TPW Winter Gathering

TPW Winter Gathering
2018 Black and Medals dinner

Sunday, June 9, 2019

Glorious!

t was, indeed, a glorious weekend! The first of what we will hope is a continuing trend throughout the summer and well into the fall. And I’m not the only one who has used that word glorious. On my tours from coffee house to coffee house I kept hearing, “What a glorious day!”

That wonderful weather was accompanied by a wide range of sights and activities along our walk. Everything seemed to be in bloom. The trees, the hedges, the lilacs … OH! the lilacs! Such sweet perfumes. The trees not in bloom were fully in leaf, giving us glorious greens and reds against the brilliant blue sky.

When we got to the Lakeshore our way was blocked by the Ride to Conquer Cancer. The road was blockaded and what seemed like thousands of cyclists were zooming along on their way to points west. So, the intrepid TPWers that we are, turned around and worked our way along the bottom of High Park, along the Queensway, and across the footbridge at the bottom of Roncesvalles. As we wound our way along the Lakeshore we commented on the level of the lake water. As we neared Ontario Place we came upon the route marshals for the run for Children’s Mental Health, and not too long after we saw the runners themselves. As we neared our turning point in Coronation Park, we were exposed, and I don’t use that word lightly, to the single proponent of naked cycling - no, I am not going to describe it, I’ve been scarred enough already. 


On our return journey we ran across the Canadian Geese goslings. It was a herd of goslings being minded by two watchful adult geese, while the other parents had peace and quiet swimming in the lake. Those goslings are getting big. Their wings are getting feathers to go with that chic gosling fuzz on the rest of their bodies.

It’s wonderful what a glorious weekend brings out of the woodwork. And if we weren’t walking, just think of all the 'sights' we would have missed!

Sunday, June 2, 2019

Goosey, goosey, gander...

There is much in the physical world to be distressed about - floods, fires and extreme weather - much of it exacerbated by our very own selves. But we also have to be amazed and delighted by the many natural wonders that we see. I think that is what motivates us to do better.
Two weeks ago when we returned to High Park, the Canada Geese presented us with fuzzy, yellow blobs of new chicks. This week they were gangly pre-teens. 


Here are some interesting facts about these iconic bird.
  • They mate for life with a very low 'divorce' rate and can be together for as long as 20 years.
  • They mate 'assortively' which means that larger birds choose larger mates and smaller ones choose smaller mates.
  • There are 11 confirmed subspecies with the under parts of each species varying in colour from light pearl-grey to chestnut and blackish brown (I will leave it to someone else to check that one out!).
  • They communicate with about 13 different calls and talk to each other in flight (we heard them in full voice overhead). Goslings start to communicate with their parents when they are still in the egg.
  • Although goslings generally remain with their parents, sometimes they form 'gang broods' with goslings from different broods hanging around together in the care of at least one adult.
  • A group of geese can be called a 'flock', a 'chevron' or a 'string'.
So, yes, they leave a lot of green poop on the ground but they are one of Mother Nature's wonders.
A reminder to the Tuesday gang that we begin hill-training this week.

Monday, May 27, 2019

Rain Poetry

A poem written by Raymond Garfield Dandridge (1882-1930) starts with  
“The clouds are shedding tears of joy,
They fall with rhythmic beat
Upon the earth, and soon destroy
Dust dunes and waves of heat.”
It is a beautiful poem. After reading it, I usually enter into a  deeper appreciation of life.
On Saturday it rained, and it was cool. We TPWs finished our walk late in the morning, and we were soaked; absolutely drenched. The sun peeked out that afternoon, and the next day was warm and full of sunshine. 

Beautiful poems and friends abound.

Monday, May 20, 2019

Birthdays

I was going to write about Queen Victoria to celebrate her birthday when Google informed me that this is Omar Khayyam’s 971st birthday.  Since the distance on Sat. morning used up all my brain cells I thought I’d just pass on a few of his best known sayings that seem to me to relate to the TPW philosophy.
To friends and eke to foes true kindness show; No kindly heart unkindly deeds will do; Harshness will alienate a bosom friend. And kindness reconcile a deadly foe.
Dead yesterdays and unborn tomorrows, why fret about it, if today be sweet?
When I want to understand what is happening today or try to decide what will happen tomorrow, I look back.
Be happy for this moment. This moment is your life.
Give me a flagon of red wine, a book of verses, a loaf of bread, and a little idleness. If with such store I might sit by thy dear side in some lonely place, I should deem myself happier than a king in his kingdom.
Here's to the man Who owns the land That bears the grapes That makes the wine That tastes as good As this does.
The moving finger writes and, having writ, moves on.

Monday, May 13, 2019

Spring has sprung, and the races have begun.



Last Sunday May 5th, four TPWs participated in the Toronto Half Marathon. It was my first-ever race. I’ve been walking every Saturday morning with TPW since November 2018, so I felt like it would be a good challenge. Luckily, the weather cooperated. It was a perfect, spring day – warm and sunny. As I crossed the finish line and hung the medal around my neck, I felt a great sense of accomplishment.

This Saturday morning, in the blossom-filled Mount Pleasant Cemetery, on yet another perfect spring day, I started asking other walkers for advice about what it was like to walk a full marathon. I was, immediately, steered towards a member, who had completed seven marathons, and she, happily, filled me in on all the ins-and-outs involved in a longer race.

On Sunday May 12, 15+ TPWs walked the Sporting Life 10K. The sky was overcast, and the temperature was 7C, but felt much colder, as we huddled together at the start-line. But the rain held off and once we started our trek down Yonge Street, along with 20, 000 other participants, we started to warm up. Most importantly, over $15 million has been raised for Camp Ooch, since the first race in 2000.