process started. I went to the police headquarters by Cedar Bridge Academy only to find this sign:



Hum! Okay, what the heck? I went in to find out what was going on. All they told me was, “We stopped doing criminal checks on July 2nd. We won’t be doing them until further notice.” But they really wouldn’t say why.

I was wondering what to do so I phone the Board of Educators of Bermuda who processes all teachers and substitute teachers applications. I’m the one who broke the news to them that criminal checks were not being done. Since July 2nd! We are July 20th. She asked me if I knew why? (Really? How The F! Would I know.) I did not say that, all I said was “I have no idea and they told me that they wouldn’t do anymore criminal checks until further notice.” Then I asked, “Does this mean you can apply without one?”

Her answer was, ”No this is unacceptable. I will phone them and find out what is going on. In the meantime, you can file the paperwork but nothing will get looked at until we have a criminal background check and your file will get rejected if you don’t get one.”

Ahhhh Bermuda, you never change. I thanked her and left it at that.

I called her back about 20 minutes later since I had another question about the paperwork and it’s at that moment that I found out that the reason why the police is not performing criminal checks is because they found Asbestos in their offices and they had to move. My question then was, “they cannot perform criminal checks where ever they are?” Well, it would seem that they are simply not working or doing any checks whatsoever at the moment was her answer. She also told me to just drive by every so often to see if the sign is gone or if there’s a new sign indicating where they have moved and are back at doing criminal checks. But until I get one, no substitute teaching.

So, for the time being, I will get my paperwork in order. Drive by police headquarters every so often, but not too often, I don’t want the police to think I am a stalker. That may go on my record…

As I have told my friend Maria, I will just wait until the Asbestos has settled.



10 years ago when we lived on De Rock we had an ”IAMCDN” vanity plate on our Suzuki Liana.

New Hampshire 563


I was off island when Daddy Cool sold the car and wasn’t able to keep the plates as a memento.

I swore to myself that if and when we would come back, I would go to TCD and see if the plates were still available and if so, I would  order them.

Six weeks ago I made my way to TCD, got a number and waited almost an hour before being able to order the plates. First they had to verify that IAMCDN was no longer in the system. Upon verification, I got confirmation that it was indeed available. The lady that bought our car in 2012 got rid of her plates! Woohoo!!! So I filled out the paperwork, paid the required $139.00 and was told it would take 4 to 6 weeks.

Well, I think it took more like 7 weeks but it was worth the wait. This morning I picked up my new plates, went to Auto Solutions (the car dealership because they have a ”special tool” to put the vanity plates on,) and voila, 15 minutes later, I drove out of there telling the world IAMCDN!

I said once, I will say it again, ”It’s as if we never left!”