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Posts from the ‘memories’ Category

Flow of time: where does it take us?

I arrived to Canada in 2004. I did not know what to expect, but I was very impressed by greatness of many things, and everything felt to me huge. I mean everything. Latvia where I came from is a small country, and, therefore, the endless wide roads, the high-rise buildings, the downtown Toronto with its busy streets and, especially, the size of any province was so different from what I was used to.

Well, time flew absurdly fast then, and I got married in October 30th of the same year. It’s very amazing that it is my daughter’s birthday on this day, too, which I hadn’t even realized when we made all arrangements. We stayed in Niagara Falls in a newlywed suite which had number 3010 on the door. Something else, or what?

Well, we got married in The Small Wedding Chapel in Niagara Falls. My family was in Latvia, so, my fiancé decided not to invite his family also, just to be fair to each other. Very tactful, I’d say. Therefore we headed out to Niagara Falls the day before wedding. The weather was mild and sunny during the day, although, it was the end of October. These pictures were taken by the numerous by-passers who all kept congratulating us, so, it felt wonderful actually.

I cannot believe it’s been 13 years. The flow of time is very different from what it was back then. The best part is that my daughter is 38 today and we celebrate the 13th wedding anniversary. So much fun together (over the internet because she is in Latvia).

Everything worked out quite well. My husband has proved himself to be the best, most loving and most honest person ever and he is still the same excellent man who I met back then. He has had a lot of patience and understanding in the situations when my health really gave up. When we are saying “…in sickness and in health, to love and to cherish, till death do us part” at the wedding, we rarely can be aware of what is ahead in reality. It has not been all that smooth, but, thankfully, we are managing everything.

We got married in Niagara Falls

Signing …

Happy me, well, we tried to take each others pictures first, and then the by-passers helped

This is us 13 years ago

While we are still very young we believe that nothing really changes as we get older, except it is a larger number. We assume we will have the same ideas and the same attitude, and the same capability when executing different things. That is so wrong! I just now have started to understand how my parents felt at older age, and I am very lucky to have my daughter as my best friend because my top energy levels matched time of her being young and very energetic and passionate.

We are a lot smarter. Life teaches us if we are willing to pay attention and to learn the lesson. We find out that some ideas were simply silly and that the world isn’t there to please us and make miraculously our wishes come true without any effort. We have learnt that lots of things require fighting for them and that path can take a lot of turns, too. It’s never as if going from point A to point B. There are always obstacles and problems, and all kinds of disturbances.

The most important things for a family are love, trust and respect. Without any of this missing, marriage is going to have cracks. The most important thing for an individual is the mental and physical health. While I have a lot of brain power, excellent memory and very strong willpower, the physical side is somewhat suffering. Well, I hope the future is friendly and has some better things for me and us.

Being an older white, legal immigrant in Canada is not quite the same as being a refugee. Refugees are treated very well here and receive extreme support. I haven’t received ever any smallest or tiniest support whatsoever. My only support has come from my husband so far, and I am happy and grateful for that. Other than that, my expectations did not come true: I wasn’t met too friendly wherever I turned to in Canada, and I haven’t made too many friends locally, as well. Realistically, I was already 46 when I relocated to Canada; so, it’s not the same as when one is 16 or even 26. I have turned from a very social person (I worked at high schools and colleges in Latvia, it was work with and among people) to a very isolated person. My lack of health has contributed to that also, a lot actually, but still, I did not expect such ignorance from the local community and people. It has been as if approaching some unbreakable brick wall: there is very little interest about what I do and offer. I suppose one has way better chances if they have classmates, schoolmates, University time friends, childhood friends and obviously relatives in the country they work and live.

Well, I have only my husband.

Here it goes: to our 13 wonderful years together! I want to thank my husband and God for this great time and I certainly believe that the best times are still ahead of us.

P. S. I have to apologize to fellow bloggers for their kind and numerous comments and likes to previous posts, as well, as thank you to all who keep following my art site https://inesepogagallery.com/ I will approve everything and I will return all likes as soon as get a bit better and all my stuff is sorted out. That won’t be today because it is our wedding anniversary. Thanks to everybody!

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Share the joy! Help the miracle happen!

English proverb says: charity never made poorstealing never made rich, and wealth never made wise.

