THE No. 19
BEACON Shedding light on the communities from Lions Bay to West Bay
Where poppies blow
Photo: Christine Hooge
Lola and Farrah in France in May 2016, free to run, to play, to hope, to dream and too young to wonder about this scene in 1917 or 1944. Lest we forget.
Home & Living
New Vessel Launch
Universal Childrenâ€™s Day
In This Issue 2
Universal Children’s Day: a day to listen Opinion
Chris Stringer Publisher
Lindy Pfeil Editor
Penny Mitchell Advertising
Melissa Baker Creative Director
melissabaker @westvanbeacon.ca Please note that all contributing writers for The Beacon retain full rights and that the full or partial reproduction of feature articles is unauthorized without the consent of the author.
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ulian* was a very special five-year-old. The gifts he brought with him to dance class were matched only by the challenges. He taught me that it’s never a good idea to have striped hula hoops that also make a noise when they move: sensory overload in motion, and a meltdown-in-waiting. I also learned from him that labels are just that: labels. Together we ripped off his labels one at a time, and I will never forget the day he marched around the studio, shaking his tambourine, stomping his feet to Tchaikovsky’s rhythms. When the music ended he looked me in the eye and smiled. My heart cracked a little. If you have a child like Julian in your life, you will understand the enormity of those seemingly ordinary words…he looked me in the eye. Julian was my listening teacher. He didn’t move to the beat that everyone else heard. He danced to the in-between beats. I’m not even sure what they’re called. Half-beats? He showed me that it’s the hidden notes in a melody that are the most interesting, but that you have to listen with all your body and soul to find them. Your ears are useful, but it’s your heart and your curiosity that allow you to hear a different dimension. He also taught me that if you should accidentally put your foot in someone else’s imaginary soup, the only solution is a heartfelt apology…and a magic spell…but I’ll keep that story for another time. As many of you know, my ‘day job’ for the past four years has been sitting in circle with students across the North Shore as they share their stories. Some of them are your children, and you should know how kind, and funny, and perceptive and wise they are. I have been
changed by their words. Forever. And Julian’s listening lessons have been invaluable. This time, last year, I was at an elementary school when the principal made an announcement about Remembrance Day. I spontaneously changed the agenda (I probably do this far too often), and the opening circle became a remembering of people who had been important to us, but who, for whatever reason, were now gone from our everyday lives - people who had moved, or died, or simply no longer spent time with us. As the talking piece was passed around, and stories of loss were shared, the silence hung heavy. We talked about death, divorce, moving, conflict, immigration. The way the talking piece works, is that only the person with the talking piece speaks. The rest of us listen - without judgement, or assumptions, or the need to respond. It is much harder than you might think. On this particular day of remembering, there was no need for words of comfort, or reassurance, or promises that things would get better. Sharing the stories of those we missed was enough. Loss is something we
all understand. It connects us. Deeply. We talked about why we missed these people. And the word that kept coming up was love. Now, if you really knew me, you would know that the L word confuses the living daylights out of me. So of course I was thrilled that the children had brought it up. Finally, an opportunity to try to figure out something about it! We tossed around some ideas of what love means: what it looks like, how it feels, and how you know it’s love. One thing kept popping up, over and over: the people we felt most loved by, were those who really listened to us. David Augsburger says, “Being heard is so close to being loved that for the average person, they are almost indistinguishable.” It seems the children agree. November 20 is Universal Children’s Day. It’s a Sunday. A perfect day to slow down, and listen to the children in your life. And when the silence comes, wait. Take three deep breaths, and feel what happens next. You will not be disappointed. * not his real name
“Loss is something we all understand. It connects us. Deeply.”
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How about a performance stage for Horseshoe Bay? by
e were waiting in the pouring rain at Horseshoe Bay for three poor souls to set up a portable stage. You know the kind: sections of stage pieced together with a white tent above, the kind you see at the library book sale. It was the Anniversary Celebration for Troll’s, Sewell’s, Lalli Loves It et al., and we were waiting for Karen Fowlie and Christie McPhee to perform. I wondered out loud why there isn’t a permanent stage, and there was sudden excitement from the people around me at the thought of what such a structure might attract, from weekly concerts in the summer, to shelter for picnic tables in the winter. The conversation continued, and just weeks later a volunteer board was assembled to investigate the notion of a small permanent performance stage in Horseshoe Bay Park in time for Canada’s 150th birth-
day. There has been virtually unanimous support, and the timing seems perfect given the grants available for the sesquicentennial celebrations. A non-profit society has been
formed to pursue the idea of a performance stage and to cultivate local arts, and we are scheduled to meet with key players from West Vancouver Municipality. Community
support is always needed, and comments are welcome at the Fowlie and Friends facebook page: www.facebook.com/fowlieandfriends.
