Today is my best day!

 

Today I saw a shirt that had the above words, I thought to myself what a great slogan. No matter what type of day you are having “Today is my best day” and make it that.

These past few years have turned into a slump, after losing my job and forced to drop out of a course I wanted to take due to financial need I have been just going from one job to another looking for some way to make ends meet. The feeling like your running in a huge mud puddle and sinking. I believe that we have influences all around us in large or small ways, the milk spilled so now you are late for work, does that mean you have to behave like a Bitch to everyone? No, not at all.

As you are just spreading your negative influence so, when I see something that is a positive influence I try to embrace it into my day and week. We all have an abundant amount of negative influences all around us every second every day. How we handle them is what sets us apart from others, are we better than those negative influences? I’m trying to be.

Today is my best day, if I take a step back and ponder this, how profound it can be of a statement. I have had so few “best days” that I think I need to re-think how I look at myself. My daughter is invited to a wedding and we have nothing to give or even a dress for her to wear. I have not been able to buy cloths in well over three years and am down to two pants and 4 shirts and one bra. I now have every sock with holes that have been re-sewn so many times that the sock is see through with only strands of thread holding together. I have sewed my cloths so many times that the patches and torn material is so thin no patch or thread is going to save it. My jeans are practically see through and now a single mom looking for work again.

So when the “today is my best day” filled my head I have to admit first glance I thought “ya right!” but then I stopped stressing out and decided yes, today is my best day.

I have a roof over my families head, I have a small amount to food to stave of hunger, small amount and not very healthy but it will keep us alive. We do have cloths, even though they are the holiest things I have ever owned. We have each other.

I think I must stop focusing on the horizon, and start learning to enjoy the walk.  Just like this quote:

If you’re going through hell, keep going. Winston Churchill

So when I am down I just need to think of it as I am just passing through, not stopping, not dwelling on anything, I’m just passing through. So, today is my best day and so will tomorrow and the tomorrows after?

I want to pass on the inspiration, I do not know who made the shirt, if it is a famous quote or what it is, but I want to pass on the inspiration to you. Make today and every day your best day by looking at what you have and not what don’t.

Make today your best day.

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I Look Up To A Third Grade Drop Out

What a strange thing to say right? Me, who has been educated beyond the third grade, I have  multiple certificates and by all account would be considered well-educated. (Even though I struggle with some things I am working on) Why on earth would I look up to a third grade drop out?

This particular third grade drop out was in third grade three times. Failed because he broke his writing arm one year. Failed the next because he broke his other arm. The final time in grade three he dropped out and went to work. An eleven year old boy digging ditches to put food on the table and a roof over his families head. This eleven year old became a man, became the sole money earner for 8 people.

This drop out loved to read and would read anything he could get his hands on. He worked hard all his life. He dug ditches, cleaned out sewers, drove heavy equipment, learned to repair heavy equipment, started his own logging business. Married and raised 7 children, including one adoption and cared for many foster children over the years.

This man was strong, wise, and always ready to lend a helping hand. He loved people, loved to talk with people, loved to hear their stories and always lifted them up before he left. He always did his best to make a wrong right. He overcame alcoholism, he overcame abuse, he overcame hardship and starvation. This man’s life experiences were vast and hard. He still rose above it, learned from it and always worked on making himself a better man, a better husband, and a better father  and friend. He is an inspiration to all who met him. I never met a person over the years who knew him say anything bad, always pleasant memories and stories of how he made their lives better.

Anytime I needed help he was always there with the best support and advice. He would ponder what your predicament was, then gave you a couple of choices. He always let you know how he saw those choices would work out. From there he allowed me to make my own choice, no matter my choice, no matter if he thought it was right or wrong, he always backed me up. Always loved me even when I really messed things up. He said that it is when we mess things up is when we find out what kind of person we truly are. If we make it right, if we do all we can to swallow our pride and make amends that is the lessons we must learn to become stronger. He taught  me to never carry the past into the future with  me. Let the past be a distant memory and never let it control your future. By watching how he loved my mother I learned how love should be, how fighting to work it out should be. How to forgive each other and how to always see the person inside and never see them in a superficial way.

