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.

Tuesday, August 20, 2019

Tutus, tulle, and tiaras

Girls must have this universal love of diaphanous gossamer-thin skirts and dresses - which is why they like to don tutus or princess costumes - even over their leggings and t-shirts. 

Despite recent efforts to rethink traditionally accepted gender characteristics, there is one immutable fact - most girls seem to gravitate towards frothy fabrics gathered at the waist, preferably dotted with sparkling rhinestones. Some even ramp up the glam factor with glittering tiaras and beribboned wands.

Of course, ballet - with its sumptuous costumes - has ignited the public imagination and remained popular since its creation in the 15th century. There is just something about pulling your hair severely up in a bun, slipping into a pair of soft leather slippers (or satin pointe shoes, as the case may be), and wriggling into a pancake tutu that makes every girl feel like a prima ballerina - whether she is practicing at a studio barre or just walking in the mall.

the next time you find yourself in a kid-friendly zone, take a look around. You would be amazed at the number of princesses- and ballerinas-in-training, in attire if not in real life.

Sunday, August 11, 2019

Merry but a little less bright

Christmas 2018, like other Christmases past, was beautiful in Steveston.

Trees in Steveston Park donned their brilliant robes and shop windows and doors wore garlands of twinkling LED's in seasonal colours. Just walking around the village awakened a sense of anticipation for the upcoming big day and of course, the accompanying urgency and panic to get as much done as possible before its arrival.

But hark, what happened to the banners made of crisscrossing mesh of lights that used to drape over Moncton Street? Why were they so conspicuously absent. I had always loved that sensation of moving through the brilliant tunnel they formed. It raised a local awareness of - and appreciation for - Steveston as a fishing village.

I don't know why they were phased out and hope that the tradition will be rekindled in 2019. After all, you can't get too many Christmas displays and this one was very specific to our village.

Otherwise, Steveston will be just another postcard-pretty place .

Monday, August 5, 2019

Buddy's outing

Not Buddy - to protect Buddy's identity
When my husband agreed to walk our neighbour's dog while they took a vacation, I thought it would be fun to tag along.

After all, who could resist images of Lassie roaming the hills and Rover dashing into the bushes to retrieve a branch or tennis ball.


This was what I found out instead-

This dog was:

Full of nervous energy - totally unchanneled 
Drawn to every upright structure, from power and phone poles to tree trunks and - of course - fire hydrants; In fact, any random object in its path was worthy of further sniffing and exploration
Perpetually in need of urinating - at each of the above; marking your territory was one thing, but repeating the whole exercise on the way back - even when there was nothing left in the bladder to empty - was downright obsessive

What was initially estimated to be a brisk 20-minute walk stretched out to a one-hour event.

Which made me wonder, was this behaviour peculiar to this dog or was it characteristic of all dogs?

Regardless of the answer, however, I congratulated myself on having wisely chosen to share my life with a cat instead. With his regal cool demeanor, discrete bathroom behaviour, and fierce sense of independence, he is the very embodiment of a picture-perfect low-maintenance pet.

I mean, there is just no comparison.

Let me know if you agree...