Karen and Christie perform under the tent.Photo: Courtesy of Suzanne Rushton
Trick-or-treating then and now by
nd the autumn weather turns the leaves to flame and we haven’t got time for a waiting game,” sings the inimitable Mr. Sinatra. But we do have time for quiet walks on the beach in the sunny afternoons that often grace September and October; for harvesting the last of the garden produce, cleaning up the garden, planting bulbs that will flower next spring, and finding ways to prevent the squirrels from digging them all up and storing them elsewhere. And then there’s Hallowe’en. I remem-
ber little pirates with their mothers’ scarves wound around their heads, wearing eye patches and carrying homemade wooden swords, and clowns in colourful costumes. The two neighborhood girls who came as dice, wearing spotted cardboard boxes. The Martian with a green face and two purple wands from a Christmas corsage as antennae. My own two daughters as little Dutch girls, with braids of yellow wool, paper Dutch caps and the wooden clogs we actually bought in Holland when we spent five months in Europe, camping with all four children, way back in 1965, but that’s another story. There was the neighbor who always had a tub of water with floating apples -
Tom DODD for council Nov. 19 www.tomdodd.ca “West Vancouver is changing - the key is to manage that change to maintain the quality of life we value here”
children had to bob for apples to get their treat; homemade Hallowe’en treats of rice crispy squares and gingerbread cookies. And one year, toothbrushes from the dentist who lived on the Drive. And it wouldn’t have been Hallowe’en without the UNICEF penny boxes. It seems a far cry from Hallowe’en nowadays, with children dressed to the nines in store-bought costumes, but the delight is still there. We still carve pumpkins and dress up. One year I wore a leather jacket and a huge witch hat and most of the little trick-or-treaters knew instantly what I was – a biker witch! All that was missing was my Harley! Old memories, new experiences, always special.
The Frost girls in costume.Photo: Ann Frost
MY 3 TOP GOALS ON COUNCIL: • Tangible steps to improve our traffic problems • Ensure the revised OCP supports a younger demographic to keep our community vibrant • Retain Howe Sound as a regional recreational asset EXPERIENCE I WILL BRING TO COUNCIL: • Management, budgeting, governance, public service I am hands-on, with a strategic view.
Why is it so easy to believe things that are not true? Psyched Out Ian Macpherson
can’t understand how all those people could believe all those lies!” exclaimed Claire. She was, of course, mirroring the thoughts of many regarding some U.S. presidential candidate’s utterings of the past several months. One might truly wonder, since fact-checking is relatively easy. But the human thinking brain is a relatively recent evolutionary development and it is full of glitches. Critical thinking is a learned discipline that few of us are blessed with. We are set up to acquire biases depending on the accident of our birth into a particular family, tribe, community and nation. In turn, these social influences have the most potent impact on our values. This is because our allegiances come from fundamental attachment needs. Manipulating this most basic of human emotional needs is at the core of effective “brain-washing,” interrogation and politics. If you want a wee taste of the disconcerting strength of
this force, try cheering for your team while sitting in the bleachers among the opposing team’s supporters! When the people we identify with espouse certain ideas, we have a natural tendency to trust them without question. We believe first, then rationalize our position afterwards. We automatically look for evidence, real or hearsay, that confirms our pre-conceived beliefs. It is natural for us to selectively attend to what is emotionally important and disregard that which is contradictory. All of this is especially true when, as a group, we face a threat. Our focus narrows and we respond to any message that addresses our insecurity in the simplest way. We have no patience for complex explanations and solutions. Trying to reason with such a “true believer” is like telling a starving person that they should not be hungry. Desperation makes our thinking more concrete, simplistic and even scapegoating. The foot soldiers behind the revolutionary leader need not understand; they just need to have faith. Even in everyday situations when we hear or read something by someone we presume to be an authority, our default position is to trust and not to doubt. And lest you think that it is only the “other guy”
who is subject to these built-in biases that can distort the truth, we really are all cut from the same cloth. Believe me.