When I was taking my college exams he decided to take a placement test. He just wanted to see if he was still at grade 3 level. Turns out he was a 4 th year engineer level. He had the life experience and read his way to such a high education that he still succeeded without stepping foot into University.

My father was is the man I compare all men to. This is a tall order follow, but I don’t need a degree, I don’t need a beautiful face, I don’t need fancy cars or trucks or anything materialistic. I want the love my father showed, I want a man who when he see his faults does everything in his power to change for the better.  Quit drinking or quit drugs or become more patient. To have courage to make amends, to make a better choice and learn from his mistakes. To always work hard at any job he has, as long as he takes pride in his work and never gives up. I don’t care if he cleans out sewers, he does it for me, and the family and holds his head up high. That is a great man.

There is not a day that goes by that I don’t miss my father. Not a day that I wish I could share my day with him. I want to hear his voice, his laugh, to feel his bear hugs and see into his eyes one more time.  To ask his advice just once more.

I try to honour my father by living like he did. by always improving on myself, by becoming stronger and more caring. I try to treat people with love and respect, even when it’s hard. I try to read everything I can to improve my mind and learn from others. I try to make wise choices, and to lend a helping hand where ever I can. I try to raise my child with love, understanding and open honesty.  I try to not judge people, not at all, not how they look, or talk, or choices they made or religion or anything superficial.

A third grade drop out is my biggest inspiration, my biggest fan, my best friend, and my father.

 

Oh Gravity

As I get older I see gravity is becoming a bit of a bitch. I suppose I should look into a support group. I wonder if there is a nipple dragging group out there?  I don’t want to be a “tripper” when I am in a nursing home, geesh, I could break a hip. A bit dramatic? maybe so. However this is a serious problem among women! 🙂

We all want to look good right? We all want to feel attractive, wanted and desired right? Hell ya. I love being loved, touched, kissed, licked, who doesn’t? But as I get older and hips have widened I see the downside of age. Such cruel reality.

Why bother, no one is looking under my shirt anymore. Why can’t I just let it all hang out? Swinging to and fro, who cares? A strong gust of wind and I have my own flags cheering me on! Other than the people they may slap in the face, oh no, more like slap in the knees! My apologies.

I am exaggerating of course. But some days it feels like the sex appeal is all gone. The body changes through life I get it. So, how do you feel sexy as you age? How do you make yourself feel like you have a” little dirty secret” that puts a little bounce back in your step? You know, when you used to wear lingerie under your cloths or freshly shaved/waxed vagina, or whatever you did you make you feel good. What can you do now? Exercise!

Yup, I saw an older lady from the back at first, it was a body of a 20 or even 30 year old. Then she turned around, and my mouth dropped! She was not at all a young woman. I had to ask her what she did? Is this plastic surgery? Nope. She does yoga 3 days a week and pole dancing 3 days a week. POLE DANCING! I asked her how old she was. She was 67 years old. I was so impressed. She told me she had only been doing dancing for about a year and she saw changes in her body that she had never had before. She has done yoga for 5 years. So she started at 62 years old to loose 30Lbs but she gained a body she never even dreamed of. How wonderful! She said her breasts have even firmed up. Come on, this is the key ladies. Find a strengthening workout that you love and work it, work it work it!

One of my new year goals is to lift these babies up, up, up. Rise my sweets! Look to the ski! I am doing push-ups, and chest pumping and anything I can to re-develop that muscle area. (And I am signed up for the next pole dance class) I wonder if there is Botox for breast? Hmmm? nah, I don’t like getting a needle in my arm, sure don’t want needles stuck into my tender ladies.

oh no, my mind just wondered to a tire pump, wouldn’t that be nice hey, just pump them up when they get a little flat. hahaha.

Well I’m just saying, gravity, she’s is a bitch. But so am I, I will not let you win!

Happy exercising. 🙂

The Monster You Made

When I awoke this morning, I had hoped to shed you.

I hoped the pain you stabbed me with, no longer bled.

Showered off your smell, and watched your touch go down the drain.

Your twisted truth of love  turned into nothing more than a burdensome trinket.

