"...without a cause, nothing can be created." Plato, Timaeus
The present essay was drafted over a long period of time. Its form and content kept on changing since the early 70's when I had the ambition to formulate a sort of "philosophy of life" through a series of sketches on various subjects.
This is a brief history of the church my wife Valerie and I bought in January 1972 to live in with our three children, Ben 5, Stacey 3, and Beth 1, after some renovations to make an apartment in the church hall/basement. The building had been up for sale for over a year, with a leaking roof, and some hymn books on the pews where the departing parishioners had left them.
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Ah, renovations. What a wonderful word. It conjures up notions of fantasy - a promise of change to newness within the context of your already comfortable, if somewhat outdated but happy existence, with dispatch and little or no pain. After all its not like your are starting from scratch – building a new house or garden. You already have the house and garden. You are simply going to make a few improvements - upgrade some elements, add some new ones, sand a little woodwork, dab a bit of paint, hang some wallpaper, throw down a new carpet, install some new appliances, widen a doorway, throw in a nice Jacuzzi tub. And, you are going to get it all done in a week-end or two so that you can get back to the important things in life - golf, entertaining, grandchildren, golf, holidaying in the Caribbean, golf.
Ottawa, for most Canadians, conjures up images of Parliament buildings, of the longest skating rink in the world, of the site of many of our national institutions such as the Supreme Court of Canada, the National Gallery and foreign embassies. Visitors to the Capital region are also impressed by its beautiful natural setting with the Ottawa, Rideau and Gatineau rivers flowing through it against the backdrop of the Gatineau Hills. Plenty of parklands, waterways and greenspace adorn it, with extensive walking and bike paths. In Ottawa, the two founding cultures of Canada meet and interact, contributing to the making of a vibrant community. Formerly known as a government town, it is now also known as a high tech centre with the number of technology workers rivaling that of the government sector. All of these factors play a part in making Ottawa a great place to live.