Category Archives: writings

Decompressive Lumbar Spinal Surgery or…

…How a stab in the back can be a good thing!

I was diagnosed with Spinal Stenosis and .after waiting almost 6 years and being unable to walk my usual hour every morning I finally got the surgery I needed.

We went to Victoria General Hospital on Nov. 4. After a pre-op wait of about three hours I got a Laminectomy(removal of bone or part of ligament) using Microdisectomy(using a camera and tube, not major surgery) with Foriminotomy (removal of bone around the neural Foramin-the canal where the nerve route exits the spine). I then waited 6 hours in post op until they found a bed for me.

The next morning I felt some pain (not a lot) and after a visit with the excellent surgeon was granted discharge. However the diligent nurses wouldn’t let me go until i urinated a fair amount. I had to wait about 6 hours before I supplied enough urine to get me the ‘all clear’.

We came back to Hornby yesterday (Nov.6) and I’m now prepared to spend 3 to 4 weeks in rehabilitation and physiotherapy. But the expected heavy pain, and unsteadiness seems to be minimal so my own prognosis is very encouraging.

All in all the experience wasn’t fun but it was made manageable by the excellent hospital staff and, of course the expert surgery. And, of course the great care by kathi (she even supplied me with a bag of snacks to add to all the boiled eggs and cereal the hospital served)

So…I hope to continue the walks I was doing 6 years ago and if you see me on the road give a honk and a wave.

Bob Cain


When Mr.Morritt (see yesterday’s photo)came by one day he noticed that I didn’t have a proper handle for my hacksaw. So…the next day he brought over his fret saw and explained how to use it. First I made the proper handle. Didn’t know it needed one as I inherited it without a handle.)

“Oh! This is fun” I thought. Maybe I’ll make a super truck.

I couldn’t help myself. Next I made an owl.

Then I made Waves.


I was born an American, but I got over it.  In 1967, the Viet Nam war was too much for a Korean war veteran, and I decided to emigrate.  I had several countries in mind but visited Canada first.  I crossed the border at sundown and watched the lowering of the new Canadian flag.  To understand my elation, you would have to participate in an American, corpse-de-ballet, flag-lowering grovel, complete with saluting, bugle calls, triangular folding, glycerin tears and synthetic-rubber reverence.  But that Canada Customs agent, with his hat on his head and his cigar jutting from his mouth like the proud bowsprit of a Grand Banks schooner, reefed the flag off the halyards, sauntered across the lawn dragging it behind him, balled it up and stuffed it into the trunk of his car on top of his spare tire, tool boxes and hockey armor.

“By God!” I exclaimed.  “This country is for me!” so I emigrated and became a Canadian citizen as soon as I could.

Oh, please!  Can’t we keep this?  Can’t we please ball up all the empty, chauvinistic, maudlin, anthem-singing, flag-worshipping quasi-patriotism and stuff it south of the border where it belongs?

Vancouver, March 20, 1998

Some Thoughts on the Great

Parliamentary Flag Debate

Leigh Cross