Saturday, June 29, 2013


See that picture there? That's me. A dreamer. Living in a cornucopia of reveries floating around in my head.
I'm much better off as a passenger than a driver. As a passenger I can while away the hours, staring out the window ruminating on whatever is on my mind. My husband knows the deal and does not expect a lot of interaction from me.
Dichotomy means a contrast between two things that are represented as being opposed or entirely different. A classic description of my husband and I. He is a social butterfly and I'm an introverted caterpillar. If it wasn't for him, I would likely be a hermit.
But stark contrasts can be seen all through life. The ying and the yang seems to effect us all.
As a dreamer, I gotta say, why is that? Why this constant push me/pull you? Even the Beatles recognized it "I don't know why you say goodbye I say hello.
Worse, as a Christian, it gets even tougher.

Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ.

Are you kidding me? You are asking me to take all the constant thoughts, ideas, dreams imaginations passing by at mock speed and bring them into captivity. That is like herding cats. That is the dichotomy of a dreamer!

Luckily for me, I'm a reasonably disciplined individual so I try not to let everything, and I do mean everything, run amuck up there. But it is not easy. I'm prone to dream, to wander, think about, picture.

I've had this discussion with God which usually ends up with me just blithely raising my hands in defeat. And fortunately for me he knows I am but dust, a frail human born into sin who struggles everyday just like the rest of us. And I belong to Him. I'm His child, which is comforting because we know the apple does not fall far from the tree and that means that God is a dreamer too - An expert one.

So here is another dichotomy. Me, a frail sinner, can come before God, perfect and sinless, and discuss one to one all my struggles, screw ups, victories and dreams. No point in trying to hide them is there....

He listens patiently and then, gently through His word, a song, creation, His still small voice, or so many numerous other avenues, tries to direct and guide me into what is always perfect and best for me.
He takes this dreamer and wraps me into His own dreams. The ones He has for me. And with God,
"All things are possible for them that believe." 

Those are the kinda words a Dreamer loves to hear....

Sunday, June 23, 2013


Last Sunday night I went out for a bike ride. I had been in most of the afternoon, snoozing and sort of watching a movie when I thought I would stretch my legs and take Amelia for a walk. It was such a beautiful night! I was missing it, enclosed in my little cocoon of a living room. So I dropped Ami off, picked my bike up and headed down the waterfront trail. There had been rain on and off and more to come but at this point there was a break in the clouds with an incredibly blue, freshly-washed sky and gorgeous cloud formations as the last bit of rain headed out and you could see rumours of more in the distance. Apparently, I was not the only one taking advantage of the golden evening light by the water. Everywhere I looked, Shiny Happy People. I have that song on my I-pod/I-pad and it just stuck in my head as I pedalled by. 
"Shiny Happy People laughing
Meet me in the crowd, people, people
Throw your love around, love me, love me
Take it into town, happy, happy
Put it in the ground where the flowers grow
Gold and silver shine
Shiny happy people, holding hands, shiny happy people holding hands"
I zoom by a co-worker, hand in hand with her lover. "HEY!, See you tomorrow!!"
I zoom by an older couple, complete with matching walkers
I zoom by two young women, one pushing a stroller with a happy baby. Maybe these two are not so happy as they are discussing the faults of various men....
I zoom by singles working on keeping their weight off, or taking their dogs out. Dogs, especially those out for a walk, are ALWAYS  happy. It's one of the things I love about them.
So, I'm enjoying the weather, the bike ride, the love and camarderie of my fellow Bellevillians as I cruise by. It is a good, cultural, connected feeling. 
But then, it happens.... I look down as I'm humming my Shiny Happy People tune and there hanging by a thread is, I'm sure, a black widow spider. It is black, big and has some sort of mark on its back. Not good people, not good. It is there just blowing in the breeze tagging along with me on my bike ride. The scenerio was kind of like..
"Shiny Happy People holding...AAAAGGGHHH!!!!!"
Of course, I immediately remove my left hand from the handlebar and consider how to stop the bike with one hand, get off and get away. Ms. Spider's thread continues to get longer so she is now a lot closer to my pumping, freaking out legs than to my hand. I decide to take the risk and swipe at the invisible thread, praying to God above that BWS does not land on me in the process. God above, knowing this is a lovely evening for me and does not want to ruin it, abides by my prayer and the black widow spider exits from my bike ride. Whew.....sigh of relief and my heart starts to slow down. 
No one noticed my little freak-out session. They are all still shiny, happy people, laughing and holding hands.

Saturday, June 15, 2013


I have a good friend and she tells me "Cyndi, you can't be good at everything." She's right of course, nobody can. Would be nice. I have my foibles, my blind spots, even dare I say, my disabilities.

I have no sense of direction. Zip. Notta. It's some kind of disability. Please don't use "north, south, east or west" when giving me directions. Means absolutely nothing. I'm the one who gets off the elevator and has no idea whether to turn left or right. When we travelled to Italy it was a given that if I was not with my family, I would probably still be wondering around the Venice airport.

