Bits and bobs

Random thoughts about random things by a random person


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I see colour

I used to think that was a bad thing to say. I’m not sure why – where the idea of not seeing the colour of someone’s skin became a bad thing. Somehow or other it became tied up with the idea of being racist or bigoted and if we wanted to be known as not being either of those two things we had to say “I don’t see colour.”

I’ve never liked that phrase, either, even though I’m sure I’ve said it.

But I didn’t believe it. I knew I saw colour. My eyes see what my eyes see. The same as I see the colour and style of someone’s hair, what type of clothes they are wearing, their jewellery – any number of physical characteristics about a person when I see them.

So it always seemed disingenuous to say it, or to hear it, even though it was what you were supposed to say.

I didn’t like it, then, because it just wasn’t true. Of course I saw the colour of someone’s skin. How ridiculous to say I didn’t.

Really, it’s insulting to all of us. I know I see it. You know I see it. You know I know I see it. But I’m afraid to admit that I see it because that will make me a bad person somehow. Because that’s what I’ve learned:

“If we could all just learn to not see colour, everything would be great.”

As you’ve probably noticed in your own journey, “I don’t see colour” has been a popular topic the past couple of months. I have learned that while it’s almost universally acknowledged that its origins may well have been well-intentioned, there is damage and hurt that occurs when we use it.

My first reaction was relief – I wasn’t a horrible person for not feeling right about saying it.

I then read more about it – to really understand why and how it was hurtful.

I’m so glad I did. As you can imagine, it’s not just about outright lying or denying diversity.

There are loads of negative things that simple, well-meant phrase can bring with it. Here are a just a few of things that I’ve learned that it can do:

  • disrupt conversations about racism
  • inadvertently support systemic racism
  • deny the experiences of those who have experienced the (overt and not-so-overt) impacts of racism, hatred and bigotry
  • make someone feel like you don’t see them

Perhaps the two biggest take-aways for me are first, the idea that if we deny that we even see colour – race – then we (even if unintentionally) deny that racism exists, and then second, that me saying that phrase could make someone seem like I don’t see them. How hurtful! Have you ever felt unseen? It’s an awful feeling. I would never want to make someone feel that way. Even if my intent in saying it is good, if it causes hurt, I need to re-evaluate.

I was going to list a bunch of resources for you to check out, but there really are too many. Just Google “I don’t see colour” (or “color” for our geographic neighbours to the south… πŸ™‚ ) and you will have a plethora of experiences to read from. I promise you will find them valuable and eye-opening.

Also in my readings, I came across the research of Dr. Osagie K. Obasogie on the concept of race and colour blindness that is worth checking out. He talks about it in his book, Blinded by Sight: Seeing Race Through the Eyes of the Blind.

Or, for a shorter read, the Oxford University Press has a great interview with Dr. Obasogie and Henry Louis Gates, Jr. that is super interesting.

Don’t let the “Eyes of the Blind” bit of the title fool you. There is value in it for all of us to reflect on. I highly recommend checking it out. Here’s a quote to whet your appetite:

This research certainly gave me a new appreciation of the extent to which understanding and β€œseeing” race has very little to do with vision. That is the gist of the book, i.e. the social and institutional practices that we’re constantly engaged in shape the way we look at people and the way that we live our livesβ€”even for people who are blind.

Dr. Osagie K. Obasogie

So, even if we all did somehow stop “seeing” race, there is obviously so much more going on in racism than rods, cones and optic nerves.

Another reason, to me, to take the time to pay a little more attention.


Know better, do better.


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The Unfinished Puzzle

For the first two weeks of quarantine, our work computer system was limited in how many people could log in remotely at any given time and I struggled with the weird schedule that came with that.

On the Sunday heading into the third week, I decided to pull out a puzzle I’ve had for a while and dumped it onto the dining table.

I’m not fast at puzzles (unless they are super easy). So if I am going to do one, I need to know I will have a chunk of time to work on it and actually get it done because the dining table will be out of commission until the puzzle is finished.

Enter quarantine.

Plus, since puzzles are easy things to work on for a bit and walk away from, it would be a perfect thing for this new work schedule.

So, I dumped the puzzle out and got started, excited to have something different to work on.

March 29, 2020 – And so it begins!

Then, not even a couple of hours later, I got an email explaining how the system had been boosted or bolstered (or whatever the right word is for this situation) and we were no longer restricted in when we could log on.

