November 2016

“When you get to the heart of evil, there is nothing there”(adopted). I oft repeat that line, but each time I use it, it takes on added significance and truth.

I am still missing home, how long does homesickness take to heal? And there have been some unexpected occurences- not even if I were clairvoyant could I have seen them coming. But they came…….

The shine has rubbed off at work too, some days I get overwhelmed other days are just ordinary, other days I could be contented. It’s all in a day’s work, I learn not to bellyache about that, but most days me miss the food at home. Although I am not a ‘foodie’, I have found a few things I like to indulge in. Persimmons, Blueberries, dried mango, samosas and of course the usual- ice cream, stew peas and tuna sandwiches.

The weather is back to normal, for it seems summer is an anomaly here. Even so, I have found reason to enjoy. I do a lot of walking, mostly because I have no choice, and not only because I enjoy the clean and crisp air, but also because I get inspiration from just walking. While I walk, I also search for interesting things to photograph. Somehow these things relax me.

I am trying to engender a spiritual as well as a physical lifestyle- to develop the whole person, mind and body equilibrium………and truth be told, had it not been for the spiritual routine, I wouldn’t have made it thus far. I need to make a final decision though about my spiritual home, and really put shoulder to the wheel on my mission.

I have not been to one funeral since I am here and it’s not because people aren’t dying. It’s more like it’s a private affair (I have heard of the death of strangers but haven’t seen an actual procession, unless there isn’t any). No am not morbid and missing funerals, but then I don’t believe anyone mourns the way we do at home.

My hair has been doing fairly well too, knock pon wood.

I guess me need fi get a drivers license sorted out, will tell you when I do. I can find a million reasons not to, and a million more to get it done.

The mall….I am seeing that in a whole new light. And it’s not through the normal lens. Retail therapy is a real and necessary concept, aside from the whole heap of land space that justifies building massive shopping malls. Even when a man has an abundance, his life does not result from his possessions, Luke 12 v 15. This is a profound lesson especially in a land of plenty. I can think of many more apt adages and bible verses too . ‘ Waste not want not’ for example, and ‘sheep a sweat long hair a hide it’ and also, ‘ we want what everyone else wants, and don’t want what nobody else wants’. But what does it profit a man to gain the whole world and lose his soul….Mark 8 v 36. Eventually, there will be some big garage sales anyhow.

Its harder for me to be my brothers keeper here, I don’t know how you do that when you don’t know your neighbour. I guess it means you leave your comfort zone (dunno). After all, the Good Samaritan was a stranger. The other thing is the race issue, which is never far from my mind. It seems to put a colour on everything I say or do. I was a skeptic before, this has taken it to another level. I have to be fighting with this one, telling myself not to impugn motive or cast aspersions. I have a post on my desk ….. that I must never conclude for others!!! After all, I am the one who said some things know no bias….. and furthermore so far, It has been way better than anticipated. In fact, it has come from unexpected places.

It is easy for us to believe too that everything is about us. In fact, most of the times the way a person behaves has nothing to do with you, although sometimes it is indeed a reflection of you. It’s not easy to know the difference but it’s necessary to learn. The old adage rings true again, ‘you don’t like me- it’s because you don’t know me’.

I have ventured outside of the city walls a bit- to Onoway, and Calgary . I have never before seen such a wide expanse of open land space, without concrete and steel. It is both refreshing and scary. Cattle grazing, horses, barns & bales and bales of hay (the type I usually see in story books), farms (apparently for hay), lakes and oil drills. Yes those are just littered here and there. Lakes not beaches…….makes me wonder if they are fake. The concept of a remote location is quite different here too, back home I lived in quite a remote location and I loved it. But I wouldn’t want to live remotely here, no sir.

And I must speak about St. Albert separately. Tree-lined roads, parks, bus system, stores and shops, houses and communities just the same, but there is a palpable difference- felt not seen. It’s as if the air is crisper and cleaner, there is an aura of security and safety, a breath of genteelness and friendliness, maybe this is a hint of what a paradise is like, without the waterfalls and beaches of course. Places like these make me understand what the sociologists mean when they say your environment impacts your behavior. Places like these  also make me understand why some people abhor big cities, but more than that it reminds me too that big cities come with certain costs- the bigger the city the higher those costs. Another fine example, of how we can’t have our cake and eat it too. I felt different I tell you when I crossed the border back  into Edmonton, and it wasn’t better.
Now this one shocked and annoyed me at the same time, man. Let me clear the air,  I really and truly have a soft spot for animals and I still do because I can’t lay any blame at their feet for this. One day me decide not to walk on the concrete pavement going across a park but to walk across the green lush manicured grass. BIG MISTAKE!!!!! Me haffi start play hop scotch in the grass as me a tell you, me couldn’t find a spot fi walk that don’t have dog s@$%#t. I was appalled, for I don’t see anyone walking their dogs without a bag to clean up after them….. can anyone explain to me what happens here? I saw the same thing another evening while at the bus stop, while walking to the house too.  There is not a spot in the grass that wasn’t decorated……. Please tell me its a form of fertilization, please…………

And of course, I cracked my phone screen twice, and left my lunch bag on a bus twice……… but it’s all good. All in the name of the game.

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