Conspiracy me this….Batman!


We are living in uncertain times it would seem.

Or are we?  Riddle me this Batman!

I am curious by nature.  Currently I am working on my second publication which is purely fiction.  Still I’m doing a lot of research to support the story I’m telling.

I want this story to unfold with a  degree of authenticity to it.   Use modern information, etc.

In my travels over the world-wide web recently I have been coming across several conspiracy theories.  The most recent is the Flat Earth Society.  I’m not sure who began this, or if it has simply remained in place since the beginning of  our kind, but the belief is that the earth is a flat and immobile.  Someone has managed to convince a few high-profile athletes such as Shaq O’Neal that this theory is in fact truth.

An odd thing happens when a ‘celebrity’ weighs in on something.  Suddenly the preposterous can seem plausible.    Why is that?

Shaq states he has driven from Florida to California several times and it’s always been flat.  So…that means the the world is indeed flat.  Alrighty then.

Stating that this planet of ours is stationery and that the sun does indeed revolve around us at a distance of only 3,000 miles and is really  just a little bigger than our moon sounds ludicrous at best.

Then of course the fact that NASA is completely fabricated and designed to hide the truth from us.  The Flat Earth Society insists there has never been any space travel…ever!  So no images of the earth from space have every been taken.  All of the images we’ve viewed have been fabricated.

The Mars rover is on a dessert somewhere or maybe in Arizona and the images are then adjusted to give the appearance of other-worldliness.

Hmmm!

My question would then be why would governments go the expense to fabricate such lies?  And honestly, I don’t want to know what theorists’ reasoning would be for this.

I watched a You Tube video today, 32 minutes in length, that insisted after viewing this video I would know that the earth was indeed flat and accept this notion as fact.

Nope! Didn’t happen.

The person narrating gives no comprehensive evidence.  We do not learn who he is or what his credentials are or how it is has happened upon this information. There was no mention about weather, tidal activity, gravitational pull, earthquakes, volcanic activity, etc.  There is no physical information to support this theory. At one point the argument was that we should feel ourselves moving through space if in fact we were rotating around the Sun and spinning like a top to boot!

And surely when we look out upon the horizon, we should see the curve!

Now I’ve flown in an airplane.  A Boeing 747 travels at approximately 567 miles per hour at 35,000 feet.  Do I feel like I’m hurtling along at an insane speed?  No.  In fact, it feels like I’m hardly moving at all.

This of course has to do with the laws of physics, speed, velocity and all that other lovely mathematical things that I have always been fascinated by even though I’m not quite wired to understand it all in depth.  Still, I get it.  And I’ve been on an airplane a few times.  I’ve seen the earth’s curvature as well.

I’ve photographed the moon and caught the various stages in all their glory.  The moon is definitely round.  Why then would the earth not be so?

Still,  Flat Earthers will tell you that the moon is not round and we only see one side of it.  And they do not offer explanation as to the various moon phases.

Still the questions that have arisen are not answered with hard core fact and proof.  For example, Flat Earthers insist that Antarctica is the end of the world and giant wall of ice some 350 feet high  is at the earth’s end to which it is unknown what lays beyond.  This sounds like an episode from  ‘Game of Thrones’.   And gravity does not exist, at least not in the way that we have been told.

Again no offer of what gravity actually is…just more vague rhetoric.

More concerning, however, is the mindset that happens when a conspiracy theory develops roots.  Why are we questioning what has been proven?  And why are there those among us who refuse to accept fact and choose to instead believe in information that, if anything, lends itself to something of a paranoid state?

If we’ve been lied to about the ‘planet’ we live on for all these years, what else are the powers that be not telling us?

Oh the horror!

In all seriousness, such groups are a little scary to me.  And now a Flat Earther has declared that the no forests exist on earth.  They are gone!

I have added the link to a wiki page link.  It simply has some question and answers.

Have a great day everyone and may the earth continue turn, round and round and round….

Peace.

 

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Another Year…


 

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My birthday is fast approaching.  Next Wednesday I’ll celebrate fifty-nine years!

In a conversation with my daughter last night we discussed age.  While some may say that 59 years of age is old…it doesn’t ‘feel’ that way.  What an odd way to describe our age though as how we feel?

I will always feel the wonder of this world that I inhabit.  Despite all the mess currently going on regarding the politics of our time, this planet of ours is so much bigger and wondrous than we’ll every be.

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We are not all that nice to each other or to our Earth at times, are we?

