The day after…nothing to crow about

Yesterday was voting day for the Federal Election. I voted by mail as my voting location wasn’t close to me. Most of my friends voting in the advanced polls since it was easier for them. I watched the news yesterday and the line ups were long due to social distancing and covid protocols. Not to mention a reduced number of polling locations due to the fact that schools were off limits. Polls closed at 9:30pm so the results wouldn’t be known until the wee hours of the morning.

While I didn’t vote for the incumbent I knew that he would probably get re-elected…and he did. My former city councillor ran for the Liberals in London-West and she won also. The general consensus is that she did nothing for the constituents in her ward and yet somehow people overlooked that. I don’t care that a person is popular or has a media presence. What are you going to do for the people you represent? You work for US! We ended up with exactly the same results as the last election in 2019. 610 MILLION dollars spent to get the same result. UGH!! There was a part of me that considered not voting because it just seemed like so much effort and there is a feeling like “did my vote matter”. I voted for the candidate that I thought would do the best job because non of the platforms really spoke to me (except they all yelled “GIVE ME YOUR MONEY”).

Last night I was watching CBC with the political commentators. When I watch it I’m reminded of watching the shows with my Dad. Tim Powers is a hoot and my Dad liked him too. He doesn’t take himself too seriously. At the end of the day there are things that matter more than politics…family, friends and love.

NEWS

What are your primary sources for news these days? Are you confident that your sources present the news accurately, fairly, and without bias? Or have you given up trying to keep up with the news anymore?

To answer the first question it depends on what I’m looking for. CP24 is a Toronto news station and it’s the one I watched for updates from the premier on covid briefings. I would go to the Facebook page for updates on the lockdown situation as it was usually more up to date than other sites. I watch CBC for political reporting. I watch it in the evening when they have a panel on from each political party. I know it’s slanted but it’s definitely not as much as it used to be. The political pundits aren’t bashing each other. Of course I watch the local news at 6pm but there is very little local news on it anymore so I usually just watch about half.

Am I confident my sources present he news accurately, fairly, and without bias? Goodness no. I was watching a woman on CTV news (channel 17) interview someone on the vaccine passports and I don’t know whether she was trying to play devil’s advocate but her questions were total nonsense. I watched an interview with someone trying to explain who the organizers are of the rallies against the PM. As I’m watching it I know that it’s just their opinion.

I haven’t given up on keeping up with the news as I grew up in a family that read the paper everyday and watched the news. I don’t get a newspaper anymore as it’s expensive and it’s more opinion pieces than actual news. There is a difference between news and information. For the election I had to go to the elections Canada website to find out how to vote by mail. Even then it wasn’t that helpful. Going to a candidates Instagram tells me a lot about the person. One candidate seems to be all about the Instagram photo “a social media presence”.

I will admit that there are days when watching the news right now is exhausting. There is very little good news. Last night I finished watching Home Town Takeover with Erin and Ben. When I feel overwhelmed with news there is nothing like watching people doing good in the world.

Monday Peeve “The vocal minority”

I wasn’t sure what to title this post for today. I was going to title it “freedumb” which seems to be one of the words floating around for the people who are disobeying the rules that were put into place to protect our society. The vocal minority is a term that I heard a someone on CBC use and it rings true.

On September 1 there were rallies all over the world and the one in my city happened to be set up in front of a hospital. Seeing that is like a kick in the gut because I haven’t even had an in person Dr appointment for almost 2 years. September 3 was the anniversary of my Mom’s death and in 6 days it will be 15 years since my twin died. The Drs were so compassionate. When the nurse phoned to tell me my Mom died she asked if I was ok and I had someone to stay with me. You have the right to disagree with the rules but if you want to have a rally do it somewhere else!! It’s disrespectful. On Saturday my Grocery Guy posted a video from a local bakery sharing her views on the vaccine passport. It doesn’t go into effect until September 22 but they have received very nasty comments on google. The sad thing is that they aren’t the only business that is dealing with this. A local coffee shop has had people stand outside their cafe. All I can think is GROW UP. These businesses have been closed for months and they have extra expenses to make sure that their place of businesses follows covid protocols. On Friday my friend and I had to write our name, our phone number and what time we were served for contact tracing. I would happily use a vaccine passport so I wouldn’t have to do that.

Yesterday I went to my local coffee shop to get something for lunch. I saw a woman walking her dog and the people sitting at the patio tables petting it. All the tables were full. There is something so comforting seeing friends spending time together over a coffee. I don’t know about you but I will do everything I’m asked in order for that to continue!!

