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The Vines

Thursday Thoughts … A Very Productive Day

mario-gotze-bayern-munich-3Courtesy: Bayern Munich – Mario Gotze #19

Just a little hint of what I scored over the past week.

Yes, it is Thursday, and it rained tonight. And now I can say that I’d rather it SNOW than RAIN !!!

Hopefully, that wish will come true over the weekend.

It has been an interesting week so far. Lots going on, and not all of it is good.

Tuesday we sat a full house, and read from the Twelve and Twelve, and Step Nine.

And I have to say that this pass through the book, at this particular meeting, is changing lives for the better.

We’ve been fortunate to keep the same group of people through this series. And we’ve grown quite close in the reading and sharing on each Step. Having just done the Men’s retreat a couple weekends ago, has given me insight into my own program and words that I can use when we discuss the steps together.

I heard a story that really hit me. coming from one of my friends.

Step Nine is the amends step. There are four types of amends …

  • There will be those who ought to be dealt with just as soon as we become reasonably confident that we can maintain our sobriety.
  • There will be those to whom we can make only partial restitution, lest complete disclosures do them or others more harm than good.
  • There will be other cases where action ought to be deferred
  • And still others in which by the very nature of the situation we shall never be able to make direct personal contact at all.

With these four situations, most folks are all over the map. I can identify several situations that I fall into myself.

My friend spoke about an amend he needed to make to an uncle who is long deceased. On his last slip, he missed the final moments of his uncles life, opting for the drink and more cocaine. Only three days later he happened upon him, dead in his bed.

He told the story and I wept a little.

They say that our departed family, or friends, are never far away from us, when they cross over. But his supplication was almost serene prayer, to God, to his uncle, where ever they are.

It was the most courageous thing I’ve ever heard my friend say, in all the years I have known him.

And I did not waste the opportunity to tell him so, and to tell him that I was sure his uncle heard his amend and forgave him, and loved him. In particular, he was buried out of the parish church we sit in – at our meetings. Consider that a double whammy prayer.

I so pray that my friend was encouraged to stick and stay.

If we do our work correctly, and well, and we touch at least one person and help them change their lives and get better, then we have succeeded in our mission.

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My weekly list of things to do, has of late been interrupted by a day of rest. It was a trend that was part of my life for a long time. and I am not sure if it is because my doc added new medication to my regimen, or that I am burning the candle from both ends again … But Wednesday has become my day to do nothing but sleep.

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Discussion has begun within our small group of men at our Thursday Men’s Group about closing the meeting. We have a core handful of people who show up every week, and tonight we heard from them in regards to this issue. But put plainly, we pay $100.00 a month in rent. The founders supply coffee, milk and other supplies from our pocket, as the seventh goes directly to the rent payment every month.

We are not attracting new folks on a regular basis, there are too many other meetings, that have been open for decades that have core attendees. And we haven’t been able to pull folks from their other meetings. In the beginning, we had hoped to pull folks who were not really tied down to a specific meeting, and only a handful of men qualify in that respect.

It is more akin to a social gathering for our small group of men who came together initially to put the group together, but over the last eighteen months, we’ve lost several founders and just recently as last week. So the question remains, if we make kitty for the month we will keep the meeting open. Because it does serve a purpose for our men. But on the wider scale it does not serve a purpose to be of maximum service to God and to men. They just aren’t coming.

We have yet to make that decision, the thought is we will see where the kitty takes us this month and decide later.

But the closure of the meeting is still on the table.

One of our newbies chaired the meeting and we talked about Acceptance from The Daily Reflections. And as usual, when that word comes up, we all turn to page 417 in the Big Book …

  • Acceptance is the KEY to all my problems and
  • Nothing, Absolutely Nothing, happens in God’s world by mistake.

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I was up early today because I had a plan. And executing that plan meant getting out of bed earlier than I usually do, because it is a meeting day, so daytime hours were precious.

We have a new super washing machine upstairs that does twice the work, for 75 cents more than a regular washer. Two loads of clothes for the price of one. I did my laundry, showered and got ready to go in between.