This morning I had to go to the hospital for a test. Luckily for me, I had worked in the hospital before, for about 10 years, so I pretty much knew how to find my way around. What I was not privy to was the amount of construction the hospital is presently under and many familiar passageways are moved/closed off or basically bricked right over. Everywhere I turned there was no door where there used to be, or there was no hall but a drywalled blank slab waiting to be painted. Oh, there are signs everywhere, pointing here and there but that is a risky thing to expect a direction-challenged person to rely on. I knew I had to get to the X-ray area which, last I checked, was in the same area as emergency. So, I made my way to emerg only to find a door. Tried the door. Nope....So I asked the lady at Triage
"Oh you can't get there from here anymore, you have to go back down the hall, up to the second floor and then back down another way to the first floor."
Are you kidding?
It is right on the other side of this door.
She was not kidding.
So I said "wish me luck" and off I went down the unfamiliar maze-like passageway attempting to find an elevator that would take me up and then, somehow back down and to my destination. I made it, eventually, though I was nearly 15 minutes late.
At this point in my life, I have a pretty good idea who I am, where I am going (mentally anyway), and what I want to accomplish. But when it comes to physically finding someplace, I am reliant on the kind hearted, family and those who can use "left, right, the big red barn, the house with the white picket fence, etc."
I can't be good at everything!
Lost again, unaware that Lake Louse is right behind me....

Monday, June 10, 2013


I wanted to take some time to acknowledge the humble crossing guard. I've known a few in my time, as I'm sure you all have. They are faithfully making sure you, me and our loved ones, old and young, are making it safely across the busy roads. 

In the past couple of years, since I've moved into town, I have had 3 different crossing guards working on the corner around my street on a busy, 3-lane road. 

The first man always welcomed me heartily and he waved at every car passing by. This was sometimes a little distracting if you were driving but you could not help but wave back. At Christmas you would find him dressed as Santa Claus, waving away to whoever would acknowledge the jolly red saint. He eventually retired and we moved onto the next fellow. 

Now this gentleman was not so extroverted. Not much of a talker and he was serious about his job. He insisted I get off my bike and walk it as he escorted me across the road. It was protocol you see and he wanted to make sure I was following the rules. One day I was driving home on my lunch only to come across a horrific scene. It seems a car malfunctioned and had lost control. It struck my crossing guard, made it around the corner and crashed into a tree. I came on the scene just as EMS was performing CPR. My crossing guard, with his shirt ripped open, lying on the ground, looked like he was sleeping as they pumped up and down furiously on his chest. Sadly, he never made it. For a while, there was a board set up with flowers and notes to remember him by. Now there is only the scar left on the trunk of the tree where the car landed. 

I have a new crossing guard now. He is a big reader, and as he waits to escort the kids you can usually find him sitting in a chair under the tree with a book. He has no qualms of me zooming by on my bike either. I just check and if the road is clear I yell " I got it!" and keep on going. 

As I continue to bike to work there are other crossing guards I pass by. One, a very nice lady who always yells out to me "Good Morning! Have a great Day!" I always appreciate that blessing. 

Another fellow has been on the job for a long time. He is a quiet one as well but does his job and very rarely has he missed a day.

So here's to you Crossing Guards. Thanks for all you do. Even though, sometimes, your job is dangerous, even deadly. Thanks for all your cheerful welcomes and waves, your hard work regardless of the weather, and for keeping me and my loved ones safe. 

Sunday, June 2, 2013

A Good Rain

There is nothing like a good rain. Not the kind you get on cold November days or early spring that are sleetish, fierce and grumpy. 
I mean a gentle welcoming downpour and just soaks everything. 
They are great for cooling things off after a hot day and making the flowers perk up. Birds laugh and sing, excited for the crop of easy picking worms. And who doesn't like the sound of the rain falling on a tin roof?

I like to get on my "little red riding hood" rain coat (a fire engine red slicker), flip the hood over my head and head out. I don't have a pair of good rubber boots, but if I did, they would be yellow and I would take on every puddle like nobody's business. 

The rain falls on my slicker with a little rat-a-tat-tat sound, like popcorn and the steady drizzle all around sounds like constant applause, sometimes getting louder depending on the intensity. I pass by a rain gutter to hear the water gurgling happily underneath.
If Amelia is with me, the smells are more than she can handle. 

When we were in Italy, we headed out one day to peruse Rome. Dressed in typical summer wear we were not prepared for rain. But before we knew it the rain started up and industrious men were yelling "Brelli, brelli, brelli?" at us everwhere and holding out umbrellas to buy. Alas, we were already soaked to the skin, didn't seem much point in taking on an umbrella at that point. The ancient cobble stones shone and I could not help wondering how much dust had been washed away only to be tromped in by the history of human feet bringing it all back. I stopped to take the photo below of my family walking along but I can't help but notice the smirk on the man's face who is sitting the rain out under cover watching the silly tourists getting wet!
 By the time we got back to our hotel, the owner, a dead ringer for Antonio Banderas complete with ponytail, took one look at me and said in his lovely italian accent "oh.....Poor Mama!" Can't complain. I got to walk in the rain in Rome! 

So if you are in the middle of a rainy day and it's a "good rain" that you are watching glumly from your window, I say grab your "brelli" or you rain slicker, get on out there and enjoy the cocooning effect of rain falling all around you with all it sights, smells and sounds.