When in Doubt: Wave Hands Like Clouds!

So until I can get a loaner brain I am hanging out with babies and family pets and avoiding complex questions, like, do I need to wear clothes?  The last time I felt this confounded I had recently fallen on my face metaphorically, I won’t expand on the subject, suffice to say, falling on your face can take time to get over, even when its metaphorically.

I could however ride my bike, not a metaphorical or even a stationary one like those being ridden by the spin class behind me in my heading picture, but a REAL bicycle  and so my youngest and I rode around Ottawa taking in all the great parks and canals and free stuff that our wonderful capital city provides.  After riding until we felt tired we would get off our bikes, lie on the grass and slurp on some box juices and watch the clouds.

There is a wonderful state under a big sky when you feel as if you are falling, or flying or floating.  And nothing moves in your mind faster than the clouds, in fact it almost seems you are thinking the clouds.

This is Wilf.  He is six months old.  I think he noticed the same thing.

Which brings me to the Tai Chi movement, move hands like clouds. I am still sitting zazen, but I am finding tai chi helps the most.  After doing a short set in the morning I can move my head from side to side without feeling dizzy. When I was studying Tai Chi with a group in Ottawa I met many people, including a man who had been severely brain injured by a drunk driver, who found Tai Chi good for their brains.

A Poem A Day, Day Twenty-six


There was garbage in the middle of the road and a crow had stopped to eat it
when she was stuck
by a car.
Her mate
swooped by her
pulling at her black wings
trying to revive her, cawing.
Soon the tree in my front yard was full of black, cawing crows.

Over and over a crow would fly over her
all of the rest of them cawing,
heads back as if gulping
some invisible rain,
while random cars made less of her each time they edged over the line.

the traffic lessened and
there was nothing left of her
and the tree emptied of

I tryed to tell a neighbour about it but before I could she said, “I HATE crows!”

Walking Around Cemeteries

This is a link to Urbpan’s post about his guided nature walk around Cedar Grove Cemetery, which I think is near Boston.

planted boots

This photo caught my eye: planted boots.  The inscription says, “Miss you Uncle John”.

I had a conversation about “sentiment” recently and how to make “place” and space for objects that reflect things that signify important remembrances. This is something that humans do, out of (almost?) all other animals.  However, often things just get piled up and instead of being beautiful and significant they become just a confusion of “stuff” and garbage.

This pair of boots with plants growing out of them are like a poem of remembrance and a recognition of impermanence. They stand in perfect contrast to all the cold stone markers.

Took the Long Way Home…

toronto island 006I don’t know the girl in this photo. It was very crowded on the ferry but I did think at the time that it would not hurt to have her in it. I missed the boat to Ward’s Island which is closer to Algonquin and so rather than sit for an hour (I didn’t bring a book) I took the one to Center Island with all the kids and parents going to enjoy the rides etc.

I don’t really like Center Island, it is over priced and crowded. Why not go to the C.N.E. if you want rides? This was last Friday so lots of people with kids were there. The islands are full of beautiful parks. I walked behind a pair of moms heading to the rides at Centerville who were constantly telling their kids “You’re going to LOVE the rides!” One little girl just wanted to run over to the swings. There are lots of free things to do on the islands with kids, plenty of playgrounds, wildlife to watch and sandy beaches to play on.
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It was a long walk. I wore my runners, and a special tenser bandage for support on my wonky knee. I did find the walk very long and difficult. Next time I will wait for the Ward’s Island ferry!  I wished I had my bike!  The owner of the B&B was able to show me the rooms I rented for my daughter’s wedding.  It is  only three blocks from the bed and breakfast to the venue and one of the loveliest walks you can find, with cute houses and narrow lanes; all tree lined with the lake and a view of the city at the end of each.toronto island 037 There are no cars on the island except for a few official park vehicles. It is a walker/biker paradise.
mapThis is a map I drew for the official wedding web page.  I know!  Remember when all you needed was big hair, a box of wine and a license to get married?

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The AIA building is the venue. There is a daycare and Montessori school there but on this particular day there were these guys who were doing repairs.  The gentleman on the right lives on the island and reassured me that my ninety year old mother would have no problem getting out at the dock for the venue. “She’s probably less than a hundred pounds so not too heavy to lift.  We lift my Gran up out of a boat here all the time!”  They were good sports.  I still am not very adept at using my phone camera and they were just about to walk off after I had tried several times to get their photo.  They were after all working!

The air show was on at the C.N.E. so I was in the perfect spot to watch some of it.  I sat on the dock and ate two delicious Ontario peaches I had brought with me and drank a bottle of water for lunch so the entire day just cost me no more than my transit fare.