Most of me was happy to hear that. I was glad that I could get back to my regular schedule and, with all the general pandemic weirdness, it was nice to have some kind of normalcy re-established.

But a tiny part of me was not so happy. Ironically, that weekend I had finally gotten myself into a head space that was ready to accept the new schedule. That was what had led to the whole puzzle thing. So that part of me thought, “But the puzzle! I just started the puzzle!!”

Had I gotten the email earlier on Sunday, I wouldn’t have even pulled the puzzle out. There was no way I’d get it done quickly and pack it away any time soon. My dining table was now off limits for an undetermined amount of time. Dang.

Not that I actually use it to eat. But still. I didn’t want the puzzle there until the next millennium and now it very well might be.

I went at it like gangbusters initially and got about half of it done the first week. I picked at it on and off for a while after that and then, when it got too hard (yes, I’m a puzzle wuss) I stopped working on it at all.

And it sat there staring at me, almost taunting me. “You can’t just leave me here. You need to finish me. C’mon! What are you waiting for??”

But I couldn’t. I had no interest in sorting through the bits that were left. The only part of me that wanted to finish it was the part that seemed to believe in some unwritten rule that if you start a puzzle you absolutely have to finish it. Or else.

Now, I had no idea what that “or else” was, but it felt like it would be bad.

So even though the occasional “Just pack it up and put it away” thought would flit into my mind, I would mentally gasp at the audacious horror of the thought and dismiss it immediately: “I can’t!!! I just can’t!!!”

And so, there it sat. Week after week after week.

Then, on May 29, 2 months to the day later from when I pulled it out of the box, I had had enough. I was sick of looking at it. I knew that I wasn’t going to finish it. And I realized it was really silly to leave it there for literally no good reason.

May 29, 2020 – Enough is enough!

It made me think about how a few years ago I was reading a book that I was absolutely not enjoying at all. Like not even a little bit. I had a similar “rule” in my head then: If you start a book, you have to finish it.

Um…no you don’t.

I remembered that I went through the same process at the time – wanting to give up on it, but also feeling like I couldn’t. As though somehow it wasn’t allowed.

I don’t remember what the book was, but I ultimately realized the foolishness of that thought process and finally put it down and walked away.

Liberty!

And now the puzzle? I had to finish it? Really? Why? Why do I absolutely, unequivocally have to finish this puzzle? What’s the worst that will really happen?

I’ll tell you what will happen: Nothing.

Zero.

Zilch.

Zippo.

So I packed it up and put it away. Done and dusted!

And boy howdy, I tell you that felt good!

How weird, right? I mean…big deal. Big. Fat. Hairy. Deal. I put a puzzle away.

And yet, there it was. It felt amazing! Liberating!

When I was younger I had the opposite problem – I couldn’t ever finish anything. To an embarrassing extent, actually.

I have worked really hard at overcoming that, or at least becoming much better about it. And it seems that perhaps I have let the pendulum swing a bit too far the other way, so that I couldn’t let myself not finish something even when it really was the smart thing to do.

Maybe, then, I felt so good about it (as small a decision as it was) because it’s another step towards finding balance.

So…if you are in that boat, and in case you are wondering: You don’t have to finish the puzzle. Nope. You don’t. Box it up and put it away.

It’s OK. You are still a good person. πŸ™‚


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Small kindnesses – How my neighbour makes my day every day

Like many of you, I am currently working from home because of the pandemic (and not-so-secretly hoping it gets to continue afterwards). My office is in my den, which looks out towards the parking lot of our condo complex. I know…it doesn’t sound like much of a view. But actually it’s kind of nice.

Where it all happens!

From spring through the fall, birds and chipmunks and squirrels perform their respective theatrics. Once there was even a curious bunny who decided to try out his burgeoning thespian skills. (He has not done a repeat performance, so I suspect his stage colleagues were not that impressed with him.) In any event, they are busy, busy, busy little critters and I am happy to have them break up the day.

In winter, when the feathery or furry performers are off to warmer climes or snoozing the months away, it’s still quite pretty. Whether it’s a blanket of fluffy, freshly-fallen snow or a storm still in progress, it’s lovely – especially because I don’t have to do my hour-long commute in it!

But, one of my absolute favourite things of the day happens at about 8:20 every morning.

That’s when Paul comes home.

No, he’s not my spouse/partner/significant other, child or other member of my household.

In fact, I’ve only spoken to him once, when I met him and his wife as we all happened to be coming home at the same time one day a year or so ago. They live in one of the condos upstairs with their daughter. Our respective schedules and habits obviously don’t intersect much because that hasn’t happened since.

