Up until a few weeks ago: Santa Clause, The Easter Bunny and a whole wealth of other rather common ideologies, weren’t worth a half sack of beer in the bush to a close friend of mine and someone I’m only now beginning to know. To her – the cold reality of sleeping on the damp ground with very little in the way of what most of us seemingly take for granted, made the encouraging phrase ‘Take Care’ out to be an obnoxious and highly insincere remark. However, she’s starting to see things differently now.

Breaking down by my side; she confided that her night had an unexplainable if not alarming impact on her senses. To the point where she was incapable of rationally processing her thoughts.

You can call it a dream; a simple hallucination; anything you like. Myself, I don’t care if you find the whole thing hilarious. Here’s to anyone taking the time to consider what I’d regard as a very near-death experience. Regard-less, something happened, only hours before. She said: Honest to God Brent… it was Sandra

She was referring to someone we lost not too long ago. And lying on her back in a field, there in a cold rain she experienced a visitation of some kind. Like a true Angel of Mercy, her friend appeared, reached out to her – then said: Everything is going to be all right.

And that was it. I’m vague on whether she drifted off to sleep in peaceful fields of azure, or lay awake wild eyed and high. All I knew, was I had a weeping, nervous wreck on my hands.

Whenever I hear ‘someone’ so completely devoid of conceit and self centered ideals, it really marvels me. Perhaps, intrigue is a better term. I find it an extremely rare human quality in our otherwise ‘bling bling’ existence. My companion was crying because she couldn’t believe ‘she’ could ever see her friend again.

Like, Heaven was an exclusive, high security Beverly Hills social; guest passes and all. However, it has been said that the Sea – refuses no river.

Getting back to more earthly delights; I’ve always felt that anyone preferring to sleep under the stars – should be allowed. However in our often harsh Canadian climate – no one should actually be forced to. There is a far greater need for human shelters for our homeless today than in the past. The number of seemingly outcast individuals are stifling and facilities are filled to capacity. Winter soon approaches and I doubt many of us would relish the thought of ‘one night’ out; never mind a fortnight or two. Maybe we should all take a moment to think about what that might be like; particularly during flue season.

It’s kind of a funny ideology that someone can play the night owl, without breaking the law but once they’ve fallen asleep – it can become an offense. And I’ll add that days, weeks & months on the street amounts to sleep deprivation, leading to mental disorder as one is encouraged to ‘move along’; or – possibly doing so when frightened by others, including lurking wildlife and or, having to relocate due to high water or other weather extremes such as falling trees; flying limbs and even whipping downed power-lines. The reports come in. It is in fact a very harsh reality to be shivering under a dark bridge on cold concrete hour after hour and then trying to pull yourself together for the benefit of working class regimen’ and common public expectations. Meanwhile – Nightfall approaches; it’s getting colder and along with hunger – your old friend, it’s simply a matter of doing it all over again.

To me, we are not at all: in recession; I say that because the Dirty Thirties weren’t described as such – as we all know: they represented the great depression. One earmarked with ‘soup lines’, unemployment and yes; displaced & broken families. What I’m seeing are the same lengthy line-ups for possibly the only meal many of us will have all day. I see my friends harvesting cigarettes from street gutters when tobacco is grown in our own country. You might like to argue the point; however, I don’t know many people who prefer things that way. Further I say it’s wrong. Moreover, it’s very disappointing and a sad reflection of who we are and what we’re prepared to frequently overlook. Personally, it’s not how i describe a great nation. Rebuilding the economy requires an overhaul from top to bottom. It’s going to take a lot more national pride than I typically see, and far more of an intellectually compassionate understanding.

In closing, I would venture that the majority of our populace grows increasingly tired of watching eastern politicians running off with enormous amounts of money and passing it off with an apology and the words: I won’t do it again. [Perhaps they’re only alluding to getting caught.] This becomes particularly aggravating when stiffer penalties are continually awarded to lesser individuals having committed far lesser deeds; stealing food, comes to mind.

I urge everyone to keep these issues in mind this election campaign and remind our politicians that taxes are paid to ensure ‘their following’ takes proper care of our needy rather than burdening an already struggling nation, themselves barely keeping their heads above water. While far too many corporate entities qualify for Tax Free status as monetary burden is shoved back on the working class who ultimately foot the bill. I say, the next time a politician knocks on your door, let them know they have a lot of explaining to do.