Saturday, 29 August 2020

Saturday Photo: March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom

The work is far from done, alas!

Fifty-seven years ago I was there, having hitched a ride with a friend with parishioners from a church in Indianapolis.  We had been attending the National Students' Association annual convention at Indiana University, he as a member of the UC Berkeley student council and I as the incoming editor of the student newspaper, the Daily Californian.

It was a wonderful experience, and it looked like society in the United States might actually come to grips with its racist past.  And there were some improvements, I must admit.

But the fact that the country is currently shaken by justifiable protests about police brutality and more divided than ever shows that progress can be illusory.

So there were peaceful demonstrations yesterday in Washington.  Wish I could have been there, but I'm hunkered down in Canada, having left the US 52 years ago next week.  Things are better here, but there's still a lot to fight for. 

Saturday, 22 August 2020

Saturday Photo: Goldenrod and Badminton, the Resilience of the Former, the Lure of the Latter

Here you have the remains of a badminton court on which a generation or two of nuns played on summer afternoons.  Part of the convent's grounds was sold to a developer a couple of years ago and condos have gone up on its slope. I'm not sure if the badminton court was included in the deal--one of the buildings appears to be still used by the order--but certainly it has been abandoned.  From which comes the lesson for this week. 

Which is that everyone needs a little fun, even women who have dedicated their lives to their deity, and nature is strong.  Goldenrod is everywhere this summer, its beautiful plumes shining in the afternoon light.  Glad to see that it is taken over this place where afternoons were once used for recreation of another sort.

Saturday, 15 August 2020

Saturday Photo: Black Lives Matter in Outremont

The part of Montreal where we live was designed more than 100 years ago as a garden suburb, sort of.  Today it is home to a mixed population that includes some folks who are pretty well off. 

Nevertheless, we came across this window sign this week on one of the tonier residences.  Nice to see!

Saturday, 8 August 2020

Saturday Photo: Closest I Get to Religion...

Had an interesting conversation this week with one of my Hassidic neighbours about life, death, and Covid 19.  She lost a brother, 62, to the disease early on in the epidemic, and since then she and her family have been very careful.

Once again I extended my condolences and our conversation drifted toward doing good, etc.  At the end I quoted my paternal grandfather who used to say "the Lord helps those who help themselves."

She nodded, and then asked me if we go to church.  She knows we don't I'm pretty sure but I had to say that, no, we didn't but that I think it's important to know what religion is and what religions teach.  Told her the story about how our son was the last person baptized at a nearby church before it was deconsecrated: he was 11 and the church was 90 something.

Then later on  I came upon this graffiti.  It's about as close I get to any kind of religious thought.  Don't know if I completely agree, even then.  Worth thinking about on this fine summer morning, though.

Saturday, 1 August 2020

Saturday Photo: Wake-up Call?

In this difficult time I've been on the look out for things that make one smile. That's whey I was delighted when a friend brought over sunflowers last weekend: everytime I saw them I found myself cheering up. 

Also I've been taking photos of bits of whimsy, and came across this one just across from Parc Molson in Montreal's Petite Patrie district.  The mattress may have been put out to be taken away by the garbage men, but someone had a better idea....

Maybe it's time for all of us to Wake up, to the bad things that we might be able to fix, and to the good things we should appreciate.

End of positive message for today....