When Paul gets home, he backs their SUV into their parking spot. This is important because it means that the driver’s door is on the side of the entrance where my den window is. When he gets out and walks towards the entrance, he ends up heading first towards my window, before going up the steps to the front door.

The first few times I noticed him coming home it was completely by fluke. I happened to look up at that particular moment, or something caught my eye, or whatever. Then, a couple of times, he happened to look in the same direction as me at the same time I looked in his direction. We each smiled politely and waved. It has since become a daily habit and even when he’s wearing a face mask, it’s still easy to see his cheerful smile (at the end of a night shift no less which is no mean feat in and of itself).

Integral to this little story is the fact that live by myself and, while I have enjoyed many aspects of physical distancing and restricted social interactions (I love me my alone time!), it has been challenging not having an actual human being to interact with. Phones and emails and texts and so on are fine and definitely help, but there’s nothing like looking at a real, live, 3D human being and having an interaction.

And so, I soon found myself looking forward to 8:20 a.m. The smile and wave take less than 2 seconds out of the 86,400 seconds in a day, but it is one of the most enjoyable things that happens every work day.

Paul likely doesn’t think twice about it. And why would he? He has family responsibilities as soon as he gets in the door and likely myriad other things to occupy his time.

But it sure has meant a lot to me. It helped me feel connected to the world outside my home, especially for those first couple of months of the pandemic. So many things were (and still are) strange and unpredictable. It has been nice to have something cheerful and predictable to look forward to each day!


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Catching up!

Sooooooooo…my grand plan of writing 50 posts in the year I turned 50 was a success. During my holiday in Ireland, I wrote my little fingers off and made my target. Yay me!

While I was quite happy with that success, it had the unplanned-for effect of writing burn out! As such, I haven’t written anything here since then. Alas and alack!!

Anyway…before I pick up the digital pen again in earnest, I thought it would be good to write a catch-up post. 1) It will be quick and easy. 2) It will at least get me back at it. Win-win!

Without further ado…here’s the scoop from the past six months. (Don’t blink…you might miss it!)

Since the Ireland trip, things have been pretty…standard. Nothing exciting going on. Work, friends, family, hobbies, repeat. With Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s thrown in for a little variety.

One thing of note (sort of) is the birthday “gifts” the province of Ontario gave me.

Within days of getting back from Ireland, I got letters from the health department telling me that, because I have now hit the golden age of 50, there are various medical tests I need to have done. They obviously did NOT waste any time on that!

Actually, it’s good that they are that on the ball. The timing was just super funny (to me): “Hey! You turned 50!! Here’s a letter so you can go get your boobs squished!! Woot! Woot!!”

They are serious about it, too.

I didn’t exactly rush out and have any of it done. My doctor and I were working on my blood pressure (all fixed now, thank you very much!) and I didn’t want to add a bunch more stuff to the medical list just yet.

In other words…I put the letters aside.

Then they sent them again.

Not one to succumb to peer pressure, I put them aside again. It started to look like this was going to be a game of medical paperwork chicken. Oh yeah?? Bring it! πŸ˜€

Then in late February my doctor brought it up. D’oh! I couldn’t exactly put him in the pile with the other papers, could I?

And if that weren’t enough, the FIT package showed up in the mail. Double D’oh!

By then I was starting to really take the hint, and had even gone so far as to read the FIT instructions, but wouldn’t you know it? The COVID-19 pandemic hit and I can’t do any of the tests now. Shucks and wazoo!

Hmmm…in a completely unplanned way, that little anecdote has turned out to be the perfect segue way from the trip to the present! Who knew!

Lest you think I am wont to disregard health things on a regular basis, I should clarify that I do take my health seriously…this was just a series of funny timing things.

Alternatively, it may just seem funny because of the social distancing thing. πŸ™‚


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Day 7 (Sept 18/19): Irish VAT rate – Why I may never complain about HST again!

(I just discovered that I hadn’t actually posted this last night when I wrote it…Oops! Not hard to tell why I’m not blogging for a living! πŸ™‚ )

When I was purchasing some things in a gift shop this morning, the lady asked if I’d be claiming the tax back. I said I had planned on it, but didn’t know the process.

She helpfully explained it to me and gave me the card I would need.

She said it’s worth doing because even though I would get the full 23% back, it would definitely add up.

23%!!! I almost choked.