Ian Macpherson is a psychologist who lives and practises in West Vancouver. More at www.westvancouvertherapist.com
Meet the flower lady Carol, the flower lady
Dundarave Pier who inspired me with tales of his weekly visits to the Downtown Eastside, adding, “If you come down with me, hris, the Beacon’s publisher, joined your life will change.” me one Saturday, to see what I get I became his sidekick in Oppenheimer so excited about on my jaunts to the Park for the next few months, giving away Downtown Eastside. He squeezed into my whatever warm clothing I could scrounge hatchback between flowers on his lap, and from anywhere. Then my partner became plants at his feet too ill to continue, (donated by IGA, but I was hooked chosen by Arlene and found a new connection, across and Mee Ja). The usual treasures the road from the from my weekly park, at a place called pick-ups included The Door is Open books and maga(DIO). I walked in, zines (from the and over the years have brought mulibrary, organized sic, flowers, art, and by Shirley), and baked goods baked goods. Books (from Kate at the and magazines from Bakehouse), plus West Vancouver Meindividual donamorial Library are on the back shelves tions of clothing. This time there for the many readers there. It is a place were also large boxes of shoes where a bit of com(returns saved up fort can be found by Ged, from Saaway from the elelomon) on board. ments. In his quizMost importantzical way, Chris ly, intangibles are Photo: Glenn Owen asked how my Carol with her commissioned painting by Paul Ygartua. given there; Francis interest began. and Ken (the DIO Initially, my daughter Kathryn influenced staff) and I give smiles, hugs, and kindness me with her commitment to preparing to everyone. My greatest compliment came weekly meals at the Union Gospel Mission when a resident of the Downtown Eastside in a program offered through the Youth said to me, “I knew you were here. I saw a Centre. Then, three years ago I met a man on flower on the street.” by
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Who decides what knowledge takes priority? by
Craig Davis Mulgrave Senior School Principal
hat is the basis of all knowledge? This is the question Mulgrave’s Grade 11-12 students have been answering as part of their Theory of Knowledge (ToK) course and one, we think, that has a place outside the classroom. Your language, surroundings, and education impact what and how you know. This is a somewhat obvious statement but one that, by its very nature, should invite deeper reflection about concepts of truth, reality, and discrimination. In an effort to take this conversation to our dinner tables, car rides, and gatherings with friends, this September Mulgrave issued an open invitation to the North Shore community to be part of a presentation focussed on how our particular context and ‘reality’ influences how we gather and process knowledge. Led by National Geographic Explorer-in-Residence, author, and UBC’s Professor of Anthropology Wade Davis, North Shore community members came together to learn how indigenous
peoples’ extremely diverse approaches to knowledge can expand our conceptions of knowledge and ‘reality’. Mr. Davis made a strong case for how the conservation of indigenous cultures should be an essential concern for all of us. If we frame the incredibly rich and complex web of beliefs, languages, and cultural networks as an essential ‘ethnosphere’ that feeds our collective humanity, then the loss of any one of these traditions is damaging for us all. He also argued that an open-minded view of truth and knowledge helps us avoid biases that lead to misguided attempts at uniformity. We teach children that beauty lies in our unique differences and support this statement by highlighting how reductive and impoverished our conception of the world would be if we all thought the same - yet time and again, we judge others’ value systems and truth from a western assumption that our particular scientific and technological trajectory is the pinnacle of human experience. As Matthieu Ricard, the French molecular biologist turned Tibetan monk states, you could switch perspectives and frame the entire Western project as “a major response to mi-
Photo: Wade Davis from his forthcoming book Wade Davis: Photographs. Among the Huli of the Tari Valley becoming a man is to join a fraternity of tribal brothers, all warriors believed to be descendants of a single male ancestor.The yellow and red face paints are derived from clay and ochre, both believed by the Huli to be sacred.
nor needs...the primary goal being to live to a hundred with a perfect set of teeth” whilst other cultures have instead focussed on cultivating moral wisdom and compassion. Subsequently, Mulgrave G11-12s par-
ticipated in a private lecture by Wade Davis about the threat of ‘cultural chauvinism’ to the existence of entire cultures. To learn more visit mulgrave.com/tok.
French Immersion applications higher than ever by
rench Immersion enrolment is at an all-time high in West Vancouver, with more than 1,000 students enrolled from K-12. Due to strong demand for this program of choice, West Vancouver Schools conducts two separate lotteries in
early December to determine who will be offered a place in Early French Immersion kindergarten at each school. Applicants will be entered into both lotteries if both schools are selected as priority choices. To complete the application process, applicants should submit original citizenship and residential documentation in person to the office of your first choice school, either École Cedardale or École
Pauline Johnson. All documentation MUST be received by the first choice school before 3pm on November 30, 2016 or the application will not be included in the lottery process. Early French Immersion generally begins in kindergarten, though there are at times a few spots open in Grade 1. École Pauline-Johnson and École Cedardale both offer the single track immersion option for
parents considering this program for their child. Late French Immersion, which begins in Grade 6, is also offered to families with students currently enrolled in Grade 5 at one of our schools that want to transfer into the program in September 2017. If you have questions about the admissions process, please send an email to: email@example.com and we will be happy to assist you.