But here I stand strong, I’ve not turned to ash and blew away in the wind.

I’ll rise from this wreckage, stronger still, with higher walls.

I wear upon my chest the heavy medallion you gave me.

My heart blackened, for believing your lies.

My love turned to vengeance, jaded and cold.

My kiss, laced with venom.

My touch, lined with poison.

My stare enchants and encapsulates all who gaze, unable to resist me.

I smile as I drink thier life force, watching it slowly drain from their eyes.

Look what you created, in all your arrogance.

You made this, you pulled out all my innocence, and filled it’s hole with the venomous beast before you.

Is this what you had in mind? Have I made you proud? Am I beautiful to you now?

Come and gaze into my eyes, let me touch your flesh, let my beautiful lips kiss you.

Come closer, feel my breath, listen to my gentle whisper,  breath in my sweet potion.

Enter my chambers my love, let me look into your eyes…

 

By Tina Curtis

 

 

 

 

 

 

You Swerved

When we met, you loved my eyes, and wanted to kiss my lips, I let you kiss me and look into my soul.

You liked my body, I danced for you.

You couldn’t get my words out of your mind, I talked and laughed with you.

You wanted to touch me, I let you.

You wanted to know me, I said yes.

But then you swerved. Our love was about shine brighter than the sun. But you swerved.

You said you were sorry and can’t go on without me. I stayed.

You said you love my smell. I pulled you closer.

You said you admire my strength, I let you lean on me.

You said you wanted me, I said yes.

But then you swerved. Our love was about to shine brighter than the sun. But you swerved.

I felt the wind as you passed me by,  and now you are too far behind.

I will not go back, I will not wait, I will not swerve from my path.

You want me now? I’m too far ahead to look back.

You swerved.

 

Remember When.

Remembering a life long passed,

Played with dolls, ran through the tall grass, chased squirrels, climbed trees, and scraped my knees.

A first kiss so new and exciting.

Feels like an eternity has passed.

What a gift it would be to turn back time, to feel all those new and firsts. Remembering how easy life was, simple and free.

Love felt so good, it was easy, laughing, exploring, swimming and having fun.

How did all that turn into fear? Hate? Self doubt and regret?

Spending all the year in the sun, and making up a little song, walk around without a destination, smell the gravel road, laugh at nothing and everything and chase a dragonfly.

But now I lost another love, gained another broken heart, and cry myself to sleep.

Reality bites me with overdue bills, piles of chores, work, kids, bad breakups, burying memories and dreams of what I wanted to be.

Remember when we used to know everything, now I know nothing.

 

 

Mom

A bit ago I was missing my father, a lot. And just wanted to say hello to him, ask him some fatherly advice. Since he died I felt like sending it out into the universe how I miss him. So I thought with Thanks Giving coming up and with the whole idea that we are to give thanks on this day, I thought it only fitting to thank my mom.

It’s no secret that we are like fire and ice, we do not see eye to eye at all. As a parent now  I try to understand her. Why she did and said what she did. I think that mom was sad for a long time, since I was adopted I feel like she resented me. She was all done raising children in her mind and now there is another baby in the house. I see that my mom, I think, may have had some mental troubles as well. She did not do well in crowds, she gets flustered and panicked. She is also up and down in moods so perhaps Bipolar. Either way, I know my mother loved me and I love her in our own strange way.

How wonderful it is to have a mother teach you to make cookies and let you lick the spoon, or even better, the bowl. My favourite memory as a kid was when my mom would make jello, she would make a little extra so I could have a 1/2 cup of warm jello before it cooled into the firm wiggly squares. I loved to drink the jello liquid while it was still hot, I still do and so does my daughter.

I was a very active child, a tom boy by all true meaning. I love that mom would get mad at me every time I came home with another cut, another nail through my foot, another gash and needed stitches. The best was when I came home with most of my flesh torn off most of my entire body from a major wipe out. She would get almost sick with worry that it would leave a scar.

“I don’t know if your nails will grow back in, why can’t you act like a girl? Why can’t you play with dolls? Why do you insist on this wild behaviour? You are not a boy and boys don’t date girls that act like boys.” She would say.

