Let the game begins

When a child starts to discover little things, they are full of wonders.  One game I love playing with a child is: 
“Where’s your belly button?” 
“Show me your belly button.” 
Since the child does not understand words, the game turns into a “show and tell”. 
Exposing my belly and say: “See, belly button”. 
Doing it for at least three or five times, the child mimics and starts looking for his own belly button. 
Where is your belly button
 And the game begins….
 
 
https://ragtagcommunity.wordpress.com/2020/03/21/rdp-saturday-loking-within/

This story has a picture

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Tell me a story is what I say instead of “Hi, how are you?” My friend finally understood what I mean and how important story telling is when he attended the Toastmaster International 2017 held in Vancouver last week. Toastmaster is … Continue reading

Window Gazers

Looking onto the window is one of my favorite pastimes when I am out for a walk; I am a window gazer not as a peeping tom but curious who will look out.  There are many windows of different shapes and sizes, with blinds or drapes, plain or with iron grills.  I often wonder if looking at a window, I can see a different world and a whole meaning will come without searching for it.

A hand on a window points me to a direction that life is very short and there’s no time for fussing and fighting.  It even considers me a friend.
window 1

A store window Victoria’s Secret does not leave so much to my imagination. It is rather revealing, there’s no secret here at all.
window 3

A walk along the neighborhood, there is one particular window that I find appealing even with the blind down.  It has a figurine of a blue cat.
window 9

One day, the blue cat disappeared, and a  strange-looking figurine took its place.  As it turned out when I went closer to the window, it’s a hairless cat and very much alive.
window 11

This window is fascinating for it changes continuously.  I am beginning to think that the tenant is looking at me looking at the window.  I’ve seen a person inside once before.

On a different day, the blue cat has a company, another beautiful cat with short fur and a long whisker.  What happened to that hairless one?  Maybe the bald cat is not allowed to catch the sunshine, or else it might get more wrinkles for lack of protection.
window 8

For most days, only the blue cat is on the window.  I am beginning to miss not seeing the cats.  Mind you, more cats are gazing out in the neighborhood to entertain me than people looking out of the window. When I look at humans looking out of the windows, most of them are elderly.

The cats did finally showed up one day, all three of them.
window 5

Sometimes, I ponder on the existence of the cats as a companion for humans.  I am not looking for any answers except for this one.  I wonder how much this doggy in the window at the pet store?
window 2

Who’s the boss

Don’t be fooled with this picture, dynamite comes in small packages

z live and let die

Youtube by:  Joniversity to watch click on the picture to watch.

Introducing the dog Spike – my majestic American Pitbull Terrier – and Visa, my 2 months old cat. While trying to depict their relentless Looney Tunes style relationship of caring and hugging while fighting and mocking about (countless plates and cups were broken during filming) the best choice of soundtrack was Guns n’ Roses – Live And Let Die

And remember Pitbulls are not dangerous. People with video cameras are.

Seven Million Whys!

I have this note posted on my computer at work that is sort of a queue card for me that helps me on a daily basis when it comes to communication, analysis and problem solving.

“I have six honest serving men, they taught me all I know.  I call them What, Where, When, Who, Why and How.”

z kipling

However, I have a problem with Why.  For me, it’s a childish question.  It’s alright when a child ask me why but when an adult asks, I felt like saying: “Are you a dolt?” in my mind.  So I facetiously answer: “Why is the sky blue?”  Evading this word is easier for me than responding to it.  The person will never be satisfied with my response.  It is akin to being put on the grill.  Having worked in a law firm, I know better.

As I found out, the whole poem is part of a children’s book written by Kipling:

I KEEP six honest serving-men
(They taught me all I knew);
Their names are What and Why and When
And How and Where and Who.
I send them over land and sea,
I send them east and west;
But after they have worked for me,
I give them all a rest.
I let them rest from nine till five,
For I am busy then,
As well as breakfast, lunch, and tea,
For they are hungry men.
But different folk have different views;
I know a person small—
She keeps ten million serving-men,
Who get no rest at all!
She sends’em abroad on her own affairs,
From the second she opens her eyes—
One million Hows, two million Wheres,
And seven million Whys!
The Elephant’s Child 

This poem just answered my question how come I do not like “Whys”!
Thank you, Poet4Justice: If for helping me solve a riddle.
Related Link: Kipling: Elephant’s Child

Garden of Daily Living

gardening 101

 

How To Plant Your Garden

 

First, you  Come to the garden alone,
While the dew is still on the roses….

FOR THE GARDEN OF YOUR DAILY LIVING,
PLANT THREE ROWS OF PEAS:

1. Peace of mind
2. Peace of heart
3. Peace of soul

 PLANT FOUR ROWS OF SQUASH:

1. Squash gossip
2. Squash indifference
3. Squash grumbling
4. Squash selfishness


PLANT FOUR ROWS OF LETTUCE:


1. Lettuce be faithful

2. Lettuce be kind
3. Lettuce be patient
4. Lettuce really love one another

NO GARDEN IS WITHOUT TURNIPS:

1. Turnip for meetings
2. Turnip for service
3. Turnip to help one another


TO CONCLUDE OUR GARDEN WE MUST HAVE THYME:

1. Thyme for each other
2. Thyme for family
3. Thyme for friends

WATER FREELY WITH PATIENCE AND   CULTIVATE WITH LOVE. THERE IS MUCH FRUIT IN YOUR GARDEN BECAUSE YOU REAP WHAT   YOU SOW.  

Source:  e-mail author unknown

Song behind the Gravatar

MARY MAGDALENE
 
Mary Magdalene
 
I don’t know how to love him.
What to do, how to move him.
I’ve been changed, yes really changed.
In these past few days, when I’ve seen myself,
I seem like someone else. 
I don’t know how to take this.
I don’t see why he moves me.
He’s a man. He’s just a man.
And I’ve had so many men before,
In very many ways,
He’s just one more. 
Should I bring him down?
Should I scream and shout?
Should I speak of love,
Let my feelings out?
I never thought I’d come to this.
What’s it all about? 
Don’t you think it’s rather funny,
I should be in this position.
I’m the one who’s always been
So calm, so cool, no lover’s fool,
Running every show.
He scares me so. 
I never thought I’d come to this.
What’s it all about? 
Yet, if he said he loved me,
I’d be lost. I’d be frightened.
I couldn’t cope, just couldn’t cope.
I’d turn my head. I’d back away.
I wouldn’t want to know. 
He scares me so.
I want him so.
I love him so.
 
 
Related link:  Jesus Christ,  Superstar

Reflection after the storm

Memories came flooding in, seeping out of my memory bank.  The earthquake, the storm, death, then calm.

Sea of Galilee

Being born in the Philippines Mother nature rules.  Nature does not discriminate, from the young and old, from the poor and rich, from the ordinary to famous folks; we are all affected.  One of the saving graces, I now live in beautiful British Columbia, Canada.  Hardly any storm but plenty of rain and cloudy days.From what I can remember, Father was swept away by the sea, never to be found.  Was there a storm at the time that caused ragging waves?  I still have yet to know.  Mother had a nervous breakdown when Father died.  Was it his death or the thought of having to care for 13 children, the youngest four months old.  I was only four years old.  Most of my memory is vague maybe it was buried with Father in the sea.

Flying debris, the tin roof blown by the mighty wind, trees falling down, roaring of the wind, torrential rain and flooding are the effects of nature passing through.

