Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Random thoughts

Apparently only 15 percent of Canadian adults are getting enough exercise -- 2.5 hours of moderate to vigorous exercise per week -- so says a recent study.

Have you ever noticed that when people get on an escalator or moving walkway, they stop walking, as if the world owes them something? Have you noticed that when we go to the shopping centre, we instinctively drive around and around trying to find the closest spot to the door, so we don’t have to walk far? And if you take transit, do you know notice how everyone huddle at the end of the train platform where the escalator deposited them, instead of walking further down.

Imagine if we just walked a little more.


My five year old son asked the other day, why it is that people say the alarm [smoke alarm, fire alarm, alarm clock] is going off, when really it is going on? Yes, why is that? 

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Back to the grind

The other day I got up for the first time in more than a year and went off to work. Not that I didn’t do work over the past 13 months, just a different kind.

What’s interesting is how familiar the routine was. Bag packed and ready by the front door, clothes hung out the night before (I even tied my tie on the first attempt, something that doesn’t always happen). At 6:20 my wife turned to me as she usually did before and told me it was time to get up. Without protest I got out of bed and went to the bathroom. Minutes later, after shaving and showering, I was downstairs pouring a bowl of Special K. It was all very machine-like.

When I got to the bus stop, I recognized some familiar faces – bus friends as they’re called. I wondered what they had been up to over the past year.

My commute is similar as before—bus, train, bus. Sometimes I can make it just over an hour, other times it’s longer, like the other night when it took an hour and forty minutes to get home. The hawkers of free newspapers still ply their trade at train stations. People still don’t move to the back of the bus, so the driver thinks the bus is full and leaves others waiting at the stop while the back third of the bus is empty. And the people that should get up to give someone a seat still don’t. Some things never change. 
Riders still have the same tired, sullen look. I remember someone telling me years ago that all the people in Romania look depressed. Have you ever been on a bus or train in Vancouver in the morning?
Though there are some differences. The music spilling from people’s ears is different than it was a year ago. And while many still pass the time flipping the pages of free newspapers, others now entertain themselves on new ipad tablets.
While making my lunch the other night, my wife said to me, “I remember you doing that...we’re you really off for a year.” After three days it surely doesn’t feel like I was.

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Beautiful moments

Have you ever had one of those times when the beauty of the world is so striking that it leaves you in awe. Yesterday, while driving through Vancouver's Stanley Park, we had one of those moments. As the late afternoon sun set, it burned the sky marvelous hues of reds and oranges. My wife captured the beauty in the photographs below. Looking at them now, it's hard to believe that the temperature was zero degrees, instead of more a balmy temperature felt in the summer.

This experience again shows how beautiful the world is, and reminds me that really we have nothing to complain about.

May you find your own beautiful moments in 2011.