Rosemary Ganley The Peterborough Examiner June 3, 2021
Twenty-five degrees today, and some hope-filled data out there on our progress with COVID-19.
I love the fact that Canadians in general are willing to be shot up, and that this week we will pass our natural competitors, the Americans, in percentage of population vaccinated. We have a lot of citizens with good sense, a trust in science, and patience.
I know there are episodes of rude and aggressive behaviour by a small number of people, but infrequent, overall. I’m always embarrassed when such persons are female. Not the kind of feminism I’ve worked for.
The witty Toronto Star columnist Bruce Arthur wrote: “We are strapped to a country that could break.” We must continue the unstrapping, mentally and politically. Let’s build up Peterborough.
My mission today was to go down Aylmer Street to the friendly “Spokes and Pedals,” where Dave and Sue will attach a mirror to my trusty bike. This will empower me to go biking on the Rotary Trail out to Trent and maybe even to Lakefield this Sunday with my longtime friend and now local heroine, medical officer of health, Dr. Rosana Salvaterra. She has scarcely had a day off in a year and a half.
Then onwards toward the LCBO on Sherbrooke. Not much foot traffic or car traffic today. Near FreshCo, I am touched by the sight of a meditator, a young man sitting cross-legged on the sidewalk, thumbs and index fingers touching, eyes closed. I utter a soft “OM” as I go by, and feel more peace. At the Credit Union ATM, which is the site of usual trepidation for me, I am surprised to see a positive balance, the result of course, of almost no spending for a year.
Inside the LCBO, I need to be reminded of where the line begins. On my walk on the Camino de Santiago in Spain in 2018, I developed a fondness for wine made from Tempranillo grapes in the Rioja region. Treat myself!
Trudging up Aylmer again at the corner with Dublin, I hear my name called. There is Margie Sumadh, an intrepid longtime United Church of Canada activist who now sells Palestinian dates and cooking oil out of her home.
She once worked in India. Today she tells me she is in correspondence with an Indian friend, a Dalit, (member of the lowest caste in strictly stratified India) who tells her he is volunteering in a hospital. Has had no vaccination.
Then it’s home to take in a one-hour zoom session on the proposed Seniors Village, a co-production of Trent University and a non-profit company out of Waterloo called People-Care, which would look after the long- term care side of the project.
Vice-president Cathy Bruce explains that the seniors’ village will be located at the northeast corner of Water Street and Woodland Drive. There are hundreds of seniors on a wait list for long term care in our area. “Our students, particularly in nursing, kinesiology and business would have many learning opportunities.”
There was then a detailed report from environmental assessors from a company called Bousfield. I heard about frogs, bats, monarchs, wetlands and borders, trees and wildflowers. The size is 75 hectares (short form for hectare is “ha”). “We have taken the “Nature First” approach,” says the young woman.
Questions on the Chat show that among the 60 taking part are some very well-informed environmentalists. I ask about cost, timelines and governance. Other people have questions about the location itself. Some ask about putting seniors far from amenities. and with an age-specific composition.
All in a Peterborough spring day. But then I lose five bucks on the Leafs-Habs game to Mary Anne Irwin.
Wear Orange As Canada mourns the deaths of Indigenous children from B.C., soldarity can be shown by wearing an orange T-shirt every Monday. Available locally from Nish Tees on Aylmer Street. www.nishtees.ca Call 705-868-3833.
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