People watching at the coffee shop

I’ve been thinking about my Mom a lot today as it is 6 years since she died. Luckily my friend suggested today to go for coffee and it is still warm enough to sit outside. My friend said it seems to be busy anywhere you go today (University students). We both had the same idea of going to Black Walnut Cafe. Unfortunately all the table were taken outside so we sat inside. They leave a table vacant in between for social distancing. I was facing out so I could see everyone in line and my friend could when they came in. My friend leaned over and asked if I saw the woman with a yellow bathing suit and short red shorts. She told me you should get a look from the side. There were a lot of cropped tops and tights/leggings and one woman had black ripped jeans on. The entire time I could hear my Mom in my head “what the heck are they wearing?”. My parents were fairly strict in dress code and they taught us to look respectable when you are leaving the house. Even today I would consider myself dressed down to go to a coffee shop with a striped t-shirt and black pants.

My grandmother liked nothing better than to go to a mall to people watch and she passed that on to my Mom. Growing up I didn’t understand why it mattered what I wore unless we were going somewhere fancy with a dress code. I remember going into a wedding dress shop with my friend when we were bridesmaids and you get treated differently if you wore jeans than if you went looking like you could afford to shop there.

We ended up at my local bank as I putting my debit card back in my purse I could see it was looking a little ratty. Surprisingly it wasn’t that busy for a Friday before a holiday. The teller took my card and asked if I do online banking. Apparently you can apply for a new one online. As she put my card through she said “this is well loved”. I got some money out as well. My friend teased what is cash? During covid I’ve rarely used cash but my parents instilled in me it’s always good to have some on hand for emergencies.

Coming home we passed my old neighbourhood. We counted the election signs which is something I would do with Mom. I’ve been watching the political panels just like my Dad would. Even years after they have gone those values remain. Looking respectable, the value of money and the importance of voting.

SHARE YOUR WORLD (deep questions!)

https://sparksfromacombustiblemind.com/2021/08/30/share-your-world-8-30-2021/

QUESTIONS    (Going DEEP on these today)

Are human beings required to better themselves and will doing that make them happier?

I think it depends on how we determine “bettering themselves”. If we are talking about a better job, better house etc those things don’t necessarily make someone happier. We aren’t required to better ourselves but I would hope that people learn and grow. Watching the news right now it seems like there is so much anger. Maybe the world would be a happier place if people would do better.

Is it easier to love or to be loved?

For me it’s easier to love. Growing up as a twin I was loved unconditionally but when she died I wasn’t as trusting so I found it harder to be loved.

Outside traumatic brain injury, can memories be completely erased?

No. My Aunt was in an automobile accident and lost a lot of short term memory but she could remember things back in her nursing days. I get emails from clothing stores I’ve purchased from. Recently there was a picture that was very similar to an outfit Janet had in blue. It’s the simplest things that can evoke a memory.

Is there such a thing as a good death?

Having 3 family members who have died I would have to say that there probably is but I haven’t experienced it myself. When I went to the Twinless Twins conference I met many people whose twins died of cancer, suicide or accident. All are different and all involve a different way they process the death.

and one ‘silly’ one because the former questions were fairly serious:   What do you imagine is inside a baseball?

A lot of spit.

Gratitide

I’m grateful for friends and family to talk to in tough times

Deja Vu

This is certainly an appropriate word for how I am feeling this week. I remember when I got my first covid vaccine and the mixed emotions that I had. The Dr giving me the shot asked how I felt and I answered nervous but at the same time I was excited because I was closer to getting back to normal. After I had my second shot I was able to get a hug from my friend for the first time in almost a year. We’ve gone out for coffee and it was so nice to be able to sit and catch up in person. As the calendar inches closer to teachers and students going back to in person learning I wonder how long it will last? The last time I was talking to my friend who is a high school teacher I thought that things would be more settled this year. The other day one of the word prompts was “FORWARD” and there are times when it feels like we are taking one step forward and two steps back.

I recently wrote about the upcoming Federal election. I am watching CBC and listen to the political pundits as they discuss what is happening on the campaign trail. The polls have the Liberals and Conservatives tied. Yes polls are not always an indicator but I know that no party is going to get a majority. My representative will likely get re-elected. It’s like ground hog day…doing the same thing over and over.

