It isn’t always about choosing

Hello everyone,
hope the new year,
so far,
has been good to you.

Still holding true?
To your resolutions?
Making plans,
moving forward?


I've shared this before, Calvin and Hobbes, never gets old:-)

I have,
mostly,
stayed the course,
as far as,
my not overthinking things,
plan is concerned.

I had a slight,
slide back,
last week,
got all weird,
with myself,
others,
about expectations,
but...
I am back,
on my path.

You might recall,
in December,
I said I would,
pick a project,
a creative endeavour,
to work on,
this year.

I have spent,
more than a month,
being with friends,
family,
etc,
working, reading, 
watching, observing,
absorbing.

I have chosen to not,
chose,
not yet.

I will be taking,
the Alpha course,
at St Jax of Montreal,
exploring,
the spiritual,
in my life.

They are nice people,
very nice.
I still don't know,
if I will follow that road,

the church road I mean,

But I will follow,
the 'class',
ask questions,
meet people,
break bread.
With an open mind,
and,
an open heart.
I will also be,
attending,
Sunday service,
from now and up until,
the end of the Alpha course,
afterwards,
we shall see.

I am in my second week,
of an online,
photography class,
with shawacademy.com,
my BFF gave me a voucher,
for a free class.
I chose the photography class.

I love photography,
been taking pictures,
for a few years,
learned it on my own,
trial and error,
with varying results,
but,
it makes me happy.
If there is one thing,
I have learned over,
the years,
it's that you always,
have stuff to learn.

Even in the first few classes,
about basic principles,
a couple of lights,
went on in my head.
Very enjoyable.

My promises to myself,
to take concrete steps,
in political,
action,
are also moving along,
meeting people,
networking,
going to the women's march,
on Saturday.
A world wide collective,
protest to the disturbing,
trends in politics,
all over the world,
but,
mostly with our neighbours,
to the South,
we stand with you,
sisters and brothers.

Keeping my journal,
reading everyday.
Being the best,
friend,
daughter,
girlfriend,
person,
I can be.

Letting,
light,
beauty,
thought...
in.
 
Going to keep doing that,
for a while,
sometimes,
it isn't abut choosing,
it's about being.

Be well you all.

Later girls,
BB


2017-Commit, create, flee the haters

It is here, the new year,
has been for a few days.
I have made a few resolutions.
I have discussed a few with all of you,
here on the blog and on face book.

Work harder,
write more,
read more and deeper.
Keep to the path of better health,
and, nutrition.
Do not over think,
things,
everything.
Flee the haters.

Concretely,
I have been keeping a journal,
not really a diary,
keeping track of what I do,
who I see, what I eat and read,
what preoccupies me.

So far, so good,
entries every day,
sometimes more than once,
on long days.

I have been doing my workout,
walking,
a bit of a challenge,
in the deep freeze.
No beating myself up,
no complacency either,
keep going,
do the best I can,
always.

I am currently reading,
Jane Jacobs,
The Death And Life Of Great American Cities
read her years ago,
but,
with my renewed interest,
in urbanity,
the space I live in,
share,
with my fellow citizens,
and,
how much I wish to work,
with others to make it,
a better place,
as great as it can be,
my beautiful ugly.
Jane Jacobs helps me,
flesh out concepts,
give texture and words,
to feelings, thoughts,
longings.
I am also reading,
at the same time,
a wonderful,
book form,
conversation between,
one of our best architects,
and,
a brilliant journalist,
about the importance,
of beauty in our daily,
lives,
surroundings.
More food for thoughts,
Et Si La Beaute Rendait Heureux-Pierre Thibault, Architecte et Francois Cardinal, Journaliste.

Thoreau's essay:
Walking,
of particular interest to us,
walkers and spiritual seekers.

They all go together,
preparing me for my,
new found fervour,
and quest for meaning,
in my life.
Two paths are most important,
to me this year.