Mother would try many things over the years, I know she would stress out about what to bring to the pot luck dinners, and worry about what the other women are wearing. I know my mom never seemed to fit in with the other ladies. I know she felt a little on the outside no matter how hard she tried to fit in, to be a part of the women in the church.  I felt her pain, her tears of not understanding why they all won’t include her or even be nicer to her. Mom tried very hard. When dad couldn’t work anymore, mom went back to school and became a  nurse. She was in her 50’s. She was always doing her best to do what she could for her community, her family, and her neighbours. I respect her very much for all her hard work.

My mom was still in the 1800’s with the idea of a perfect lady. Some of that I agree with, respecting a woman is a big one. But a woman is not needing to be absolutely dependant on anyone else to be considered a lady. And there starts some of our arguments. I want to trust a man, I want to have a husband. I just can’t settle for any man, even if that means I am single my entire life and die alone. I will not settle for just any man just because he’s a “good church member”. Or just because he is “her choice”. But I love her for worrying about me and telling me to “get a man”.

When I was raising my daughter I looked at my parents for “what not to do” and “what to copy”. I believe that once you are of an adult age, you choose what person you want to be and make those changes. I can’t blame parents for everything that is wrong with me, I am to blame as I have freedom to make changes. As a parent, I tried to give my daughter the good things I loved about my upbringing. Like Sunday dinners my dad would cook dinner for breakfast and breakfast for dinner, and mom would set the table and burn the toast. Like learning the value of hard work and the willingness to sacrifice yourself to help another person. Lick the cookie batter bowl. Playing games with my daughter. There are so many I can’t list them all, but as the years go by I learn to value what mom did all those years ago and even still. She is trying her best, to be her best parent she can be, best friend, best person she can be.

I love you for that mom, thank you for all you taught me, and thank you for all your love. It’s not easy to be a great parent, never knowing if the choice you made was right or if you picked the wrong battle.

Happy Thanks Giving to my mom and all you parents out there. Thank you for trying everyday to be a better parent and learning from your mistakes.

 

 

 

Woke up with icicles

Winter came in like a raging lion. It was so windy that icicles were forming faster than you can say icicles. In fear of my solar panel flying away I braved the spears and tucked the panel safely under the camper behind the tires. Yet I still had the thirty feet to brave to safety. I flipped up my hat and ran as fast as my chubby little legs would take me. oh I wish I put boots on, slippers are not a wise choice at this point.

“I’ll only be a few seconds,” famous last words as I am now frozen to the ground, its freezing at a nice and easy pace of .6 seconds. My car can reach 100km/h in a cool 2.5 minutes, yet the wind can stick me to the ground faster than I can blink. This is ridiculous, I am now in my stocking feet pulling my slippers off the ground and putting them back on my feet while being pelted by shards of ice that jack frost decided would be fun to throw at me.

What brave adventure would it be if there wasn’t at least one wipe out, oh no, I’ll make it two wipe outs and a bruised tailbone just for extra dramatic affect. I make it up those puny camper steps and threw the hobbit size door to safety. Once inside I discuss at length who’s great idea was it to make such small steps and narrow door, do they not know that people are entering these things?

We fire up the propane stove since we have no electricity, it took an hour to warm up the inside of the camper to 10 degree Celsius. OK, we are warm now. Time for bed, I can’t sleep since our camper is being pelted with spears and the wind is trying very hard to capsize our vessel.

I  managed to get a few hours of sleep under a pile of 10 blankets. I open my frosted eyes and exhale to see a cloud of breath. My daughter and I have breath races, who can make their breath go further. I don’t know who won, a tie I suppose. Time to get dressed and ready for the day. Like taking off a band aid we rip of the pile of blankets and race to get to the compost toilet. After I peeled my frozen but cheeks off the toilet seat I decided that it may be time to get dressed.

OOOOOHHH, I cried as I am now naked and my body is trying grow fur as fast as it can to get warm. I decided I am not shaving this winter, I will grow out what hair I can and help keep my pits and legs warm at least. It is a sacrifice I am willing to make.