On Wednesday here in BC we will celebrate not only someone’s birthday but also Pink Shirt Day which is an initiative against bullying.

The theme this year “Make Nice”.

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I’d like to take that challenge a bit further and just ask everyone to practice kindness on a daily basis.

It isn’t easy.

Still the benefits so outweigh the difficulty of dealing with our anger and not projecting it elsewhere.   And if someone is hurting ask if they’d like to talk.

Listening is one the best skills any of us can have.  I have been working on this in a big way.

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Since joining a local Toastmasters chapter a year and half ago my listening skills have increased ten fold.  Still, there is always room for improvement and always will be.

We just passed Valentines Day.  At our Toastmasters meeting we were all asked to say one word that describes what love  means to  us.

After the fact I thought about this quite a bit.  How could one word define love?

And this is what struck me just before falling to sleep a few nights back.

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Love = Freedom

 

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Hate = Fear

Freedom is expansive…it encompasses so much!  Embrace freedom and surrender to a loving heart!

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Kindness matters…always!

 

 

 

 

 

Life in the Fishbowl


 

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I rise just before 6:00 AM. I’ve been sleeping just a tad longer these days.  Leaving the welcome warmth of my bed can be difficult at times.  This has been a cold winter and I always turn the heat down in the evenings before going to bed as I cannot sleep well when it’s too stuffy.  Having the air be a bit on the cool side is okay when I’m tucked beneath my down-filled comforter.

Pillows tucked around me,  just so, with just my wee head popped out the top.  When the alarm sounds to rouse me from my slumber feeling the cool of the morning air inspires me to press the snooze button a few times.

And sleep has been odd these days.  Constant waking throughout the night.

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My dreams have been fervent and harried.  I wake feeling as though I am coming a great distance to join the waking world.  Even as my eyes begin to open, I am often still very much in the dream state.

Caught between two dimensions, if not more.

I shake the sleep from me by way of a morning shower.  In and out, slap moisturizer on, apply a bit of make-up, brush my teeth, drink a glass of water.  Dry my hair, dress and put my lunch together then dash out the door.

When did it become necessary for me to arrive at work so early?  Usually by 7:30 AM I’m sipping my coffee, going through emails and organizing my work day.

I put this on myself.  And yet, I love the early morning.  When the weather is great I witness sunrises that are breathtaking.  If not, I enjoy the sound of the rain.  The torrential down pours, I must admit, are a bit much sometimes.

As I cross the Queensborough Bridge I listen to the news of the day.  These days a man named Trump seems to dominate the air waves.

And I pause to wonder why it is as humans we can’t seem to find that balance in terms of getting along.

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Why is it so difficult?  Is it just our nature to behave the way we do?

Trump is trying to save Americans from what, I cannot say.  He’s sees a threat I suppose and feels it necessary to build walls and keep people out.

I feel deeply saddened by this.  Living in fear is a bad place to be.  I’ve been there. This is what I see when Trump is insistent on building a wall along the U.S. / Mexico border and when he bans people from seven countries housing those who follow the muslim faith from entering the country.

I see fear.

Trump thinks he’s being tough, and sadly tough is not what any of us needs.

In fact, we need compassion, love, understanding and acceptance.

When a country the size of the U.S. elects a President to isolate them to the degree he has already implemented in just under two weeks, we really need to look at ourselves collectively and how it is we all got here.

And sadly the United States is deeply divided as well.

A travel ban has been put in place and a 5 year old boy was detained for several hours and taken in hand cuffs at the Dallas Airport.

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Why?

Here in Canada, a disillusioned young man went into a mosque and shot down six people of Muslim faith as they prayed.

Why?

I believe, must believe that we all basically good at heart.  There is a a percentage of human population that is not good, misguided and evil. This is displayed in so many ways.  And oddly enough history has a way of repeating itself.

Still we have in the last 25 years gone through an extraordinary changes.  When industrialization took hold back in the mid-1800 and early 1900’s the response was not good.  Two world wars and then seemingly this world embraced the industrial age with fevered acceptance.

We humans, by our very nature, like routine. And yet in the last 60 years this world has changed so dramatically.

The industrial age quickly gave way to the computer age.  In my lifetime, and I am only pushing 59 years of age, I’ve witnessed the introduction of colour TV to having a device that I can hold in my hands that will connect me world wide.  Technology has moved into our lives at a rabid pace.

We haven’t exactly embraced it.

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Socially we turn to our computers, our smart phones and connect in a totally different manner.