Involvement in,
municipal politics,
to me it's a put up or,
shut up, 
proposition.
Things need to change,
I will no longer sit,
ideally by,
sure vote,
but watch people,
who don't deserve to run,
our city and institutions,
get into office,
fight voter apathy,
talk, discuss the issues,
make it real to people,
because it is real,
and,
this 'they are all the same',
attitude has got to go.
No more putting up,
with greed, graft and corruption,
our ideas may not always,
prevail but,
in my case it will no longer be,
through lack of trying.

Also this year,
I want to help people.
I must,
use my people skills and,
communication abilities,
they are my strengths,
and putting them to the,
service of people,
in whichever way I can,
is an objective,
and,
I believe a path to,
meaning.

This year I will make art,
write,
no matter what,
because life goes on,
until it does not.

Funny, all the plans,
I made for New Year's day,
didn't work out,
not even plans,
B and C,
and,
I became much less flustered,
than I had similarly,
a week earlier,
so ,
maybe just maybe,
the reflection and,
especially,
the not overthinking are,
working,
maybe.

I wish all of you,
a happy, healthy, fun and loving new year.

My words to live by for this year,
are by the great Louisa May Alcott:

Good Books like good friends,
are few and chosen; the more select.
The more enjoyable.

Flee the haters,
seek the light.

Be well, all of you.

Later girls,
BB

Yup, it’s resolution time

Hello all,
I hope your holidays,
whichever you celebrate,
have been,
joyous.

Mine were nice,
quiet.

On Christmas Eve,
mom and I went to,
a Christmas service,
at a wonderful,
Anglican Church ,
in downtown Montreal,
an open modern church,
where all are welcome.
Indeed, we felt welcome.
It warmed our hearts.

I took this picture of my fave church a little more than a month prior to the Christmas eve service, it has long been my favorite downtown church(and we have many beautiful churches and cathedrals) it's the architecture, the  church yard, the location, all of it, a whole, that I cannot adequately explain. I had never been inside before Christmas Eve

 

this picture of the interior of St-Jax of Montreal(formerly St-James The Apostle Anglican Church) I took on Christmas Eve 2016

I am an agnostic,
have,
pretty much,
always been.
But,
in these last few months,
I have felt,
adrift.

I am not miserable,
I am not suffering,
but,
I do long,
for...
meaning.

I suppose most of us do.

I have found that,
I disappoint myself.
I am angry and hurt,
much too easily,
touchy, prickly,
more than before.
I expect people to be,
who and what,
they aren't.
I have been a pain in the ass,
especially to my mother,
and,
my girl.

To be clear,
I have much to be grateful for,
family, friends,
good health,
a strong mind.
but..
I need more,
stimulation and conversation,
thinking and pushing myself.

I need meaning,
I need to make a difference,
to people,
to my little corner,
of the world.

I think the church,
might be an avenue,
towards that,
also,
civic involvement.

I became a member,
last year,
of a wonderful,
municipal party,
here in my beautiful ugly,
Smart,caring, 
engaged people,
I have met,
in it's ranks.
Recently,
we elected a vibrant, brilliant,
woman at it's head,
and when,
her victory was announced,
I vowed that I would,
work towards,
having her elected,
Montreal's first,
woman mayor.

So this year,
I will write more,
and work harder at,
it.
I will read more,
and, deeper,
think, reflect.
I will share,
what I am passionate,
about,
with you my 
readers,
be it,
faith, culture, politics,
and,
I hope you will,
comment,
and,
join me,
in a conversation,
about ideas...
life...
all of it

May the hard year that,
2016,
has been,
end on a soft,
peaceful note,
and may we all waltz,
joyfully,
into 2017.

Be well,
all of you.
Stay healthy,
strong,
hopeful,
and,
kind.

Later girls,
BB 

Beginning to look a lot like….

Hello everyone,
hope you are all,
keeping well.
It's coming on Christmas,
and,
I am actually all done,
with my preparations, which is,
stupendous.


