Monday, January 30, 2012

French Baroque

I think it's always nice to keep the company of people who will take you out of your comfort zone. A good friend invited me to an event put on by a group of people who are interested in music of previous centuries- they put on shows with instruments from earlier centuries. My mom & I decided to step out of the old comfort zone & check it out. The concert took place at a beautiful old church in the city. I have to say it wasn't really my thing (the harpsichord is an interesting instrument but not one that makes me want to get up and dance), but it was an interesting night. The musician talked of duelling composers from the 1700s & brawls at the cafes they frequented. It was certainly a far cry from the basketball courts I'm used to- but it was lovely.

That musical event set the tone for an amazing weekend. Saturday I met Tom & Devo's new pup- what a cutey. I'm pleased to introduce Edgar!

Sunday I had a skating date with Andrea & it was so lovely- it was wonderful to hit the ice on a warm afternoon.

These 'anniversary' lilies have also kept me smiling- each day a new one opens- how glorious.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

The Queen of Cliché

In my line of work- dealing with people all the time- I come across a lot of clichés (and a lot of talk about the weather). The funny thing about clichés for me is that I always get them wrong. For example: "Now we're cooking with gas" came out of my mouth as: "Now we're cooking with oil"- not sure I'll ever live that one down at work.

The other night I was lying in bed trying to think of a way to describe a particular feeling in my heart. I thought of the expression "tugging at the heartstrings" and I reflected that not once had I ever considered my heart as an instrument. Then I chuckled when I read "My heart did a pirouette like one of those dancing hippos in Fantasia" (from: The Curse of the Holy Pail, by Sue Ann Jaffarian - a smutty mystery novel series that I can't resist)*grin*.

But neither of these ways to describe the heart have resonated with why my heart is so happy.

One of the boys I used to coach (you know, your average 17 or 18-year old boy) had sent a message to Alvin on Facebook to say hi to me. And there's this feeling of excitement, happiness, awe, or something- that makes me well up with pride that a young kid across all these miles would remember his old coach- even if only for a few minutes. It means so much to me to hear from them via email or Alvin's FB; taking the time to extend wishes or a hello brings out all the warm fuzzies. I invested so much time at those basketball courts that I'm heartened to know that some of the kids have recognized how much I care for them. If I find the right words to describe the feeling, one day, I will post them up here.

I've also been told (somewhere along the way) to take note or commemorate some of life's small achievements. Yesterday I celebrated my 3rd anniversary with my dear Alvin - yay! Here are some flowers & our anniversary candle that are on the kitchen table reminding us of how fortunate we are, and how our lives have changed over these three years. Thanks to all for thinking of us with emails/ snail mail / flowers.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Cold Snap

We all knew it was coming...our unseasonably warm temperatures of the past months now seem like a distant memory. It is currently -28 degrees Celsius but it feels like -39 with wind chill. Alvin has stepped out to work in this madness for a couple of hours. I could think of nothing worse.

We've only had a couple of days of this but I've had the furnace blowing full blast & it seems that I constantly have a pot of tea on the go. I feel like I have a mild headache- on the verge of becoming full fledged due to all the white noise. Inevitably it made me think of power cuts in Lusaka. All the humming from refrigerators, TVs, radios- shutdown; I remember smiling in the dark of my former apartment. Hearing the neighbours conversations loud & clear from behind the wall- no interference from any electrical hums or buzzes. How easy it is to think the grass is greener. And I have forced myself to remember (when praying that my '98 Rav4 will start in the morning, when I can't breathe from the shock of the cold, when I want the furnace sounds to kick off) the mad scurrying of the cockroaches when the power went out. Aiming the flashlight in the kitchen was like a scene from a horror film with the monster roaches running for the dark corners. I am not saying that I prefer this cold...but I'm reminding myself that the joys of shorts & t-shirt weather everyday, anytime of day or night, come with tropical insects...Here's to staying optimistic in 2012!

I had to include this photo of Tom- I don't envy his job as mailman these days*grin*
(Hope ya don't mind Tommy- such an amazing photo).

Thursday, January 05, 2012

Bat Out of...

I felt like such a hypocrite last night. I've always told myself that I'm not a big city girl. During our trip to New York in the Fall I recognized that the pace of life in such big happenin' cities is just too busy for me. I kept telling myself that I would never want to get pulled into such a hectic way of life- always on the go.

I recall recently driving somewhere with my mom; she very gently suggested that I could go a few kilometres over the speed limit (I used to have a heavy foot- but I lost that somewhere along the way). I now putt along in the slow lane like an old lady.

Then there was me last night, getting wound up and hitting the gas pedal very heavily, on my way to yoga. How hilarious is that? Rushing to relax. Sigh. I always have the best intentions to leave on time...instead I end up rushing like a bat out of heck.