Ah...Thursday. Last day of June. Last day of this work week. Last day of the first half of 2016. And the day before Canada Day. Here's to flying our flag(s) proudly - wherever we may be.
Rob's home; you may have guessed this, since there's an audio journal. He arrived back from London, Ontario last night after a whirlwind of work getting his mom's affairs in order. Hand in hand with his younger sister, the two of them have made preparations for next Monday's small gathering and a small army of professionals have many wheels in motion.
Today's may be the last audio journal for the week, although our written journals will still be right here; they're something Rob can do from afar. This week, he's in London, Ontario.
On Sunday, just after I'd written and recorded yesterday's oh-so-serene "being there" journal, we got a call from Rob's half-sister. Lois, who lives in Halifax, had come for a prolonged visit with her mother, Rob's step-mom, and it was Lois who found Margaret after she'd passed away in her sleep in her own bed Sunday morning.
What a weekend that was: awash in sunshine, warm temperatures and gentle breezes. As I sit here tapping away on my well-worn keyboard, I look up and sigh. The winds are picking up, rustling the sweet green June leaves, reminding us to "shhhhh!" and listen to the chatter of birds, the hum of boats out on the water.
Well, this sure is not how I hoped yesterday's bird story was going to end.
And I'm going to ask you to go to my audio journal today if you have the time or the means. I'd kind of like you to hear it as I tell it, if that makes sense?
Something happened and I'm trying to find the positive here. Maybe it's a lesson in the Buddhist principle of non-attachment: not clinging to expectations about the way the world is supposed to work. I'm just starting to learn a little bit about that whole way of looking at life.
Nature has renewed herself at our home once again, and I'm not talking about dust bunnies multiplying - that's not noteworthy. It's a momma - or perhaps poppa - and their babies, and I have proof!
Last year, a robin built its nest right near our front door. If you followed this journal spot here then, you might remember it.
How do I write this today? I don't want to make you sad as we're awash in memories from three years ago today; we're looking back with fondness and with smiles. For this is the day that Lauren became a bride. She was cool, relaxed, joyful and beautiful. It was a wonderful day.
The solstice took place last evening, making today the first full day of summer. Never mind that everywhere you turned yesterday, people were celebrating, but who am I to be the rain cloud on your picnic?
You'd be forgiven for being confused about just what season we're in, though, if you were to go by what everyone was talking about yesterday.
Welcome to Friday. Did you remember to Wear Plaid for Dad today? This Sunday, of course, is Father's Day and my dad is here today to celebrate it because he was diligent about keeping track of his own blood levels of Prostate-Specific Antigen (also known as PSAs).
We're almost there: on the precipice of another spectacular-looking weekend. I've one more journal for you in the afterglow of a lovely few days in one of the prettiest spots we've had the pleasure of visiting. And we're delighted to share with you just one more heavenly experience. I'm so grateful for a chance to focus on something other than the real-life heartbreak that has so dominated the news this week. I hope you are, too.
We've all done it: binge watched. Usually people binge watch TV, though. On the weekend, Rob and I binged, basically gorged ourselves on live theatre...and it was delicious!
Picturesque Niagara-on-the-Lake is a town that time forgot: like the sweetest northeastern spots Rob and I love in the US and Canadian Maritimes - Connecticut, Maine, New Brunswick - Niagara-on-the-Lake is so charming and idyllic, we struggled to understand, to take in the horrific news that started our day yesterday.
Let me start by telling you how humbled, how touched I was by your notes yesterday regarding Vicki Sainsbury's observations on grief, the hourglass, the changes in who we are. So very many people witnessed themselves in her words, read their experiences in her writing. I was honoured to be able to share her wisdom and perspective with you. And if you'd like to read a piece that Vicki had published in 2011 in the Globe and Mail on the 21st anniversary of her Jim's passing, it's some wonderful writing.
We played a song in the 6:00 am hour yesterday and, for the first time in a while, I had to just leave my mic off when it ended and let Darren do his thing, lest the lump in my throat move up, turn to tears and spill out on the radio. The song "Maybe I'm Amazed" by Paul McCartney and Wings played - all five glorious minutes of it - and I was taken to a moment three years ago this month, when Lauren and Phil danced to it: their first dance, at their wedding. So much joy.
This day, June 8, has been declared "National Best Friend Day" and I've got some video today and a letter from certainly my oldest - no, make that longest-standing - friend to share with you in response to yesterday's journal about radio's survival. You're going to love it. Lots of friendliness today!
Now that the dust has settled, the tears have dried and the sets have been struck, the fact that after 43 years, Canada AM is no longer on the air, has become just another sad fact of Canadian broadcasting. A sad, real fact: fewer and fewer younger people are watching television and the industry is striving to shape shift and move towards a future that hopefully includes more people turning back to - instead of turning their backs on - traditional broadcast television.
On Friday night at the Greek Theatre in Berkeley, as he had so often done, Paul Simon sang one of his and Art Garfunkel's most famous songs. But he paused before the last verse of "The Boxer" to deliver these words to the audience: "I'm sorry to tell you this, but Muhammad Ali just passed away." (For an incredible piece of writing on the man and his life, go to this link).
I wanted to start out by saying that if you ever miss a journal because your CHFI newsletter doesn't come in when you're expecting it - or perhaps, more rarely, even at all - just go to erindavis.com and it's here. You can even add it to your bookmarks.
It's so easy to get behind a cause you believe in. And we believe in Tim Hortons Camp Day, yesterday marking 25 years of changing kids' lives. We lost track of how many people came by to say "hi", to welcome Darren personally to their radio station, or just to meet our unofficial Camp Day mascot, our Miss Molly!
Here we go: another road show for Darren and me today, along with Ian "The General" MacArthur and the hottest promo team in radio. In honour of its annual "Camp Day", 98.1 CHFI will be at the Tim Hortons on Dundas at Kipling until 9 am with lots of fun, inspiration and free stuff.