So, this is what its like to winter camp in your camper. Well, the beginning of winter at least. I was told it was a three season camper, he lied!

 

 

Fear of Success

While I wallow in the trenches, this filthy rot smell, fills me with hate, self loathing. Watching endless hopes and dreams drifting down the fast moving sludgy river, never to be recaptured. Oh bitter tasting fear coats my tongue so all I can taste or smell is rot and sludge.

Look up, see the speck of light trying to peer through, sending hope, sparking dreams. Oh what a sweet life if would be to be success. Oh what a sweet life to be my own boss, to set my own wage, to build my own financial freedom. Freedom to travel, to meet interesting intelligent people. The water I think would be blue or maybe green and warm. Imagine what sweet taste that must me.

But what is stopping me? Oh ya, fear. What a vicious circle that has encapsulated me. How to break free? What do the rich know that I don’t? Does it really take a lot of money to  make money? While the wishful saps are stuck to the rotting tree, that speck of light mocks me. Torments me with the unknown. Round and round we go, deeper and deeper in this hole. How do I break free? How to climb the thorny walls to the light above.

Whey! what a dramatic picture of what I feel about success and fear. I feel like every time I get a bit closer, the chair is pulled away and I do not get a thrown in the castle of success. Why is it so scary to try? I mean really, I am afraid to fail, yet if I don’t try I fail.

Anyone else ever have to deal with fear of doing something? Start a business? Try something new? New move? Anything? How did you get over what you feared so that you could do what you know you want to do so?

 

 

 

 

Culture Fest Calgary 2017

I attended the Diversity Festival on Sept. 30th 2017. I was not sure what I was expecting but what I got was not it. I am happy that Calgary is trying to help with understanding other races, culture, and religious beliefs. However, what I got here were people complaining about “the White man” and “the Canadian Government” isn’t showing them equality, special treatment, and giving them what they want. Oh, how I wanted to share a great post on how amazing this festival was, but it was anything but that.

First off, thank you to all those who made it possible. I am sure there was some chunk of cash put into this. I am sure you were trying to make this a great event that everyone can learn of others and to gain friendship and understanding. I do not feel this was the place or time for political hate to be yelled about, or even for racial hate to be spread. Yet that is what happened on this day. It really put a damper on the whole show.

Warning, the topic today is discussing this culture fest that took place. I share the actual things that happened there and racism and political agendas.  If you are tired of hearing it, don’t read on. I also ended up ranting about the racism of the festival so if you are not wanting to hear that, please stop here now.  It is hard to talk about this because when you do people say you are racist for calling out the racism done. It is also hard to talk about because there is no racism intended in my speech. I want equality across the board, pure equality, yet this is not going to happen because too many people relive past hate and refuse to forgive and move forward. So please understand, I am not being racist by pointing out the racism that was displayed. For those who want to have an honest discussion on the topic and try to understand each other a little more RESPECTFULLY, than I am up for that. This is not however, a racial bashing day. I will not stand for people yelling about hate for a race, culture, sex, colour, political agenda, etc.

Rant: Equality, what a hot topic in any culture that moved to a foreign country to set up new roots. My thoughts, no culture should be paid any money just because they were born with that nationality. No culture should be given free education, free home, or anything over what any other individual in the entire country would get. No special treatment. If you need help to get educated, you do it like everyone else. If you need help buying a home, you do it like everyone else.  We can not change the past, it can not be undone. Building respect and tolerance is better than rehashing the past, by doing this it just continues the hate. Equality across the board, no differences, equal opportunity, equal pay, equal.

I love different languages, to hear the music in the words, or even play the game of guessing what they are talking about. Especially those languages that always sound angry but the people are not, it is fun to watch and listen to. Only with not knowing what they are saying at a festival where you are trying to know each other it’s not so great. We were being yelled at by an Indian woman who says some words in English only not very clearly as she was yelling her rant and mostly in her language. We were being yelled at in the audience. It was horrible to see such a display. What I could make out of it was she didn’t come to Canada to get paid minimum wage and she wanted the Government to pay her higher than minimum wage. This may be hard to hear, but the truth hurts sometimes. In response to that I say get a better job. Go to school, get skills, and get a better job. You know what the base rate of money is for lesser skill trained work. It is the same for ALL races, so if you don’t like working for $12.20/hr, then please get some higher level of education, and earn a higher level of wage. I too had to start at minimum wage. In fact, when I did minimum wage it was $5.50/hr. Try that on for size as a single parent! I got a student loan, studied hard, and when done I worked for minimum wage again at $11/hr, until I found a better job. From there just keep climbing the ladder, that’s how it is done.