RCM SAR launch their new rescue vessel by
CM SAR Station 1 unveiled their new rescue vessel on September 18 in Horseshoe Bay. With a crowd of more than 300 in attendance, mayor Michael Smith, MLA Jordan Sturdy and key station sponsors Fred McDonald of Thunder Bird Marina, Harvey Flemming of Aquatica Submarines, Jaiven Khatri of Milestones West Vancouver, and West Vancouver Rotary, cut the ribbon to welcome the new vessel. Boudewijn Neijens, Station 1 Coxswain explains: The RCM SAR 1B (yet to be officially named) is the second vessel type specifically designed for the needs of RCM SAR. It’s a 31-foot Rigid Hull Inflatable Boat (RHIB) with twin 250hp outboards and a maximum speed of 43 knots. Rescue vessels are often operated in extreme conditions, so this new RHIB was designed with safety, endurance and comfort in mind. The hull is built by Titan in Sidney, is extremely strong and capable of resisting the worst weather, repeated beachings and the odd encounter with a log. But the most remarkable feature is the new Integrated Control Environment (ICE) console developed by Shockwave, also in Sidney. Shockwave drew on its previous NASCAR chassis building expertise to build a suspension platform that protects all five crew members from the worst impacts of heavy seas at high speeds. The vessel is equipped with the latest generation marine electronics allowing for operation in dense fog and at night, and carries all the usual rescue equipment. It can be deployed within minutes and can be operated with a crew of two if need be, although a typical mission would include four crew. Special thanks goes to the West Vancouver Community Foundation, the Vancouver Aquarium, Blue Water Harmony, and Ginger and Snap.
Ribbon-cutting ceremony in front of the new rescue vessel.
Affordable housing - a hot topic MLA Update Jordan Sturdy
he definition of affordability is elusive, despite being commonly referred to when talking about housing in West Vancouver. Clearly, affordability is relative and subjective. Perhaps what is more useful is a discussion of policy objectives that a community may want to achieve. Along the Sea to Sky Corridor in Whistler, it was recognized almost 20 years ago that if consideration was not given to housing options for employees they would be priced out of the market, as has happened
in places like Aspen, and only a very limited demographic would reside in the community. Everyone else would be forced to commute increasingly long distances, traffic flow would deteriorate, emissions would increase and quality of life would suffer. Teachers, health care workers, and firefighters, not to mention Safeway employees and the local barista would, in reality, make their homes in other communities. So a new policy objective was born. Whistler hoped to achieve the retention of 75% of its employees within the municipality. Over the following decades, through density bonusing and amenity contributions, working with the development community and Provincial and Federal governments, many different models of employee restricted rental and fee simple ownership structures were
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implemented. Some succeeded and others failed but while trial-and-error has been a difficult master, always keeping an eye on the objective has ultimately driven success. Whistler has surpassed their objective and 80% of the people employed in Whistler, live in Whistler. And Whistler is better for it. The community has a healthy mixed demographic, residents have shorter commutes as well as free time to contribute and put a real stake in the success of the community. As the Provincial Government has committed $500 million dollars to “affordable” housing across the province and developers are clamouring for opportunity in West Vancouver, the time is right to better define what we are trying to achieve. Jordan.sturdy.mla@ leg.bc.ca or 604.922.1153
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mountains to sea
The future of Howe Sound Elspeth Bradbury
ur boat was completely surrounded by white-sided dolphins.” For Ruth Simons, this experience in 2010, this dramatic upwelling of life in the waters of Howe Sound, was a revelation. Here was proof of nature’s ability to recover from decades of abuse. In the six years since then, she has watched with delight, from her home in Lions Bay, as orcas and grey whales have returned to the area, drawn by recovering populations of anchovies, herring and salmon. Ruth grew up in West Vancouver at a time when the Sound, always so beautiful when viewed from above, was in reality a poisonous soup of heavy metals and acid rock drainage resulting from 70 years of unregulated mining at Britannia, along with estuary contamination from logging and outflow from two pulp mills as well as a chemical plant. Creek waters were undrinkable, shellfish were toxic and salmon returns were minimal. In the last decades of the twentieth century, governments gradually began to legislate better environmental controls for industry, but only after massive remediation efforts started at the Britannia mine site in 2006 did residents like Ruth begin to see evidence of improvement. Healthy returns of herring, aided by Squamish Streamkeepers, who were wrap-