I have been keeping,
my promise to myself,
of not overthinking,
obsessing over things,
so far, I am managing,
mostly
:-)

I have been feeling a,
need for spiritual,
sustenance,
a need to make,
a difference,
to be involved.
What that means,
I am not quite sure,
but I have been drawn,
to churches,
their peace and quiet,
their beauty,
the words, the music,
can't really explain it.

I have also felt a call,
to politics,
roll up my sleeves,
and get down to,
the grass roots.
These are interesting times,
scary times, we live in.
I hear a call to serve,
not arms,
and,
in spite of the current illness,
that seems to be afflicting,
politics,
what I do 'hear' is that people,
want change.
To me Trump is no real change,
he is stagnant savage capitalism,
wrapped up in,
a made in China cloak of,
Make America Great Again.
Hypocritical, rich man crap.
I think a lot of the people who,
voted for him and agree with his,
'principles' are,
good earnest people,
searching for change,
but, 
they 
need to make change,
not abdicate,
their rights.

I believe both the
left and right,
want a better world,
a safe, clean, hopeful,
world,
planet.
I don't think screaming,
curses at each other will,
accomplish that,
or anything in fact.
There are facts,
and,
opinions,
not the same thing.
Demonizing will lead no where.
I believe in better angels.

One resolution for the new year,
flee haters,
debate with people of,
good faith.
No more mansplanners,
No more wasted energy,
thoughtful intelligent,
pragmatic and optimistic,
plans for change,
because change,
my friends,
is of the essence.

Working at a local level,
to make my,
neighborhood,
city, 
world.
Better,
belief and meaning,
this is what I,
want,
need.

World peace and better understanding,
lofty and attainable,
all at once.

Enjoy the lead up,
to the holiday frenzy

be well,
you all.
Later girls,
BB

November is over!

Hello All,

November is finally over,
yes!!

December is a much better,
if colder and more,
expensive,
month.

Bring it on.

Let it be resolved,
that for the next,
month and a bit,
I will indulge,
in,
NO OVERTHINKING
there!
it is said for all,
to see,
to read.

All you my friends,
my family,
my acquaintances,
my readers,
know this about me,
I am a thinker,
that is who I am,
it is neither,
a good or a bad thing,
it just is,
one might even say,
it is what it is.
But, aside,
from being a thinker,
I am also an,
over thinker,
and,
that isn't good.
It stops me from taking,
action,
it stifles,
my ambitions,
it drives my loved ones,
insane.
I obsess,
I over analyse.
This is especially bad,
when I am unhappy,
when I am searching,
for the next thing.

A new year is about to dawn.
I have decided,
that this is the year,
I start the next big thing.
I have narrowed it down to,
three possibilities,
all are creative endeavours,
all interest me,
intensely,
immensely.
I will devote myself to,
one of them,
starting at the end of January,
and intend,
that by December,
I will have a finished,
project,
no matter what.

That is my resolution.

For the month of,
December and the first days,
of January,
I don't over think,
I work,
I share,
I breathe,
I walk,
I love,
I experience,
I do not search,
I let experience,
come to me,
present itself,
I will be reading,
going to films,
listening to music,
watching tv,
art exhibits,
museums,
conversing with good,
smart interesting,
people,
I will be living my life,
without dissecting,
everything.

There will be no obsessing,
no overthinking.

I need to break that.

Move on from the hurt,
the fear,
the paralysis.
Move.

I have been inspired by,
the musical,
Hamilton,
it's story,
it's creation,
it's actors, 
dancers,
singers,
great art,
lifts us,
inspires us,
in sometimes,
surprising,
unexpected ways.

I wish you all,
a wonderful weekend.

Will be back
on Monday

Later girls,
BB




Goodbye Mr, Cohen

Hello all, 
Hope you are all,
fine,
happy and healthy.
Been a bit of a rough,
week,
last week,
for us bleeding heart,
liberal types. 
Cold cock,
punch in the face,
the election of,
Trump,
WTF!!!!
but,
rise up,
fight.
I realize,
this is easy for me,
to write, say, think,
I am not an American.
But, I have faith,
in Americans,
just like I did,
in Canadians,
through the dark,
Harper years,
stand tall,
brothers and sisters,
keep up the good fight,
this too shall pass.

