Loving the Sacred through Word and Image. The Ferryland – New Foundland Iceberg Easter 2017. A Word Press Production.

Archive for July, 2010

My BIG FAT Birthday Day …

Courtesy: Fancy Monochrome

I stayed up way too late for me last night. I sat on Tumblr and celebrated the beginning of my birthday last night until about 4:00a.m. Then I went to bed to read for an hour.

I got a three hour nap in before getting up and showering to get to the 9:00 a.m. meeting at St. Matthias. I left at 8:15. It was supposed to be a short walk there. Which ended up taking me more than 35 minutes to get there because I got lost with the address in the meeting booklet. Thank god for neighbors in the area.

I got to the meeting a few minutes late, but it was all good. Staying in the day, one day at a time was the topic. I shared a bit about my day and it was good.

I walked back towards home through the Westmount Square tunnel that goes past the Metro. I decided to go on a shopping spree for my birthday. I went to a few shops looking for a new backpack. After three shops I found the one I wanted. $50.00 bucks well spent.

Then I went by a souvenir shop to get some new patches for my bag, that I enjoy sewing on it. It is a custom I learned when I moved to Canada. You sew flags and other patches on your bag. It looks really good.

Then I went to Indigo to look for a new book to read. There were so many good books I wanted to get. I picked up three or four books but I settled on a new novel written by Christopher Rice. Yes, son of the great Anne Rice. He is gay, we met many years ago on Miami Beach at a book signing. The book is called “The Moonlit Earth.”

It looks like a good read. I have read all of his books more than a few times over the years. I need a good hundred dollars to spend at Indigo, alas, I don’t have that much free cash to spend.

Then it was off to lunch. It was a BK kind of day.

I came home from the mall and started working on my patches and transferring all my crap from my old bag into the new one. I am pleased with the way it came out.

Now it is time for a nap.

Thanks for all the birthday wishes. It has been a good day so far.

Oh, I almost forgot …

Hubby got me a bag of goodies for my birthday. I really needed new shower towels, I got two very comfy towels in a sea mist blue color. He also got me a new umbrella that I badly needed. A bunch of huge tootsie rolls, you can never have enough chocolate.  A new water bottle for my travels.

So that has been my day so far.

More to come, stay tuned…


It’s official …

It’s my birthday. I am one year gayer …


It's official …

It’s my birthday. I am one year gayer …


Friendship …

courtesy: dubhlina

Friendship is a wonderful gift to receive and to give and when times are hard it is the hand that is offered that is mostly appreciated.


Making Lemonade …

Courtesy: gryphon-in-equylybryum:

Today was a day. It started early, and the first phone call I made was to Louise to see how her homecoming went. It went well. She got to sleep in her own bed for the first time in over 8 months.

She said she was depressed. And then she said that she would not come to my birthday luncheon on Saturday. I said ok. Tolerance for those with different struggles, and powerless over people, places and things. The call was brief. And that was that.

Then I checked my email. Everyone that I had invited to the luncheon canceled their invitation. FUCK ME !!!

I was like, god dammit.

My inlaws did not send a birthday card to me as of yet. My Mother in Law is on my SHIT LIST. No Fucking Christmas this year.

I had things to do today. So that’s what I did presently. Rick called and we decided on Thursday Nighter’s in NDG. I did the transit across town to meet him and Bill. bill has been sober longer than any of us put together. It was a double speaker meeting at 15min/per person. You know, the kind of meeting that uses a timer to count down the minutes. And then, in the middle of a thought we hear RING RING RING…

It was ok. After the meeting, on the way to the Metro, Rick brought up that he would go to the 9 a.m. meeting at St. Matthias Church just up the road from Tuesday’s Beginners. So I told him that I would meet him there on Saturday morning. It’s a discussion meeting. We can get a morning meeting in and skip the night meeting.

We decided to hit a meeting tonight, instead of Finchley tomorrow. He just can’t take all the noise and distraction.

That’s all for tonight. More to come, stay tuned…


Pondering the Future …

Courtesy: Hawtblogfeed, Teq

I’m still alive. Thank God for small miracles. People tend to forget.

Today was my visit with the doctor. I got up, showered and got out with plenty of time to make my appointment early. My bus pass would not work on the bus. God damned opus passes. They are more trouble than they are worth. The bus driver let me ride anyways.