Then came Ruby Tower crashing down.  It was intensity 7.7 in the Richter scale.  People rushing out of their homes.  Me standing by the canal, the water creating a whirlpool and saw a huge rock emerged from the ground.

We were spared from these disasters except Father.

The Voice of God in a Great Storm
A Psalm of David. (Psalm 29) 
 Ascribe to the Lord, O heavenly beings,
ascribe to the Lord glory and strength.
Ascribe to the Lord the glory of his name;
worship the Lord in holy array. 
The voice of the Lord is upon the waters;
the God of glory thunders,
the Lord, upon many waters.
The voice of the Lord is powerful,
the voice of the Lord is full of majesty. 
The voice of the Lord breaks the cedars,
the Lord breaks the cedars of Lebanon.
He makes Lebanon to skip like a calf, 
and Sir′ion like a young wild ox. 
The voice of the Lord flashes forth flames of fire.
The voice of the Lord shakes the wilderness,
the Lord shakes the wilderness of Kadesh. 
The voice of the Lord makes the oaks to whirl,
and strips the forests bare;
and in his temple all cry, “Glory!” 
The Lord sits enthroned over the flood;
the Lord sits enthroned as king for ever.
May the Lord give strength to his people!
May the Lord bless his people with peace! 
 This is a  Day of Grace.
 
Related Articles:

Evolution of Man: Layers of History

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Layer up is the advise of our fearless leader .  Make sure we have a rain gear underneath the layers of clothing we have to brave the elements of Camino de Santiago.  The weather was so fickle.  It cannot make up … Continue reading

Emptying my mind

Continuation of yesterday.

Time to meditate and rejuvenate my inner-self.

Repeat after me…. Ommmmmm……Ommmmmm…..

meditation

Like this?  Visit Miss Four Eyes.  This is her creation and she blogs naked.  Okay, don’t get too excited.  Slowly, slowly, take your time.

Disclaimer:  I received no compensation for using her cartoon, mantra, meditation technique or mentioning her name what so ever.  Only the joy of sharing her humour.

Hand in hand

Kindness and generosity go hand in hand.  And we thank you for you extending a helping hand.

The Filipinos are extending their grateful hearts and I am sharing a note from Facebook of TruPinoy.

z Pinoy TY

A grateful nation thanks all of your very generous hearts and outpouring support in the rescue/relief/recovery/rehabilitation efforts on the devastation brought about by Typhoon Yolanda (International code name: Haiyan).

May every Filipino you encounter in the world thank you all personally. Our people affected by the recent natural disasters may not have a very Merry Christmas, but because of all of you, they will feel that there is hope for one. God-bless all of you and all those in this country who make it better for others in need.

AUSTRALIA – US$10 million package
BELGIUM – medical and search and rescue personnel
CANADA – C$5 million…
DENMARK – KR 10 million
EUROPEAN UNION – EUR 3 million
GERMANY – 23 tons of relief goods
HUNGARY – search and rescue personnel and rapid response team
INDONESIA – in-kind donations
ISRAEL- team of medical, trauma and relief professionals
JAPAN – emergency relief medical team
MALAYSIA – medical and search and rescue teams
THE NETHERLANDS – undisclosed financial aid
NEW ZEALAND – NZ $2.15 million
NORWAY – KR 20 million
RUSSIA – rapid response team
SAUDI ARABIA through Prince Talal bin Abdulaziz Al Saud – US$100,000
SINGAPORE – $50,000
SPAIN – in-kind donations
SWEDEN- emergency communications equipment
TAIWAN – $200,000
TURKEY – medics, rapid response team, search and rescue personnel
UNITED ARAB EMIRATES – Dhs 36 million
UNITED KINGDOM – £6 million and $9.6 million worth of emergency support package
UNITED NATIONS Children’s Fund – $1.3 million worth of supplies
UNITED STATES – initial $100,000 for water and sanitation; Troops, emergency respondents, transportation and equipment

 
Many have asked me if I have any family in the Philippines and if they are affected.  Two siblings are in the Philippines and luckily they are not affected.  However, there is one person that I connect with in WordPress and I have not heard from him.  The last we “talked” he was worried about Yolanda.  Then silence.
 
Today, I a note from him that he is “Still Here”.  Thank goodness. 
 
Please keep them in your prayers.  Thank you again for your kindness and generosity.
 
Related Links:

Semper Fidelis

Semper Fidelis is Latin for “Always Faithful” or “Always Loyal.” This is the motto of the United States Marine Corps.  It is a useful slogan not just for the Corps but as well as to our country and to humanity.

I have taken the liberty of posting war stories.  A proper theme for the day. This is a Remembrance Day story that I am proud to share about my Uncle during his younger days and his brother Moises Gonzalez, who lost his life in 1944 who were faithful to humanity during the war.

The Gonzales brothers saved the life of James Carrington.  James was a World War II veteran reunited with Uncle who aided his escape from Japanese after 64 years and died shortly after the reunion.

reunion

Both men cried with joy when they met. Carrington was thankful that if it were not for the courage of the Gonzalez, he would not be here.

You may want to read the rest of the story by clicking on the picture or here.   A YouTube is also available here.

I am happy for them.  I wish I could make Uncle happier if I could help him find out what really happened to his brother.  I posted a story about it in Love and Valor.

Take time to remember.  Let us together as a nation to honour and remember  the Veterans, war dead and all those who have made the ultimate sacrifice on our behalf in times of war, armed conflict and peace. There are many ways to remember and actively participate to honour those who served our country. For one, do not hesitate to discuss this with your family and friends.  It’s important to remember so that we don’t repeat the past.

Santa Cruz nathaniel (3)

Nathaniel ~ US Marine

Let us honor the valiant who sacrificed their lives for your safety. Let us  salute our nation’s heroes. Let us remind our friends and dear ones about the patriots who lost everything in battle. Let our  silent prayers be a tribute to them.

Lester Pearson
Whether we live together in confidence and cohesion; with more faith and pride in ourselves and less self-doubt and hesitation; strong in the conviction that the destiny of Canada is to unite, not divide; sharing in cooperation, not in separation or in conflict; respecting our past and welcoming our future.

Lest we forget.

Related Links:
 
Photo Credits: Nola News and Nephew Nathaniel

Reflection: What is my calling

There is so much drama in the world.

We use dramatic language to make a point!  Even the Good News if taken out of context is not so good at all such as “We are worthless slaves…”

Slaves?  How can I be a slave.  I am God’s child, blessed and gifted.  Given with a life to do good in this world, a responsibility, to be of service, to spread the Good News and to be accountable.  How can I use these gifts I received.  I am not the only who has these gifts.  Each and every one of us have these.  And that brought me to a question; What is my calling?

I do what I have to do and to seek out the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living.

This is not Disney talk or Pollyanna attitude.  I am called to be of service to do good for whatever that good would be.  I don’t know.  Being simple-minded, I can only focus on the god of small things.  Starting small eventually leads to bigger things.  If not, I will gather all these little things and make them big.

Give me a sign.  What sign, there are so many signs in front of me.

Give me a sign

The hungry street people, feed them.  Children being abused, take a stand against injustice.  The marginalized, spend time with them.  These are visible signs and I am blessed with eyes to see and feel their needs.  What do I with what I see?  My sight moves me beyond compassion to nurture and share the gift what I receive from my Maker.

