Masochistic Perceptions, Trials and Truths

These are my cyberfied cerebral synapses ricocheting off reality as I perceive it: thoughts, opinions, passions, rants, art and poetry...

Saturday, July 09, 2011

Climbing close to the summit of Mt. Wilcox, July 5th, 2011

Summer and the Superman

Greetings, readers. Once again, life has kept me away from writing here for some time. Summer holidays have just commenced and, being a teacher, it allows me to free up some space in my day to ramble on about whatever is bouncing around in my random cerebral happenings. For example: promulgating on whether or not I should formulate my position on puppets as it seems that the world is hardening into two camps: those who love them and those who fear/hate them. When the hand leaves the puppet, is that like the soul leaving the body? Is there a soul? Does death give our lives meaning, or, rather, render life meaningless? Get the idea?

Seriously though, Summer is always an interesting time for me. It's my favourite season by far as it allows me to indulge in cycling, mountaineering, kayaking, camping, sitting outside with a good book while enjoying a nice cup of tea, coffee or cold beer. The dark side of Summer for me lies in that I've got a lot of unstructured time and, while poking fun at my overactive mind in the opening paragraph, I do think too much and begin to feel anxious about returning to work at the end of August. I think all teachers go through this to a degree.

This year will be a bit different for me too as, after five years of teaching junior high school Special Needs students, I am moving to a new programme, new school and new age group. I will be working with elementary school children, starting in September, who have just arrived in Canada. Most of these children have been living in refugee camps their entire life. The vast majority hail from Somalia and central Africa, with a couple from the Middle East. The mandate of the programme is to teach English language skills and work on general socialisation skills while helping the students to adjust to being in a classroom. Most of the kids have been through significant trauma and there will be a lot of behavioural issues in relation to this; PTSD, etc. I am very much looking forward to the experience and hope that I am able to serve these children well, putting them on the path to a successful and fulfilling life.

Staying with teaching, I am greatly anticipating my teacher training certification in Hatha Yoga at the end of August. I've outlined my journey toward this goal in previous blog entries, and am very excited that Yoga Magazine ( is running "my story" in their August U.K. edition and September U.S. edition. I think Yoga will be an effective tool to use in my classroom starting in the Fall, and definitely a tool I use to keep myself sane and limber!

As previously stated, Summer is my favourite season for activities. Torrential rains have been falling on Edmonton and northern Alberta since Thursday night, prohibiting any play outside (stressful when one has an antsy nearly 9 year old in the house). I can not complain, however, as I had spent Monday- Thursday of this week playing in the Rockies in the Jasper area. Nothing soothes the soul (if we have one that is ;P) than a few days camping in the mountains. A colleague and another friend and I climbed Mt. Wilcox; a lovely 6 hour trip that saw us pass through beautiful alpine meadows, get sunburns on the snow patches, get the adrenalin pumping through a few calculated risks and then scree surf and body sled the way down. Along the way we saw big horned sheep, mountain goats and elk galore. The following day, my colleague and I went kayaking at Horseshoe Lake, which we supplemented with a bit of rock climbing and cliff diving over the icy glacial water. If that didn't get the heart pumping, then the young black bear we crossed paths with did! Fortunately, he or she was too consumed in eating grass than eating us. I'm looking forward to heading back there at the end of the month with my wife and daughter, but may have to squeeze in a solo trip as well... or two.

So that is where I'm at. Life is good and I am up for adventure. Quoting my mantra from Helen Keller (part of which is on my tattoo):

Here's to a summer of pushing limits, challenging one's self and doing things that make us feel complete and happy. Here's to the new challenges that will arrive in September. Life is all about living, folks. Dig out your copies of Nietzche's "Thus Spoke Zarathustra" and remember always:

I teach you the Superman. Man is something that should be overcome.



  • At 7:53 a.m. , Anonymous Anonymous said...

    Ummmnmmm.....please eject from my computer Sir.....NOW


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