Saturday, March 26, 2011


I had some music blasting Friday as I cleaned up the flat. P Diddy's (aka Dirty $...aka etc) latest hit rang through the doorway & the tears started flowing. My dear little prairie Mennonite Granny would certainly not have anything in common with this famous rap star...but the words had me thinking of my Gran who was then in hospital. I was reminded of how over the past few hospital visits there was talk of Gran's sister & daughters "singing her home". I don't know the intentions of the lyrics (I would assume hardly biblical), but that is the tune that will remind me of my Gran's passing.
It was only a few hours later I received the call that Gran had in fact passed away; and my Gran's sister was there earlier in the day signing & praying Gran's way up to the heaven she so fiercely believed in.

I'm thankful that Alvin & I had one year (today) to spend with her- it's crazy to reflect on all the changes over the past year we've spent back in my Motherland.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Neither Here nor There

I'm typically an absent-minded person, but tonight- it's something else all together. I meant to fold the dry laundry & throw in another load that didn't get done over the weekend, but instead I got sidetracked by the dirty dishes in the sink. While I filled the sink with soapy hot water something led me into the bedroom. I would like to eat my supper but what to prepare? I'd love to finish knitting the scarf I've started, read a chapter in the book that I am thoroughly enjoying, perhaps I could sit down & watch a bit of the Raptors game...I am getting nowhere. And now I've found the dirty dishes soaking in cold water*sigh*.

I could chalk it up to my piecemeal day. I was downtown for a half day of training and back to the regular office for the afternoon. But I know that's not really it.

Things for me have been going so well; I've been excited about:

- the first day of Spring
- Pop's birthday today
- the graduation party friends hosted for me last weekend
- the promise of a nice tax return
- the promotion I was offered & accepted (today I started a full-time permanent position in my new-ish field of human resources)*weeee*

But to make sure that I don't float away to the clouds with happiness there have been a couple happenstances that have kept my feet planted firmly on the ground.

My dear old Gran took a fall & things are not looking good (she's been so up & down in the past few months- it's been awful to watch her suffer...then see her spirit come back with a vengeance & she's home cooking up a storm; but only to receive a phone call a couple days later that she's back in hospital). I'm heartened that my mom is together with her 2 siblings, her hubby & her nephew in Saskatoon to try to figure out what happens next.

We also received heart-breaking news from Zambia. We were informed on Sunday that our dear Uncle Watson has passed away. There is so much to say but nothing feels quite right yet.

Monday, March 14, 2011

March's lion

It looks like the lion of March is retreating at last. The sun is glorious out my balcony window & it was almost warm enough for my midday jog- oh how incredible it feels to be back running on the road. (I will continue to ride the stationary bike/ run on the treadmill in the gym at work for the rest of the week- but today it was so exciting to hit the road & enjoy the fresh outdoor air)...

I told myself I would take photos this weekend of my "graduation party". But Alvin only took one photo on his phone so if we can get it off I'll post it here. A sincere thanks to Ry & Krysta for co-hosting a party for me. I usually wouldn't flaunt my achievements so loudly but someone once told me that it is worth marking some of the accomplishments that you've been committed seeing that I couldn't afford to be at my real convocation in London, England- Ry & Krysta got a few good friends together & I've been able to feel good about the completion of my Masters- & now on to other challenges*smile*

Of other interest I have acquired a hammock. I happened to mention how I would love to have a hammock one day- honestly, how luxurious is it to be able to recline in the sun with a good book? Gin & tonic within reach... Funny enough the sweet bus driver who takes me & a couple Jamaican ladies to work every morning decided that she would give hers to me. Apparently she never uses it- how hilarious is that? I may not be able to hang it off my balcony (condo rules)- so I may have to ask Tom & Dev for some yard space*giggling*. I love random incidents like that. These are the small things that remind me to be thankful for being just where I am right now. (It's easy to be nostalgic for Zambia with all this snow...)

Thanks for the photo Pop.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Gangsta rap meets red-neck Albertan hillbilly

I realize that I haven't posted my day-to-day stories like I used to in Lusaka. I'm hoping that this post will inspire me to take the time to reflect & write a little more regularly. A few thoughts that have been on my mind while walking these suburban streets:

1. I was grinning from ear-to-ear the other morning listening to all the birds chattering to each other on my morning walk to catch the bus. Now that the sun is up when I head out I can't help but smile at the busy chirping & fluttering- I think I even heard a woodpecker this morning.

2. Seriously, what's wrong with pet-owners in this city? I have two beefs. The first being that nearly everyday I walk down a trail I meet a dog owner with a dog off-leash. Nine times out of ten the loose dog runs right up to me. Sometimes sniffing, sometimes barking or growling, but always followed up by some awkward owner stating how friendly their snarling dog happens to be. I sigh, thank my lucky stars that the dog is friendly & bite my tongue, tighten my hands into fists so I don't point rudely to the sign that says "Trails are on-leash areas". Secondly, it seems that dog owners have become a bit lazy when it comes to picking up after their dog poops- maybe we need to get some more by-law officers out patrolling during this cold spring. One also can't help but notice how nasty all the yellow stains are on the gorgeous white snow...but cleaning up after pet pee is not a battle I'm likely to win*grin*

3. One day out walking it was all I could do to not burst out laughing. A young man was walking towards me- perhaps 16 or 17 years know that age. It was a cold day & he was sporting his skinny jeans with huge sneakers, a ball-cap with the straight brim (very gangsta), a bandanna tied stylishly around his neck, and a partially zipped red plaid lumberjack coat. The overall impression: a confused white suburban boy in the middle of winter trying to look a little Cali...while clearly having strong Albertan roots*smile*

4. I am officially a graduate! My convocation took place on March 8th; and since I whined one evening that I would miss attending the event in the UK my dear friend Ry offered to host me a party. I shall take photos this weekend- weeeeeeeeeeeee.

Friday, March 04, 2011

"Australia suits me...

I'm planning a beach work out to prepare for soccer season". That's my friend Clara in a letter she recently sent me from her home in Sydney. It's always wonderful to receive snail mail...but her timing could have been a little more sensitive. This past week, every morning except yesterday was -30 something ridiculous with windchill. I really didn't want to hear about beach workouts.

Being one never to dwell on the negative my grumpy days are behind me & I shall head to the gym to go for a run today...& hope that the temperatures become more reasonable for my outdoor pursuits.