“I remind you to rekindle the gift of God that is within you” ~ 2 Timothy 1:6

 
 
Related Links:

Room with a view – Burgos Cathedral

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“Gratia Dei Sum Quod Sum” ~ By God’s grace I am what I am. Upon opening the window of the hotel we stayed at Burgos, the gothic Cathedral is right in front of me.  We spend the night at the Hotel Meson del … Continue reading

Final Journey on Earth

She came to Canada by steamship as a young woman in 1958 with a four-day train ride from Halifax to Vancouver as her introduction to Canada.  Vancouver offered the beauty of the ocean, along with the comfort of the mountains that reminder her of her home in Italy.  She married, raised a family, and lived in Kitsilano where she was known for her garden and flowers, which she carefully tended until just weeks before her passing.

Gina Antonioni  July 26, 1936 to October 30, 2013

Gina Antonioni July 26, 1936 to October 30, 2013

She was a supporter, a volunteer, and active participant at the Italian Cultural Centre and Villa Carital until her illness would no longer allow her to help.  Through her work, at Arbutus Manor for many years, and involvement in various clubs and groups, including Catholic League of Women (CWL) and the Circolo Trentino, she had built a large and varied group of friends.

Catholic League of Women

Catholic League of Women

The Easter candle is lit at baptism and lighted again upon death. “In dying we are born to eternal life.”

Easter Candle

Easter Candle

We do not live to ourselves, and we do not die to ourselves.  If we live, we live to the Lord, and if we die, we die to the Lord; then, whether we live or whether we die, we are the Lord’s.  For to this end Christ died and lived again, so that he might be Lord of both the dead and the living. ~ Romans 14

Related Link:  Leave of Absence

Leave of Absence

Leaving work mid-morning, my commitment was at 11 a.m.  It’s close by to work, walking distance but I haven’t been to this place.  Plenty of time to walk the inside streets, enjoy the beauty of the autumn day and the rain stopped.

This is the west side of Vancouver, a beautiful neighbourhood that takes pride of their surroundings.  The environment is warm and welcoming.  Homes are old, mostly heritage, painted houses in living colours and well-kept.  Luscious garden, recycled items, ornamental trees and chair to sit around.

There’s nobody around and understandably so, it was work week and the children were at school.  I found myself alone in sweet serenity to commune with nature.

I reached my destination.

Heritage Building

St. Augustine Church.  This is the first time for me to visit the church.  As mentioned in my previous post, Candle in Spain,  I say the same prayer when I visit a church the first time hoping my wishes will be granted.  I did not because I was there for my friend to attend a Mass of Christian Burial of her mother.

Related Link: Candle in Spain

Habitual Reader

Joyce Carol Oates says: “The first sentence cannot be written until the final sentence is written.”

reading

This brings me to the habit of reading a book.

I read the first page and the final page before I decide whether I will read the whole book.  Should I enjoy these, more than likely I will relish reading every word written in the book.

Happiness is Laundry Day

How can I be so happy to see an empty laundry room.  No competition!  I can do three loads of laundry all at once instead of having to wait for the next available machine.

When it comes to laundry day, I have to learn the habits of my neighbours.  Weekends are out.  I wouldn’t dare go to the laundry room.  There is always a line up.  Busy, busy, busy. Early mornings are out, too.  I’d rather have that extra sleep with the kitties and sleep in.

Monday and Tuesday nights is continuation of weekend for those people who did not do their washing.  During the day of the week is definitely out, I work; unless I call in sick just to do laundry.  The best time for me is on Thursday and Friday nights.  It’s a mad dash for me to get home fast to do the laundry.

There is a system to this madness.

On Wednesday, I prepare the dirty clothes for laundry night.  As you can see, I use a wheelie to carry the hamper.  When I come home on Thursday, every thing is ready.  Say a quick prayer that the room is empty if not repeat performance on Friday.

Between these, I have to make sure that I have laundry detergents and plenty of coins.  Otherwise, I have to wash some items by hand should I run out of undergarments.  Opsey, sorry to air out my dirty laundry.

I must say washing machines and dryers are the best invention ever.  No more washing dirty clothes by hand.

Oh, happy days.

Children at Play: 1984 vs 2013

Play is very important, I cannot reiterate that enough.

There are so many benefits in playing.  For one, it’s a great exercise when the body is moving and running around.  Being a playmate, friendship will flourish.  It is an essential part of children’s development since it contributes to their physical, mental, social and emotional well-being.  This is the reason I keep telling the kids to go outside and play.  As an adult, I will be the first one to take part with the children.  I still love to play.

Children playing

Pass forward.

Play have taken a whole new meaning today.  Enter “smart” technologies. Are these technologies making the children smarter?

New Generation

Ironic.  This time I cannot participate.  I don’t even know how to use a cell phone or iPad.  The children are teaching me how to use them and I refuse to play.

Images copied from children’s Facebook.

A Revelation

First, I had an epiphany and you can read it here.

Second, I found out what is the most popular search: The Cat Prayer.

It’s rather interesting to read the search engines and the various ways people identify what they are looking for.  These are the examples:

a cat’s life poem, a cat’s prayer, cat poem, cat poems, cat pray, cat prayer, cat praying, cat praying to god, cats good night prayer, cats prayer, cat’s prayer, cute cat poems, , poem about cat, poem on cat, praying cat, praying kitty, thankful cats and the best is meow I lay me down to sleep prayer

Thirdly, I am thankful and appreciate your interest on this article.  Therefore, I am reposting it for your enjoyment.

a-cat's-prayer

Related Links:

Sierra del Pardon – Mount of Forgiveness

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To reach the Mount of Forgiveness, it’s an uphill battle in an open windy country side.  The sign says 4.3 km of steady incline. From the distance I can see the electricity wind generators, in short windmills. towering the sky. The … Continue reading

After the storm

Sky always blue. 
Snow peaked mountains
towering the sky. 
z mountain
 Mountains that I see everyday
basking in the light of the sun
My thoughts longing to reach it
to feel the warmth of the sun
the coldness of the snow
from the distant
I stand in silent reverence
Praising your Glory.

Candle in Spain: November Peace Challenge

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Spain is filled with churches and we tried to stopped by in most of them, time permitting.  When I enter a new church, they say make a wish and your wish will be granted.  I have three wishes and I pray it all … Continue reading

Lets eliminate Monday

If we eliminate Monday, then what day can we make fun of?

November 3,  at 2 a.m. on Sunday,most Canadians will “fall back” and turn their clocks an hour back to end daylight saving time and revert to standard time.

But don’t let the time change dampen your mood

monday-is-gone

Source: annycook.blogspot.com

Hindu celebration of Deepavali

Cardinal Jean-Louis Tauran, President of the Pontifical Council for Inter-religious Dialogue, has issued his annual message to mark the Hindu celebration of Deepavali. The text is entitled “Christians and Hindus: Fostering human relationships through friendship and solidarity”. Deepavali (also called Diwali) celebrates the victory of truth over falsehood, light over darkness, life over death, good over evil. The celebrations last three days and mark the beginning of a new year, a time for family reconciliation, especially among brothers and sisters, and adoration of the Divine. The date for the feast can vary. Hindu communities in Canada begin their celebrations of Deepavali this year on November 3.

diwali-greeting

Link to the Message

Thank you,  Ela of Poet4Justice.

Let the little children come to me

Thousands of Catholic families from around the world gathered at the Vatican over the weekend to celebrate the Year of Faith with Pope Francis.A small group of children was invited to sit on the pope’s platform to listen to speakers from across the world speak about their faith and families.