Before you ask, no I didn’t already know the tax was that high. Everything I’ve bought to this point was the price that was advertised so I had no idea how much of that was tax.

Anyway, it makes our 13% HST in Ontario seem rather paltry now…

I guess all things really are relative!

_____________________

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Putting the right perspective on other people’s opinions

When it comes to this topic, the most common thing I hear is that we should never let other people’s opinions influence us.

I don’t think that’s necessarily true, or healthy.

And I don’t think the opposite is true, or healthy, either.

Other people can provide a distanced perspective on things in our lives and help us see things slightly (or even sometimes completely) differently than we see them.

Sometimes we can’t see the forest for the trees and we keep waltzing deeper and deeper in.

Even unasked for advice can provide some valuable insight on something – even though it can be as annoying as all get out.

That’s not to say that we should always follow the advice we are given. Listening and following are two completely different things.

If we are able to sit and really listen to what is said and allow ourselves to be distanced a little from the situation, we can evaluate what has been said a little more objectively. We can pull out the things that we accept and then push aside the things we don’t want to accept.

It might help us with some of the decisions we have to make – or possibly even help us extricate ourselves from some situations already-made decisions have put us into.

Of course, it’s easier to write those two paragraphs than it is to put them into action!

It takes a certain amount of, I would say, emotional maturity to do that. Depending on the situation – or the person giving the advice – we may have more or less of that than in other situations, or if we are hearing it from someone else.

A few things that could help in determining if we should listen or not are listed below. This is not an exhaustive list. And you may already have your own formula for how to deal with other people’s opinions. These are just some things that have helped me sift through the occasional morass of opinions.

1. What do I want and why do I want it? What do I expect to accomplish or get from it?

We can be very easily influenced if we don’t have a solid idea of where we stand on any given thing. Before we start listening to what other people have to say, we should at least have an idea of our own position on it and why it’s important.

2. What is the intention of the person speaking to me?

If we know that the person genuinely loves us, then we can assume that they are speaking from a place of concern. For me, that makes them more worth listening to than someone whose motives I’m not so sure about.

3. How much do I trust that person?

This is related to #2.

If the person is someone we trust, then why wouldn’t we listen? Even if it’s something we don’t want to hear, it might be that we need to hear it. I would rather hear something like that from someone I trust than anyone else. Or worse, not hear it at all and make a really stupid decision because I was maybe too stubborn to listen to another perspective.

4. How many people are saying the same thing?

If everyone around us is telling us practically the same thing, that’s a really good sign that we should stop and at least think about it.

Unless we’ve completely surrounded ourselves with awful people (and why on earth would we do that??), at least some of those people should be people we know and trust. If that’s the case there’s a good chance that what they are all saying has at least some value.

5. What do I want and why do I want it? What do I expect to accomplish or get from it?

Hopefully you have paid enough attention that you have noticed that this is the same as #1. πŸ™‚

That’s because after we’ve heard what everyone has had to say, we should re-evaluate our own thoughts and position.

Has anyone said anything that shows that we won’t actually achieve our goal by following our current plan?

Or maybe has someone articulated a fear that we already had – or a consequence we hadn’t though of – and, hopefully, even provided some suggested solutions?

After all that, though, ultimately it is our own decision, whatever comes of it.

What’s that saying? Something to the effect that

We are free to choose, but we can’t choose the consequences.

So we have to accept everything that comes with those choices – the good, the bad and the ugly.

In a nutshell: Don’t dismiss what others have to say just because you don’t want to hear it. And don’t automatically do what they say just because they want you to.

Easy-peasy, right? πŸ˜‰

___________________________

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Day 6 (Sept 17/19): I’ve got mail!!

I can’t believe I forgot to tell you about this yesterday! So even though this is being written on day 7, it’s about day 6, so that’s how I’ve titled it. πŸ™‚

As I was sitting at the sea-side of the house yesterday, doing my drawing, I heard some rustling at the back door. (That’s the door that I think I already told you is broken and I can’t get open.)

I looked up and through the frosted glass, I could see a man there in a red shirt. It looked like he was trying to put something in the mailbox.

That wouldn’t have anything to do with me, so I went back to my pencil and paper.

Then he knocked.

I went to the door and let him know it was broken and I couldn’t open it.

Then, quite unexpectedly, he asked, “Is this Lucy Cove?”

I was awash in a mixture of surprise and childlike, Christmas-morning glee! Mail for me? Here?!?!