We date…online.

We rant…online.

We do everything…online.

Show our intimate bits, and say things typically we would not.

Yet there is this world out there and the space that surrounds us.  A triangle formed by the new Moon, Mars and Venus held me in absolute rapture as it did so many others.

Snow that had piled up over several weeks leaving local lakes frozen over drew crowds that pulled on their ice skates to enjoy skating under a full moon.

And there is a magic to it.  There really is.  When we feel connected to the world we inhabit, it is a grand thing.

When we work collectively as the human race…oh…it is such a beautiful thing.  And it is usually in reaction to a massive evil that brings us together.   These days we find ourselves once again caught up in what appears  a terrible thing.

Let me leave you with this.

There is a small boutique hotel in downtown Vancouver that has been around for a very along time.  I won’t go into the why of it  now, however, across the parapet there is signage that reads:

UNLIMITED GROWTH INCREASES THE DIVIDE

On the Community College that sit across from it a sign went up recently that reads:

LET’S HEAL THE DIVIDE

We have more similarities than we do differences. Let’s focus on our commonalities and see where that takes us.  Let’s heal the divide.

To those who’ve lost loved ones due to violence inspired by fear and ignorance, I feel your hurt, pain and confusion.

Find forgiveness as this will save you.  Continue to love as this will elevate you.

If I could I’d wrap this world in love, I would.

So why don’t we give it a go.

Namaste.

 

 

 

 

A Truth


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Sunset in Steveston

I sit before this screen thinking about the things I’d like to talk about.  The rush of ideas come fast and furious.  I could surely wax poetic on any number of things; I could rant on any number of issues as well.  There are injustices a plenty that I could champion.

The screen remains empty.

I make my breakfast and pour another cup of coffee.  I gaze out the window at a frozen world.  It’s beautiful.

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The view from my home on Dec 26, 2016

I’m wrapping up a challenging year that was preceded by a few tough years.  I was asked a question at dinner with friends last night ‘What did you take from those experiences, what did you learn?’

Now this was in reference to my bout with cancer and the treatment provided.  It could well apply to the vehicle accident that followed as well.

I responded that we need to ask questions and be kind to ourselves.  And indeed we do. The question remains though.  ‘What did I learn from this?’

And the screen, while I’ve jotted down these thoughts, no answer is readily coming.

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Vancouver from the Ferry in September 2016

I entered 2016 in the metaphorical darkness of depression.  I had felt the all too familiar slide begin.  In truth, I’d been fighting this for quite some time.  2015 had begun with promise.

I was working out with a trainer and running with my group again wanting to take back my health after the cancer thing .  The vehicle accident kibosh-ed my progress.  The pipes in my building flat lined and the building had to be re-piped. For 3 months no hot water. I was attending physiotherapy and the bills began to mount.

My job was stressful yet I kept at it.  Despite the pain, despite the overwhelming cost to fix our building I was beginning to slip.  I’ve never experienced a back injury before and physically my condition was not improving.  I would try to do things, but just walking was an agonizing thing at times.

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A moon to remember

I was living with pain daily.  I wasn’t sleeping.  And I was still recovering from the effects of chemo and radiation.

‘What did I learn from all of this?’

Still an empty screen to this question.

Fear crept in.  Was I going to lose everything I’d worked so hard for?  In many ways I felt completely impotent regarding the direction my life was going.

Did I talk about any of this with anybody?  No.

In my mind, to give it voice would give these feelings validity.  I was in denial.  My financial safety net was gone to the renovations in my building.

I then lost my job.

The quicksand I call depression was pulling me, enveloping me…my strength was gone.

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Sunset December 2016 in Steveston

All of the avenues I’d been exploring…meditation, energy healing, etc. were no longer viable options for me. My head and heart weren’t there.  I was in that all too familiar dark place.

In 2016 I sold my place and recovered some of my costs, though I still have debt, it is now manageable.

I found a condo that is now more of a home than my previous place.  I found another job which I really like.

And a few months back I emerged from the mantle of depression.

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What have I learned from all this?

Perhaps this is an ongoing lesson.  Perhaps the answer has many layers to it.

One thing though, despite the darkness I appreciated and admired every morning that I’ve been graced with.

I still stop and stand in awe of a luminous moon rise and always let those who I’ve been so blessed to have in my life know it.

And I will never give up on myself.  I will never give in to the pain of the past.

There is a balance between the dark and the light that must be found and met.

