Sunday, September 1, 2019

It's a cats' world


Stevestonites love their dogs. On any given day (but especially on warm sunny days) you can see our best friends sauntering beside their owners on the riverfront promenade, sniffing and snuffling every dusty bush on the dyke, lapping up water in metal bowls in front of village stores, or straining their pole-wrapped leashes while waiting for their absent masters.

Yep. No doubt about it. Dogs reign on the well traveled routes in our neighborhood.

But... 

When you take the quieter corners and cul de sacs, you will soon discern that cats rule the backwaters. In the soothing whispers of tree leaves, seductive dances of undulating grasses, and crisp scents of well tended private gardens you find them - sometimes well hidden but at other times, boldly out in the open, as they survey their domain with their characteristic self-assured pomposity.

Their sightings seem to spark a sense of wonder, even privilege, on the part of the observer. Indeed, the cats themselves appear to remind us that such moments are not to be taken lightly - with their cool stares, their upturned Roman nose, and their disappearance just as you whip out your camera phone.

Sunday, August 25, 2019

Walking - with or without shoes


I remember a man who always cut a distinctive figure around Richmond (including Steveston) - not so much for his long, wispy grey hair, nor his clothing that didn't quite match the seasons, but for his bare feet.

For years, he could be seen on the streets - with no protective footwear - treading on sizzling sidewalks in the summer and freezing footpaths in the winter as though inured to discomfort and pain.

Observing him from afar, I thought he appeared determined to get somewhere fast. There was an intensity to his stride as he hurried to his destination.

Then one day, much to my surprise and relief, he started wearing shoes. 

Nothing else had changed. He still looked and behaved pretty much the same. Except his feet were cushioned against the earth. I bet there was quite a story behind this happy change. However it has been months since I have seen him - with or without shoes - and the story may never be revealed any time soon.

In the meantime, I am keeping my fingers crossed that all is well with him and a brighter future awaits him wherever he may be.