ping creosoted pilings previously deadly to herring eggs, had helped to revitalize the entire food web. “It’s almost miraculous. And how positive that the 3,000 youngsters who attend the kids’ camps on the Sound each year can connect again with a functioning marine ecosystem!” After Ruth retired from business, she served as a councillor in Lions Bay. This experience gave her useful insight into the workings of local governments and into the complications of effective planning across jurisdictions. In 2013, she joined the Future of Howe Sound S o c i e t y and is now their Executive Director. Ironically, the spectacular recovery of the Sound from the effects of industry has been paralleled by a swarm of new industrial proposals. Residents concerned about these and the lack of a comprehensive plan had formed the Society three years earlier. Their concerns were by no means new or isolated. In 2000, for instance, The Howe Sound Community Forum had brought together representatives of Local Government, Regional Districts and First Nations. The group had lapsed for several years but, largely thanks to Ruth’s efforts as volunteer coordinator, is once again meeting regularly. The Squamish Nation, having worked on their Xay Temixw (Sacred Place) Land Use Plan is now turning its attention to the sea. The collaboration and collective wisdom of groups such as the Forum is much needed because the list of development proposals for the area seems over-
“Creek waters were undrinkable, shellfish were toxic and salmon returns were minimal.”
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Ruth Simons enjoys a breezy ferry crossing on Howe Sound. Photo provided
whelming: LNG terminal for the old Woodfibre mill site; massive gravel extraction operation at McNab Creek; logging on Gambier Island; waste disposal incinerator for Metro Vancouver at Port Melon; fixed link to the Sunshine Coast; and not least, 11,000 residential units along the Sea to Sky corridor. Ruth felt that although a few planning pieces were coming together, an overarching plan for the area was still missing. The Society along with BC Spaces for Nature wondered if the Sound’s designation as a UNESCO Biosphere Region could serve this purpose. Biospheres do not impose
laws or controls but promote solutions to find a balance between the natural environment and human activities. There are eighteen of them in Canada, two in BC on Vancouver Island. Is Howe Sound a good fit, and would such a designation be helpful? Ruth certainly believes so, and if anyone can steer this initiative through the arduous process of application, it will be this dynamic woman and the growing number of residents who believe it is time for Howe Sound to be recognized internationally.
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We got s this and get it off an d La dies for a while along O.K. reached t said Oh for home before then left the boats quite sailing. here shucks I'll just act natural and . and went to bed jus I think my quickest th t as all the clear en ad I go dr ca ess wr n't on fo g r be th cause I don't know e time being is – sig nal went. It certai what is right. Anything from now nly is strange craw - I was chatting on for a while at le away with Lady Ha ing around in the l P/O J.M. Grant, Ca wi ll as t be rt dark after having an ley when n J. 3595 anti-climax. Nevert been suddenly she stopped talking and used to so many li heless we went R.C.a.F. c/o bowed, every into London yesterday gh R.A.F. Records Offi an d thing is strange ov ts at home. Every- one bowed but us. I turned around we ce nt on a walk- Dept and there ing tour. We saw 10 Down er here though. Th . S7 B2 Adastral Of in was our initiation at stood the King, Queen and Princess g St fi ., ce Pa ll St ma . ll. James ri to London. Some fun eh! hind me. I nearly fell over. All I co ght be- arch, Bi Park and the Admiralty Bld. and Kingsway, London-England uld think g Ben, Tower of Lo The next day we of was what would nd som on, Westminster If I find ou got a chance to go back down and see Lo r any better way I'l place. Flt. Lt Gran e people give to be in my Abbey, the Thames river and l wire Harndon in the daylig some of the fa- riet. She can pa ht. Lord Harley call t was presented and then mous bridges and in the di We drove down town ss any news I get ti sta ed me over and prese on the top of a doub nc me to send e Bu wi ck th in Pa a gh wi la am re ce . – saves expenses. Gi We haven't been up le to the Queen. I ga decker. We had an nted me ve to hours ride down to ve a ™sweet∫ little my it ye love to al t l bu of t do will the family and Un that later. Ox- shook her hand ford Circus and Pi cle Jack and Aunt then the King. They bow and caddily Circus, ne Ma be l. Wr it e of sto ar the main part of ten. We are all fine od and Then on chatted with me fo London. Again we and reare of the ministe ing to go. had feel about a hu r a minute or two, I could about our eyes and mouths some rich lady Fran rs here told us ndred pairs of ey open. I was amazed es boring giving ces Ryder, who was A/G at into my back and the small amount of up everything was as damage you could see still as dians. We her home to make a place for Cana. a mouse. MURRAY called ther has tea here around e and had tea. Everyone four-thirty or five then
Lest we forget
Pilot Officer Murray Grant, Royal Canadian Air Force
n 1941 newly-married Murray Grant from Woodstock, Ontario, had been sent with the RCAF to join the war effort in England where he served as a rear gunner on a Lancaster bomber. He was stationed near Windsor Castle, one of the residences of the Royal family and, from time to time, King George would randomly invite members of the armed forces to his home to thank them for their services. In
March 1941, Murray was among the lucky ones to be invited. These are excerpts from his letter to his family in Canada about the visit and his experiences in England: Tragically, just four months later, on July 24, 1941, Murray’s plane was shot down in the sea off Brest, France. He did not survive. Our thanks to Caulfeild resident, Rosemary Verrall, who is Murray Grant’s niece, for providing this memento from the family scrapbook. Rosemary sent a copy of Murray’s letter to her majesty, Queen Elizabeth, on Remembrance Day two years ago and received an appreciative response from the Queen’s lady-in-waiting.