There is a story that fits so perfectly. “If You Give A Mouse A Cookie” Written by Laura Numeroff. Please do read it, even a summary online if you like. Basically, if you give a mouse a cookie it will ask for milk, then a straw, and so on.

Meaning if you give people more and more, not encourage them to do for themselves, they will complain, bitch, whine, and make claims of being mistreated until they get what they want without getting it for themselves.  This story is relevant to a lot of people who want the Government to give them more land, housing, money because they are born a specific race, or money for past hurts, or give free education because they are a specific race. This is wrong, this is not helping anyone to “be equal” and this is not helping them to become strong independent race / culture and become an active positive influence in society.  I believe we all must learn to do for ourselves, of course we all need help along our journey. However, we should never have help based on a race or religion specifically, help must be based on need, not colour, race, religion, etc. Help everyone equally no matter what you were born.

Rant: I heard a few people complain about “the white man” today. This racist speak also infuriates me. It feels as though it is OK to bash the “white man” and no one can say anything about it. Hating white skin people is racism. It is just as racist to say “white man” as it is to bash any other culture/ colour/ religion/ sex / etc. First off, people with white skin do not go around trying to hurt you. Not all people with white flesh fall into those who suppressed you, enslaved you, took away your culture, life, religion, starved you, etc. It is not “white man” who hurt all those many upon many nationalities. It was a specific people, a specific religious belief at the time by those specific people. By calling the “white man” you are being racist by bunching people into one colour even though not all of those who have white skin are Brits, or Russian, or Irish, or Greek, etc.  Just like not all people with black skin are from Africa or brown skin people are from India. There are a lot of people with pale skin and have no family history of harming anyone. So, if you want equality, stop being what you hate having been done to you.

The first culture to start the whole program was the native hoop dancing, a lady introducing them as Metis people. I was excited as I love to watch the hoop dance performances. However, she too complained that all of us Canadians took their land 30 thousand years ago. Having native blood as well, I get very frustrated how this is still a topic. What are you wanting us to all do? Have every single Canadian individual that has no native blood to move off Canadian soil?  This is something that just can not happen, so what do you want exactly? We all know that what happened to natives was horrible and still is, just like the slavery movement was and is still horrible as it still is being done today in parts of the world. The murder of Asians building rail ways, boycotted and treated horribly by others in the communities was a horrible pilgrim start to this country. There are many other cultures that were mistreated also, just like the Irish who were starved out in this country and so on. (There, white against white) I have native blood, and the land being taken is not my argument, I have always felt there is room to share. There is an opportunity for everyone to gained better lives with the new world being developed even today. We all have the right to purchase land, what happened was done, and can not be undone. You must move forward by stop reliving the past. I agree that we all need access to grow our own food, to have the ability to buy food, land, homes, and to build businesses. This is a basic need for everyone. Try some businesses that attract money for your families, neighbours, communities and society. Why not build something with what you have? Could you not do some organic non-GMO farming on your reserve and sell those foods at farmers markets, or set up your own grocery store chain that people can shop at?

Ah, see, the racism overshadowed the dance. I saw the dance, but because of the words that were said before the dance I felt frustrated the whole time, like I wanted to stand up and yell stop hating! I couldn’t feel the healing power of the dance. I liked the dance by those two young girls, it was a good start in the program. I would have loved to see another hoop dance by other dancers, more experienced. I really do love to find the story in the dance and feel the healing power by those who have more experience in the dance. It can be quite healing. In one hoop dance I saw in Calgary at another festival, I think it was in 2003 or so. I cried during the dance, it felt so wonderful to be close to the dancer. However, the girls this day only did a short dance and I really liked the choice of music by a band called A Tribe Called Red.

