Week 20. This time I wore my Walk In Her Shoes t-shirt although you can barely see it in this picture. I walked up University as usual, stopping at Osgoode Hall to see the beautiful cherry blossom trees. I did take a video but I’m a little embarrassed to post it.

I had to stop for a break since I was in pain and read from my book “True To Life” by Beth Kaplan. I’m taking a class at U of T called “Life Stories 1”, taught by the vivacious Beth Kaplan, who is a writer and former theatre actress. Like me, she has written a diary since she was 9 years old, and like me, she was inspired by the Diary of Anne Frank. She really listens to our stories and offers such meaningful feedback. It’s been tough digging into my past and creating stories from my experiences. We are currently in the childhood phase, and my first story was about my grandmother during the time when I lived on Stokes Crescent growing up in Kanata. I vividly remember one afternoon when it was blistering hot (we didn’t have AC), and we were both lying on the bed in my room, immobilized by the heat. She asked me to walk on her legs to relieve the soreness. I used to love doing that. I guess it is typical in Indian culture for grandmothers to ask you to do that, but in my class other people had never heard of someone walking on their grandmother’s legs.

I walked up Yonge street, passed Buddies in Bad Times theatre, and made it to Balzac’s for my 3 PM meeting with Gillian. She is my friend who is working on a documentary about Phoolan Devi. She just spent a few months in Vancouver with the director, Hossein Fazeli, to edit the film and plan the next stage, which will be returning to India to shoot the re-enactment scenes. Talking about India always gets me excited because I am dying to go there! (haven’t been since I was 15). Perhaps I can go the same time that they will be there – it would wild to actually see how a documentary is filmed. They will be filming in Uttar Pradesh, which is in northern India, close to Nepal. It is also the home of the Taj Mahal, the birthplace of Krishna, and the land where Lord Rama was said to have ruled thousands of years ago. It must be a magical place!

Lately whenever I get to Balzac’s, I start crying tears of gratitude. No one really understands this, because whenever people see you cry, they naturally think that you’re upset, but really, there is something about being there that feels so grounding that it moves me to tears. And I’m becoming accustomed to crying in public. I think my sense of what is socially appropriate is going out the window. A result of spending too much time on my own I guess. Anyway, when I was about to leave, the ladies that work there gave me a beautiful daisy cookie – “It’s on the house”, they said. How incredibly sweet!!

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Daisy flower given to me from the ladies at Balzac’s

I stopped by Chapters on the way home, and encountered this owl that reminded me of the universe and it’s all-knowing wisdom. Far beyond my own knowledge that’s for sure. The owl has a special significance for me because it was the symbol for the team I worked with at Cancer Care Ontario, called ‘Knowledge Management’, and my manager Casey had given us all owls to hang above our desks.

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Owl at Chapters, Bay & Bloor

Then I walked home all the way in the rain, and it was beautiful!

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University Avenue at night

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