I maintained my cool outwardly and simply asked him to put it in the box and I would go round later to collect it.

He did so and left.

Never, since I got here, had I wished that door wasn’t broken like I wished it in that moment!

I couldn’t just pop around the house to get it, either. It’s an end unit townhouse, with a carpark next door. I had scoped out earlier in my stay if there was a quick way through the carpark to the upper road.

Unless I magically develop some decent parkour skills on the quick like, it wasn’t going to happen.

I would have to walk down to the other end of the block and then back to this end of the block (on the back street) to get into the garden and claim my prize.

I was tempted to go right away, but I knew if I left off the drawing without finishing it, I would never finish it and it was something I really wanted to do. Plus, I’ve been practicing telling myself no and this was another opportunity for me to learn to wait.

So I waited – until I had finished the drawing and got dressed to go out for lunch.

It wasn’t easy. Every now and then I would look towards the back door. Or I’d look at the paper and think, “I could finish this when I come back…” (knowing full well that I wouldn’t).

I wasn’t curious about what it was – I’m hitting the big 5-0 while I’m here so I assumed it was a birthday card.

I did wonder, however, who on earth would have sent something to me while I’m on holiday in Ireland?? I remembered my friend Kelly had texted me a few days before I left, asking when I would be leaving for my trip, so I thought then that it must have been her.

Despite the temptation and curiosity, though, I persevered and waited!

Once ready to go, and still not really wanting to go down the block, to come back a block, and then have to turn around and go back up that block (which was the actual direction I needed to go for lunch and errands), I thought I’d take another look at the carpark.

Maybe I could scale the stone wall? Maybe it wasn’t as high as I remembered?

I scoped it out and, yeah, it was high. Too high for my almost-fifty, unathletic body at any rate. Bummer.

I took a gander to the left side of the lot to see if there was any hope in that direction…Hmmm…Did I see a break in the large boulders that bordered it? Did that look like a path between the boulders and the fenced-off field next door??

Off I toddled to check it out. Sure enough – there was a small path that I hadn’t seen before! I scrambled between/over two boulders and up the path to the other road. Then I went through the gate to the back garden and, through a little jungle of flies and webs, I claimed my prize!!!

There was another surprise when I didn’t recognize the handwriting. Kelly and I have known each other for decades now and I am familiar with her writing. This wasn’t it.

Now, totally flummoxed, I looked to the top left corner of the envelope.

It was from my friend Trish!!! That was even more unexpected because she is on holiday right now in Portugal!

I looked at the postage cancellation mark and sure enough – she sent it from her holiday.

So here I am, currently in Ireland, getting a birthday card from Portugal, from a friend who lives only about 3 hours away from me in Ontario! How fun is that??

Take that, Meg Ryan and Tom Hanks!!


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It’s not what you see…it’s what you SEE.

This is my view when I’m working or crafting in my den.

Your first thought might be, “Well, that’s nothing to get excited about – it’s a parking lot.”

And, technically, you would be correct.

But it’s also a voyeuristic peek into the theatre of life.

“Whoa there! You’re getting seriously corny now. Back off with the hyperbole, would ya??!”

I know…but it’s true.

A couple of weeks ago, for example, on a Friday afternoon, I saw a big SUV pull up. A couple of young women got out and a couple of other young women from my building came out, laden with backpacks and such. To say they were excited would be a serious understatement.

It was a beautiful day – the start of what promised to be a beautiful weekend and I immediately thought, “Girls trip!”

I couldn’t help but be affected the excitement of their moment. I was immediately thrown back in time to girls’ weekends I have participated in and a flood of wonderful memories washed over me.

My main cast of characters, though, are of the “lower” orders of Kingdom Animalia. Squirrels, birds, chipmunks, caterpillars, flies, and – oddly, for apparently a one-day-only showing – two cats.

The caterpillars were a fleeting seasonal thing, but when they were here, boy oh boy, were there a ton of them. I don’t normally mind caterpillars – I enjoy watching their furry little bodies inching along. But there were so many that I would have to say that their show bordered on the Stephen King side of things. But still, it was a free show and they didn’t eat all the leaves off the trees, so who am I to complain?

The birds – robins, mostly – have their annual shows in the spring. Wherever they’ve been before that, they have most definitely been well-fed. No scrawny, starving actors in that troupe! They proudly show off their red rotundity for all to see!