Still reeling,
from the election news,
and,
in an attempt to distract,
myself,
I was scrolling,
through,
my Instagram account,
lots of menswear,
lots of cats,
pretty photographs,
very little news,
but,
I do follow,
Rolling Stone,
Mother Jones,
The Advocate,
that kind of stuff,
so I scroll,
and,
I see a picture of,
Leonard Cohen,
and,
and the words,
Leonard Cohen dead at 82.
What??
So I turn to google,
and,
yes, it's true,
Leonard Cohen,
is dead.

Instant sadness.

The month of November,
had been better,
than expected,
I did not,
in spite of,
surgery and waning light,
feel sluggish and blue,
like I often (read always),
feel in November,
I felt good,
sort of,
optimistic,
then the Trump thing,
but after,
freaking out,
I figured this might be,
a turning point,
a historical rallying point,
for breaking down,
and,
maybe even fixing things,
at the very least,
spur people to involvement,
action.
I did not come,
to this on my own,
help from friends,
and people much smarter,
than me,
pointing me in that direction.
There is always hope,
and things are never,
finished.

But, Leonard Cohen,
Dead,
that's hard.

I know he was 82,
he lived a long,
and,
full,
life.
Love, work, music,
sex,
family, work,
legacy,
creation,
words, tunes.
He left us,
a great body of work.
Words polished,
words agonized over,
work,
decades of work.
A man of art,
a man of appetites,
a man of quests,
a man of understanding,
a man of doubts,
a lover of life,
a lover of language,
a lover of women,
by all accounts,
a good friend,
father,
neighbor.
I did not know,
Leonard Cohen,
personally,
we both loved,
this city,
our beautiful ugly,
I did not know him,
but,
I felt he knew me.
My longings,
my desires,
my ambitions,
my failures,
my foibles,
my qualities,
my fears,
my triumphs,
yes,
I felt he knew me,
I felt he knew,
us.
The collectivity,
the common consciousness,
has lost an important,
mind, heart, soul,
we will miss him,
but,
his words,
his music,
his voice.
live on.

Godspeed Mr Cohen,
Goodbye.

leonard-cohen


Be well my friends,
be kind to each other,
reach out and love, smile.

Later girls,
BB

Changes

Hello all, 
today is the tenth,
of,
November,
two days ago,
Donald Trump,
became,
President of the,
United-States,
so after having one of,
the classiest,
stand tall,
strong moral fiber,
presidents,
we now will witness,
four years of...
I don't know-
bad stuff,
sends chills,
down my back,
not in a good way,
more like the,
invasive chills,
you experience,
right before,
a bad case of the flu,
fever, joint pain,
teeth chattering,
that kind of bad stuff.

I am not an American,
I am a Canadian,
a Quebecois,
a Montrealer,
but,
I have so many friends,
acquaintances,
people I care about,
and,
admire,
who live in the U.S,
and they are our,
neighbours,
our biggest trade partners,
an omnipresent,
influence,
on everything that happens,
here,
elsewhere.

I think politicians,
rule very little,
I think,
big business,
does,
mostly.
The world is run,
by oil companies,
pharmaceutical companies,
banks etc
and this is why it is in,
the state it is,
and,
we are,
all of us complaisant,
we buy,
and,
consume,
hoping to fill the voids,
in our lives.

I am not a political,
analyst,
I have been a student,
of history and politics,
my whole life,
it interests me.
In the past ten years,
or so,
I have felt a rising anger,
at the ugliness represented,
in politics.
The rise of social media,
has brought greater,
access to information,
also to disinformation,
it has allowed people,
to have a voice,
also the trolls to run,
rampantly free.

