Tuesday 20 November 2018


Occasionally the day you write a regular blog post happens to fall on someone’s birthday, in this case, mine. So, it can be a day of reflection about how you got here and what is the meaning of life.

None of us may be able to fully explain the second statement adequately, but I do know how I got here.

In 1945, my father was a member of the Royal Canadian Air Force. From 1943 to 1946 he was posted to a number of air bases in Canada. But, between 21 January 1945 and 10 April 1945, he was in Calgary, having come home from Mount Hope, Ontario. In April he was sent to Portage La Prairie, Manitoba. While he was home, there is no doubt that he and my mother enjoyed each other’s company, in every sense. I am evidence of some of the fun they had together.

Dad was not home for my birth; in fact, he did not get here until over three months later, which is close to when the photo with him below was taken. The one of me with Mom (aged about two)  is one of very favourite pictures.

The meaning of life seems unclear to many, although I don’t think it’s complex. Simply put, two people in love want to raise a family together. I am convinced that is meaning enough.

The same explanation was true for my parents. They were here because their parents fell in love, got married and wanted children. And so on, and so on…

We can speculate all we want about the existential question, but it really just comes down to families. The timing of children may be accidental in most cases, but their existence has meaning primarily for the parents.

Genealogical research is just trying to put the pieces together about all the loving couples in past generations.

I can confirm that the days lately keep piling up more quickly it seems. At this advanced age (our children would call it that) I am just as busy as I have ever been, although I no longer have to do yard work. Climbing a ladder to get a box down from a high shelf is the most exertion I might experience most days. The alternative to growing older, however, is less than desirable.

We do tend to watch movies and TV programs that feature older people – well, at least people our age – as they reflect the experiences and pains we can associate with. More emails containing jokes about aging seem to be arriving these days, too.

Anyway, it’s good to have birthdays. And especially good to be able to celebrate the birthdays of children and grandchildren.

It gives meaning to life!

Thanks Mom and Dad.