Personal Best: Thankful for the simple things

In the North Okanagan, it's easy to find reasons to be thankful, especially when other parts of the world experience such suffering

Thanksgiving Day is upon us, a day to be grateful for the many gifts we have in life. But it is all relative, isn’t it? Would the Kurds fleeing for their lives into Turkey, carrying the clothes on their backs and their babies, feel thankful? Or would the Liberian mom holding her dying husband and nursing her Ebola-stricken children feel much gratitude for her plight in life? We must be appreciative for all the good things in life even if there are few good things. We forget the simple things like breathing well, walking without a cane, talking to our friends and relatives and being glad we have friends and relatives.

I like to think of clean sheets when I am feeling down and looking for simple, good things to be happy about. I wonder if those Kurdish refugees have ever had the opportunity to feel the absolute comfort of fresh, clean, cool, sheets or if they ever will. It sure makes me feel grateful for my place in life. And is there anyone in this blessed Okanagan feeling the sun shining today and breathing in the cool, fresh-smelling air that doesn’t appreciate these gifts? Well if you don’t it is time to stop and look around you and feel the physical beauty and to know, compared to others, how infinitely lucky we are.

Well, we are getting revved up for municipal elections with a host of new and old candidates all vying for the jobs of mayors and councillors with a large pool to choose from. I hope you will take the time to attend all-candidates meetings or just go meet the candidates yourself and ask them what their priorities are.

I just want to say thank you to all the former mayors and councillors in the North Okanagan for their past years of service. In municipal politics you are damned if you do and damned if you don’t. There are those bean counters that wouldn’t spend a cent on anything that smells of art or culture and there are those who forget that for every new sidewalk or road we scream for, it potentially raises our taxes and we will have to come to the front if we want improvements. It is hard for any council to walk a fine line between the various factions.

One thing that really bothers me is to hear so many complaints about a lack of communication with council and citizens and yet this past term, especially in Vernon, has had information session after information session about parks, culture, budgets, etc. etc., all well-publicized. Also the information gathered has been heard and used to finalize a host of plans. Anyone who says we don’t have enough communication obviously hasn’t been paying attention.

In addition, Vernon has recently been recognized by the provincial government as a great place to do business by receiving an Open for Business Award. This award, a $10,000 grant is to fund more business-friendly developments in the city. Guess our old council did something right. Most of all don’t forget to vote Nov. 15.

An Older Driver Re-assessment Workshop is coming up and it is a great opportunity to refresh your driving knowledge, especially if you have a reassessment of your driving skills coming up. ICBC and NexusBC Seniors Services are hosting this comprehensive event at the Okanagan Regional Library, Nov. 25 from 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Seating is limited so register by phoning 250-545-0585, and donations are appreciated.

If you have any comments or questions e-mail: blackmail1@telus.net or phone 250-542-7928.

Pat Black writes about issues of concern to seniors in the North Okanagan, appearing every other Sunday.

Just Posted

Cyclist struck on Vernon highway

Emergency crews responding, more information to come

New Vernon pastry chef has real sweet tooth

Caken Me Crazy’s owner left the dental industry to pursue the culinary arts

Vernon retirement home holding open house

Orchard Valley will open doors to the public on Saturday, Sept. 21

Vernon realtor captures Okanagan Valley in photo collection

Marty Gilbert’s book, The Okanagan Collection, is available in acrylic, aluminum, or fine art paper

Kootenay jazz performer to take Vernon stage

Holly Hyatt is readying to perform in the Okanagan in October

VIDEO: Police interview with Sagmoen made public

Defence lawyer says statements made by accused Curtis Sagmoen should be deemed inadmissible

Métis actor enthralling in first lead role

Okanagan Screen Arts Society to screen Falls Around Her Sept. 23

Second bat found at Greater Victoria elementary school tests positive for rabies

Island Health confirms second rabies case, this time in Saanich

South Okanagan school bus driver calls out bad drivers

Bus driver said she sees multiple vehicles go by the bus despite having the overhead lights flashing

B.C. man guilty of first-degree murder in Yukon killing

Edward James Penner, 22, was given the mandatory life sentence for the 2017 slaying of 25-year-old Adam Cormack

Woman stabbed at least five times in Nelson during random attack

Victim is in hospital, suspect is in police custody

Victoria man spots online photo of his totem pole 11 years after it was stolen

Mark Trueman restored the pole himself before it was stolen off of his property in Duncan

‘I’d do it again,’ says B.C. man who swam naked, drunk in Toronto shark tank

David Weaver, of Nelson, was drunk when he went to Ripley’s Aquarium in Toronto on Oct. 12 2018

Morning Start: Who is Greta Thunberg?

Your morning start for Friday, Sept. 20

Most Read