Earth calling the SSG


I know you’ve been holding your breath waiting anxiously to hear from me since my last post. Sorry it took me so long but the internet connection is wonky here at Cloud 9 and the roaming rates are just ludicrous.

As it turns out, there is poutine, ice cream, dinosaurs, padlocks, zip lining and lovely walks in heaven. Plenty of squirrels, chipmunks, ducks, geese and gulls too. Oh, and beer tasting. Yeah.

I will be back on Earth this Sunday *Sad Puppy face* but in the mean time, let me tell you, being this happy is beyond awesome. I highly recommend it!

In other news, my Tumblr blog turned 3 this week. Check it out. I may be biased but I think it’s kinda cool.

Summer Solstice Girl turned 3 today!


Hope you all are having a great summer. I’ll try to get up to speed with your lovely blogs some time next week.

Miss you all!

Don’t want no flowers when I’m dead

There’s this Spanish song called “Donde Brilla el Sol” (Where the Sun Shines). It was a favourite of my mother’s. She used to sing it all the time. It goes like this:

No quiero flores cuando muera
Las quiero ahora en mi jardín
No quiero amores con cualquiera
Cualquiera no me hace feliz

Como el girasol busco mi lugar
Donde brilla el sol
Tengo el corazón a disposición
Para un gran amor
Siempre digo si
La palabra no, nunca me gustó
Como el ave soy canto mi canción
Sin una razón

No quiero herencias venideras
Ni un gran futuro por vivir
Quiero sentir la primavera
Que no se queda mucho aqui

Here’s my translation:

I don’t want flowers when I die
I want them now in my garden
I don’t want to love just anyone
Just about anyone doesn’t make me happy

Like the sunflower, I look for my place
where the sun shines
My heart is available
for a great love
I always say yes
I never liked the word no
I’m like a bird singing my song
for no reason

I’m not waiting for an inheritance to come
nor I long for a grand future
I just wanna feel the spring
since it doesn’t stay very long

My mother used to tell me all the time that she didn’t want flowers at her funeral -or her grave, for that matter. She would say to me: “I want them now, when I can enjoy their pretty colours and their sweet scent”.

As it happens, I’m very much like my mother. I also don’t want flowers when I die. I want them now in my garden. I wanna enjoy them now, when I can. And that goes for all the other stuff too. Natalia and I were watching an episode of Two and a Half Men today. The one were Charlie’s best friend dies while drinking and smoking cigars at Charlie’s place. Then Charlie starts thinking he’s gonna die as well because he leads the same kind of unhealthy life his pal did. He tries to make amends and starts buying people gifts. While at his mother’s place he mentions he needs to go arrange the funeral. The mother tells him not to be cheap and get his pal an expensive coffin. Sure, it’s intended to be a joke. But sadly, more people than you’d think, believe that if you love someone, you have to spend a lot of money on a casket and a fancy funeral. I also think it is disgusting that funerals have become so expensive. Why does a grieving family has to also be burdened with such a financial blow? Why thousands of dollars must be spent so their loved ones can be buried?

I say, the hell with that. What”s the point? I’m dead. I’m not gonna enjoy anything you buy me. In fact, I want the cheapest casket possible. That’s why I want to be cremated as well. That way there won’t be a grave people would be tempted to bring flowers to. That money can go towards providing food and education for a third world child. Or to support your local animal shelter. Or plant a bunch of trees.

So, I want my flowers now.

I love flowers

And it’s not just me. Everybody deserves flowers when they’re alive. FYI, that doesn’t mean you have to run to the nearest flower store and buy the most expensive bouquet you can find. It’s not about money. It’s about letting people know that we care about them.

That’s why I don’t want people saying how much they loved me, or how much they miss me when I’m gone either. Tell me now that I am alive, when I can actually hear it, when I can tell you that I love you back. It’ll make me happy and it’ll make YOU happy. Nothing more rewarding than telling your loved ones that you love them. Just go tell them and rejoice in their smiles.

Also tell them now much you appreciate they being in your live and all the little things they do for you. Those are the flowers that will brighten anyone’s day.

And every now and then, for no reason, buy them some flowers too! :)

On being Canadian

Almost nine years have passed since I came here with just two suitcases containing all my earthly possessions.

Then I quickly bought myself a copy of How to Be a Canadian (Even if You Already Are One)  Excellent book.  I highly recommend it.  I even talked about in one of my earlier posts.   It has taught me a lot about being Canadian, eh?

I have learned how to quickly say “I’m sorry” even if it is not my fault. I have learned to take my shoes off at the door (my American swingdancers friends don’t get this). I have learned to dress in layers. I have learned to love the seasons -as I knew I would, summer BBQs and hockey. I have learn that most Canadians have a big porcupine index… Sorry, what’s that? oh, you don’t know what the porcupine index is? let me tell you:

You know porcupines, right? funny chubby rodents with quills or spines which they use for protection.  To keep predators away.  You wouldn’t want to hug a porcupine but most important of all, the porcupine doesn’t want you to hug him.  So a professor of mine used to joke in class about how people have different porcupine indexes.  Some people have a high index so if you get too close, they become uncomfortable and they bristle.  Some people have a low index and are more comfortable with letting other people get close to them.  As in hugging and stuff.

And yes, I know that here they call it personal space.  I think porcupine index is funnier.

So, where was I? ah yes, Canadians and their high porcupine indexes.  Except for Swing Dancers.  Swing Dancers belong to a completely different species.  They do like to hug and stuff.  I guess that’s why I feel so comfortable among Swing Dancers!