I folded the laundry, put it away and headed out for Indigo Books in the core.

I must tell you that having Thanksgiving in October and a quick hop over Halloween, Christmas has come to Montreal.

Alexis Nihon is decorated with Silver stars and purple neon. We saw our first decorated Christmas tree, lit with all the baubles, in Westmount Square on the way home. When I got to Place Montreal Trust this afternoon, the giant Christmas tree is in its beginning stages. The frame is up, the flat screen tv decorations are up as well.

Instead of baubles all over the tree, there are a handful of screens around the tree showing different things. There is also the train that circles the bottom of the tree eventually. They haven’t yet completed the grand mall decorations.

I walked into Indigo and thought to myself, that several of Santa’s Elves shit sparkles and glitter all over the store. Because they are totally into the Christmas sales mode. Over the past several months, they have been restructuring the store, ( i.e moving books from one location they used to be in, to another section, only to move them again to where they all are right now.)

I was headed to Horror to find Christopher Rice’s – The Vines … Which I had to special order because they were out. Then I had to find where they put that class of books, because they weren’t where I had last seen them. I found a grumpy old man who took me to the new section that wasn’t there, the last time I was up there. But when it came to asking him if he could order me a book, he grunted at me and asked someone else ( read: a member) to do it for him.

That was a God moment. A member working in my favorite book store.

So I got my copy of Anne Rice’s, “Prince Lestat.” And ordered a copy of “The Vines.”

When we last saw Lestat, reading all the other Vampire novels, Pandora, Vittorio, and the Vampire Armand, Lestat has been comatose, lying on the floor of an abandoned convent, located in New Orleans, and is said to be haunted by a little girl. Nobody knows when he will wake, or if he will wake again from his self imposed slumber.

Now, Anne Rice has brought Lestat into this age. And with all the bells and whistles that exist at this time, what will he do, how will he react, and what kind of story did Anne weave for him? She has said that before she started writing this book, she wasn’t sure what she was going to write after her werewolf series. But she said that Lestat began talking to her, and she listened and this next book is the result.

I’ve never been disappointed by any Rice novel, from either mother or son. Two completely different writers.

I went back to fiction and found the next book in the Temperance Brennan series written by Kathy Reichs, a book called “206 Bones.” Now I get where she gets her titles. If you read her, by this point in the reading game, you too will have figured that out. And if you don’t, that might get you to read her.

I headed to cash … and once again, there was elf sparkle and glitter shit all over the ground floor.

I was standing in line waiting to pay, and I spied one of our women buying books of her own. We got to talk for a couple of minutes. That was another God moment.

I was craving B.K. and there are two in the mall. One in the food court pit in the basement of the Eaton Centre, and a second one below the main staircase to the Scotia Bank Place Theatres. I opted for the second because it was close to the Peel Metro and I only had a few minutes to scarf my food to get on the train and get back to Alexis Nihon for my scheduled haircut.

Taking a short break to eat dinner .. be back soon !

Chicken Fettuccine is the BEST !!!!

After completing my meal, I had fifteen minutes to make my transit up two stops and to the salon.

I walked through the mall to the Peel Station. As I crossed the turnstile, a train was in the station. I ran down the stairs and across the platform, only to be met with doors shutting in front of me. FUCK !!!!

I hate when that happens.

The next train was five minutes out. I waited.

The train pulled into the station. The doors opened, and remained open. They did not close as they usually do.

That was the first sign, something was wrong …

Then we heard those tell tale “Tones of death …” Meaning that the line was down.

The announcement came over the p.a. system. There was no ETA of re-establishment of service.

We waited …

The clock is ticking still …

The train doors shut, and the train took off. They must have worked fast to turn it around.

I made my appointment.

There is a new haircut sweeping the male persuasion as of late. They come in various styles.

I’ve seen this cut on one of my favorite actors, he wears it well, now I wear it well.

I had the rest of the afternoon to fart around until I had to leave…

And that’s where we are at the moment.

Tomorrow is Friday, more to come, stay tuned …