Nov 12, 2011

The Jeffers!!!!

While in Thunder Bay I had the honour, pleasure and satisfaction of meeting a side of my dad's family that until now had been a set of stories and reassurances that they were as awesome as described. 

 My dad grew up in Brandon, MB. Son to John and Dorothy Howard. Dorothy was one of three sisters, maiden name Phillips. I got to meet my Great Aunty Glady who is 99 this year. My dad has spoken so much of her over the years and I guess she saw me in diapers at some point but since then for whatever reason I have never met her. Glady's has two sons Lorne Jeffers and Harry Jeffers. These two characters were also a source of constant story goodness but I heard more about Lorne than Harry while I was younger. It wasn't till I was older and started talking to my dad about cars more that Harry came into focus.

 Great Auntie Gladys lives in the Thunder Bay care home or whatever the term is for it and she loves it. I was fascinated by her and all her stories. I'm already a listener (for the most part) so put me in a room with experience, determination and a generation of survival and I am all ears. I was actually surprised because you hear of such horror stories in those places but not so in this case and my cheeks hurt from smiling so much when I left the first night we visited. We later went out for a chinese buffet with the entire crew wives Rosemary (Harry) and Lorraine (Lorne). It was a great time and I had the waitress capture a few shots for the record. 

Harry on the left, Lorraine beside him (Lorne's wife), Great Auntie Glady's up front, Rosemary (Harry's wife) in pink and Lorne on the left. What a smiley bunch!!

Rosemary, Harry and Great auntie Gladys

 While in the Bay I went on a huge bike ride with Harry in the rain (we weren't expecting that). He took me pretty much across the city, down to the marina, up through the university...I was totally lost and just following along. He did offer to have Rosemary pick me up...i think he saw how exhausted I was. I turned it down though...I'm not letting a 69yr old whoop on me that easily!! Harry had a heart scare awhile ago and the doc said get he was knocking off 30+ kms a ride...made me look like I was made of concrete. 

 We also visited Lorn in his garage/machine shop. Harry spent many years as a machinist and Lorne worked to Thunder Bay hydro and is also an experienced machinist/welder etc. Needless to say between the two of these skilled individuals you'd be hard pressed to find something they cannot do. Lorne graduated as an electrical engineer and legend has it he has done some amazing work for Thunder Bay. 
   **this video was put together by the girlfriend of the young guy in here that Lorne helped out. I asked Lorne's permission to post it and while he was hesitant he still let me. It's got to be hard when someone makes something this complimentary in your honour. I loved it, please watch it but please ask permission before sharing it off the blog if you want to**

 Harry was a god send helping me with my van. Every time we went out there seemed to be something new happening. Sometime outside of Sask my oil pressure gauge dropped helplessly limp...I was fearing the worst but it turned out to have just fallen off it's receiver. I noticed a sheen around the front tire and we found that for some reason the copper washer behind the banjo bolt decided to start leaking. Crafty Harry made me a new one in his garage and we fixed it up. We were trying to stop a leaking point where the thermostat housing meets the new manifold but after multiple attempts and even a new thermostat housing I still had leaking in Sudbury. It's not much and I'm reluctant to use a can of sealer but it is a leak...and may end up sealing it in the end.

 We also fiddled with my carb and while it doesn't stick at highways speeds anymore it is proving to be more difficult to start. So first tank of gas isn't as good as the warmed up second tank. Oh well...he showed me what we did so I can dial it back if needed.

 Harry has gotten into the hobby of RC airplanes. We spent a day at the field with his two buddies. I decided to just observe after taking his plane out a few days earlier and driving it straight down into the parking lot of his flying club (a double no no). The sounds of "upupupupupupupup" is still ringing with me!  :)

 Lorne fixed up a mount for my camera and with that, soe fresh pie, some motherly love, some good grub and an amazing visit....I was out the door headed for the Georgian Bay!!

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