Pope Francis and boy

Pope Francis was visibly amused when one child stayed on the stage instead of returning to his seat on the steps.

Let the children come to me and do not prevent them; for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these.  Luke 18:16

See more photos here.
 
Source:  NCR Staff

My heart skipped a beat – A Referrer

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Do you ever read the “referrers” in your Stat section?  I do. Do you click on the link should you see an unfamiliar link? I do. When I did visit the link of the referrers, my heart skipped a beat … Continue reading

Pre-thought, aftermath, side-effects: Eerie

Pre-thought:

To find a perfect pumpkin, you let the baby loose in the field to choose while the adults have fun pushing the wheelbarrow in the patch.

Parents have to think of safe ways for Super Baby to go out trick or treating.  One has to call his Super Friends, Super Mice, Super Grandpa, Super Auntie and Uncle to come along as well.

Safety in numbers will dispel any eerie thoughts of the parents while they are out just around the cul-de-sac.

Aftermath:

Carved pumpkins with lit up candle inside will cast how eerie looking they are. The glow will surely scare the ghosts away.

Gather all the candies; count how many same of a kind in their loot.  Those candies are equal to a kilo of sugar.

Keep the Super Baby away from the fireworks to prevent any eerie mishaps.

Side-effect:

Super Baby had one too many chocolates and was just spinning all over the place.

And these candies will surely bring your dental bills skyrocketing, and your dentist will love you for it.

Cavities and toothless, now, that is Eerie.

And who is going to clean up the mess but Super Granny.

Haunting: The little girl did it.

The  body parts littered on the lawn: three heads of children with creepy crawlers going into their eyes.  What a gory sight.  I wondered who with the right mind could do such a thing.  Macabre!

No one was around and with my quick thinking, I pulled my camera to take pictures as evidence.  As a witness to a crime scene, I must take notes and collect evidence to back up my story.

Kneeling on the grass, I positioned myself as close as possible to the heads and tried not to touch the icky-yucky crawlers.  Click, click, click.  And more clicks, taking more shots as quickly as possible because I am just so excited with the situation.

As I was about to get up, a mother and a little girl came around.  I was surprised by their presence being caught in their lawn.  I quickly got up on my two shaky legs and before I could say something, the little girl exclaimed, “I did that.  Yup, I took them apart and put them there”.  She said this proudly and her Mom just smiled at me.

The next door neighbour is no better.  It’s a Dead Zone!

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p style=”text-align:center;”>Dead Zone

The whole nine yards turned into cemetery.  It appears that dead bodies were dug out from the grave.  Skulls and skeletons, feet, legs, torso and an empty can of pop.  The pop will surely have finger prints of the murder or murderers.

As I was about to collect the pop can, the haunting chased me away.  The ghosts of poor souls remained on earth and never rested.  Rest In peace, my friends, rest in peace.  I promise I will find who did this unspeakable acts and said a short prayer “Have mercy on these poor souls” as I took my leave.

Spooktacular!

Octoberian Costume Birthday Party

Fearing that I will miss the birthday party for the month of October while I was walking the Camino, they waited until most of us are present.  We celebrated it in style: costume birthday party just in time for Halloween.

It was all start cast:  Mini Mouse, Ginger of Gillian’s Island, Captain James of Star Trek, Ghost Buster, The Venetians, Race Car Driver, Pirate, Nemo, Nurse (a real one), Lulu the gypsy fortune-teller, M&M, Pikachu, Priest (a real one) and much more.

Minie, Capt. James & Ginger

Minie, Capt. James & Ginger

The leading person who turned 60 years old is my brother who looks like David Suzuki.

Lulu, the gypsy fortune-teller is a very memorable character in our family life.  She was my mother’s friend.  How she suddenly appeared in our life remains a mystery.

Suzuki and Lulu

Suzuki and Lulu

Mother has a way of helping out people.

I remember how Mother helped Lulu take a bath.  Lulu was apparently so dirty that the water turned brown.  She doesn’t speak our language and we only spoke English to her.  She came in and out of our apartment, bee-lined to the kitchen, helped herself out on any food to eat and made herself at home even Mother was not around.  Lulu called my mom Mother as well.  Mother is Mother to everybody and everyone.

Having had her fill, she takes out her Tarot card and starts reading them.  Talking to herself mostly and suddenly, she will say, Mother is here.  Huh? No she’s not, I said.  Next thing, Mother walks in the door.  How did she do that is beyond me.

Lulu gives Mother a reading whether she likes it or not.  Mother doesn’t mind.  I don’t know if Mother believes in fortune-telling or palm reading because it is quite contrary to our belief system.

One day, Lulu read in the card that we are going far away to another land.  Mother did not believe on that either.  And it did happen.  How did she do that?

Back to the party.  The Filipino tradition, if it’s our birthday, we are responsible for throwing in the party, bring our cake and eat it, too.  We do not wait for anybody to throw us a surprise party.  We do not wait for anybody.  We let the whole world knows that it’s our birthday and we invite as many people as we can to help us celebrate.  Celebrate we did.

As for my costume, I wore my hiking gear; boots, poles, backpack, hat, waterproof jacket and pants, iPad in a red leader pouch,  a camera, gloves, sunglasses, water bottle, etc.  Gosh, cannot believe I carried these for 15 days.  Eventually, I had to divest myself since it was boiling inside the house with all these characters and cooking going at the same time.

The Pilgrim

The Pilgrim

The cake is always gigantic.  There was no blowing of the candles because most of us are sick of colds and we definitely want to keep the germs to ourselves.

Birthday Cake

Good times, good times.  Happy Birthday to us.

Related link: Tenth month of the year

Cats Rule

On the internet, you can never have too many cats. Now, on two islands in Japan, a similar principle seems to be in effect. The islands of Tashirojima in Miyagi prefecture and Aoshima in Ehime prefecture are covered in cats – and tourists love it.

Photo shot

Click on the photo for more pictures and story

The two islands are gradually being taken over by cats as the aging populations on those islands gradually fall. Veterinary doctors regularly visit the islands to ensure that the cats are in good health, Otherwise, however, they are free to roam. Tourists have been arriving by ferry to photograph and feed the cats, and local ferry captains have reacted with great surprise to the influx of new tourists.

At the moments, island officials are trying to figure out what to do to make the situation best for both tourists and cats. The cats already have a plan, however – take over the world!

via: kotaku.com

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A Story of “Faith” Umbrella

The spring rains did not come and the summer heat was worse than it had ever been.  All the fields in the area were parched, dusty, and brown. Our livelihood, our way of life, was wilting away. Most mornings we would search the sky for any sign of relief, for a hint of rain on the horizon. Days turned into arid weeks and soon became months.  Everywhere faithful people prayed.

The ministers, priest and rabbi of our local churches announced that there would be a special service to pray for rain on the following Saturday. They asked that everyone bring an object of their faith. So come Saturday morning we all gathered in the town square. People came with anxious faces and hopeful hearts. Looking around you could see the Bibles, Book of Prayers, crosses, crucifixes, pictures of Jesus – and you could tell the Catholic because of their rosaries.

