Monday, August 24, 2020

Nepal maybe?

As many of you are aware, I will sometime have the pleasure and delight of accompanying my daughter and her family to Nepal. I will be helping them settle in, I will be comforting myself with the knowledge of where they are, what their home will look like and so many more aspects of experiencing with them the new world they will find themselves.

Then I will go home and be able to remember.

My ticket was booked for early June.

The pandemic, the global pandemic arrived in March. Long before the ticket was to be shown at the airport or the seat claimed, even before the bags were packed the refund for the ticket showed up in our bank account. I would not be going to Nepal in June.

With so many of you,my world,my daughters world,each one of my daughter's worlds changed. The goodbye celebrations,the family celebrations,the trip to Europe were all cancelled.

None of us have been in a plane, none of us have been able to hug our beloved family members who live in Indiana. We have not travelled to Edmonton this summer. The children have not been to school. We wear masks. Last week two daughters and their families came to our home in Collingwood. Oh what fun we had, oh how we missed those who could not join us because of a closed border.

The planning has begun again for my trip to Nepal, maybe the Nepal border will open on August 17. Maybe I will fly with the family who is going to work and live and learn in Nepal for the next 5 years. They have left their home, they are living in a borrowed apartment. They have tried momos, the children love them and are eager to try the food, and learn the language. The three year old calls watermelon tarabuja.

I have an airline ticket. Perhaps I will get another refund. Perhaps I will fly soon, stay tuned.

Today is August 19. Today was the day for the flight. Today we are not flying to Nepal. Nepal's borders are closed. I hope and pray the young family I am going to/was going to/ might accompany can go soon. I hope they can get settled in their home soon. In the meantime they have begun a blog it is entitled Home in Motion ( My son in law and daughter are both great writers. Check it out if you are interested.

Soon, perhaps I will begin a new blog. It is set up. It is on Wordpress
 It is called   The blog is travelling gg (as many of you know one of my primary identities in these days is that of grandma gloria (gg)

and yes if you are noticing it is no longer August 19. 

I am not good at setting up new blogsites, or adapting to old platforms that get changed,  I am fortunate to have daughters and partners and friends who help me.   Thanks to them all and because of them I am certain that my new blog will be up before I fly to Nepal,

And so for now goodbye to Blogger and blogspot. My journey continues the improbable has become probable and the musings continue.

Wednesday, August 19, 2020


A ticket no longer means a trip
a plan no longer means an event
 A calendar no longer details a date
 a restaurant no longer feels inviting
 A movie theatre no longer offers a blockbuster
 a gallery no longer calls me in
A dining room no longer set for guests
 the odometer no longer speaks
the language of distance

I travel valleys, flower scented with possibilities beauty 
over hills and discover more hills,
some transformed into mountains of impossible passage
 swim across clear blue waters and swamps,
 cycle against headwinds into dreams

 gloria fern August 2020

Tuesday, August 4, 2020

A Month

Yesterday’s yesterday it was July,  a summer
month is Canada,   we  were swimming in the bay
my restorative home in these months of warmth,

the sidewalks filling with people coming to
enjoy the waters lapping on shorelines, the  breezes
blowing through trees, to escape the still city sounds,

cars filled with longing  seeking space by orange
pylons you are not welcome in this space,
or this place as the earth called forth welcome,

the holiday weekend had arrived, will it someday
be recognized as emancipation weekend,  and when it
is,  how will its meaning be understood?

today the rains have stopped falling, the birds are
singing as the thunder echos in the background,
the trees wave gently, the breeze refreshes

we have had a partial family visit, we have opened 
and yet our gathering is incomplete as our beloveds live
south of covid border line and perhaps soon 

some will be across the ocean while pool and lake waters
lap on shores familiar waving hearts  and I  wonder when
will this end?   and I wonder when will  what end?

beginning constant beginnings and endings and another month
has passed and I am packing my bag, maybe I will travel

certain uncertainty  a hallmark of  seasons, months passage.