It reminds me of that line,
in A Tale Of Two Cities:

It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the season of Light, it was the season of Darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair, we had everything before us, we had nothing before us, we were all going direct to heaven, we were all going direct the other way - in short, the period was so far like the present period, that some of its noisiest authorities insisted on its being received, for good or for evil, in the superlative degree of comparison only. A Tale of Two Cities, Charles Dickens,
English novelist (1812 - 1870)  

Donald Trump,
in his words,
in his actions,
in his lack of anything,
remotely resembling,
character,
or moral fiber,
has become President,
by spewing,
hate, 
of...
everything,
wearing an ill fitting suit,
long red ties,
and,
orange hair and face dye,
an epically bad,
comb over.
and a made in China,
snap back cap that,
states:
Make America Great Again.

I understand about fear,
about despair,
this guy,
an exporter of jobs,
and,
dishonorable employer,
a man born with a silver spoon,
in his mouth,
a graduate of elite,
universities,
will not make,
America great again,
he is everything that is wrong,
with America.
Greed and bully ism,
are his credo.
He is not the unemployed,
West Virginia coal miner,
the former Kodak employee,
in Rochester, New York,
the waitress in Buffalo,
the single mother in,
Mississippi,
he is not the pensioner,
in Arizona,
who now works for Walmart,
after his pension fund,
disappeared in the 2008,
financial collapse.
Trump and his ilk,
The Waltons of Walmart,
the Koch brothers,
etc,
the friends of Putin,
and,
his fascist policies,
that's who Trump is.

Are the Clintons,
the Obamas,
the Biddens,
the Trudeaus,
perfect?
not even close,
their war policies,
and,
friendships with oppressive,
regimes like,
Saudi Arabia,
bother me to my very core,
however,
their messages and policies,
are kinder,
more optimistic,
are they better people?
I think so.

Is the world in need of change?
Oh Yes, massive changes,
is Trump the route to that?
well...
It would seem so.

The ride is going to be,
excruciatingly painful,
it will get a lot worse,
before it gets better.
Change is inevitable,
and,
always,
difficult and scary.
We must hold through,
to our principles,
we must be kind to each other,
we must stop pointing fingers,
and,
creating scapegoats,
we must fix,
this,
all of it,
lots of work ahead.


A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step-
Lao Tzu

 

 

Lace up your boots,

reach for your protective,

all weather gear,

pack a sandwich and a thermos of tea,

and a book,

sustenance and protection,

will be required.

Bon courage,

my friends.

Be well.

Later girls,

B.B

 

 

Rockin’ the scarves and Turtlenecks

Hello all,
hope you are all,
well and chipper.
My surgery is done.
Went as expected,
perfectly.
I have no pain, 
slight discomfort,
that's it.
My surgeon,
recommended,
a week off work,
and,
that is what I am doing,
I will rest.
Naps, walks, good,
high protein,
high calcium food,
I will read,
I will write,
compile ideas,
rest up my body.
Surgery is hard,
on a body,
even a robustly,
healthy,
one.

I want to thank all,
of you,
for your well wishes,
and,
positive energies,
been a big help.
As usual mom,
and,
my friend, Helene,
have been there for me,
moral support, 
company,
listening to my,
ramblings.
My friends,
my love,
my family,
everyone,
I,
felt the warmth,
the concern.

Just so you all know,
I'm fine,
truly,
I will be rockin' scarves,
and,
turtlenecks for the next few,
weeks,
protect and hide,
the scar,
which right now,
looks like a,
garotte gash

gavotte

It will get better.
In a few months,
it will barely show.

I am glad it's November,
Summer would have been, 
more of a challenge,
to hide the scar.

Feeling fine

Catch you all,
soon.

Later, girls,
B.B

November

Grey day,
November coming at full,
speed.
I love the Fall,
I hate,
November.
Some of you are,
thinking,
hate is a strong,
word,
emotion,
BB.

Yup, it sure is,
so maybe,
I should say,
I.
have an intense,
dislike,
visceral,
even,
for November.
I tell ya,
November is a crappy,
month,
like,
March.
one is the beginning,
of the long Winter,
the other is the,
will it ever end???
part,
of the Winter.

