September 22, 2013 Extravaganza

There are so many activities that are worthwhile today.  Which walk should I attend? 
When I started planning today’s walk, the first option I chose was AIDs walk.  I have supported this walk since I have I know people who have this disease.  Now, it’s just another illness like a common cold.  The only thing is there is no cure, only prevention.  It is a good cause. 
Suddenly, invitations to go out for walk came up such as:

These walks are about Reconciliation.  I think it will be a gathering of all Nations to walk towards reconciliation.  Reconciliation is a good thing in order to have peace and unity.

Walk with Us
 It will be a very interesting day. 
Not only I will be with esteemed leaders such as Suzuki and the Elders, Dr. Bernice A. King, a Baptist minister and the youngest child of iconic U.S. civil rights activist Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., will deliver the keynote address at the start of Canada’s first-ever Walk for Reconciliation. 
Sorry, Aid Walk Vancouver some other day.  I have a better offer. 
Related Links:
 
 

Awakening the Spirit of the Dragon

Each year, festival honours the ancient Chinese tradition of dragon boat racing with an Eye Dotting and Dragon Blessing Ceremony. 
Dragon Boat Logo

Dragon Boat Logo

An altar is set-up on the dock for a Taoist Priest to perform the ceremony.  The dragon boats are dressed with ornate dragon head and tails.  The boats are all lined up for blessing.  Invoking the Goddess of the Sea, the Saints and the Immortals through chanting and burning joss sticks cleanses the race course, competitors and boats.  This will charge them with the strength of the Dragon. 
The priests make offerings to the five elements and directions:
  • East – joss sticks representing wood
  • West – flowers representing metal
  • South – candles representing fire
  • North – water representing its elemental self
  • Centre – fruit representing the earth
 Eye dotting ritual is the climax of the ceremony which officially awakens the Dragon. Ancient Chinese dragon mythology has it that the Dragon sleeps in the mountains and travels to the water when it is awakened. 
And the race is on….. the 25th Annual Dragon Boat Festival.

25 years ago, I did join the race.  The name of our team was “Wet, Wild and Weary”.  I kept the T-shirt for memorabilia.  Did we win the race?  In our minds, we are the winner.  Joining the race is already a sign of winning: a sign of courage that we can do it.  And we did.