Friday, July 3, 2020


Blankets, umbrellas,  six feet apart
dot the shore line, it is Canada day
red shirts with white maple
leaves cover little ones and big ones
testing the water, playing catch on the hillside
where blankets, picnic tables were covered
with families gathered and 
charcoal smells waft to me, escaping 
for a day from cities confinement

trips to the beach crowd my memory as
I swim, fighting the waves
in my now hometown,
the cows were milked, the car
packed and we all five kids
dressed in excitement piled
on top of each other hardly daring
to believe there would
be a parking space for us

those days there were no
restrictions on picnic table,
blanket spacing,  little if any
awareness of the stolen land
we were celebrating on or the waters 
we were swimming in, no awareness either 
of the town peoples who wished
we would not come and eat in their
parks or play on beaches

children playing, adults laughing 
feeding children and themselves, drinking
from coolers and thermos,   pulling out more
and more food, packed, planned carefully
days earlier in the hopes that this outing
this day would offer comfort and joy in
the midst of so much uncertainty
distracting for a few hours from the
job loss, the illness, the work still waiting

the more things change
someone once said

the more they stay the same.

Friday, June 26, 2020

It is Friday

It is Friday, what’s new in Collingwood today,
the email news feed is as consistent as I  
scanning    for good news,  any

photos of double rainbows in rain filled skies, of
sun rising or setting over the bay, numbers of
cases falling, deaths lessening

yet there are deaths, there is loss, someone
is grieving and I am swimming in the bay,
celebrating first little arms wrapped around

my neck in months,  and my body has taken on new
hope, even when I speak to the daughter so far
away in the United States,  I know we will be

together again before forever passes, and in the
meantime I will zoom, I will delight in face painting
across miles and I will hold tight confident

in the wellness of friends, of  family,  and the
wonder of time and space, found for gardening
and swimming and reading and hiking and being

wondering how I will hold it all as we open
to old possibilities made new,  to the options , the
wonder of a cleaner, friendlier world,

open in new ways to difference, to rejection of
ism’s that support some at the cost of others, knowing
I am a benefactor and giving up privilege is

a challenge felt even in these days of knowing
that my family is safe and well, and others are sick 
dying some because they do not have

a home with a yard, with a bay to swim in or a
trail to walk  or bike on, or the privilege that comes
with retirement and safety from

a front line job that puts me at risk
one of my children is doing front line work,
so far she has not tested positive for the virus

of Covid,  her family is not free from the
deadly virus of racism         the
unfairness        requires action 

sometimes,I am up to the task and other times
inadequacy surrounds me and despair wins out
over the belief in the possibility of  ever

experiencing the change that this world

requires      but today I know that the virus will
not last forever, there is a           brave new generation
rising up and filling this grandmother

with faith and confidence                they stand
knowing they make a difference.

 gloria fern June 2020

Thursday, June 18, 2020


mosquitos swarm over the rock crevices and pine
and maple woods,  we walk, I swat away

tears of despair  as I run through possibilities
again,    how do I live this life of privileged

anguish,   I stumble on the roots catching
myself in the midst of a fall, in the midst of another

bite into maybe,  what is this life of no touch,
of no hugs outside the household,  I swing my

walking sticks in the air, dissipating  the
latest attack,  watching my footing as I  move

forward to read another story online to a child afraid
to play  with his cousin,  he has learned distance

protects,  he  likes that we are
connected by an invisible string and that I

notice he is growing into a big kid,  my teeth,
bring laughter to his eyes across the screen,  I

repress another flood of tears,  I know I cannot
go to him, not now,  giggling  together about my baby nose

stretching the invisible sting of connection
from my heart to his
and back again.

gloria fern june 2020

Sunday, June 14, 2020


with gratitude to Jeanne Thompson and her CD 
Peace be with you and the Peace Train

We drove over hill and vale
met in a park, sat on a hill, 
peed behind a bush, no toilet in sight, 
but we saw a daughter  had tea 
and a bite

it arrived in the mail 
a pink bubble wrap envelope, 
Peace be with You  the title of 
recording,  I listen  I hear 
love is at the heart of it

barely awake a lego train 
arrived, money saved,  
ordered on line, moms assistance
allowed bakery's inclusion, 
video shared delight, 

the market trail led us 
around town,  bicycle wheels crushing 
gravel,  skidding through sand,  
bouncing on pavement,  
we travel
The phone rings, I hear his message again,
there are those who are
ready to head out the western 
door, death is not bad
notice it all

angels on shoulders
change all around, I head to a march, 
I made my own signs,  justice equals 
peace,  abolish racism the other side,

the song rings in my ears, 
thanks for lyrics that 
summarize so well
a'int no time for couch potatoes 
or regretting the past ... 

time to move forward together at last.

gloria fern June 2020