Photo: Courtesy of Rosemary Verrall Murray and Harriet Grant’s wedding photo in 1941, shortly before Murray was assigned to the war effort in England.
Photo: Public Domain A formal photo of the royal family circa 1941, around the time that Murray visited with them.
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Back to school with turtles, fireflies and sloths by
’m writing this from the University of Peace, located about forty-five minutes outside of San Jose, Costa Rica, in a tiny little town on top of mountains in the jungle. The school is mandated by the United Nations and offers a variety of master’s degrees and PhDs in disciplines centered around the study of peace and how our world can strive to achieve it. It came to be in 1980 as a Treaty Organization established by the United General Assembly under its very own Charter. My master’s will be in Gender and Peace Building. I have approximately 150 classmates from 39 different countries across the world. The campus is littered with hammocks, outside spaces for learning and massive windows to take in the surrounding valley. It is also conveniently located next to “el Parque de la Paz” or the Peace Park, where, I’ve been told, you can spot sloths. I was tipped off by a classmate about turtle season, which is now. She had completed an internship with a place called Refugio Romelia which runs a sea-turtle protection program to ensure more tortuguitas have a chance at life. We arrived by
trekking along the beach from Montezuma, a little town on the Nicoya Peninsula, for about 2.5kms. The stretch of beach we walked through was very sobering in terms of the amount of ocean debris littered throughout. It was a strong reminder of how the ocean connects us all, how our global efforts to use less plastic are lacking and hurt our oceans deeply. Looking very turtly with our backpacks, we turned left from the beach and walked about 50m into the jungle to be introduced to a wonderful crew who got us settled prior to our volunteering endeavours. From the spacious kitchen and common area you can routinely see monkeys, iguanas and gorgeous birds. The friend I was with had the first shift patrolling the beach and witnessed a momma turtle give birth to more than 100 ping pong ball size eggs. The Romelia crew put the eggs in a bag and brought them to the hatchery which was where I saw them later that night. They were then buried in a square within the grid pattern in the sand to be kept track of and protected until the turtles hatched and dug their way out of their nests. That night, more than 100 turtles did just that and were placed in a bucket to be brought to the ocean. We were in charge of placing the little turtles on the sand and allowing them
to walk about 10m to the water. It is important for them to do this as it allows them to get their bearings before swimming away. We then proceeded to patrol the beach in search of more momma turtles under the most incredible starry skies. On our return to the kitchen, a little light blinked at me. I squeezed my eyes shut and opened them again to be sure of what I had seen. The light blinked a few more times and by then I knew I had encountered my first firefly, which National Geographic had told me were at risk of extinction!
I would highly recommend the experience for anyone who has an interest in travelling in Costa Rica during the fall months. It is very reasonable to stay there at a rate of USD$15/day (including three meals and a bed in a beachfront location). It is best to stay at least 5 days to really learn the ropes. Visit their website for more information: http://refugioromelia.com/ and to learn more about the University, go to www.upeace.org or visit my little blog: laurisse.blogspot.com.
Photo: Courtesy of Omar Ibrahim Turtle baby making its way to the sea.
M U L G R AV E OPEN HOUSES
November 23rd 6:30 - 8:30pm
November 25th 9:30am - 12:00pm
THIS IS NOT A BOX.