Every now and then I forget and I hug a person I just met.  In the millisecond before my arms touch them, I can feel them bristling and I go “ah, crap” but the momentum carries me and there’s nothing I can do but try the Man Hug

But I digress. I moved here on September 3, 2001. I’ve had good times, bad times, hysterical times.  I’ve met a lot of wonderful people.  Since, I’ve learned how to shovel snow, how to get a fire going on a fireplace, how to keep warm.  I’ve learn to ski and to skate.  I’ve learned to love Hockey, maple syrup, shepherd’s pie and meatloaf. I’ve also learned that in order to survive an Ottawa summer one needs A/C.  There’s no other way around.  Holy heat, Batman, does it ever get hot in here.  I’ve also learned that if you’re renting, hydro better be included in the rent cause otherwise your paycheck is gonna go straight to the pay the hydro bill in the winter.

I’ve also learned that Canadians are very polite people but that doesn’t necessarily mean they like you.  Some of them are just being that, polite.  I’ve learned that most Canadians are obsessed with being politically correct (subject for another post).  I’ve learned good English and bad English -It don’t mean a thing if it ain’t got that swing  ;)

Furthermore, I’ve been the proud owner of a Citizenship Card since December 2006.

I’ve learned so many things in these almost 9 years I’ve been in Canada.

But what the most important thing I have learned is that if there is a place on earth where I can be happy it is right here, in the Great White North!

There’ll be days like this

When did this blog turn so sad?

When I started it a few months ago, I had a different idea.  It was supposed to be a happy blog.  About the things I like, the things I enjoy doing.  Like swing dancing, for example.  About my life in Canada -which I love!

Why do I feel compelled to write about all these awful things? why can’t they stay 6 feet under?  I guess that as much as I have tried to bury them, they refuse to be forgotten.  They’re like Zombies!

Very well.  I shall continue writing about them.  Perhaps if I do, one day they will get tired of haunting me and they will leave me alone.

I started thinking about death right after my mother died.  Ok, one may argue that it was way before that I guess but it didn’t become a conscious thing until then. And I don’t mean death in general, I mean my own death.

I lost all my desire to live -which was never very big to start with, right after that nefarious October in 1983.

Funny thing, I have always been perceived as a happy person.  Even as a child.  Just a couple of weeks before my mother died, one of the nuns commented on what a happy girl I was and what a happy family I had.  I just smiled.  I’ll never forget how I felt inside when she said that.  I wanted to scream “if you only knew”  I wanted to scream “please help me”.  I couldn’t.  I didn’t say anything.  I just smiled.  I had carried my burden, my shame in silence for so many years.  And I continued to do so until now.  I changed schools.  I distanced myself from most of my friends and made new ones.  Friends that didn’t know anything about my past.  Till this very day, nobody in my family talks about those things.  My mother is very rarely mentioned.  My father even less.

But I also continued to smile.  Go figure.  It’s never been a fake smile…. ok, almost never.  Most of the time my smile is genuine.  I truly enjoy a lot of things.  I am two persons in one.  The happy, cheerful girl that loves to dance and do sports and many other things.  And the sad, lost little girl who wants to find her way home.  Very lonely and scared.  The little girl that doesn’t know how to take care of herself. The little girl that doesn’t understand why mommy and daddy are not around.

And that kills me.  Sometimes – like now, the pain is unbearable.  The loneliness, the fear.  Those days I feel I can’t keep on going.  Those days I think even more about death.  Those days I resent the doctors that kept me alive when I was born a premature baby.  Those days I beg Death to come get me.  Those days I hope for some miracle that would put me out of my misery.

The tragedy is that I am a happy person by nature. Or I would be, were it not for the special circumstances of my life…. 

Well, my mama didn’t need to tell me there’ll be days like this.  I found out all by myself when I was still a child.

What makes the Summer Solstice Girl happy

A smile, a hug, a good conversation.  A squirrel pausing to evaluate if I pose a danger to her and then continuing to look for food for the fast approaching winter.  A chipmunk eating peanuts from my hand at the Arboretum park.

Flowers, rain, thunderstorms, birds chirping away outside my window.

Family and Friends.  Seeing a friend being happy.  Being able to help a friend in need.

Chocolate.  Chocolate fondue, chocolate chips, chocolate cookies, chocolate cake, chocolate cupcakes, chocolate icing, hot chocolate, iced chocolate, chocolate bars, chocolate fountains.  Chocolate-covered strawberries. Hell, chocolate-covered anything. Well, not really… chocolate-covered broccoli wouldn’t make me happy.

Dancing, being airborne (a.k.a. aerials), competing, performing.

My cat, so soft and warm cuddling with me while I type.  My cat, playing hide and seek with me.  My cat going on walks with me.  My cat. Period.

The sound of running water.  Rivers, creeks, falls, a backyard pond, a fountain.  Water in the form of lakes, ponds, inlets.  The sound of the waves splashing on the shore.

Music, music and more music.  From Bach, Mozart and Beethoven to Liszt, Rimsky-Korsakov and Ravel.  From Joplin, Bechet and Armstrong to Gershwin and Bernstein. Classic music, Celtic music, Klezmer Music, African music, Latin music, Jazz, Blues, Black Gospel, Soul.

Bunny wabbits and groundhogs.  Horses. Fall colour explosions, snow. Making snow angels.

A nice cup of tea and a book.  A good movie shared with good friends.  Cuddling.

Coffee.  Meeting a friend over coffee.

A full moon on a clear night.  Stargazing.



Those are the things that make me happy