From Where I Sit – Piece of Cake

As life settles back to what we laughingly refer to as normal, I’m amazed at the number and complexity of thoughts and actions that have consumed us for the past few weeks. We can thank adrenaline, the urgency created by the relentless march of time, and a strong work ethic for getting us through. Most people have the resilience and skill to handle what’s thrown at them?at least in the short term. However, prolonged stress can and does kill; if not immediately, then surely in the long term.

Let me recap what’s been running through my mind and life in the last few weeks. Monday saw Roy elected as county councillor after a month of door knocking while trying to bring in the harvest. He was successful in defeating the incumbent (who was in office for 12 years) and two other challengers. Waiting an hour for results from one small poll nearly did me in. This is the same position I held 15 years ago, so Roy went in with his eyes wide open. For a crash course in human behaviour, seek public office. It is a privilege. It is an eye-opener.

Because the farm work continues with baling, hauling bales and grain, and field work, there hasn’t even been time to savour the victory and catch up on some sleep. Hopefully, that too will happen soon.

On issues a little further from home, I regret that I couldn’t actually watch the Chilean mine rescue but had to settle for radio reports. Like a billion other people, I was mesmerized by the stories and sub-plots intrinsic in this unbelievable drama. The dynamics of what went on both down there and up on terra firma intrigue me. My friend’s husband is a gold miner working in Indonesia, and frankly, I can’t fathom anyone going underground.

In one sense, I wish I was still ensconced in the combine and away from media as the Colonel Russell Williams trial unfolds in Ontario. The details of perversion and depravity remind me of the Bernardo-Homolka trials of the 1990s or the serial murders of sex trade workers committed by Robert Pickton. I can only pray that the people affected by these two new murders, sexual assaults, and sex-fuelled break-ins will be able, with help, to survive the horror of what they’ve experienced. Williams is just the latest example of evil personified.

So there you have it?the resilience spectrum: from playing catch-up after harvest and an election to grieving a heinous public murder; from tackling a to-do list of delayed tasks to wondering if you’ll ever see daylight and breathe fresh air again.

Now I just need to refill a prescription that lapsed, attend a day-long grief conference, babysit my awesome grandson, attend a session on the role of an executor, keep a couple of specialist appointments, plan a first- time food event, and assume a new role in the travel publication business. Piece of cake, from where I sit.

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