Photo: Courtesy of Julian Tijerin Laurisse and iguana in Costa Rica.
Mulgrave is a co-ed Pre-K to G12 IB World School that encourages students to become everything they can and desire to be. The world is waiting for their ideas, their perspective and their contributions. Unpack your imagination here.
West Vancouver, BC
By-Election opens doors by
ometimes, a door opens and it leads towards a situation that perfectly fits your experience and your personal goals – you just have to walk through it.” So says Tom Dodd about his decision to run for West Vancouver council in the November 19 by-election. “Now that I have the time, I have been looking for a way to give back to our community and help shape it for the future. This is a particularly good time to get involved, as the OCP (Official Community Plan) is currently being updated,” he says. Tom sees the major challenges facing West Van as balancing our aging demographic by attracting younger families, while working on solutions to our growing traffic problems. For the past two years, Tom has been an indispensible member of the team that produced the highly successful PumpkinFest fall fair and fundraiser for the West Vancouver Community Centres Society. Last year, as co-chair, he
implemented documentation and control systems to help guide future committees. Tom has been a director of both public and private companies, as well as a council member and financial officer for strata councils in BC. His unique mix of experience includes helping to build and run technology companies. And when it comes to the nuts and bolts of the planning and building bylaw process, Tom has firsthand experience, from the “other side” of the counter. While phasing out of corporate life, he renovated the home he currently shares with his wife, Sue Daniel, in Dundarave. “For the reno, Sue and I chose to keep the footprint of our modest 75-year-old bungalow and update it to current standards, rather than tear it down and build new. That way we could keep the mature landscaping and protect the view lines for our neighbours. I think we need civic regulations that will encourage that kind of activity.” Election day is November 19, with advance voting at the Municipal Hall from 8 am to 8 pm on November 5, 8, 9 and 14.
Tom and his wife, Sue.
Henry (Harry) Greenwood Commendation by
Monica Sanderson Veterans Affairs Canada
r. Harry Greenwood is a Veteran of the Second World War. Mr. Greenwood became a member of The Royal Canadian Legion in 1992, after retiring to British Columbia from Ontario. With the Royal Canadian Legion, Branch #60, he has served in many executive positions, including first vice president and chairman and, for the past six years, as service officer. His duties within these positions have included assisting Veterans and
their families with pension and benefit applications and other needs. Mr. Greenwood routinely goes above and beyond these duties, graciously and tirelessly spending his time on hospital visitations and the need for homecare. He also helps arrange transportation for Veterans to get to and from clinics and medical appointments and, if needed, drives Veterans himself. Within the bounds of the Poppy Fund, Mr. Greenwood organizes Veterans’ gatherings for lunches, teas and other social events. As a strong advocate for continuing education, Mr. Greenwood encourages Veterans to seek further education opportunities.
Impressively, Mr. Greenwood chartered the first seniors’ centre in Squamish, British Columbia, joined the Capilano College (now University) Advisory Board, initiated the ElderCollege into the university and even facilitated classes for Veterans and seniors on the great books and life-writing. Mr. Greenwood has also served as chair and adjudicator of the Legion’s Youth Remembrance Poster, Essay and Poem Contest. This position includes speaking with students in high school and encouraging remembrance in the community. West Vancouver’s Harry Greenwood. Photo Provided
Book Your Eye Exam at IRIS Today Vision plays an important role in every aspect of our lives. Our vision allows us to experience the world to its fullest. A complete eye examination checks your overall eye health, measures changes to vision and develops a plan to enhance and maintain your eye sight. Book your eye health and vision examination at IRIS today. Park Royal Shopping Centre 908 Park Royal South 604.925.3470
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St. Francis-in-the-wood You are invited to join us for
A Very Messy Christmas on Saturday, November 26 th at 4 pm We will have fun making ornaments for our family Christmas trees. We will be enjoying short stories together about Christmas traditions. Then we will celebrate the upcoming season with a Messy Feast. We will take home memories!
Some Messy Church memories!
ikolai 3 lius 5 and N
brothers Ju e attention of Farrah 3. th s ld ho h ra Lola 5 and Storyteller Sa with sisters
Lola follows intently as Rev Stuart demonstrates.
Julius is happy with his creations.
s her colour
s and prepar es for a work
Photos: James Slaney
Join us for fun on the fourth (4th) Saturday each month.
