Thursday, January 10, 2013

This, that and the next thing

A few things on my mind:

Insomnia.  Ever since having influenza before Christmas, I have had a never-ending case of insomnia.  It doesn't matter how busy I've been in the day, or how early I've gotten up.  2 a.m. finds me scrounging through the medicine cabinet looking for anything with the potential to knock me out.  I'm getting an average of 4.5 hours of sleep a night and feel like death all day long.

This is the year that my baby will start school.  Up until December 31st I could say, "She starts kindergarten NEXT year", but now I can look in a straight line down the calendar to September and it's making me incredibly sad. She's also had a recent growth-spurt that has her looking much more like a little school-age girl than my babyish preschooler.  An old neighbour of ours at the farm, who had been a schoolteacher all her life, always said that a child wasn't ready for school until they could reach over their head and touch their ear.  The 4 yr. old is now proudly showing me almost daily that she is mere centimetres from being able to reach her ear.  Only last summer it would have been impossible.  What a difference a few months can make.  Time marches on whether we want it to or not.

I need to get out of the house more.  I do leave the house to buy groceries, run child-related errands and go to a plethora of meetings, but it seems like forever since I went to hear some live music, check out an art gallery or attend a film. This is typical for me in the winter.  During the summer I think nothing of running to the store at 10pm at night to get a jug of milk, or wander around the downtown for an Artwalk with friends.  But the cold and darkness of  winter makes me reluctant to leave my house, and once I've drawn the blinds at dusk, I'm "in for the night", as they say.

I got an ereader at Christmas. Oh my goodness, I love it sooo much.  I'm already on my third book and I only started using it last week.  I love that I can borrow books from the public library for free. (Being the daughter of a former librarian has made me all about borrowing, not buying.)  Why would I buy a book I can read in 2 days and will never read again?  I can't say enough good things about the ereader and the borrowing system.  I don't even have to go to the library, which suits my winter seclusion.  I can just download the book directly onto the reader from home!  Only after I had gotten the reader did I find out that the public library also has readers available to borrow for you to try out.  Definitely check it out. (Get it? Check it out?  I'm so punny!)

Some bigger topics:

Syria. I was going to say that Syria was in the news again yesterday, after releasing 2,000 civilians in exchange for 48 Iranians. But then I realized that Syria is always in the news, so it isn't really news. I remember one of the first reports I heard about the current civil war in Syria, it was almost two years ago and I heard a reporter interview a man who had fled to Turkey after witnessing the violence in the hills below his town. He said that government forces had come to the area and burnt the crops in the fields and uprooted the olive groves. Without even having to hear another word I already knew who the "bad guys" were in this scenario. Anyone who destroys food, and the work that has gone into it, is in the wrong. The farm kid in me was especially horrified by the destruction of the olive groves, as those trees can produce fruit for hundreds, even thousands, of years. All those years of careful tending, destroyed.

#IdleNoMore. You can say what you like about Chief Spence, and I might not even argue with you about it. But if you think that aboriginal people in Canada get a free hand-out that makes up for the past, and don't have anything to complain about, then I have no problem calling you ignorant of the topic. Mike took every Native studies class that was available when he was in college, and I typed his papers, and then read some of his textbooks, if I could stomach it. The stories would make you cry. I'm not sure that there is anything we could do to make up for the violence visited upon the people who rightfully owned this land. What I do know is that we have an obligation to at least keep our promises, and hold our government to those promises.  We'll see what happens after tomorrow's meeting.

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