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saying goodbye to Michael Enright

11.45 a.m. Is there a more Canadian experience than this – listening to all 3 hours of CBC radio’s Sunday Morning, with occasional tears in my eyes, as people famous and unknown pay tribute to its extraordinary host? After twenty years on the program, Michael Enright is leaving. I don’t think his departure is voluntary, I think he has been eased out – made redundant, though they’re giving him an hour somewhere else. The fact that he’s a superb interviewer and journalist, empathetic, erudite – no. Out. 

I understand perfectly the need to foster new talent and to listen to diverse voices. But to throw out an expert in his prime – IMHO, stupid and short-sighted once again. If it ain’t broke, let’s break it!
Now I’m laughing as he and Robert Harris sing a Frank Sinatra song, with just the right mix of self-deprecation and absurd courage. So good. He makes it sound so easy. Like Peter Gzowski – one of the last great voices from the golden age of radio. 
I have had to find things to do while listening – I cleaned out a kitchen drawer and the fridge, then moved to the bedroom radio and folded t-shirts and stowed winter stuff, then moved to the office radio and sorted the pile of notebooks and file folders. And now, just sitting listening. But soon I’ll chop the red cabbage and start cooking it, while being informed, entertained, educated, enlightened, inspired. Kept company. That’s what good radio does, and how vital it is, especially now, in lockdown.
Thanks to all involved.
 10.30 p.m. Good news: the sparkling basement apartment is rented for the month of July! A great help. The coreopsis bought and planted not long ago is blooming, but something relentless is devouring the buddleia. More green beans today – soon enough for a meal, along with the delicious red cabbage. At one I did Jane’s class from Vancouver, thinking – this pandemic has hurt many. But for me, there have been small blessings, like Jane’s class on Zoom; foregoing the hairdresser and learning that I actually like my hair longer; the daily bond with Monique; gardening more; slowing down. No shopping, no gallivanting, just hunkering. Appreciating beyond measure my house and garden to hunker in. 

Watched a bit of Hard Day’s Night yesterday for perhaps the twelfth time; it was on TCM. I channelled my 14-year old self while marvelling again at how much they loved each other, how their exuberance and joy bounces right off the screen, how funny they were. “The place is surging with girls!” complains their road manager. “Please sir, can I have one to surge with, please sir?” says John. 

And then I watched I am Not Your Negro, James Baldwin, excoriating about American racism, eloquent and unforgettable. 

This is what I saw first thing this morning. Sending love to you too.

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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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