It is the Holiday Season, Issue 28

Another Christmas is here and another year is coming to an end. At times it has felt that it took an eternity to get here since March 13th, the day we rushed home from Europe. At other times, it seems as if it was just was yesterday.

The year 2020 was meant to be memorable. I turned 70 in June and on December 26, we will have been married for 50 years. On March 12, I was looking forward to another 18 days in London but on March 13, we were flying home to Montreal. We had planned to spend a few weeks in Nova Scotia visiting family in July or August. For our anniversary, we planned an escape to the Lands of Loyal Hotel (https://www.landsofloyal.com) near Dundee, Scotland for New Years Eve. My parents would bring our family there for Christmases in the early fifties.

Instead we have been semi-secluded for the past nine months. I haven’t been able to hug my children or grandchildren. Every newscast about Covid-19 is more panic stricken than the last one. The American dream has become a fantasy. In 2020, the USA has lost its moral authority to lecture anybody about democracy and freedom. China, Russia, and North Korea are more powerful and more influential than they were four years ago. The world is a more dangerous place.

Hopeful for 2021

Thankfully, 2020 is coming to an end and there are a few things to celebrate. I have learned how to video conference better than Dick Tracy. For those of you that are too young to remember this comic strip character, he had a telephone watch that we thought would always belong to the sci-fi world. I have discovered a hobby, I love to write. I just hope that people enjoy reading me. Old friends have been rediscovered. These have included Wayne MacMillan and Leon Livingstone in Cape Breton; and, Mike Sefsik, Pat Rousseau, and Martin Kibsey from high school in Sept-Iles, QC. My apologies for naming you, guys, but I do like to recognize people that have been important in my life. Vaccines are coming so maybe we will be able to go to Nova Scotia for the summer of 2021 and back to Europe by mid-January 2022.

My web site, atwatersedge.co will be going live December 31st, just in time for the New Year. Newsletter content will be easier to read on portable devices. I hope to be adding additional content that you will find interesting and provocative. I think that there may be one more newsletter before then.

The usual reminders:

Buy better, buy less, reduce, repair, reuse and recycle.  Shop local, support local businesses, buy from local farms, and support local artisans and manufacturers. As always, wear face masks where required, wash your hands, practice social distancing, hydrate, and exercise. 

Thank you for reading. I wish you all the a very happy holiday season.Best wishes for a great 2021 – it will have to be better than 2020.

The Co-working Concept, Issue 80

January 22, 2024

Co-working space came to mean the notorious We Work model. When I had been asked to opine on co-working I tried to steer the conversation away from the Adam Neumann / Softbank  flimflam growth model. Instead, I suggested that property owners look at usage and users. While I doubted We Work’s ability to survive I […]

The Affordable Housing Conundrum

October 3, 2023

Before I fall completely into the trap of opposition politics, I have decided to take a break from never-ending criticism and to start suggesting solutions to the affordable housing conundrum. Do I have a plan? No, more a collection of ideas To start with, I think there are three key issues: Home ownership is not […]

We Should Know Better

August 26, 2023

I know! I am going to sound like a grumpy old man. Maybe that is because I am. I have been scratching my head in wonderment at the Taylor Swift phenomena. Is she an Incredible song writer, composer, and performer? I really don’t know! A discussion for another time? But probably not. At my age […]

Not in My Back Yard

August 4, 2023

Don’t build it! At least, Not In My Back Yard ! I acted as an advisor  in the sale of a beautifully natural, 14-acre urban waterfront estate. Existing zoning allowed for the development of 30 to 35 single-family homes, which after road dedication would leave very little green space. I did not think that was […]

Glasgow – That Dear Green Place

July 31, 2023

We were visiting Glasgow (literally that Dear Green Place in Gaelic) to see where my father was born, grew up, and went to University. Fortunately for me, my cousin John from Australia had just visited and had met with historians, Bruce Downie  and Norry Wilson.  So,  we too arranged to meet them in the Govanhill […]

Vienna on Top Again

June 25, 2023

Vienna on top again. This week both Monocle Magazine and The Economist unveiled their quality of life / most liveable city indexes. There are differences in the way each publication sets its index. So it is even more impressive that once again, Vienna tops both lists. I am a bit lazy today so rather than […]