And so we prayed.  We prayed a mighty prayer of praises for God, praises for His divine protection, and  petitions for rain. We sang, prayed some more, and heard the minister proclaim our faith in Jesus. And then we prayed some more. Just as the hour of prayer was concluding, and as if by some divine cue, a soft rain began to fall. Cheers swept the crowd as they held their treasured objects high in gratitude and praise.  The Pentecostals were shouting out their Hallelujahs with arms raised in ecstasy. The Catholics even got excited and were waving their rosaries, whipping them around in a frenzy.

But one symbol of faith seemed to overshadow all the others; one person had brought an umbrella.

Faith Umbrella

Special birthday pilgrimage to receive blessings on my 50th birthday in Vatican, Rome, Italy.

Source:   Friarmusings

Toro Loco and Hemingway

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Bull! No, I am not swearing.  Bull, it’s exactly  the first thing that greeted me at the hotel in Bilbao. It can be an imposing figure for a foreigner like me. Speaking of bulls, Pamplona is famous with Running with … Continue reading

On pasture land

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The Pyrenees of France.  What a spectacular view. The walk started from this mountain region going downhill.  Downhill?   We skipped the hard part which is the “slight incline”, now we have to do the “slight decline”.  Besides we are not real troopers … Continue reading

Pamper Yourself

Other than Lucy, the cat, who helped me get over the brain “silent treatment” Sophie the dog of a mutual friend on Facebook showed me how to relax.

We had a fabulous day of relaxation having our facial.  I learned a trick from her how to remove the bags from my tired eyes.  Cucumber.  That is what I call a cool cucumber.  It works.

Sophie dog - pamper yourself

Sophie’s motto is “every girl needs to pamper herself.”  And did we ever.  Pure bliss.

Do you have tricks to share with Sophie how to pamper yourself?

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A task for angels

z angelMany years ago lived a man who was able to love and forgive everyone he met.

Because of this, God sent an angel to talk to him.

“God asked me to come and visit you and to tell you that He wants to reward you for your goodness,” said the angel.

“Any favor that you desire will be granted. Would you like to have the gift of curing?”

“By no means,” answered the man. “I prefer that God Himself choose those to be cured.”

“And what about bringing sinners to the path of the Truth?”

“That is a task for angels like you. I don’t want to be venerated by anyone and serve as an example all my life.”

“I can’t go back to heaven without granting you a miracle. If you don’t pick one, you’ll be obliged to accept one.”

The man reflected a little before answering: “Then I want Good to be done through me, but without anyone noticing – not even myself, so that I don’t commit the sin of vanity.”

And the angel gave to that man’s shadow the power to cure, but only when the sun was shining on his face.

In that way, wherever he went, the sick were cured, the earth became fertile again, and sad people regained their joy.

The man traveled many years over the Earth without ever realising the miracles he worked, because when he was facing the sun, his shadow was always at his back.

In that way he could live and die without being aware of his own sanctity.

Source: Paulo Coelho Blog
Read more: Daily Mail ~ Paulo Coelho ~ Seeking Best Yourself

Glimpse of Santiago de Compostela

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Entering the narrow pathways considered as a street in Santiago de Compostela, we could see the steeple of the cathedral.  The pilgrims’ steps quickened as they are getting excited to reach their destination. In front of the towering old steeple, dating as … Continue reading

The Fall of Autumn – For Hue

Another guessing game of weekly photo challenge while I am out and about.  Here I am creating my theme again: the falling leaves of autumn taken last year 2012.

Fall is a lovely time when the leaves turn to many shades of colours from yellow to dazzling red.  When every leaves look like flowers and the trees became so excited in showing off it’s majestic structure.

Who cannot fall in love with the fall season.  It’s enough to bring ones senses to heightened awareness that I am nothing in front of these trees and it is a humbling experience.

Trees planted at Metrotown Shopping Centre.

Trees at the School Board and the path of golden leaves.

Trees on the boulevard of East 12th Avenue and painted red sidewalks covered with fallen leaves

Buddha

Buddha

“It is only her in large portions of Canada that wondrous second wind, the Indian summer, attains its amplitude and heavenly perfection, — the  temperatures; the sunny haze; the mellow, rich delicate, almost  flavoured air: Enough to live — enough to merely be.”  –   Walt Whitman, Diary in Canada

Game Club

Mr. DaG I call him of I know I can make you smile can truly make you smile.  I just want to tap into his sense of humour.

Thanksgiving season he posted Attention: No More Thanksgiving.  What a turkey.  So I started this conversation with him:

By: I know I can make you smile

By: I know I can make you smile

(Click on the photo to take you to Mr. DaG’s site)

Seeker: Turkey you say? A question for you. How do you keep a turkey in suspense?

DaG: Send him to the Twilight Zone ?

Seeker: Twilight zone is good but my answer to you is: I’ll tell you tomorrow. 8=))

DaG: OK. You are now an official member of our “Let’s Play the Game Club” on this blog.

Don’t you just love a good banter every now and then?  Commenting is always good.

Open your Heart

Open the doors of your heart.

Give special attention, love and prayers to all those who come to the door of your home and workplace.

Let this simple gift of self be a witness to the love of Christ among us.

Pau Wau

Saturday is normally the Weekly Photo Challenge.  Well, this will be challenging since I don’t know what the theme is all about.  I am going to post just the same to throw off some equilibrium in the blogging world.  Naughty, naughty.

Pow… Pow… Wow.. Wow.  Put it together.  Pow Wow.

Pow Wow is a gathering of Aboriginal First Nations and non-aboriginals.   It is steep with legend and tradition.  We had a First Nation celebration on September 21, 2013 as part of the Reconciliation, Walk with us.

This is the dance of Metamorphosis of a Butterfly.  The colourful shawl is the wings of the butterfly.

Butterfly

Butterfly

She danced to the beat of the drum.  Slowly as she emerged from her cocoon.

Gradually her feet moved two slow steps.  As she transformed into a butterfly, the steps criss-cross, legs started to jump and opened her wings to show her true self.  A metamorphosis of beauty.

The Flight of the Butterfly

The Flight of the Butterfly

At the end of the show, we were invited to learn the dance and performed the dance with her.  Okay, easy peasy.

Let me try.

Let me try.

That’s me in red shoes with my two nieces.  Not showing you how I tripped when my feet got all tangled.  I must say it was fun.

The day I took the children to Pau Wau will be told and retold to their siblings, cousins, friends and hopefully to their future family. The story of the First Nation will remain in history forever as we continue the dance to healing and metamorphosis to a beautiful butterfly – ad infinitum.

Competition

Competition is what I avoid and I am really good in avoidance.  It’s bad enough that I constantly wrestled with me, myself and I.

There is something to be proud about wrestling because my niece is graduating today after wrestling her way in becoming an Engineer.

She did several wrestling competitions and won some medals.

Medals, medals, medals

And a black eye to boot. 

Black eye

Black eye

Marianne, Congratulations.  I am very proud of you. 

Related link: Wrestling: Sakamoto vs. Marianne

Something fell from the sky

On my way to work, something fell from the sky.  As I walked closer to it, it appeared to be a small piece of paper iridescent green colour.  I bend down to pick it up and it was paper light.

Good Lord.  A hummingbird.  I don’t know what to do.  I was so scared that it might have died from the impact of hitting the pavement.  It was breathing so fast. Stroking it as gently as possible and praying to it “Please do not die” was all I can do,

I turned around and went to the nearest bush.  I laid it gently, left and hope it will come back to its senses.

On my coffee break around 10 am, I went to check the bush.  The hummingbird was gone.  I hope it flew away.