Of course,
good things happen,
in November,
lots of good things.
Some of my favourite,
people,
were born in November,
my parents got,
married in November,
other things,
I am sure.
To me the last few,
days of October,
and,
November,
are about,
fading light,
and,
energy.
The colours are,
brightest and,
prettiest in,
October,
the crisp,
air,
the bluest of skies,
but,
as October recedes,
so does the light.
The deep steel gray,
of November follows,
no snow yet,
cold rain,
dark skies,
cold,
damp,
nothing to buoy,
the spirit.
Every year,
I feel this way,
every year,
I try,
not to feel this,
way,
but,
it is what it is.
I will not wallow,
I try,
hard,
to find good things,
about,
the grey,
the dark,
the damp
...
I spend time with friends,
I read and watch,
and,
participate in,
creative inspiring things.

I look at the past year,
and,
look to the coming one.

This year,
I am in,
the here,
the now,
this week,
I will have surgery,
for my thyroid.
Prognosis,
is excellent,
and,
I feel fine,
physically,
psychologically,
my emotions,
are a tad,
grey,
but,
not black,
this will go well.
I am in good hands,
the best,
from this will come,
bigger and better things.

Surgery is a little bit,
scary,
and,
even though,
the physical healing,
goes well,
when you are a strong,
burly butch,
such as,
myself,
the emotional healing,
is harder.
Doable,
necessary,
and,
ultimately,
life changingly,
rewarding,
but,
hard.
Everything that makes,
you grow,
stronger,
taller,
bigger,
is,
not the incremental,
growth of,
everyday life,
but,
the punch in the gut,
epiphany moments,
of growth.

My hysterectomy,
was a beating,
an emotional,
car crash,
from which I have,
fully recovered,
and am in fact,
that much more,
strong,
confident,
weathered,
dashing and dapper:-)

This thyroid thing,
I'm thinking,
stinging face slap,
shock,
small red hand imprint,
move on.

Bring on November,
let's get this shit over,
with.

Be well,
don't let November get you down.

Later girls,

BB

Fall thoughts, Fall plans

Good afternoon, you all.
Grayish and coldish day,
here in the beautiful ugly.
Still lots of colours,
pumpkins aplenty all around,
October coming onto,
November.
A time of reflection,
and preparation,
for the long,
indoor periods,
that will follow, 
in a few weeks,
Winter,
will be upon us,
so the last bit of Fall,
even the rainy, windy bit,
must be lived,
to it's fullest,
that is my way of seeing,
things.
I love the fresh crisp air,
the Fall layers,
jackets and hats,
boots and yes,
even rain gear.

Yesterday, was a gorgeous,
Autumn day.
Clear blue sky,
a nip in the air,
all the colours still around,
the wind hasn't blown all,
away,
all the leaves,
yet.
I had coffee with dear friends,
and,
then I went to,
the evensong service,
at our beautiful,
Anglican cathedral,
in downtown Montreal.
There is a full choir,
and,
majestic organ music.

I love choirs,
always have,
and,
hymns and devotional music.
They have a very positive,
effect,
on me,
they fill me with hope,
with inspiration,
with feelings of love,
of community,
I have been needing that,
lately,
perhaps I am having,
a spiritual moment,
in my life,
or maybe it is just that,
I need a place of calm,
and beauty in my life.
It felt good,
the service,
and I shared it,
with a friend who,
loves music so much.
I intend to go back.

I feel much better,
this week,
less raw,
I know everything,
will be alright,
and,
that if I feel lonely,
or as if my life,
isn't full enough,
I must find a way,
to fill it.

My brain is bubbling,
with thoughts,
with ideas,
I need to give them,
shape and texture,
I need to create,
and,
live,
not overthink,
everything.
Embrace,
walk,
feel the wind,
feel the rain.

I am making chowder,
I made fish stock,
started with,
onions and garlic,
I added,
potatoes,
corn,
peas,
scallops,
and whole milk.
It is cooking slowly,
it will be delicious,
simple, easy, hardy,
nutritious,
life is good.

Be well, all of you,
stay warm, stay safe,
love each other.

Later girls,
BB