I'm less irritable, more content but still 'restless" despite service, meditation and prayer. What is there for me to do? Quo Vadis? Where am I to turn next? What is there for me to do?
Brian had just returned from a long trip with his Bigfoot camper. Now all he had to do was visit friends on the island. I responded, saying that, hunting season opens in the next weeks. I am defined by the seasons. Work remains central.
I rankled to learn another of the "complicit" has semi retired and is "living off avails of their despicability. I am reminded of the political 'survivors' who participate in the atrocities but in contrast to Nuremberg find themselves after wars or change living out their lives of lie in luxury. It does me no good to think of them. It's like thinking of the survival of sharks and fearing for the decline of the salmon or dolphin.
It's the comparison that's odious. I compare my 'insides' with their 'outsides' and never truly know the trials of my fellow man. Their cowardice and deceit derive from different roots. As Jesus said, pluck the timber out of your own eye before you try to take the sliver out of your neighbours.
I'm disturbed most by all the tens of thousands who have become rich through illegal drug growing and sales. I cannot think of the hundreds or more police and beaurocrats who are a part of the multi billion dollar British Columbia drug industry. I suspect envy fuels my rage. The gulf islands are owned in part by the Marijuana Mob. Meanwhile my government punishes its citizens with more and more punitive taxes while criminals lives lives of luxury
Meanwhile I'm toughing it out here at the Oyxtercatcher, sitting outdoors in fine weather, eating fresh halibut and fries. Gilbert is by my side. I've just been blessed with a weekend of fine weather among friends and will soon drive my sportscar to the ferry terminal to return to Vancouver.
None of the fears I've had in the last week have come true:
1) I did not crash my motorcycle on the way to or from Sturges
2) I did not make a total fool of myself as a speaker at an international medical conference. I need not live in shame
3) I have not been arrested for political incorrectness.
4) I have not caused death or injury to anyone through negligence and obsess constantly and study always to deal with the life and death challenges of daily work.
5) Gilbert has not been hurt.
6) No one really close to me has died.
7) The banks haven't taken our money out of the accounts despite their doing that in Cyprus.
8) The government hasn't arrested and killed all the educated like they did in Cambodia.
9) There is no new plague decimating the population.
I worry about all manner of things and daily hourly block the fears so they don't get a foothood and overwhelm me. The same is true with resentments. As expectations are 'preformed' resentments I'm careful about expectations too.
It's difficulty in the mundane times. Chaos and terror are sometimes easier to deal with because they are by nature a major distraction. In the good times all one really has to worry about doing is messing up themselves.
I'm blessed to be on Salt Spring Island again. I've know the joys of country island town life here. The restaurants and cafes have been places where I've sat with friends and lovers only to dine and laugh and while away the time while we all wait for the Messiah to come. I've ridden the back roads of this island in search of little home businesses that produce cheeses, chocolates, spices and in the past even brought home lamb roasts. This island produces the very best of lamb but it's hard to get on island because of all the regulations.
I loved swimming in St. Mary's. It would only have been better if it was a nudist beach and I was surrounded by the 'fantasy' of nude beaches, that French Riviera dream where the young and body beautiful 'supposedly' cavort. The reality of nude beaches is that they're populated by one's neighbours with all their tendency to age and obesity. It's a bit like working in a street clinic. At St. Mary's Gilbert and I swam alone and it was wonderful in the sunshine and warm water.
A young man is playing guitar outside and singing pleasantly. I could wish that it was Paul McCartney or the Kinks - he's singing I can't sell my yacht - but I've been blessed to hear the greatest rock bands and entertainers of our times as well as the world's finest symphony musicians and often it's the local present entertainment that is so memorable. John Lennon was just an intellectual trouble maker high school student. I remember a doctor I knew who liked to hear Gordon Lightfoot playing at the local pub. I love to tell people I hired the Guess Who for our high school dance for $500. It was their high school too. I was just one of the student council.