This was the first time I encountered a hummingbird.

Fast forward a year later.  Spring, a beautiful sunny day, however, the dark night of the soul is trying to invade me.

I was gardening on my balcony at the same time talking to God.

God, where are you.  I don’t particularly like how I am feeling, please take this away from me.  Where are you?

Suddenly I heard this whooshing sound.  It was high pitched buzzing more like it.  Am I hearing things now?  Or the tension is affecting my eardrums again?

I look up and right in front of me was this beautiful golden hummingbird.

Oh my God.  I repeated this so many times in my mind. Transfixed to this small creature, I did not breathe nor move for fear of scaring it away.

Time stood still.

Zoom, it was gone.  So was the dark night of the soul.

hummingbird

From here on, the hummingbird is my constant companion especially when I tend to garden.  One hummer brought others  and they stay around all year.

Oh, give us pleasure in the flowers to-day;
And give us not to think so far away
As the uncertain harvest; keep us here
All simply in the springing of the year. 
 Oh, give us pleasure in the orchard white,
Like nothing else by day, like ghosts by night;
And make us happy in the happy bees,
The swarm dilating round the perfect trees. 
 And make us happy in the darting bird
That suddenly above the bees is heard,
The meteor that thrusts in with needle bill,
And off a blossom in mid air stand still. 
 For this is love and nothing else is love,
The which it is reserved for God above
To sanctify to what far ends He will,
But which it only needs that we fulfill. 
A Robert Frost Hummingbird Poem

The Way

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Unlike Martin Sheen in the movie The Way, I came to walk the earth and walking part of Camino Santiago de Compostela is just one of my dreams.  If you have seen the movie, this Posada was in the movie. … Continue reading

Walk, walk, walk

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Where am I?  According to the itinerary, we would have walked the foothills of the Pyrenees near the French border. This is the Camino’s traditional start to the “French Route” where medieval pilgrims arrived into Spain from France after an … Continue reading

The rain in Spain…

Image

The rain in Spain stays mainly in the plain.

Really?

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Somehow this cloud does not look promising on the first morning of staying in Bilbao, Spain. The sun was struggling to break through the thick clouds.

It’s rather a warm day, the sun won, the rain lost, the clouds remained in the horizon giving a soft white fluffy cottony texture,

I found a corner bar that is open first thing in the morning. It is actually a coffee bar by morning and  serves stronger beverage by night, if you get my drift.  Here I decided to have my morning Java and a simple breakfast.

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Ah coffee. Coffee tastes much better in Spain than Starbucks in Canada.

In the background, I could hear music playing to the tune of “It’s a Wonderful World. It seemed to me that it was coming from across the water,

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After coffee, I decided to follow the music and crossed the bridge. At the other of the bridge, I found the lone player and people were passing, in a rush, and continued walking.

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Well, I have all mornIng and now he has an audience of one, me.  I requested if he could play the “It’s A Wonderful World” again. And he did.  What a beautiful way to start a day. Of course, he deserves a good tip for making my morning memorable,

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I walked away and he was playing the classical hymn “Ave Maria.”

Good Morning, Spain!

Home of the Topnotchers

I was searching for the University of East where I studied back in the Philippines.  Finally, they are now on line however the history is still yet to be updated.  I have so much fond memories studying.

This University is really top-rated.  No such thing as being humble based on its logo.

z ue (2)

That is tall order and I cannot reach that for I am only five foot and two inches tall.  As a freshman, I prefer to have good times and date the men in the Engineering Department.  I was a flower amongst the thorns.

There is one person, though, who jumps so high that she became a topnotcher.  She must be about four feet and eight inches tall.  They say dynamite comes in small packages.  And that she is.  With that small head, she is all brains.

Thelma

Was my Mother very proud of her dreams to educate her children?

She was more than shock to find out about this.  Her perseverance and dedication to raise her children with good education no matter how poor we were was a great sacrifice for her.  Mother, we are proud and love you for providing us the life you didn’t have.  Thank you, Mother.

I know I will be in deep doo-doo for flaunting this.  Here’s to hoping that she hasn’t been reading my blogs.

Thelma was the top-notch.  We are siblings and she is the second Octoberian who celebrates her birthday.

Happy Birthday, Sister!

God Bless.

I love you, Dad. Happy Birthday

See this picture? It means a a lot to me. This picture is always on my bedside table as I sleep every night. The man beside that child on the roller coaster in that picture is my dad. Today is his birthday, and I wanted to share my favourite picture of the two of us.

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My mom and dad have helped shape me into the young man I am today, and if my dad hadn’t worked graveyard shifts so he could spend quality time and play video games most day with me as a child, I wouldn’t be who I am right now. Why the video games? Also, you’ve probably wondered why I’m obsessed with The Legend Of Zelda.

The thing is, when I was younger, I was diagnosed with echolalia. In other words, I couldn’t exactly communicate or speak for myself without repeating what someone would voice out to me. Sometimes I would make noises instead of talking. I also had this bad hand problem to go along with it. My hands were so weak I could barely pick up a crayon. I couldn’t draw a picture or anything. My parents went to see a few specialist to get help for me. When the doctors told my parents to get me a toy that would help the muscles in my hands develop, my dad was the one who thought of buying a Nintendo 64 for me. The one game I just couldn’t put down was “The Legend Of Zelda: Ocarina Of Time”.

As a kid, all I knew was that I was this guy who would make random loud noises every time I would swing my sword in the game. But every time I played that game, my hands got better, and better, and better. During that time I was also attending a special needs pre-school to try and rid me of my echolalia. Going to that school mixed with the quality time playing video games throughout the day with my dad helped my verbal communication develop quickly.

Eventually I started speaking normally like any other kid. I think it was the fact that I was learning how to verbally ask my dad to help me out in certain parts of the game. I want to dedicate not only this picture, but also this day to my dad. Without any of his unconditional love as a parent alongside with my moms, I wouldn’t be anywhere close to being the guy I am today.

I love you, dad. Happy Birthday.

Photo of Christopher and Angel.  Written by Christopher for his dad, Angel.  Angel is my sibling #13, the baby in our family.

Contact of the Fourth Kind

The Mother ship heard my SOS whether Greenland exists and she sent the fourth kind to contact me.

Contact!  Greenland, contacted me.  Was I ever surprised?  Of course! Unbelievable!!!  Did the Mother ship abduct me?  No, it only wants the young and the restless.

This was my SOS post: Greenland, do you exists?  She does exist. We are not talking about little green people here.  See for yourself.  Read what she commented on my post.

To prove; this is an image of my today’s map.

Will I share her with you?  Nope, finder’s keeper.  Just kidding.

Everyone, I am proud to introduce to you, Greenland, The Fourth Continent.

Let us welcome Greenland into our blogging path. Please be gentle, no pushing, no shoving, and one at a time.  We do not want to scare her and she might take off with the Mother ship again.

Thank you, The Fourth Continent for making my dream comes true.  Hopefully, one day I will reach Greenland.

Related Links:

Sweating with Fear – Saturated

Can one get any wetter?  Wet is wet.  That’s it.  These were my thoughts as I was feeding the ducks at Stanley Park and another thought pop up.  Do ducks get wet?  Or does water just roll down on their backs?