I get to the clinic 20 minutes early for an 11:20 appointment. I got through triage with Phillipe quickly. And then I waited. I waited for an hour. Thank God I brought a book with me to read.

I am still alive…

Here are the numbers:

The new viral load tests can detect copies less than 40 now.

Viral Load: 39 copies
CD4%        : 43% – The highest this number has ever been, ever.
CD4 Abs.  : 1419 (06 Jul 2010)
1462 (17 Feb 2010)
1312 (29 Sep 2009)
1638 (30 Jun 2009)

My triglycerides are the lowest they have ever been: 5.7
HDL: 0.9
Glucose 6.3
CH/HDL 3.7

My weight has leveled out at: 84 kg. Doc says I need to loose some weight. This freaking diabetes diet has done nothing for my girlish figure.

More to come, stay tuned…


Valhalla …

Valhalla has just concluded. The fleet mourns the loss of Captain Phil. It was quite an emotional episode. But I think it was done with class and honesty.

“If you see the seagulls, they are the image of the sailor who is gone…”

Sig Hansen, Northwestern.

We send our thoughts and prayers to the Harris family. Eternal rest grant him and may perpetual light shine upon him.

**********

So the day today was a good day. Things did not go according to plan for either one of us, but, at the end of the day we survived those issues. Thank God for sobriety and a program to guide us. These little graces remind us just how precious the journey through sobriety is. Tomorrow the sun will rise and things will be better.

My birthday is quickly approaching on Saturday. I went out of my way to plan a little party with a few choice friends, and right now, I cannot guarantee that the main attraction will show up. And I am powerless over people, places and things. But if this does not go off like I hope, you bet I will be a bit resentful, for a spell. But plan B is in my back pocket.

Like I said things did not go according to plan, but with those lemons, we made lemonade. I had to shop for the group on the way out. I get to Zeller’s to buy coffee and it was on sale. But what store does not stock decaf coffee? I had to buy it at Five Seasons at a much higher rate, because that is a boutique Westmount store. Oh well.

It was our business meeting tonight. We were short a few bodies. Our chair did not show up for the last meeting of the month, so we had to improvise a topic and Rick chaired instead. No Call, No show.

It was a good topic… H.A.L.T.
Hungry, Angry, Lonely, Tired… What do you do each day living one day at a time to stay sober? Do you use the slogans? Do they mean anything to you?

I have a routine to my day. It begins quietly and proceeds that way. I keep my friends close. I don’t carry around baggage nor do I carry anyone else’s baggage. I keep to my side of the street, and I keep it clean. I am powerless over people, places and things. I don’t get caught up in others business. I follow a couple of principles and procedures.

The weather outside tonight was amazing. Blue sky with a breeze. The birds were singing, and the squirrels were squirreling. We should have had the meeting outside it was so nice. We had low numbers at the early meeting, but what we lacked in number we gained in open, honest gratitude.

I don’t get why people come to the meeting, sit for ten minutes and then get up and leave. I mean you committed coming here, why not commit to the whole hour? I got that excuse during the break looking for readers for my later meeting. “If I read, that means I have to commit to the whole meeting and I am not ready to do that!”

You win some, You loose some.

Our speaker tonight was fresh. Six months fresh. But what she lacked in time, she made up in spades during her share. She began with, “I am nervous and I don’t know how long I will talk,” and slowly progressed into speaking for the rest of the hour.Nobody moved. Nobody left. Everybody was glued to their seats for the entire hour.

We didn’t close the meeting till after 9p.m. We went long tonight. But that’s ok. We have a good group of hangers after the meeting, which facilitates sharing and communication between members. Katie knocked it out of the park tonight. We were so proud of her.

It was a good night. It was a sad night. It was night.

Tomorrow the sun shall rise and it will be glorious.


They was Sacrificing Babies …

Courtesy: Salvaging Mankind

You want to hear about our Friday trip to Finchley. It was a gray day and it wanted to rain so bad, but it didn’t. I left home with plenty of time to transit the city. I took the shorter of the two routes out. I walked down the tunnel to Georges Vanier Metro, just down the hill, instead of walking all the way to Atwater and switching trains up the line.

I made it to Snowden with 30 minutes to spare. I was very early for my pickup. Rick showed up at 8 and we set off for the meeting. It was sprinking all evening on the West end. The church had moved us from the 1st floor room we usually use, to the basement classroom, down the stairs.

