Pandemic puppies and bicycle booms

Photo by Jayden Burdick on

In the face of adversity, we have a choice. We can be bitter, or we can be better. Those words are my North Star

Caryn Sullivan

As the world races to fend off the third wave of the pandemic, it is easy to become overwhelmed by negative news cycles and what seems to be never ending worry and fear. There are some aspects to our current experience that seem to have been positive.

As people in our neighbourhood moved from offices to working from home, it was both fascinating and worrisome to note the number of puppies on our walking paths and park areas. Worrisome in the sense that potentially many animals could end up surrendered to our local humane society when purchased without careful thought and consideration.

Over a year later, these dogs have grown and matured and seem to have become members of families and are now recognizable to me while I am out walking as well. And they all seem well trained and behaved, another side effect of spending all of our time at home instead of somewhere far away while household pets waited anxiously for their owners to return.

Along with new creatures in our community, there is also a noticeable swell in bicycles being ridden by people of all ages. Cars parked along our streets for months without being moved have been likely violating some city bylaw. But it’s wonderful to see people use bicycles or walk to where they need to go and not to rely so much on fossil fuelled sources of transportation. Daily noise of airplane traffic seems to have diminished and one wonders what our future world will bring. A return to old behaviours that have been accelerating climate change or a more mindful path forward?

Gardening, camping, spending more time in the outdoor world. There have been good adaptations along with those that are more challenging. We have learned to continue to connect with family and friends in spite of not being able to see them face to face. Some of us are reading, making things, creating art in any form, and cooking at home, more now than ever before.

While we are likely all hopeful for an end in sight, it is reassuring to know that it has not all been negative and that we have the ability to make changes. Big ones that potentially could chart new directions in our world. We do have the opportunity to become better than we were before.

Stay healthy and safe!

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