What an introspective mind I had that afternoon for a simple activity of feeding the ducks when I can just easily enjoy the moment.   And I did.

z WP Sept 28, 2013 (1)

These ducks are smart when they see humans.  They very well know that we can’t resist feeding them even when there is a sign “DO NOT FEED THE ANIMALS.”  Ignoring the sign, I have half a loaf of baguette that I do not want to waste.

On the other side of the bank, I saw a racoon.  Go away, bandit, you are not invited.  Do you think the bandit understands?  Of course, not!  Bandit had his eyes on the bread.

What happened next, bandit went for a swim across the bank, on my side of the lagoon.  Then bandit started calling his family: “Come and follow” in bandit’s purring sound.  A Mama and a baby raccoon heeded his call.

Now what? How am I going to get out of this situation?  The exit is where the raccoons are.

Please note that this may sound like slow motion but this incident happened in a flash.

Panic set in.  I started to sweat and wanted to shout “Go away”.  Too late, they came charging towards me and all I can do is jump on the bench.

Help ~ thieves ~ bandits; these raccoons are stealing the bread. I threw the bread to the other side of the lagoon, they run after it. I quickly jump out of the bench and ran out faster than a speeding bullet.

Sweating with fear during this incident, wet and saturated with my perspiration.  I am safe and sound.

“I AM GOOD.”

An African tribe does the most beautiful thing.When someone does something hurtful and wrong, they take the person to the center of town, and the entire tribe comes and surrounds him.For two days they'll tell the man every good thing he has ever done.The tribe believes that every human being comes into the world as Good, each of us desiring safety, love, peace, happiness.But sometimes in the pursuit of those things people make mistakes. The community sees misdeeds as a cry for help.They band together for the sake of their fellow man to hold him up, to reconnect him with his true Nature, to remind him who he really is, until he fully remembers the truth from which he'd temporarily been disconnected:"I AM GOOD."Please Share :)
 An African tribe does the most beautiful thing. 
When someone does something hurtful and wrong, they take the person to the center of town, and the entire tribe comes and surrounds him. 
For two days they’ll tell the man every good thing he has ever done….
The tribe believes that every human being comes into the world as Good, each of us desiring safety, love, peace, happiness. 
But sometimes in the pursuit of those things people make mistakes. The community sees misdeeds as a cry for help. 
They band together for the sake of their fellow man to hold him up, to reconnect him with his true Nature, to remind him who he really is, until he fully remembers the truth from which he’d temporarily been disconnected: 
“I AM GOOD.” 
This is a brilliant idea, in my opinion, if I can bring this In Canadian / Filipino culture.  Maybe not, I think I will be the person in the middle.
Source: Facebook

The Pivot of My Heart

Japanese Art

Japanese Art

 I sit beneath the cliff, quiet and alone. 
Round moon in the middle of the sky’s a bird ablaze:
all things are seen mere shadows in its brilliance,
that single wheel of perfect light… 
Alone, its spirit naturally comes clear.
Swallowed in emptiness in this cave of darkest mystery,
because of the finger pointing, I saw the moon. 
That moon became the pivot of my heart. 
 (Han Shan)

Let it be written, Let it be done.

The gathering of Truth and Reconciliation Commission ended with the walk in solidarity with the aboriginals and non-aboriginals.  Thousands braved the day in a wet, wild, and wonderful walk.

We were banging drums, singing traditional songs, wearing button blankets and hats as we marched along the Georgia Street.

walk-for-reconciliation-0130922

The stories told were very horrific and sad about the treatment the aboriginals received from the white people especially at the residential schools.  These are the survivors who came to have their stories documented for the history books.

As horrific as it was, the gathering will be the beginning of a journey toward reconciliation. Canada is stepping forward to share the pain it created.  From here, we can move towards healing.

The keynote speaker for this event was Dr. Bernice King, the daughter of Martin Luther King, Jr.

One day, you’ll be able to join hands together and say in the words of my father and it will be a truth in this nation.  Free at last, free at last, and thank God almighty we are free at last.”

May the stars carry your sadness away,
May the flowers fill your heart with beauty,
May hope forever wipe away your tears,
And, above all, may silence make you strong.
Chief Dan George

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Harvest Time

It was a bountiful harvest considering most of these vegetables grew in a container and a small parcel of land.

Bountiful Harvest

Garlic, sage, kale, parsley, carrots and basil are just too much for one person.  Most of these vegetables I shared with neighbours, friends and family.  I will be keeping a few bulbs of garlic to grow.

I picked them way before the Autumn Harvest moon came out.

The view from my balcony faces west and I see the morning moon.  A light cloud hanging low and a single bird hovering the horizon gave me a feeling of serenity in the stillness of the morning.

Harvest Moon September 20, 2013

Harvest Moon September 20, 2013

Of course,  the moon looks brighter at night especially on the first evening of Harvest Moon.  In order for me to capture this, I have to go out on the street, look towards east and wait for the rising of the moon.

Harvest Moon Rising September 19, 2013

Harvest Moon Rising September 19, 2013

“Believe in yourself, your neighbors, your work, your ultimate attainment of more complete happiness. It is only the farmer who faithfully plants seeds in the Spring, who reaps a harvest in Autumn. ” – B. C. Forbes

Everything else is secondary.

This showed up in my Facebook with a comment:

“This so true!”

I scanned it, read it, re-read it and read it slowly.  Somehow this quote is not sitting well with me.

So I commented to the sender:

“What else is missing in this article?”

“Nothing!”

“Is everything else is secondary?”

I will leave this question open for you.

 

Labour Day Bash

The day before the school starts, on a Monday, we celebrate Labour Day in Canada.  It is one good way to end summer.

The Labour Party throws a festivity the whole afternoon at Trout Lake.  It is a gathering of people mostly working for the government in a unionized environment like me.  We invited the family of the workers as well.  The more the merrier, the more we can educate people to work in a fair, safe and equitable working situation.

I could hear from the distance the live band was playing Blues and Jazz.  Rows and rows of colourful tents are becoming visible as I arrive Trout Lake.

The first thing I noticed was a couple of older folks gyrating to the live rock music on a hot sunny day.  They must be the alumni and a die-hard union couple.

Dancing couple

Dancing couple

One can help but enjoy the festivity starting from eating the union staple food: hotdogs and buttered corn.  Family brought their children and dogs, adults blowing bubbles, green headed clown doing his balloon tricks, take as much buttons if you want to put on your shirt and hats; and much more.

Who would think that there is a labour strife looming in the horizon when we are having so much fun?

People are wearing their best union shirts to show off their solidarity.  The best one is a shirt of Jack Layton, a remarkable man who led the National Democratic Party.  This was a man full of wisdom and a great leader.  We will miss him.

The whole the afternoon was pure entertainment for me and I was good in avoiding talking shop.  In the meantime, people were staring at my shirt and not saying a word.  I wonder if I was wearing the food on my shirt, ketchup, a good symbol of unionized condiment.

I left the party and the couple was still dancing to the tune of “Together Again.”

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When I came home, I immediately checked my shirt to see if there were stains.  I realized the logo on my shirt is the symbol of Jerusalem Cross, symbol of my faith.

Jerusalem Cross

Jerusalem Cross

What a Happy Labour Day.

Inspired by TK Morin of Bite Size Canada.

Dream Symbol

In my case Pilgrim’s Progress consisted in my having to climb down a thousand ladders until I could reach out my hand to the little clod of earth that I am. ~ Carl Jung

This is a painting I find interesting at Masqua’s Art  produced by Antonie H. Los, an artist based in southern Ontario.