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I will focus on wellness in 2017.  I will ask for the help that I do in fact need and look to heal and strength my person.

Happy New Year to everyone.

Peace.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Grievances…A History Of Sorts


 

20160929_072536After a year and half the American election finally came to bitter end.   The outcome was not what anyone expected.

We watched closely up here in Canada as the ugliest campaign in history unfolded. I could not believe that a man such as Trump could even be considered.  He has legal cases pending in court, he is loud, obnoxious and has virtually no experience in the political realm.

He’d somehow become something of a celebrity with his show ‘The Apprentice’.  The Donald, as he sold himself some 20 years back,  has an insatiable appetite to be in the spotlight.

What you have to understand is that it’s not just the U.S.A. that is experiencing radical change.  There is global unrest and a lot of it.

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We should be coming together as a global collective to remedy the issues that exist, and I fear with the choice Americans made on November 8, 2016 that the shock waves will be felt for years to come.

What I have seen my neighbors to the south try and hold onto is the old adage that they are the greatest country in the world and they have this ‘American Dream’ thing that, like their love guns…they cannot dismiss or let go.

And what is the American Dream?

Here is Wikipedia’s description:

The American Dream is a national ethos of the United States, the set of ideals (democracy, rights, liberty, opportunity, and equality) in which freedom includes the opportunity for prosperity and success, and an upward social mobility for the family and children, achieved through hard work in a society with few barriers. In the definition of the American Dream by James Truslow Adams in 1931, “life should be better and richer and fuller for everyone, with opportunity for each according to ability or achievement” regardless of social class or circumstances of birth.[1]

The American Dream is rooted in the Declaration of Independence, which proclaims that “all men are created equal” with the right to “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.”[2]

There you have it.  Yet it seems that for many, the factory workers, those who were not has fortunate somehow felt cheated to some degree.

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The ALMIGHTY ECONOMY (a.k.a. Oil) became the ruler of the day after the Second World War.  With technology advancing at a rabid pace from the 1970’s forward tens of thousands of factory workers found themselves out of a job.  Small towns became ghost towns as their citizens lamented over the good ol’ days.

Several economic recessions and the crash back in 2008 left many with absolutely nothing.   No educational options, no retraining options, no jobs, no home, no nothing.

Meanwhile in other countries such as Bosnia, Ruwanda, Lybia, Syria, Iraq, Iran, Mexico, etc. corruption and war had made it impossible for their citizens to eek out a living.

The exodus began as refugees sought out new lives for themselves and their families here in North America. The American dream has been sold globally and many made their way to Canada and the United States to begin a new life.

For many of the citizens down in the U.S. with no job and having lost so much, they found the idea of immigrants coming to their country as offensive.  These people were stealing their jobs, their livelihood.  Even worse were the ones who gained entrance illegally.

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The setting was ripe for a man of Donald Trump’s nature to come in and tell these U.S. citizens that he was going to build a wall to keep out the illegals and toss out all the aliens who had come to America.  Yet he could walk across the street to a different rally and feed a line of bullshit to that group, even if it contradicted what he had just spoken about, and quite often it did.  In fact, the contradictions were absolutely astounding.

Riots were breaking out at his rally’s.  He was having people tossed out and continually made derogatory remarks about women.

Women became the devil and he was running against a woman.

And yet the Republican party, even though many didn’t like him, didn’t want him to lead party allowed it anyway.

Trump may think he can build a wall, tear up trade agreements, trash the U.S. healthcare system, send immigrants packing  and repeal women’s rights in order to make ‘America great again’ but those are not things that can be done with the snap of the fingers.

Trump had best be careful as all those people who voted him in may turn on him when he doesn’t deliver their brand of justice.

Let’s hope that President-Elect Trump doesn’t do anything rash out of the gate.

Peace.

 

 

 

 

2016…A Year of Transitiions


This has been an interesting year.  One filled with several challenges.  As I begin to finally settle into my new digs I am reflecting on some of the things that I’ve experienced and felt.  And I’m thinking about the things I am in the process of adjusting and / or changing.

One thing that is out…the microwave.

A microwave is a form of non-ionizing radiation. As a matter of contrast, ionizing radiation changes the electromagnetic nature of atoms, or ionizes them. … Your food is being zapped by high-frequency waves of heat, and some people argue that this radiation can be harmful to your health.     Feb 24, 2015 

I used to cook all the time without one.  Perhaps it’s time to revisit those habits.  Still, I have a panini maker that makes awesome sandwiches if I want something fast!  I’ve got my Ninja that makes awesome smoothies and shakes!  The appliances are old but in very good condition.  I’ve cleaned them to the point that they appear new.  They are about 30 years old.

