Posted by: pointsevensnowball | November 25, 2008

Masmatchewan…

For the sake of your reading pleasure (well hopefully it’s a pleasure) and my writing pleasure I like to try and vary my blogging style when and if I can. So I was thinking of writing a poem about our time in Regina but then I realized I’d never think of anything that rhymes with SAKATCHEWAN so I’m scrapping that plan. That said, if anyone CAN think of a single word that rhymes with the S-word, I’ll be happy to write you a poem…

As mentioned in our last couple blogs, Tracy and I try not to repeat the same kind of volunteering twice as we’re trying to convey the many different ways to ‘give .7%’. (So just to be clear, we’re not down with repetition when it comes to volunteering during the campaign… but we ARE cool with repetition when it comes to blogging about how we’re trying not to repeat ourselves… got it?).

washing up at the Souls Harbour soup kitchen

washing up at the Souls Harbour soup kitchen

That said, it’s really tough to say no to an invitation to help out at a soup kitchen. Whereas many organizations that we contact can’t make use of our offer to volunteer because it’s the wrong time of year or they’re looking for long-term help only, soup kitchens will ALWAYS say yes to some extra help. So Tracy and I said ‘sure’ to the Souls Rescue Misison soup kitchen in Regina. The young man who runs the kitchen told us they serve 150+ people PER DAY. That’s a lot of hungry people. Fortunately there were TONS of volunteers helping out that night – a few of them first-timers like us. Hee hee… one man fell easily in love with Tracy whom he referred to as ‘PENTICTON!!’ (from across the room) and I’m guessing he ate at least 4 big bowls of stew just so she’d have a reason to come back to his table and clear his plate. Along with the funny PENTICTON! guy, several other diners and many volunteers wanted to know about our campaign. We filled them in and were stoked a few days later to see that they’d filled in the SNOWBALL EFFECT on our site – hurrah!

dig our Christmas creation man

dig our Christmas creation man

The next day Tracy and I bundled up and walked from our hotel, the Ramada (yep, Ramada AGAIN – we sooo appreciate the sponsorship!), to the Kids Help Line headquarters. We’d been invited to help decorate giant Christmas wreaths for their upcoming fundraiser, Homes for the Holidays. In a word, this was fun. We both love Christmas and well, being put in charge of something – even if it’s something as simple as deciding how best to disperse coloured baubles and giant ribbons on a large circle of er… tree bits. Dorks to the core perhaps, but we were proud when the wonderful staff at Kids Help Line approved of our wreaths. And here we have to say a huge thank you to said staff for helping to line up some media coverage. A reporter from the Regina Leader-Post was there to interview us as we wreath-ed. Sidebar: for those of you who SAW that article, please be assured I’m not actually a professional female wrestler although the picture might have led you to believe otherwise.

)

Craig Kielburger we love you 🙂

After finishing up the wreaths, we received an AWESOME invitation to accept two tickets to see Craig Kielburger speak at a centre in Regina that evening. (While I’d never heard of Craig prior to our tour, his name has come up consistently along the way). Of course, we accepted and wow, what a speech. For those of you who have never heard of Craig, he started up his own non-profit when he was 12 years old after reading an article about a kid his age who had been subjected to child slave labour and then murdered. Now 25, Craig and his organization, Free the Children, have built over 500 schools in developing countries. Craig has written several books, spent time with Mother Teresa, Archbishop Desmond Tutu, the Dalai Lama, etc. and he’s received FOUR honourary doctorates. Exchanging a few words and our ‘business cards’ after his presentation, I felt like I was meeting a living legend – someone who will be remembered years and years from now for his leadership and vision. I could write a book about his presentation but he already wrote one so it would probably be faster if you just read his – Me To We. All in all, it was a nice mid-trip hit of inspiration.

Speaking of inspired, I should also mention our evening of ‘cheesy-oke’ with Tracy’s friends Sarah and Curtis in Regina. We showed up at the red-walled Irish bar just as the karaoke was getting started. After learning that first-timers score a free pint we started flipping through the book in search of the perfect song. Sarah and Tracy soon hit the stage to pay tribute to classic Coolio with a little ‘Gangsta’s Paradise’. Tracy was clearly lost in the ‘magic’ of the moment, closing her eyes and dancing along with the music. Later the three of us went up to sing (read: ruin) ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’. The bar was packed with college kids and the crowd was awesome, woohoo-ing everyone regardless of talent or lack thereof. And finally after a few more beers (and years of Bridget Jones watching), I bared my soul to the tune of Celine Dion’s ‘All By Myself’ – high kicks and all. Hey man, the campaign trail can be a lonely road 🙂

Under attack by Sarah & Curtis' insane (and very cute) cat

Under attack by Sarah & Curtis' insane cat

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