I didn't know at the time I'd be listening 45 years later to Bachman's radio station. The entertainer is playing "Slip Sliding Away", Paul Simon. I loved hearing him at at local auditorium with Garfunckel and a few hundred in the audience.
I'm alone and I might feel better like the tables next to me with 4 or 6. There's a collection of friends and so often I've been at such a table. There's a family too and I've enjoyed this with my own family and my brothers. A couple of lovers are present. They're paying more attention to each other than their food. I've been that couple.
It's not like adolescence when one can only hope to be the lovers or the one in the group of friends.
Hell, I've even been Hugh Heffner with the briliant hot young girlfriend or Brad Pitt with the gorgeous wife. I've been blessed in love and my work has allowed me to serve despite the danger and despair.
It's beginning to drizzle. It's British Columbia weather but I've sailed to Salt Spring in winter and enjoyed sitting outside having coffee in the cold and grey. The climate is so inviting here.
The singer is playing Leonard Cohen's "Hallelujah". I've heard Cohen up close in a concert hall. I've been close to genius and greatness. There's been the entertainers for sure but I've shook hands with three prime ministers, several nobel prize winners and countless Olympic Athletes.
My brother remains my hero at the end of the day. And my friends. Now my mom and dad are gone I realize they were saints, normal humans, but saints.
I'm reading a book on the 40 most influential Christians. Very human, saints. Even Jesus cursed.
The politically correct aren't human. They're dead. True evil.
Yet there are those who are well mannered and gentle in their ways, still effective and fearless. I admire them.
So many are cowards. I am noticing more drizzle.
I ordered ice cream. Did this anger God. Does he or she care about my waistline. It's not good for health. Dr. Dave commented on that. I think of losing the waistline for vanitie'sreasons. I'd like to wear one of those form fitting Italian suits. Instead I opt for the old journalist baggy and wrinkled look like it's not a 'choice' but rather that it reflects my being distracted by other more important things. The fact is 'fashion' is important and if one doesn't understand the significance then they must watch "the devil wears prada"
The young waiter brought the Sundae. Reminds me of the BDI in Fort Garry. Kirk would remember that. Our families made expeditions to the Bridge ice cream parlour as kids. All the flavours. The banana splits were incredible.
When he brought the sundae he moved an umbrella over me. What better evidence of the future's success than this young man. I've been enjoying meals and stays in Ganges for more than 20 years. Somebody's working and caring and maintaining.
Looking around I see everyone else is happy and enjoying themselves like I am.
The music and arts scene has always been vibrant on Salt Spring. So many world reknowned artists and writers have made this their permanent or retirement home. I first learned of this when Valdy was here. Then I recently learned Patterson, author and editor of 'Beyond the Wire" had moved here. about. I enjoyed Allan this morning. I've got two of his music albums.
I just asked: the entertainer here is Mike Demmer. He's played here through the summer. I remember the fellow who died up north on Vancouver Island. He had wired his whole house as a musical instrument but never left the little town because his mother was there. His work is studied at universities all over because after he died it was bequeathed to those who could appreciate his genius. Some of the neighbours later said they'd enjoyed the music he made. I liked Bill Cosby reflected on how his little boy loved him as a basketball player. He was 'great' in his son's eyes but acknowledged none of his own friends would think of him as a Globetrotter.
The 'self esteem' movement was declared a failure because it bred incompetent obnoxious children without skill or talent who simply thought their shit didn't smell and they were A-Okay. So love of self is necessary for love of others but it can't be institutionalized or instilled by pop psychology.
The drizzle stopped and I've completed devouring the sunday.
It's sabbath. I am to learn today that life goes on despite my not being in frenzy today. God can carry on without me.
I'll make my way to the ferry. I've books to read. It's been pleasant 'island' sitting outside by the boardwalk enjoying Mike's music and the fine Oystercatcher food.
Thank you Jesus for this wonderful day. Thank you Lord for all your blessings.
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