Services Sundays 8am &10am (with Sunday School)
Wednesdays 10am 4772 Piccadilly Road South 604.922.3531 | stfrancisinthewood.ca
• c rafts • g a m e s • fo o d • songs s e i r o t s • e We heopyou e s o t ere! th
ST. FRANCIS-IN-THE-WOOD CHURCH A place for families celebrating community 4772 PICCADILLY ROAD SOUTH
Caulfeild Cove Hall
The show must go on by
n Saturday, October 15 (as the founder of the Vancouver Noseflute Ensemble - which doesn’t actually exist), I had a small part in a variety show held at Caulfeild Cove Hall. The sound tech had just finished adjusting all the mics and instrument feeds, when, ten minutes before show time . . . BLACKOUT! The storm (the third in as many days) that had been raging all afternoon, took out all the power in the area. It was pitch black
on the streets and at the venue. Incredibly, the vast majority of the sold out crowd still made it to the venue through challenging and somewhat unsafe conditions - and stayed the entire evening! Flashlights and battery powered lanterns appeared. An acoustic piano was located and wheeled in to replace the electric one. Acoustic guitars were played without their electronic pickups, and the slide show was ditched (for obvious reasons). The performers delivered their lines flawlessly and sang their hearts out! The sound tech stayed fully engaged, regardless of the diminished needs
for his services. For the drummer, it was business as usual even without power ...the beat goes on! The crowd seemed unconcerned by the darkness and maintained a wonderfully respectful silence so all could hear the unamplified performers. People still found their way to the bar without spilling a drop or landing in someone else’s lap. At one point the person beside me leaned over and asked if the lights were turned out on purpose - that’s how well things were going! At intermission, spirits remained high with cell phones providing light. Amazing how
Karen by flashlight.
Photo: Chris Stringer
a shared challenge can bring out the best in people. Karen Fowlie (the awesome lead/producer/director/) along with her co-conspirator (writer, organizer, stage-manager) Clive Scarff, kept everyone fully engaged throughout the evening. I was thrilled to be involved. Many thanks to Karen and Clive and all the other wonderful performers for allowing me to be part of such a great event.
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Home & Living
The chill is in the air!
A Culinary View Maureen Goulet
he leaves are turning and the furnace is on - it is time to snuggle in for the winter. Warm stews and hot soups give us a feeling of nostalgia and well-being. Every country has its own comfort food. I have an Irish background so a hearty Irish stew with dumplings is what warms me inside and out during the winter months. Try this no fuss recipe from Jamie Oliver for a delicious winter meal. For more comforting recipes join Alex Chen on November 9 for his version of comfort foods.
Maureen Goulet is the owner of Ambrosia Cooking School where Chefs come to share their culinary secrets: www.ambrosiaadventures.com
Rebecca van der Horst
ffering tax tips is a bit of a trend with this article so, on that note, here are a few more tips to ensure that you make the most of what’s available to you when tax time arrives: Split income between spouses. As of the 2014 tax year, couples who have
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Photo Provided Comfort food in the form of Irish stew.
at least one child under 18 can transfer up to $50,000 of taxable income to their lowerincome partner and claim a non-refundable tax credit of up to $2,000. If you’re going to claim this credit, you cannot also split pension income with your partner. Don’t assume that you don’t need to bother filing a tax return because you have no income. Some low or zero-income earners still think there’s no need to file a return. This misunderstanding can cost thousands of dollars in lost benefits and credits like the GST credit and the CCTB. More benefits
upWardcoNStructioN.ca 101-1305 Welch Street, North VaNcouVer MOBILE: 604.790.0472 OFFICE: 778.340.1355
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Personal tax planning tips for 2016 Armchair Accountant
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are being distributed through the tax system with each passing year. For some benefits, like the GIS and the Working Income Tax Benefit, recipients need to apply every year. Teenagers who earn a few thousand dollars should also consider filing. That will create RRSP room that can be carried forward indefinitely to use at a time when they may owe tax. Transfer unused credits. Credits for students such as those for tuition, education and textbooks, can be transferred to a spouse, parent, or grandparent once the credits are first used to re-
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duce the student’s tax payable to zero. The credits can also be carried forward indefinitely so the student can use them later when he or she starts earning money. Claim all eligible medical expenses. Travel expenses are eligible when people need to go more than 40 km (one way) to get medical treatment that isn’t available closer to home. Medical expenses can be claimed by either spouse or partner. Be sure to consult your tax preparer or accountant for further tax planning. Rebecca van der Horst: email@example.com
“At Amici restaurant we specialize in old world Italian cooking, where the food is plentiful and delicious! You want Italian? We’ll give you Italian with our tradition of warm hospitality.”
1747 Marine Drive, West Vancouver | 604.913.1314
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