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a phenomenal community organizer

Anna has organized a “strike camp” at a local community centre – she and a bunch of high school volunteers are looking after kids whose parents can’t afford child care during the strike. Today, the leader of the NDP Jagmeet Singh came to the camp, and the local MPP Bhutila Karpoche introduced Anna to him as “a phenomenal community organizer.”

She is chuffed, and so are her parents. ‘Community’ and ‘organize’ are among her favourite words, words she acts on.

Inaya’s poster says “I love my school and cuts hurt me.” Eli’s says “How will I learn math with 30+ kids in my class?” That’s Paul Taylor in the middle, Anna’s friend from high school, who ran for the NDP recently and came a close second to the Lib.

Before that news came in, I spent the morning in a depressive funk. It’s just unbearable to see evil triumphant in the States, to witness a disgusting lunatic in charge with a team of craven lickspittles beneath him. How do the Dems fight a man and a party who have not a shred of ethics? How do they figure out the rules when there are no rules? And here, our teachers are on strike against another disgusting government. Is the world collapsing, or just democracy and decency?

So. Depressed and sad for a bit. Plus a ton of fresh snow.

And then I went out to shovel the snow and saw the mail had arrived and there was a parcel for me. I have established a strong bond over the internet with Antoinette in Edmonton, who was a good friend of Mum’s and her piano teacher. She has knitted me a cowl, a beautiful pink scarf in a silk blend from a cooperative in Peru; it’s soft and warm and perfect, and it made me cry. As I wrote to her, she reminded me that people do care for each other, and also that there are lots of kind people who care for me. Easy to forget during the down times. Thank you, Antoi.

Last night was the dance party with a fabulous DJ. I arrived as it kicked off at 7, and danced, almost without stopping, until departing at 9.45, grateful for a ride home in the snow from friend and student Sam and her husband Michael. Not a big crowd but bigger than the last time, and Gina is hoping to produce it 4 times a year. Nothing better for the soul than dancing your brains out.

At least some of us, unlike others of us, including 49% of the U.S. who approve of Trump, still have brains.

PS. Just had this email from a former student. More cheering up. Thank you! Onward.
I just wanted to tell you that your blog brings me great joy and I appreciated all the movies you recommend! I too saw and loved 63UP, Little Women, and the Dr. Ruth documentary, which surprised and enchanted me. I’ve admired Siphe November when I’ve seen him on stage at the ballet–I can’t wait to see this documentary. I appreciate your curiosity and wide-ranging interests–it’s inspiring.

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2 Responses to “a phenomenal community organizer”

  1. theresa says:

    I am completely with you, re: the horrors to the south of us. And little bits of it leaking into our country, our politics, our communities. I have trouble sleeping, lie in the dark wondering if this is end of anything resembling democracy. Is it? But of course there are pockets of true goodness (your daughter sounds like such a great example), kindness.

  2. beth says:

    More than little bits of it, Theresa, here in Ontario and especially in Alberta – what is happening in the U.S. has given permission to the vilest of human behaviours and impulses. I too lie awake unable to banish dark thoughts about the future of the planet. So we need to cherish family and friends and community – and blog partners – more than ever!

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About Beth

I began keeping a journal at the age of nine. Nearly fifty years later, I started this online journal, sharing reflections, reviews, updates, and the occasional secret.

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Chris Walks
This blog evolves. It once was about travels. Now it’s a reason to be at the keyboard that I value.

Theresa Kishkan
Theresa Kishkan is a writer living on the Sechelt Peninsula on the west coast of Canada.

I walk on. With my feet, and in my mind as well.

Carrie Snyder
Wherever you’ve come from, wherever you’re going, consider this space a place for reflection and pause.

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