I have grown up with horrible racism being done to me. I have been beaten, abused, neglected and even teachers refused to teach me because of the colour of my skin. I am not a “white man”, I am a mix of multiple nationalities yet at times, people look at me and call me a white man. People don’t know what nationality I am, I have been attacked for being all races at one time or another. My skin is olive-brown, I have some people call me a white man with a tan, Native, Indian, Spanish, Italian, black, etc, and have heard every slur, every hiss, and felt every sting. Yet I understand that if I wanted to be treated with respect, I had to start acting how I wanted to be treated. I celebrate all my nationalities that my blood carries, and those close to me know that I am a multicultural born. It is possible to be treated as an equal, if you yourself act like an equal and stop using the racist slur and hatred that you hate being done to you.

This festival was filled with hatred talk, displays of hate in the dances and so on. I expected this festival to celebrate culture today, not rehash out past and relive the hate of long ago. There was no talk of FORGIVENESS, there was not talk of how each culture is moving to build strong members of society. We can not move forward if we keep putting one nationality over another, or re-hating over passed wrongs. Move forward with spreading your art, dance, music, ideas, business, etc. Show your culture today, not the hate of yesterday. Show your culture with restaurants, art galleries, and show how you can love. It is far to easy to show hate, and to hate about passed wrongs are not helping move forward, it’s just spreading more hate, and building on more hate that many people don’t even have to feel today. Show love, show forgiveness, show your culture, your faith, your love. Am I being naive? No, I don’t think so. I have forgiven being hated because of my skin colour, my sexuality, who I am has been ridiculed, raped, beaten, and abused. I forgive because I want to move forward, I never want to live behind me, I want to move forward. I am stronger because of the passed, I can not forget the passed, but I will not live the passed. This is how we move forward. Forgive!

So, the other issue with the festival was no translation. Oh, how I wanted to hear the stories of their songs. There was wonderful singing, yet no TV screen or brochure to show the words in English so others could understand the meaning better. There was no TV screen telling the story of the dances, so others could understand the dance better. It was hard to understand a dance’s meaning when there was no way of knowing what they were wanting to show. In trying to understand each other better, we need to understand what is being said, or shown.

After each performance there was a 10 to 15-minute brake. This was ridiculous. It dragged the day on so long that I wanted to leave out of sheer annoyance. Each show was about 5 to 10 minutes depending on how the performers wanted it. Then another 15-minute break. There should have been an hour or two of showing, then a 15-minute break, move the day along instead of slowing it down to a crawl.

The intermission music that was played was only Bollywood style music only different, not so up beat it was rather depressing slow style. There was no place that stated what culture it was from. I would have liked to hear music from each of the cultures that were coming up next. Get a good feel for the culture, the people and to know what was up next would have been wonderful. Instead it was very one-sided as was the food. The food was cooked beautifully, it was rice with lettuce salad and a yogurt topping. Yet no sign saying what it was called. No sign showing the nationality that is was coming from. There were no other foods to try from other cultures, just Indian style food I found on google. Again, very one-sided display. I would have liked to taste multiple culture of food. After all, food is a way to bring people together, right?

I hope the people who did this festival think of all people next time. Translations and explanation of songs, and dances. Not allow political agenda and hate to be spoken. To share all cultural food choices, and the booths to be for sharing information, not selling frenzy of only their language books. What am I going to do with a book written in your language? I can’t read it so, I am not going to understand you still. To talk about forgiveness. To move the show along in a timely manner. And please tell people to not talk on their cell phones in the bleachers during the performances. I had a woman talking the whole time on her cell phone, yelling at the person during the Russian singers. Another thing that made the whole afternoon a wash.  Share small servings of food from multiple cultures, and intermission music be from all cultures in the program.

I wish that we all stop seeing race, colour, sex, religion, and start seeing us all as one nation, one people, one friend and neighbour. We do not need to relive passed to move forward. We do need to forgive and do for ourselves by building and showing who we are and what we can do together all in OUR Canada.