Oh! those summer nights


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This post contains scenes of nature therapy, art therapy and memories of teenage love.

First, let’s pay tribute to a talented actress and songbird, Olivia Newton-John who recently passed away at the age of 73 after a long battle with cancer.

The summer of 1978 was one of adventure and romance for me and my best friend. We met cute boys whose families owned cottages on Georgian Bay. The days and nights were full of giggles, kisses and hopes. I remember exchanging letters and pining for my American boyfriend months after his family returned home and everyone fell back into weekly routines. I held onto the sweet memories for months until they were buried and cooled by the winter’s snow. We saw each other the following summer, only in passing, exchanging polite greetings.

Olivia Newton-John sings Hopelessly Devoted from that cult classic, Grease

Fast forward to summer nights occupied with glamorous household chores, mellowing out with TV sitcoms, and adjusting fans to cool off my sweaty, menopausal body. Some of the perspiration is caused by frustrations with a geriatric Cat.

Closing off a well-appreciated vacation week, I recently joined members of my Rotary club and a dear friend for a forest therapy guided tour of nearby woods. It was refreshing to get outdoors plus meet people whose faces I had only seen on the screen during Zoom meetings.

One tree endured ten minutes of my sensory attention during a forest therapy exercise
The author appreciates the sights, sounds, and aromas during a forest therapy guided tour

I admit to hugging a tree during this event. I struggled to quiet my busy mind that constantly needs to identify and classify my surroundings.

You can learn more about this forest therapy practice at https://www.foresttherapyottawa.ca/.

One daily activity this past week was to evolve a piece of art as homage to one of my favourite, underappreciated artists. It also provided me with mindless dotting of colours while watching TV or listening to music with a really good beat.

Night forest – a study in pointillism, markers, August 2022 TAJ

I think one can appreciate the final result after viewing the progress. Let me know what you think: https://photos.app.goo.gl/5ZQ2dW3kx5P7FhX99 .

Now it is Sunday, a day of reflection, household chores and preparing for the return to the downtown workplace. Let us pray that the Busing Gods will be kind.

Thank you for dropping by, especially if you are a real person and not the creator of a made-up blog.



A test of unconditional love

I think that maternal instincts never cease.


Readers of this blog are aware that I am the chief caregiver for my daughter’s geriatric Tabby Cat.

She is almost 17 years old and prone to kidney failure. My daughter used to joke with worry that the cats would outlive me and she would end up having to take them in. Well, one cat down (Snuggles in 2019) but this one is still holding on.

The Cat’s name is Geneva, which I use when speaking fondly to her, responding to her demands and providing hugs. When referring to the expenses, emotional toll and cleanups, I just use “the Cat”.

The old girl recently had a couple of Vet visits to monitor her blood sugar levels, kidneys and general health. A neighbour loaned me her pet stroller for the most recent visit instead of me stuffing her into a carrier and taking taxis. I may need it again next week…

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True patriot love


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Canada Day 2022 is approaching and celebrations in Ottawa may be tarnished by unwelcome participants.

After Ottawa residents were harassed for many weeks this winter by the “Freedom” Convoy occupiers, many of us cringe when we see someone with a large Canadian Flag draped over their shoulders, or flags fluttering from the back of pickup trucks parked on our residential streets.

Those people disrupted traffic, disrespected the national war memorial and infested downtown residential streets with their noisy, smelly trucks and menacing behaviour. Their financial backers and some western Conservative supporters tried to disrupt democracy and overthrow our fairly elected government while using the vaccine mandates as their focus for complaints.

They used offensive language and visual props encouraging personal attacks on our Prime Minister. They welcomed members of the right-wing Christian and white supremist fringe. They harassed politicians and doctors. They taunted residents who wore protective masks while walking on the streets. They used their own children as shields to thwart arrests and removals.

It was an occupation that was planned with military precision. It makes one think that there is a darker influence that still lurks in the background.

Thankfully, the OPS and reinforcements removed the protesters in a peaceful, methodical manner.

Tree stump after the May long weekend storm, graced by a small Canadian flag

Those occupiers are back in our fair city with plans to attend Canada Day celebrations and stick around all summer. What are they protesting now? Vaccine mandates have been lifted.

Local residents and politicians are not pleased with the antics of these unwelcome visitors with their menacing behaviour, anti-science rants, immature posters and flags. People of the Ottawa region are still recovering from massive storm damage and hydro outages. We don’t need this bullshit.

I haven’t been downtown for many years to celebrate in the hot sun or rain with thousands of other people. The COVID-19 pandemic distancing recommendations and Freedumb Convoy have sealed the deal on my personal preference for quiet, clean celebrations closer to home.

In the news

Convoy removal: https://globalnews.ca/news/8630153/live-coverage-ottawa-police-freedom-convoy-feb-18/

Vaccine mandates lifted: https://toronto.citynews.ca/2022/06/20/vaccine-mandates-canada-travel-pandemic/

Backgrounder: https://www.canada.ca/en/treasury-board-secretariat/news/2022/06/backgrounder-government-of-canada-suspends-mandatory-vaccination-for-federal-employees.html

Ottawa will be ready: https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/ottawa/canada-day-downtown-convoy-protest-fears-1.6497837

That weasly, opportunist politician: https://globalnews.ca/news/8936478/pierre-poilievre-encourages-protests-canada-day-rally-reports/

Local law enforcement plans for Canada Day: https://www.ottawapolice.ca/en/news-and-community/canada-day-2022.aspx

Our national anthem – Official lyrics of “O Canada”

English version

O Canada!
Our home and native land!
True patriot love in all of us command.

With glowing hearts we see thee rise,
The True North strong and free!

From far and wide,
O Canada, we stand on guard for thee.

God keep our land glorious and free!
O Canada, we stand on guard for thee.

O Canada, we stand on guard for thee.

French version

Ô Canada! Terre de nos aïeux,
Ton front est ceint de fleurons glorieux!

Car ton bras sait porter l’épée,
Il sait porter la croix!

Ton histoire est une épopée
Des plus brillants exploits.

Et ta valeur, de foi trempée,
Protégera nos foyers et nos droits.

Protégera nos foyers et nos droits.

Source: https://www.canada.ca/en/canadian-heritage/services/anthems-canada.html


Wishing my fellow Canadians a happy, meaningful and respectful Canada Day.

Thanks for dropping by. Don’t overstay your welcome.