Tuesday
June 3, 2003

Home, Sweet Home

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Here are a few of my favorite online haunts:

REALTOR.ca
[This is the site I visit to fantasize about living in Toronto again, which is almost every single day during the winter]

Jonathan Cainer's Zodiac Forecasts
[This is where I visit in the morning, when I need a positive spin on things past, present and future.]

Living Local
[This is where I go to see what Canadians are up to, sometimes I even buy things from the businesses listed there.]

Environment Canada Weather
[This is the site I visit every morning, and before every road trip during the winter]

The experiences of the past little while are thankfully over. An internal debate has been raging, should I record this experience, or should I remain silent in hopes that it will not happen again, to anyone. It will not happen to me again, as I will take drastic measures to prevent it, once was enough.

Place: Ontario, Canada
Time: Spring 2003

Cement walls, painted white, surround the bed on two sides. One window, high up and to the left of the bed, shows daylight behind wire mesh. A curtain is pulled around the remaining two sides of the bed. On the bed is a lone occupant. No visitors have been allowed. No one has entered the space since the wheeled chair was hurriedly left there hours before.

The wheeled chair sits beside the bed, near the head of the occupant; from it emanates a foul stench.

The occupant holds an empty plastic bag, a grocery bag she has brought from home and kept with her, into which she wretches violently from time to time. The bag is empty. The muscles in her neck and abdomen feel tortured.

Occasionally the occupant stirs and begins to moan and cry softly, “Oh dear, oh dear!”. She struggles out of the bed, onto the cold floor, and into the chair, adding to the scented pain and misery of the small enclosed space. She then crawls back into the bed, clutching her plastic bag.

She feels cold. She is exhausted.

At one point, hours ago, she cried for help, for a blanket. No one came, perhaps no one heard. The people working in this “room” are few. When they are in the room they are moving constantly, and soon gone.

That was me. Attila was in the nearby crowded waiting-room, waiting patiently and respectfully for news of my well-being. That news was finally available well after dark, when the light had long faded from the high, wire meshed window in that ghastly cubicle where I lay, when at last a doctor examined me.

I was immediately removed to a bed in another area of the hospital, where I received fluids and medication intravenously, and had access to help if I needed it. Over the next day I received excellent care and a good assessment of my health problem, from busy and competent people. I have returned home, feeling a bit battered, but definitely on the mend.

The lines that ran through my head, during those long hours that I lay exhausted with fear, pain, and misery, were from a screenplay of Dickens’ "A Christmas Carol”:
“ ears to hear with, eyes to see with”.

It seems these words have been lost in the sea of political and economic rhetoric. There may be no individual to blame for incidents such as the one I experienced. Our social priorities are seriously out of order.

I feel as a people we can do better than this.

Right now, all I can say is, “Home, sweet home.”



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Page by Page: A Woman's Journal
Photography
Poetry
by Maggie Turner

Canadian Maggie Turner writes and publishes poetry, photography, and a personal journal online. Her work reflects the current way of life in Canada, embracing Canada's past, present, and future in a unique portrayal of everyday life. Maggie's voice is one of the many that actively depict the rich diversity of Canadian culture.

Photography: "a term which comes from the Greek words photos (light) and graphos (drawing). A photograph is made with a camera by exposing film to light in order to create a negative. The negative is then used in the darkroom to print a photograph (positive) onto light-sensitive paper.
Source: University of Arizona Glossary

Poetry: "a form of speech or writing that harmonizes the music of its language with its subject. To read a great poem is to bring out the perfect marriage of its sound and thought in a silent or voiced performance. At least from the time of Aristotle's Poetics, drama was conceived of as a species of poetry."
Source: Creative Studios

Journal: " "Though a journal may be many things - a treasury, a storehouse, a jewelry box, a laboratory, a drafting board, a collector's cabinet, a snapshot album, a history, a travelogue..., a letter to oneself - it has some definable characteristics. It is a record, an entry-book, kept regularly, though not necessarily daily.... Some (entries) will be nearly illegible, written in the dark in the middle of the night.... Not only is it a record for oneself, but of oneself. Every memorable journal, any successful journal, is honest. Nothing sham, phony, false...." (Dorothy Lambert from Ken Macrorie's book, Writing to be Read )
A journal is a way to keep track of your thoughts about what you read... as well as what you did on any given day."
Source: Journal Writing

A Blog is an online journal created by server side software, often hosted by a commercial interest.

"The term "weblog" was coined by Jorn Barger[4] on 17 December 1997. The short form, "blog," was coined by Peter Merholz, who jokingly broke the word weblog into the phrase we blog in the sidebar of his blog Peterme.com in April or May 1999.[5][6][7] Shortly thereafter, Evan Williams at Pyra Labs used "blog" as both a noun and verb ("to blog," meaning "to edit one's weblog or to post to one's weblog") and devised the term "blogger" in connection with Pyra Labs' Blogger product, leading to the popularization of the terms."
Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_blogging


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