I can only agree with this proverb.

However, we rarely see this implemented in the real life.

The question is: why not?

It’s because thanks to technical advancement, human brain gets used less and less, and we are seeing lots of out-of-focus, forgetful, inattentive and not that sharp brain responses nowadays. Where is humanity going? Towards the artificial intelligence replacing the normal one?

It’s also because poor people donate something to other poor people while extremely rich make their donations to large charities which quite often sponsor their personal businesses.

It’s also because there are so many advantage takers, so many middle men who steal everything from the person who works, creates and does.

It’s because greed dictates to overlook anything not profitable, therefore, it’s ok to poison people with harmful chemical food and drinks as long as they bring in huge profits. Doing so for 50 years has caused epidemics of cancers, obesity, diabetes, heart and vascular diseases and all kinds of gastrointestinal and brain and cognitive function related disorders. I haven’t heard or seen anybody seriously pointing towards the huge internationally operated processed food or drink manufacturers that they sell poison and present harmful chemicals as good and healthy food. Well, there are a few people who write enlightening articles which soon disappear in the sea of distorted reality.

It’s ok to cheat, lie and spread out rumours, hence, that’s a very popular thing. Who cares about truth? In fact, we are noticing, how many cannot accept and take any truth. Not at all. The truth has to be decorated, sweetened and embellished in order it would become digestible for the most part of population. Just try saying something not flattering to somebody. Just try, you won’t be waiting too long for nasty responses. So, where is the respect to other points of view, to other opinions?

Great example is CNN: it’s hard not to notice how hard they try sticking to unproven facts, how many efforts they put in propaganda and popularization of assumptions. The news they call news are not really anything based on facts, but they always go like this: he thinks, we assume, she believes, etc. The views they express and represent are very one-sided and very biased. I personally have lost respect for many of them; maybe the most neutral is Anderson Cooper who doesn’t openly look like he’s going to personally attack everybody who disagrees with his point of view.

I am working extremely hard on implementation of the new perception: perception that does not idolize somebody because of their wealth or status, the perception that facilitates creation, creativity, independent way of thinking and being. Results? Quite poor so far because the toughest thing ever is trying to break some strong, old, dogmatic, widely supported, unfair and misguiding principles that dictate to respect the trends, trending people and trending habits, but have nothing to do with genuine and honest evaluation of human potential and human achievements.

100% commercialized Christmas also falls in the category of misleading naive and believing people who really think that it is true if it says: everybody is buying, eating, preparing, looking for and watching one thing, but not the other one. When I hear “everybody” I want to ask: who is everybody? 1 in every 10 or 100 people? 5 in every 1000 people on whom there are statistics?

Putting it simple: everybody is nobody.

Christmas gifts

Are you overdoing with gifts because otherwise somebody might think something bad about you? Or otherwise kids would respect you less since that girl received talking laptop and the other guy has a robot for Christmas? Or car? Or necklace worth a large house?

The truth is that giving gifts and giving to less fortunate people at Christmas was never supposed to be a competition, however, in the world led by greed, competition is the only way most people would understand.

What happened to the natural warmth of the heart, to cards that kids draw and paint themselves, to decorations all family make and put up on the tree together? What happened to simple, home-baked goods and treats that even kids can help with? What happened to nice, inexpensive gifts which were always supposed to show the good will and love of the gift giver, not their wealth and amount of available dollars? What happened to Christmas that was for everybody: for lonely, for not that well-off, for those who have disabilities, for every child, for every mom and dad, for every parent, for those without a family? Where are the events that invite all of us to come together and share the joy without the need to invest in large gifts and attractions? It’s good at least walking and watching fantastic store window decorations is for free. It’s nice that poor people donate gifts for other poor people because they understand that every single heart is expecting a Christmas miracle to happen. Will this wish come true? I hope it will.

Share the joy! Help the miracle happen!

Christmas gifts

The soothing Sunday thoughts: what does he see?

Look at the old man,

He is so peacefully sitting under the apple tree.

What does he see?

Rivers rushing away like years,

Somebody’s face who he kissed

Under the blossoming apple tree?

What does he see?

Was that a glimpse in eternity?

No more urges, no regrets and discoveries.

It is all gone, but he finally has no need

To rush, to chase, to speed.