I walked down the stairs and sitting there was BIG Brian. I was like, what’s up dude, where have you been? And he asked me how long I’ve been coming to Finchley, and I said, about a month. I said that Rick has been bringing me. He was outside. He walked down into the room and Brian was like, Yo Dude, you have to pass by my house to get here, why didn’t you tell me you were coming to this meeting.

The excuses were flying. Rick is being tight on his fuel budget on who he picks up and where. We had some coffee and sat down for the meeting. The first speaker went up and did her thing. Then there was the break, and the second speaker.

The prayer meeting was going full force as we all sat down for the long haul speaker. He started his story, and the people up stairs were starting to get loud. There were shouts and what seemed to be people praying in various languages, tongues, etc … The spirit was rising as the speaker kept going. Then the noise got worse, with kids running from here to there, pitter patter across the ceiling.

A baby cried out and it seemed they were either praying, casting out demons or exorcising someone because they voices were getting louder as the speaker went on. I was like, what are they doing upstairs, sacrificing babies or something? Not to mention that there was no air in the basement. I could only get one window open, and at the end of the meeting I couldn’t get the window closed… FML!!!

It was hot, the natives were singing, dancing and chanting upstairs and it was a serious disturbance downstairs in the basement. It took all Rick had to stay seated for the entire share. He was getting seriously agitated, because everybody had a hard time paying attention to the speaker aside from all the noise. UGH !!!

On the way home, Rick offered to take Brian home, which was on the way for us, Brian commented that they would bring this up at the business meeting. It was just too noisy. And if it is going to be that noisy every week, we get relegated to the basement, they might need to find another hall to host the meeting in another church.

They could always move to Westmount. I am sure St. Leon’s would take another meeting on the Friday night. It’s a nice space and $100.00 a month for rent.

That was our sacrificing baby talk for tonight.

More to come, stay tuned…


Caption this …

Courtesy: Pipius

What’s going on here? What are they saying to the boy?


I met a man …

It is a full plate kind of night. It is Tuesday on top of that. I had a lot to do today and a full day to do it.First, I had to take some time to do my readings and pray. And I start my day reading a sober blog written by a man named Dan. […And I am Somebody]. He is a member from Minneapolis. He has a blog that he is writing on from Mexico right now. We have been on lake Atitlan for the last 2 weeks. You can click the link and go read him. It is a fabulous read.

After I caught up on my daily readings I set off for the afternoon.

This afternoon I did my housework and shopping done for the meeting and hurried out at 4 p.m.

I just had a feeling.

I got to the church, it was just me and God for almost 1.5 hours. I set up quietly and efficiently. And then went upstairs to sit outside and people watch in the neighborhood. It was a beautiful day today. Not too hot or humid. But just right.

We had a good showing for the early meeting. And a few newcomers attending their first meeting. And lucky us, one of our old timers came to visit us today, which was a real treat. It is good to see friends come to visit, even if they were on a 12 step mission.

The room was buzzing with spirituality. It was great. We did the swap out and readied for the late meeting. And tonight’s speaker came to us from Friday Finchley.

I’ve never heard someone of another culture share at a meeting before. And I have a lot to write about this topic. Our speaker got sober in the 90’s and is originally from Iran. He has been in Canada for many years, having fled the country after the revolution.

He spoke of Shah time, a time when the Shah of Iran was in power and Iran was more Western than it is today under the hard line regime. Iran, he told us, was more European. Men and women could socialize in the same spaces, go to school together and alcohol was not forbidden as hard line Islam decrees. The eldest of seven children he grew up in an oppressive home with a father who was in the military.

He lost his father at 43, and military service was mandatory. He shared bits and pieces of his life story, and I was captivated with his story. When alcohol was forbidden opium became easier to get.

Cultures are very different. Yet our speaker tonight told us a story about fear, hatred, misery and addiction. After the revolution, he sent one of the brothers to the UK for university because that was not an option for many in Iran. He fled the country via a second country to get to Canada.

This is where things get interesting. And I have to ask him about this at a later time, but he did not explain his religious practice at this time, being a Muslim man in Montreal. But alcohol is forbidden in Islamic custom.

Coming to Canada did not stop him from starting a bender that almost killed him, and ended him up in the pen. He got out of the pen and went to rehab and started doing meetings. And you could tell that there was passion in his voice about gratitude, thanks and just how serious he takes his program today.