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I like to have a cold one and read a book.  I’ve read many books this year.  Taking the time to do the things I love to do.

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These were two of the books I read this summer.  Gareth Wood is a friend.  I met him at my first writers’ group.  He is an excellent writer!  The other book that I read was ‘The Rainbow Comes and Goes’ by Anderson Cooper and Gloria Vanderbilt.

I’m actually reading a classic at the moment.  ‘To Kill A Mockingbird’.

As stated I moved and I’ve been here a couple of months now.

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Moving day August 5, 2016.  A little windy that day but we got it done!  These were the first photos I took from my balcony!

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And then I explored my new neighborhood.  I found fabulous trails in the ravine that borders our building!!!

It is beautiful!

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And I was being my old silly self.  Sharing time with my daughter in her neck of the woods as well.  We would head up to Ucluelet over on Vancouver Island during the Labour Day weekend.

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We enjoyed the beauty of the rain forest.  Some of the trees here are more than 800 years old!

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We met Pinky, a female Humpback whale that’s been coming to Barkley Sound for the past 5 years to feed.

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Sea lions waved at us as we passed by on a Zodiac during our Whale Watching expedition.

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There were at least a hundred relaxing on the rocks.  Cormorants  and seagulls  occupied the other end of this little island.

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We decided to head up to Long Beach.  It is absolutely spectacular up there.

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The weather was fabulous.  And at night, I saw something I’ve not seen in ages.

Stars!  I saw billions of stars!

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There is an aboriginal settlement that is 5,000 years old close by.

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On our final day we woke to heavy fog.

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My daughter prepares as we consider our final destination.

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This lighthouse has stood here for more than 100 years.  The rocks in this area are unforgiving.  If you plan on sailing in this area…best to know what you’re doing.

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Then it was back home.  This a photo of Vancouver from the ferry.

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The Tragically Hip performed their last concert from Kingston, Ontario.  It was broadcast live across Canada.  Gord Downie, the lead singer, has been diagnosed with an aggressive form of brain cancer.  I’m praying that a miracle happens.

He and his band have produced some of the most prolific music…ever!

We watched the concert here in New Westminster during the food truck festival.

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Then it was back to work.   We are making a lot of changes and upgrading systems.

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And I’m once again enjoying the awesome sunrises that occur during the autumns months on my drive in to work each day.

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And the sunsets have been pretty spectacular as well.

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The view outside my home is changing as well.  The trees are all ablaze.

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Pumpkins are almost ready for picking.

That’s what I’ve been up to more or less.  I received the all clear regarding my health.  The heart is good and my body is cancer free and beginning the long journey back from the effects of treatment.

I still have back issues from the vehicle accident, however, I need to keep moving.  The alternative…well, we won’t go there.

This is our Thanksgiving weekend and I have so much to be thankful for.

I know I am blessed and need to say it more often.

I hope you enjoy the photos.

Namaste.

 

Human Touch


I met a friend for dinner this evening.  We met after work down at Kits Beach at The Boathouse Restaurant.  Jayne and I always have great discussions.

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I mentioned that I’d been downtown shopping a couple of weeks ago and I had seen the ‘Free Hug’ people in front of the London Drugs at Granville & Georgia St.  I told her how I stood waiting for the light to change, my spirit feeling  considerably  lighter at the idea of a stranger willing  to put their arms around me and share a moment.  I told her that I simply opened my arms and was hugged first by the woman and then by the man.  hug 2

I was surprised she’d never heard of this.  It has been in Vancouver for quite some time now.

Just an act of kindness and a moment shared through human touch.

There is something so intrinsically beautiful and simple in this act. As we parted ways and I made my way home through the streets of Vancouver to the North Shore where my daughter lives, I got to thinking about the people that touch our lives on a daily basis.

I thought of the friends I have, the jobs I’ve held and those who have entered my life and left leaving lasting impressions.

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I thought of people from my past that I’d tried to please who seemingly caused me to bleed the energy from my soul and wondered why I had given this so freely?

Truth is I wanted, craved, desired, needed the basic interaction of human touch.  To feel genuine caring and to feel loved.

I think we all do.  And every once in a while getting that ‘Free Hug’ reminds me that I’m not alone and that I do belong to the collective known as the human race.

Namaste.