What does he see?

Nobody runs away from the death,

Nobody gets away with his sins.

He has now time and he just dreams it away

Under the blossoming apple tree.

What does he see?

It feels like he has the answer,

It feels he has got the entire eternity.

Eternity 1

The Mother’s tree

I have a box of memories. This box holds everything which I could take with me from my past life in Latvia after I moved over to Canada. It is amazing how little space can be filled with memories of 46 years, and that’s all I have from there.

As I’m going through yellowish pictures, some as old as I am now, some even older which makes them 70 or 80 years old, I’m having a look at my mom. She is so diligent, loves moving and doing everything so much that even now at 85 she is still busy in the garden and at the sewing machine. Her eyesight has worsened a lot, but that does not stop her. My dad was like that, too: always busy with something. We had a fantastic place over there in Latvia. It was a semi-detached house; quite honestly, it later caused a lot of problems just because it was not solely ours, and my dad built it practically from scratch, when we moved to this small town Saldus, it had only the outside walls and sort of main structures.

Mother's day

He and my mom worked hard to make it a lovely living space. My mom is a born gardener, somebody who genuinely understands the nature and character of every plant and tree, and I believe I have inherited this knowledge because I have green thumbs, too. We had a huge orchard, 2 greenhouses and many flowers and vegetables, all kinds of them. These, who know what life was like in the late soviet era, can recall how nothing was in the store, so most food which we had on our table came from our own garden. Thankfully, gardening was the greatest thing I could ever learn. I started helping early, we were just small kids: sister and I, but it was an unwritten rule that everybody has to participate in order garden and orchard received the attention they deserved.

My mom in her 30

My mom in her 30

In my memories, there’s always spring and blossoming apple tress in this old place which doesn’t even exist anymore. I suppose, that will be my most favorite time of the year for as long as I live. There were white and sweetly pinkish clouds of blooms all along the garden path as we walk down the hill. The house was at the top of a hill, so when standing there, one was overlooking the most beautiful scene imaginable. Cherries, apple trees, plum trees, pear trees, black, white and red currant and gooseberry bushes were on both sides of the path. I think it’s not a coincidence I love painting garden path images. Whenever I think back, I am seeing my mom under these blossoming apple trees. It is spring, it is warm and sunny and dad works in the small shed he built, as well.

Whenever I think about a mother and her importance in our life, I am seeing a huge apple tree, wide and strong and it carries its fruit through dry, rainy or stormy summers straight into the first frosts of the fall. Branches are so strong and flexible at the same time, but they are in a full beauty in early May. Mother and a blossoming apple tree are synonyms for me.

My mom working at greenhouses

My mom used to work in huge greenhouses, I was quite often with her, I was 4-5 since we didn’t have kindergartens 

I never developed extreme attraction or attachment to things one can buy, but I found an endless opportunity to express myself through things one is able to create. Therefore, creativity became my true existence. That is thanks to my mom who is the most creative person I’ve ever known. She created home decor, pillow cases and curtains, thousands of dresses, skirts, blouses, dresses, coats and jackets. She still loves designing and sewing aprons. She gives them as a gift to people who love cooking or doing work around the house. She could create any outfit one only can dream off. I took over this skill when I was 12; and when I was 13, I was wearing everything made by myself, that included coat, pants, skirts, blouses and tops. It takes my mom nothing to create the most beautiful flower arrangements, and I obviously am good at that, as well. I think my feel of good composition and balance within a space or image takes its origin right there: that is the way my mom would arrange things. Harmony and balance was the main feature of any of her creations. I’ve never eaten more delicious patties or home- made pies. Thanks mom for allowing me to become not a consumer, but so much more a creator of anything beautiful around us! I think it is a precious skill which carries me through life and makes my living so much simpler.

My mom at her sewing machine

Returning to the memory box: I was surprised how few photos I had from all these years. Well, cameras and smart phones were not available as they are now, so having taken a picture was a big deal. I cannot describe the heartache when these pictures didn’t come out as good as planned. It does not really matter whether I have only a few or lots of pictures. My memory has it all: the old house, the orchard and my mom under a blossoming apple tree. That’s all what matters.

My mom in Latvia

A recent picture of mom, just last year, she is 85

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