I was speechless at the end of his share. I was so touched by his story and his courage to persist, to stay sober, to be connected to meetings, a home group and service. He truly carried the message, from one side of the world to another. It was a great honor to have him speak for us tonight.

We had newbies at the late meeting, We gave one chip away, we had one silent pick up from the desk while I was counting money and we sold a Big Book, which I let go for half price, Rick is gonna kick my ass. But that boy I sold it to promised he would return to the meeting next week.

Redemption

Hubby downloaded the next episode of Deadliest Catch, Redemption the other day and I skimmed through it but did not concentrate on the last 5 minutes of the show word for word. Tonight we watched it on tv. I am glad I saw it on tv tonight and not a few days ago, even if I know what happens in the end.

In the last moments of the episode Phil looses his life after having a second incident. After doctors worked on him for a long while there came a point that a decision had to be made to end life saving procedures.

Jake is off to rehab. Josh now is in Anchorage taking care of dad, who has passed away. The crews on the Bering Sea are facing a 1000 km size storm at sea. And Next week, Valhalla, Josh will contact the fleet about his fathers passing. That much I know.

Hopefully Jake won’t go crazy and get all up in the bottle. We shall see, if he stays or he returns to Anchorage. Hopefully he stays on the straight and narrow.

That was my day in a nutshell. Goodness, sadness, and gratitude for a good day spent with friends and fellows in the program. I am very glad that I am sober today because I get to do fantastic things like I shared with you tonight.

more to come, stay tuned…


Monday Musings …

A good day was had by all. It was a quiet day today. I did my usual morning routine. I collected about 100 images from my library here at home and uploaded them to my Tumblr. Which sparked a frenzy of activity of people liking and reposting photos that I had uploaded.

Little did I know that if you upload it, they will like it …

I spoke to Louise just a little while ago. We were talking about her new boobs. She was laughing and telling me stories about what she has to do every day to make herself stronger. She told me that she will be coming home on the 28th from Florida. With enough time not to miss my birthday on the 31st.

That’s about all that’s going on here at the moment.

More to come, stay tuned …


Tumblr 44 …

Courtesy: Jessnha


The Kind Hearted Forgive …

Courtesy: Hawtblogfeed

If you know my reads, then you will be familiar with Shannon, from Down Under. I have been following him for some time now. And it comes to pass that the other day he posted a video on You Tube, that I can’t link it up from here, but you can go to his blog and watch the video yourself, if you are so inclined.

I told him that his message about the kindhearted and forgiveness was, in my estimation, the most important message he has shared with us to date.

Ever since that night I have been pondering just what “Kindheartedness” feels like. I imagine that I have a heart. And that I am kind. And in sobriety, I surely have learned how to forgive.

The Kind Hearted Forgive …

Ponder that for a moment. You can’t carry anger and resentment around with you for your whole life. You can’t live a proper free life without, at some point, letting go of that baggage that keeps you from feeling free and moving forwards.

This thought came to mind earlier tonight. I was sitting on my Tumblr just watching the photos scroll down, and I noticed someone new on my subscribed list. I did not know where they came from or how they ended up that I had subscribed to them. I figured that another Tumblr had been started at one time, to which I subscribed at one time or another. And then the name changed. I did not recognize the new name. But later on tonight he started posting hellos and photos of himself. This person was a young person.

So I sent him a question, trying to figure out how we met. He responded with an “oh my god.” Then he dropped off my feed. He had clicked on my page where I had posted my coordinates, age and location. He then responded with this phrase …

I think I’ve just been virtually molested …

Needless to say I was offended. I unfollowed him and made a decision to strip my front page of identifying facts and went on with my night. I’ve never been insulted like that in a long time. It was like a sting from a bug that bore down into my heart, that someone would say something so ignorant and stupid.

And I heard Shannon in the back of my head saying:

“The Kindhearted Forgive…”

I can let tonight’s insult go. It did not go any further than that space, but I am sure he had a conversation with his followers about the troll who said hello. imagine. Some teenagers need a good kick in the ass.

So what are you hanging on to that you need to let go?
Who are you holding a grudge against?
And What resentments are you harboring inside of you?

