Week 38. I’m sitting in bed at Jasmine’s place, just finished watching another episode of The Night Of, a stirring, beautiful HBO series about a Pakistani boy who is accused of murder. His parents are played by two amazing actors, Peyman Moaadi (a great Iranian actor who was in the movie “A Separation” that premiered at the film festival a few years ago), and Poorna Jagannathan who I am a huge fan of. It took me about halfway through the second episode last night to realize that she was the producer and one of the stars of the play Nirbhaya, that I saw last year and shook me to my core and caused me to set this goal of walking every week. She is also one of the 50 most beautiful women in India, a humanitarian, and a wonderful actor.
Ok so back to the walk. I’m hesitating a little because it felt slightly uninspired. I awoke on Sunday after my Mom’s Laksharchana that she hosts every year and I think after being surrounded by so many people and so much love, I didn’t really want to go for a lonely walk through the streets of Kanata. I talked to Hara for a bit and tried to help her with her engineering assignment, but was pretty useless when it came to remembering steel and stress and alloys.
It was a really nice day, and I walked my usual path, with a plan to go to the library to pick out a new book since I haven’t been reading anything related to women’s rights lately… or should I say, related to powerful, inspiring movements that are changing the world. You know, like another “I Am Malala” or “The Underground Girls of Kabul”. I just haven’t found anything of that calibre recently. I walked past the golf course, and the sun shone through and I met it with my weary gaze.
I approached the library and the anxiety and irritation hit me, and so I took a detour and walked around my old high school, Earl of March, adjacent to the library. I remembered my days there, especially being picked up after school by Manar’s Mom, or missing school because of a painful period, or being dropped off in the morning by my Dad at exactly 8:42 AM, when the bell would ring. Actually I think there were two bells, the warning bell and then the actual one. Either way, I was always late!
It was Sunday so the fields and buildings and portables were deserted, and I was free to snoop around. It was gorgeous with the leaves changing colour.. can’t believe it’s already fall!
I didn’t remember there being portables when I was there, but I think they had to add them because Earl now includes grades 7 and 8 so it must be at full capacity. At the library I was overwhelmed by the choices, and narrowed it down to these fabulous five books (I plan on reading them all at some point):
I ended up choosing “If Nuns Rules The World” by Jo Piazza, about ten feisty, inspiring, no-nonsense, blessed, high-spirited women, who surrender themselves to Jesus, society, and are utterly devoted to their missions. I’m almost halfway through already! Jo is a contributer to the Wall Street Journal and a commentator on CNN, Fox News, and MSNBC. She states that she doesn’t believe in God, but she fiercely “believes in nuns”. It’s hard not to after hearing these inspiring stories. There is Sister Jeannine Grammick who supports gay Catholics and has tried to be silenced and dismissed by the Catholic church time and again. But she doesn’t let it faze her, because her compassion and principles know no bounds.
“People always emphasize sex, sex, sex….. And it isn’t about sex. It is about love. It is who you fall in love with that makes you lesbian and gay. Love is the important thing here, not sex.”
– Sister Jeannine
Then there is Sister Megan Rice who campaigns against nuclear weapons, and was sentenced to three years in prison for breaking into a nuclear complex in Tennessee to call attention to a nuclear threat. What a hero!
Following the library, I walked to Walmart where I bought some conditioner and sifted through magazines, and read a great article in O magazine by Elizabeth Gilbert. Then I was saved by the bell. My brother sent a snapchat of my cute mother sitting in Home Sense with a picture of the Buddha behind her. And I said “Where are you? I’m at Walmart!” and then I didn’t hear back so I wandered over to Chapters and got a latte. Eventually my Mom and brother came there and picked me up. I glanced at my phone and confirmed that I’d walked at least 8 KM (over 10,000) steps and decided to call it a day! As we drove back we chatted about the day. It felt good to be home.