The dream symbols are often what is remembered just prior to becoming fully awake and I’ve been fascinated by such things quite a long while. Normally it’s just a scene… confusing and rather imponderable, but I’ve read too much CG Jung to discount these little messages from the unconscious out of hand.

The first is a tree in full leaf, but the view is both above and below ground. Underground, the tree trunk turns into a two-headed snake. Not sure what I’ll be calling the piece, but it does have elements of the caduceus (the symbol for medical practitioners). What it might mean to me, I have no idea, but I felt prompted to paint it anyways.

There are other paintings in this website that appeals to me.  Since I am fairly new in appreciating artwork produced by students, I am still learning how to understand how come I find them it fascinating.

Take a peek at his artwork and see which ones you find appealing.

Related Link: Masqua’s Art

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:
 
 

The Best Part

There are so many parishes around where I live.  I go where ever the wind blows me.

The one closest to me is St. Frances de Sale I go should I feel like walking.  Down the hills is St. Therese but I’ve never went because walking uphill is just a challenge for this old body.  Our Lady of Mercy I visit should I wish to see my family.

Since I prefer the easiest route, I hop on a Sky train and attend a mass at St. Mary’s Church.  Here I love listening to Fr. Pierre, a Frenchie.  Somehow French man has a sing-song way of speaking English and his sense of humour is effective when he speaks his sermon.  It is much easier to shallow his teaching when he lifts the congregation up rather than talking down to us.  That is what I call effective communication.

Should I feel the need to drop by at a church on a way home, I go to the Cathedral.  Here I meet all kinds of people including the pan handlers, the addicts, the alcoholics, the mentally ill or anyone who wants refuge from an inhospitable weather.  Most of the priest here are on the higher echelon.  Their sermons are okay. For as long as I get my dosage of Spiritual healing and thanksgiving, that is what I am after.

When I really missed being with the elders, I go to the Indian Reserve and attend a mass at St. Paul’s.

First Nations Aboriginals

First Nations Aboriginals

As I mentioned before, the whole world is my church.  So far, I haven’t met anyone who understands this mentality until recently I read an article from UCAN News.

Faith revolutionizes our lives…

I would like to tell you what my expectations are regarding this World Youth Day. I would like us to make noise, I would like those inside the Dioceses to go out into the open; I want the Church to be in the streets; I want us to defend ourselves against all that is worldliness, comfort, being closed and turned within – Parishes, colleges and institutions must get out otherwise they risk becoming NGOs, and the Church is not a Non-Governmental Organization….

These are the words of Pope Francis.  Finally, a man who understands me.

The World is my Church, this is the best part.

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Peace ~ Moving beyond

The common thread between me and other immigrants, we fled our country to move beyond, sometimes, to move beyond hate. 
Hate is a strong word. 
When I was younger, I wrote a term paper the Pros and Cons of Capital Punishment.  The final analyst of the paper, I was for electric chair, a capital punishment.  This was based on a young mind being exposed to violence.  Not in my home where love thrives but due to poor government system and being under the regime of so many super powers. 
Hearing and reading stories is not good for a young mind for I learned the word hate. 
I hated what the Spaniards did, I hated what the Japanese did, I hated what the Americans did, and I hated the martial law, hate, hate, hate… 
Here in Canada, I learnt the history of the holocaust from watching the movie Schindler’s List.  I hated the Germans. 
Fortunately, there is one immigrant that helps me move beyond hate.  Eva Olsson, a holocaust survivor and she lives here in Canada. 
Her life philosophy in life is:
> Live one day at a time and make it a masterpiece.
> Treat others the way you want to be treated.
> Racism is a learned attitude
>Make a choice.
> Change your attitude.
She is right.  I cannot change the past and I can definitely change my attitude.
Eva Olsson: Canadian Immigrant ~ Holocaust Survivor

Eva Olsson: Canadian Immigrant ~ Holocaust Survivor

Subsequently, I began to find my VOICE.  Stand Up!  Speak Up! 
By being silent I will suffer.  That is why I have to speak out against intolerance, violence, disrespect, mendacity and any forms that will kill the soul of a human being.  If I maintain this silent attitude and accept the inhumanity, then, I have just lost the purpose and meaning of life.  That purpose comes from the heart connected to the mind.  As much as possible, I leave little room for hatred and cultivate love. 
Love brings peace.  A moment of Peace, a day of Peace, and never-ending Peace is what I strive for. If I tell myself who I am, words are not enough.  I have to show you and I start with children. 
If I can only teach one child to become loving, forgiving, compassionate, kind and see the goodness of the world in the God of small things, then I have done my job.  Hopefully, the child in turn will teach other children and this can have a ripple effect. 
I changed and keep the deep abiding Love of God based on my Catholic faith to love one another as He loves us.  And this is Peace. 
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A line a day makes a pattern

And the red flags are up for the United Way Campaign.  Kingsway Street is lined up with all these banners to remind us that United Way kick off is just around the corner.

United Way Banners

United Way Banners

Across the street is an electrical box.

Electric Box - Front view

Electric Box – Front view

Lines are bisecting each other that make a pattern, a street pattern.   This is the front view.  The most important part because Metrotown Mall is a major destination for most people to shop till they drop.

This is the back view or maybe front since you can see the door handle.  It doesn’t matter.  It all depends on point of view.

Electric Box - Back View

Electric Box – Back View

This is a side view.  Central Park practical covers the entire panel.  It’s a beautiful park by the way.

Side View

Side View

The main streets are Kingsway and Nelson.

Kingsway and Nelson

Kingsway and Nelson

This is a major intersection with traffic light patterns. 

I have just given you a good map of Burnaby’s main hub.  Come on over and I’ll meet you at the mall for coffee.

Summer is over

This is blocking the view.

Good thing summer is over.

Source: Flickr/CC-BY-2.0/Kyle May

Think of it this way, he has from October to May to hit the gym and start working out.  If he remains the same, Paul Sullivan has something to say about it.

You’ll have to fake it.

Turning that spare tire into a six-pack will take the whole summer and you’ll be ready for your beach close-up just in time to head back to school, fool.

There are a number of things you can do, like suck your stomach in as you stroll, all nonchalant, along the shore. If anyone asks why your face is so red, just tell them you burn easily from the neck up. Like all those other red-faced shore stalkers going by.

Then there’s the briefest-possible-moment-of-exposure tactic. Just drag your beach blanket and mummy kit as close to the water as you can without being swamped, then disrobe quickly, flashing your bi- or mono-kini, and then immerse yourself up to your neck as quickly as possible.

To get out of the water successfully, repeat in reverse. Do not, like Daniel Craig, emerge from the surf in glorious 3D slow motion. You’ll scare the little kids on the beach.

Make sure to do whatever you can to avoid the inverse beach fitness rule. That is: The less fit you are, the more flesh you expose. Don’t be that guy with the beach ball for a belly and the speedo. If that bikini didn’t look quite right in that artfully lit Swimco mirror, how do you think it’s going to look out here, in the stark light of day?

I don’t want to cramp your style, but you don’t have any, especially when your body is a gallery of all your deepest thoughts written in flesh. Tattoos, even Angelina Jolie’s — especially Angelina Jolie’s — don’t make it better. You look like human graffiti.

There are some people, of course, who look fantastic on the beach, all fresh and tousled and tanned. They’re called children. They don’t count.

Paul Sullivan is a writer for a local newspaper, Metro News.