Rhymes, Rants & Accolades from North Central BC

Archive for January, 2013

The Fourth Dimension

The Fourth Dimension

As the years go by and I’ve gotten older, I’ve come to realise that there is indeed a fourth dimension and that it is the passing of time.

It seems such a short while ago that racial segregation was rampant in the U.S and it was accepted by almost everyone. White was white and black was black – and never the twain were permitted to use the same bathroom or ride the same seats on a bus. And schools were segregated too. Who would have dreamed that in the not-so-distant-future a gentleman categorized as being “black” or “coloured” would attain the highest office in the land.

So many changes in my relatively short lifetime!

In about 1985 I attended a forum in Fraser Lake on the subject of “World Peace.” The panel was composed of folks from various walks of life in the community. One fellow- a veteran of the Second World War- spoke eloquently and emotionally. He said that he had few good memories of the war and was not particularly proud of being a veteran.

I was amazed by his words. I had assumed that the revered status afforded returning soldiers had provided them with a sense of pride at having performed a job well done. But few veterans I knew had ever talked about the war. Perhaps the sacrifices of those who had signed up for battle were not limited to those who had died. Survivors often ended up with battle fatigue and emotional scars.

It was the final speaker who spoke in soft, faltering tones that I remember most distinctly. James was a young First Nations lad who has since become a good friend. James’s concise take on the subject of whether World Peace was obtainable was, “It is inevitable.”

The world scene has become even more chaotic and frightening since the nineteen-eighties. Wars, wars and more wars in countries I had never heard of before. Each night on the Evening News we have lessons in geography, along with horrific pictorials of mans’ inhumanity to his fellow man. It is easy to become cynical of mind and despondent of spirit.

But then I remember that wonderful forum on World Peace, which was held in Fraser Lake so many years ago. And the young man who ascertained that peace was “inevitable.” Although World Peace will likely not occur in my lifetime, I believe that someday it too will become an accepted fact of life.

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Adventures on Snow ‘n Ice

I am so glad I hung onto my cross-country skis when we moved into town! Last Sunday was a perfect ‘old fashioned Christmas card’ kind of day with sunlight sparkling off the snow blanketed trees and underbrush. The Village had plowed the trail that parallels the highway and I found myself scooting right along.  (Well ‘scooting’ indicates speed…. so perhaps a better word would have been ‘shuffling.’)

The last time I donned skis was during one of those massively-deep-snow-winters between ’06 and ’10. We were living at Coryville and I was breaking trails almost daily, often running out of energy before enjoying a decent run. The oval I’d made around our house was about right for my senior citizen sense of security. But there was a long steep hill behind the house that was tempting. One day in a fit of delayed adolescence I decided to indent the pristine hillside with tracks that bisected the slope in a sideways direction.

After a few passes to tamp down the track, I was able to gather enough speed to have fun, but not enough to be dangerous. Or so I thought. Suddenly one ski cut the corner and I found myself toppling over, with my skis mired in the deep snow.

It shouldn’t have been a problem. After all I was an old hand at falling. Except that this time I could not get up. There was just too much snow.  I floundered around helplessly in the deep fluffy stuff – rolling over and writhing and squirming – attempting  to get back up and on the track. My poles were useless and there were no trees within reach.  When one ski detached itself from my boot I considered removing the other one as well and crawling my way back up the hill. But the snow was just too deep and too soft.  There was no way I could crawl without sinking into the deep soft snow.

Finally, with the errant ski snapped back on my boot and, with superhuman strength and dexterity, I managed to get vertical and back on the trail.

“Time to give away my skis, along with my skates to the younger generation.”  I thought sadly.

But I kept the skis. I did give the skates away after a near “ skate-astrophe”

OUCH!

Geriatric grandmothers skating across the pitted surface of a hockey arena.

My friend took lessons in her younger years.

She attempts the bunny hop and even fancier manoeuvres.

I glide carefully on dull figure skates — never could get used to those darned pics!

We wore tube skates on frozen ponds with deep cracks, patches of snow and clumps of grass.

Falling was a big part of the fun!

Now I brave the distance from the boards to centre ice.

Go slowly over the bumpy area by the goal post and around the bend to where the ice is smoother.

Away I go, faster now!

My friend approaches — third time around for her!

She waves and I wave back.

My pic catches an indentation in the ice.

I wobble precariously.

Mustn’t fall! I tell myself.

Could break bones at my age.

Can’t stop toppling.

Ouch!

I hope desperately that my body’s intact ….?

Thanks be to God — it is!!

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