(The Hamilton Spectator - November 23, 2013) KAMPALA, UGANDA – When Rob Ford first appeared onscreen in Africa I was sitting in front of some public televisions, a place where I often work, reading about Ghandi. It was strange because Gandhi, the great Indian leader, led a fifth of the world's people to democracy in his bare-feet, boney and malnourished and wrapped in just a sort of bed-sheet, while the burly mayor of Toronto has become a small man even while, in heavy shoes, he’s fallen with such a thud that it somehow has to be heard around the world. The last time I recall Ontario news making it this far was six years ago when the Shedden massacre involving the infamous Banditos gang got a couple of paragraphs in a Ugandan daily.
We arrived at the chapel to find Timothy’s casket sitting heavy at the entrance. This, yesterday morning when we had walked down the familiar green hill to the chapel, the university chapel of dark wood and century-old brick, a place the children have known as Sunday school for some years, a place now to say [...]
It’s the other day and we’re on the streets of Uganda, on the morning school run again, this time behind a tanker truck plodding in front of us. “Danger,” it says in red letters that are big enough. Then, some distance below, near the license plate, “God bless my work.” Such open prayers and other [...]
So, it’s Day 15 of Single Daddin It’ and we’re at the dinner table, that place of ever-illuminating discussion, and Jon blurts out, ‘Hey Dad, if you got shot, would you rather be shot in the mouth or in the eye?’ I looked up from my Kraft Dinner and hotdogs. I mean, really, has it [...]
Of course our stories – your story, my story, the story of the drunk down in Apartment 8 –are all pretty much the same, that is they are all stories of human beings trying to get by in one way or another. I was reminded of this last night when Liz, my oldest, performed in [...]
We’re told that her mother and father where there, and so probably were the neighbours and her school friends, no doubt, and pretty well anyone who cared for the little girl. She had been laying there dead for some time when this man came in and looked down at her and took her by the cold hand and said what [...]
It’s somewhere around Day 54,386 of Single Daddin’ It, the highlight of my year when it's just me and the kids. Is it November still? I think it snowed yesterday. Pretty sure about that. Somewhat sure. Okay maybe it rained. I think Jean called yesterday too. She’s my wife. My Bride. We started dating when you [...]
It’s officially Day 1 of being the Poor Lonely Single Dad – Jean is back in Canada for, gulp, 18 days – and we’ve slept in by 45 minutes and The New Young Dog goes without his morning walk but we still manage to scramble and jump in the truck and get on the bumpy dirt road [...]