As it gets closer to September I feel that pang of missing my Mom and my sister. If we weren’t in a pandemic I might have planned something with friends. While I keep busy the nights are the hardest. Time helps but we never stop missing our loved ones. I’m glad that it’s going to be cooler next week so I can go out for coffee or lunch.

Monday peeve August 23/21

In Canada we are currently 1 week into a federal election campaign. While I am peeved that we even need to have an election during the 4th wave of a pandemic my peeve is about trying to find information on the candidates. I remember having the same problem during the last election. My municipal councillor is now running as a Liberal candidate in the London West riding (where I used to live). She has a large following on Instagram but if you look at the people congratulating her very few are actually Londoners. The candidates in my riding are the same ones that ran in the last election…except for the Conservative candidate. If I go to their websites it just links to the platforms for the party. When I was eligible to vote for the first time the cards we would get in the mail actually had information on their community service, maybe a picture of their family, if they were lifelong Londoners or not. I’m one of those people that thinks you should have some experience before you put your hat into the ring. 2 years as a councillor doesn’t cut it.

15 years ago my twin and I volunteered for a candidate in our riding. It seems like a lifetime ago. Voting was important. At the moment I am undecided. I don’t want to put an X beside a name just for the sake of saying I did it.

LOOKING FOR THE GOOD IN THE WORLD

Right now it is easy to feel discouraged with all the bad news in the world. Add to it an election that we don’t need and all of the questions regarding how to do it safely. It’s no wonder I couldn’t turn my mind off last night when I went to bed.

I decided that I would do what I always do when I feel down is write a list of things I’m thankful for…

  1. Love. Seeing friends with pictures of their spouses on date nights or with their kids.
  2. Friends that encourage each other.
  3. My grocery people. Yesterday I got my grocery lady that always asks how I am. Who knows September is not a good month for me.
  4. Farmers Markets. I got a good haul yesterday. It just tastes so much better than the stuff you get at the store
  5. My local coffee shop. Yesterday they posted on Instagram that they are donating proceeds from all their lemonade sales for the next 5 days to Make a Wish.
  6. Finding the perfect Christmas gift for a friend.
  7. Shopping local. You will never get that personal connection going to a mall.
  8. The little conveniences that make life easier. Online banking, instant coffee from my Keurig (the faster it gets to me the better!) and laundry in apartment.

Share your world August 9-2021

https://sparksfromacombustiblemind.com/2021/08/09/share-your-world-8-9-2021/

QUESTIONS

Restrictions are being lifted all over the world.  Do you feel it’s safe to go out and mingle in crowds in light of the Pandemic?

In Ontario most things are open with capacity limits. We still have to wear a mask. I feel safe going out for coffee or to a restaurant. I got a haircut recently. They have you write down your name on a sheet when you walk in, sanitize and they wipe down the chairs when you are finished. I wasn’t big on crowds before covid so that doesn’t really change for me. I recently went to a grocery store for the first time since well before covid and it was not a pleasant experience. The hard part is watching the news and many of the “experts” have differing opinions on what is safe.

What are some things that are okay to do occasionally,  but definitely not okay to do every day?

Splurging on new clothes, a nice meal etc.

Eating cake. It’s a treat for special occasions.

Wear pjs all day

Would you relocate for love (romantic or otherwise)?

I don’t know

Do you believe in any conspiracy theories (no judgment)?

No. As I said in the first question it’s confusing enough listening to the mainstream news.

Local

The Friday Reminder and Prompt for #SoCS July 31, 2021 | (lindaghill.com)

No photo description available.

Your Friday prompt for Stream of Consciousness Saturday is “the last photo you took.” Take the last photo you snapped. What’s the first word that comes to mind when you look at it? That word is your prompt. Enjoy!

How appropriate that the last photo that I took with my phone is one of food. I wrote about my perfect summer day in my last blog post.

While there are a few foods that I could have chosen to write about the word local encompasses so much right now. A couple days after my birthday in June my friend and I went to this coffee shop for a belated birthday treat. They had recently updated their mobile app and had some kinks to work out. Their debit machine wasn’t working so we ended up getting our order for free. Since it’s a local spot they get to know their regular customers and the barista knew I was one. On the day this photo was taken I saw the owner come out with someone’s order. I couldn’t hear the conversation but could tell by the exchange that her bowl was on the house because there was a mix up with the order and they had to wait a while. You don’t get that type of service at a chain like Starbucks or Tim Hortons. Shop local or support local is a hashtag that is used often. I know that this coffee shop appreciates every customer because it’s a choice where you choose to spend your money.