The chipmunks are the primary stars, though. They are around from spring, through summer and into fall. They are quite active and constantly alert! I don’t know how many of them are around – there might just be one or two repeats or there could be a bunch of different ones. They flit around so much that it’s hard to notice individual markings. In my head, though, there’s just one and, with my genius creative mind, I have named him Chippy.

Just yesterday, though, Chippy perched on the window well for quite a while and had a LOT to say in his monosyllabic chirpy voice. His favourite place seems to be at the exit of the downspout, though. Frequently my attention will be grabbed as I see his head pop out and up from there. (I’ve tried to get a picture of him – them? – but he’s just too fast. They’ve all come out blurry.)

The weather can be a character in and of itself, too. Beautiful, sunny days show the traverse of the sun – through shadows, as my window faces mostly north. Wind and rain or snow evoke a sense of coziness and gratitude for the warmth inside. Fog reminds me of growing up. Even if there are no living characters in the scene, weather can inspire feelings as strong as the most populated stage!

All that to say, while the parking lot, in and of itself, ain’t no great shakes to look at, the view from where I sit is really quite grand after all.


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The ocean – the ultimate battery charger!

My ocean view, growing up in St. Lawrence, NL

I grew up in a small town on the southeast coast of Newfoundland, a beautiful, rugged island jutting out into the North Atlantic. The ocean was a very strong presence in my youth and it has stayed with me throughout my life, even though most of my adult life has been spent away from in.

It is no surprise, then, when I say that my favourite place to recharge is by the ocean. I’m not a total snob about it – any body of water will do in a pinch, but the ocean is where it’s really at for me.

I spent almost 14 years living in Calgary, Alberta, on Canada’s prairies, about 40 minutes from the Canadian Rockies. People I knew who had grown up there got the same thing from going to the mountains. Others, who had grown up further east, fully on the prairies, got it from the vast openness of the horizon that they offered.

After having lived there for so long, I can understand both perspectives. There is something truly majestic about being in the mountains. Taking the gondola up Sulphur Mountain in Banff gives you a view and perspective that you can only get in the mountains.

I also really valued the open expanse of the prairies. There are lots of jokes about it – your dog runs away and you can see him for days and so on. Obviously, that’s not how it is, but it sure can seem like it – horizon and sky for days! It, too, offers a perspective on our place in the universe that can’t be achieved the same way in the mountains or by the ocean.

One of the things I miss the most about living on the prairies is being able to watch a storm from miles away as it crawls along the landscape – a curtain of snow or rain, or even just wind and dust, moving along the horizon like a separate living thing in and of itself. It’s truly beautiful.

Yet still, for me, it’s the ocean. I love the smell of it, the sound of it, the look of it. Standing on Signal Hill or at Cape Spear, facing east and seeing nothing but the vast expanse of blue (or steely grey on a cloudy day), knowing there’s nothing between you and Ireland except the rolling deep, gives another perspective of how we fit into this world.

You can even almost feel the pull of the swells. Even when it looks flat and calm, you know that beneath the surface there are currents constantly moving, moving, moving. The iiiiiin-out, iiiiiin-out, iiiiiin-out push and pull of the waves is hypnotic.

It was a similar feeling when I stood at Point Loma in San Diego and faced west out over the Pacific Ocean.

But it wasn’t quite the same because it wasn’t “my” ocean. The Atlantic is where my heart is, so yeah, I do play favourites. πŸ™‚

Here are some other favourite ocean places and pics for your perusal.

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Practice does not always make perfect

We are all familiar with the old adage:

Practice makes perfect.

Anonymous

I’m sure most of us have even accepted it as fact. The more you practice something, the better you get at it – obviously! And, even if you never quite reach actual perfection in it, you at least develop a proficiency in it.

Well, a couple of weeks ago, I watched a video on Becca Courtice’s blog that totally turned that idea on its head for me.

Becca featured an interview with professional scribe Paul Antonio and they talked about the pre-basics of learning calligraphy. Paul said something that really struck me:

Practice doesn’t make perfect. Practice makes permanent.

Paul Antonio

As Paul explained, if you are practicing something the entirely wrong way, that absolutely won’t make it perfect. It can’t. It will, however, make the imperfections permanent.

BOOM! Serious mic drop moment for me.

How did we never glom onto that before? Or is it just me? Did everybody else realize this, while I was off to the side practicing to make my imperfections permanent? Dang!!

This whole idea has added a completely different dimension to practically everything I do now. See…you CAN teach an old dog new tricks!!

Have you thought about this before? Where and how did you stumble across that idea?

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