MITCHELL’S MUSINGS: A new season dawns

Some tidbits from the wonderful world of white that surrounds us as winter arrives once again in the North Okanagan...

Some tidbits from the wonderful world of white that surrounds us as winter arrives once again in the North Okanagan…

……hopefully you weren’t one of the hundreds of people rushing to the tire shops this past week. It’s funny how we know winter’s arriving and we can feel it in our bones, or even see it on the calendar, but until that white stuff is on the ground we remain in denial.

Not that I can talk because as I write this I haven’t got those sand bags in the back of my truck quite yet.

Now part of it might be that in these parts snow may come in November or it might not show up until Christmas Eve, there’s no way of knowing until it happens. Well there is the Farmer’s Almanac and the weather channel but even in these high-tech times we’re still pretty bad at predicting weather beyond what’s happening outside our window.

I’m not sure why that is but I like the fact that after all these centuries and discoveries and smart people that have come and gone, we’re still pretty much at the mercy of Mother Nature.

Gee, might as well embrace it huh?….

……and by the time you read this the civic election will be over and the winners and losers will be known.

First of all in my book there are no losers. If you’re brave enough to put yourself out there to serve on council or school board or regional district I applaud you. If you didn’t quite make the cut please don’t be too discouraged.

You not only served a vital role in democracy and raised the level of discussion during a civic campaign, the most important of the three in my book, but people did vote for you and please consider trying again.

The ones who did win obviously deserve congratulations as well but now the real work begins. Both the incumbents and challengers who will guide us into the future over the next three years carry a huge responsibility along with them.

Yes they are duty bound to represent their constituents to the best of their ability and lead their respective jurisdictions in the best way they see fit.

However I would caution the winners to also please keep the region as a whole in mind because what’s best for individual jurisdictions isn’t always what’s best for the North Okanagan as a whole.

Politics is about debate and representation and sticking to what you think is right but ultimately it’s about compromise and trade-offs and coming to agreements that benefit the community at large.

And that takes goodwill and sometimes listening instead of pontificating and reaching for ideals and agendas that aren’t practical in the real world. It also takes empathy and common sense, and dare I say it, a little wisdom.

What it doesn’t take is legal action against each other and political grandstanding and costly studies that solve nothing and politicking that may appeal to some constituents but doesn’t look beyond those imaginary boundaries that divide us.

The bottom line is the North Okanagan is a great place to live. Certainly there is a lot we can achieve politically to improve on certain things, and with a fresh political mandate we are optimistic that much can be done.

However while we’re reaching for the sky let’s keep in mind that there is much to be grateful for here in the valley and we all must take precautions not to screw up what we already have.

Good luck to all concerned……

……enough preaching and politicking and as wonderful and precious as democracy is, there is also some comfort in knowing that there are no election campaigns in sight until at least 2013.

So try to enjoy the white stuff this weekend, be glad you live in a democracy, and for sure get those snow tires on if you haven’t already. I’ll look into some sand bags and everyone drive carefully.

Not that any of us can predict these things but it looks like winter is here to stay.

—Glenn Mitchell is the managing editor for The Morning Star

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