Every hour we hold onto baggage like that the more dis-eased we become. And that dis-ease reflects on our daily lives interacting with others. Forgiveness comes on universal time. On God’s time. If you are inclined to believe in God, as I do.

This is a good way to end my day with this meditation…

The Kind Hearted Forgive…


Redemption …

I got a sneak copy of the next episode of Deadliest Catch and it seems that things are on the level. We are still an episode shy of Valhalla, here with Redemption. Jake checked himself into a rehab in Seattle. He made the right choice. Better he be there safe, clean, and sober, than out in the world on a self destructive path. I see that Valhalla, the last episode of the season will run in the states on July 20th. I imagine that we are still a week off the schedule here.

It seems that the other crews are facing their own demons on the Time Bandit, Northwestern and the others that slip my mind at this hour. What will happen to Deadliest Catch next season???

Hopefully I will get the copy of Valhalla before the air date.

I hope that what Jake started he finished cleanly. And even with the passing of his father, that he stayed on path.

More to come, Stay tuned…


Friday Finchley Update …

Courtesy: Midnight Souls

It has been a quiet week so far. Nothing much to report. I was supposed to get to a meeting last night with Rick, but he didn’t get home from work until late. So we decided to get out to one tonight.

I went up to Snowden to meet him earlier tonight, he almost bailed a second time due to a tooth problem. We got him to a drug store where we got some ambesol and some pain killers for the evening, a short haul solution to a greater problem, he has to get to a dentist to get it fixed.

We went to Finchley again tonight. I like that meeting. We are playing a little sobriety karma. The story goes that if you mention an old timers name to the universe that they eventually show up at the meeting you are going to. Since Rick and I have been meeting hopping over the last few weeks, names get dropped in conversation as in, “I haven’t seen him/her since…”

Tonight the night started off well. Everyone was smiling. I think some people are averse to smiling others. Because I walked into the room and one of them asked me what there was to be smiling about. I ignored him. Got some coffee and started talking to a member who will be speaking at my home group next week.

We were talking and I turned around and I almost fainted…

When I got sober, many years ago, I met a man in the rooms who was good friends with my sponsor back then. He was a scary man, just out of the pen, and getting sober. He is a few years up the road from me today. He got sober a few years before I came along. They used to attend Shadows religiously. Times have changed since then. Shadows is not what it used to be, and Montreal sobriety is not the same as it used to be. Ok, back to my story…

This member used to bake. That was his in, at his home group. They had a full kitchen at the old location and he used to bake muffins, as a way to integrate into the fellowship and to help get to socialize with others.

I turned, tonight and bowed, in a way, and shook his hand. He remembered me from Shadows. I asked him about my old sponsor and we chatted a bit. Rick was trailing behind me outside, he soon joined us in the meeting hall. I looked at Rick and said that this was a good omen. We should strike while the iron is hot, and ask him to speak at our meeting. Rick was like I have two folks lined up already, but I pressed him on the issue. He took some paper from my wallet and got his number. So hopefully we have him lined up to speak for us in a few weeks.

Little did we know when we sat down that our old timer would be speaking second tonight in the lineup. I was so excited to hear him share. It has been at least 7 years since I last saw him at a meeting.

And he told the muffin story …

He said a few other things that sparked comment. Back then, He along with a few other men, would pick up sponsees as they tailed into Shadows and forcibly say “shut up, I’ll sponsor you!!!” Times have changed and that kind of comradery does not exist like it used to. That all encompassing care that existed between people.

He doesn’t do that any more. He is more thoughtful of others, and kinder to himself. He has an old sponsor, a man 32 years up the pike. And he says that the longer his sponsor stays sober, the better he gets. I am sure our friend is making the rounds of meetings in Montreal. Once you speak somewhere, people pounce on you for the kill to get you to speak at other meetings. That’s how it works.

Speaker meetings are the nurseries that farm the speakers we all get for our meetings. We are always on the lookout for good speakers. not that we can bring in a crowd to hear them, sadly, but at least they have a great space to come talk to the few and chosen.

You stick around long enough, the miracle happens. Eventually you cross paths with people you haven’t seen in years, and you both are sober that’s the gift of sobriety.

He said, some of the greatest people I know are in the program. And in the same breath, some of the people I get the most pissed off with are also in the program. But times have changed and I have changed, and I am not the same man who came in 13 or so many years ago.

Good coffee, good speakers, a good night was had by all.