Posted by: pointsevensnowball | December 8, 2008

the world chico, and everything in it…

Gabe had beautiful roses for Tracy... and nothing for me (I mean the NERVE!)

Gabe had beautiful roses for Tracy... and nothing for me (I mean the NERVE!)


After many hours of Jack Johnson and a few roadkill sightings, we rolled into Penticton (aka the homeland of Tracy and Gabe). Tracy was all nervous excitement as we cruised down into the happy little Okanagan city, rubbing her hand on her thigh and tapping her feet. We pulled into their complex and Tracy flew into the building and up the three flights of stairs to their little love nest. It was all sweetness and pie for the next few hours as Tracy and Gabe couldn’t keep their eyes or hands off one another. Hurrah for love 🙂.


We didn’t linger long in Penticton however. After another lovely dinner at Earls

Thanks to our mama & papa Kelowna hosts, Chris & Karina!!!

Thanks to our mama & papa Kelowna hosts, Chris & Karina!!!

(Santa Fe Chicken Salad-style), we drove to Kelowna where we’d be spending the week at Gabe’s cousins’ house. And yes that was a deliberately plural ‘cousins’. Like Tracy and I, Gabe’s family takes the form of cousinly herds.

There were a lot of Portuguese people in that house plus a couple partners of. Subsequently there was lots of good-natured yelling, laughing and eating throughout the week. Good times.

As for P7S, the beginning of the week was filled with school presentations and media interviews. We started off at an ungodly hour (sometime before noon), at Okanagan Adventist Academy where our presentation was met with resounding er, silence. Not really a bad silence, just that first thing Monday morning silence. The kids were polite, attentive listeners and we got the job done. Later that afternoon we presented to a pile of students crammed into the library at beautiful Glenrosa Middle School. Once again the students listened well and offered up some particularly impressive questions considering they were a bit younger than our usual crowd. And their teacher, Mr. Orloff, was extremely supportive of our campaign, suggesting we submit a funding request to the provincial government (thanks Mr. Orloff :). 
say hello to my new favourite Pacino movie

say hello to my new favourite Pacino movie

After a busy day of presentations, we rewarded ourselves with a treat from Booster Juice and headed back to the house of Portuguese. There we were treated to a little Pacino. Scarface had been on my list of movies to see for a looong time so I considered the viewing to be another landmark campaign accomplishment.

The next day was AWESOME. We presented to a couple of classes at Okanagan Mission Secondary and the students there were wonderful brainy little people. After presenting to a thoughtful group of grade nines, we went to Earls for lunch with teacher Katie Nault. Tracy and I loved meeting Katie as she’s close to our ages and into a lot of the same issues. She told us about a Millennium Scholarship Challenge based out of Kelowna that invites kids to develop a project in response to one or more of the Millennium Development Goals. What an awesome idea. Tracy and I would love to learn more about this process and possibly get involved on some level.

That afternoon we spoke to a group of senior-ish students in Katie’s after school social justice club. It was awesome to meet a group of young adults so well-informed on issues of extreme poverty. We asked them to name the Millennium Development Goals and they were like “psssssht! No problem”. And it wasn’t. Then we took Katie’s suggestion about engaging the kids through a quiz and that turned out to be a wicked idea. We divided the students into two teams and had them square off against each other (for fair trade chocolate) to answer questions about the MDGs, Canada’s aid commitment and extreme poverty in general. The kids brought their ‘A’ game to the table and the competition was heated good times. I would have liked to spend another couple hours just talking with these kids as they seemed so full of ideas and energy. Hopefully, we’ll meet up with them again down the road.

Wednesday guess what we did? We presented to students at schools about Point Seven Snowball!! I know, CRAZY right?! In the wee hours of the morning we dragged our butts off the air mattress we’d been sleeping on to drive to Summerland where we presented at Summerland Secondary. The group was forgiving of our initial technical difficulties and responded with lots of challenging questions. One young man criticized the idea that we should be spending on Official Development Assistance in spite of the current domestic economic crisis. We responded by pointing out that aside from the basic moral principle that those in CONSIDERABLY better positions than others should do whatever’s in their power to help out (and save lives), it’s also in our best long-term interest as Canadians to increase ODA. From an environmental perspective alone, it’s crucial that we help countries handicapped by extreme poverty to develop sustainable environmental practices – especially as populations soar out of control. Globalization means we are increasingly interconnected with other countries and cultures and we need to level the playing field to ensure global sustainability. I could write more about this as I think it’s a very important question that demands thoughtful reflection and debate but I’ll leave it at that for now.

I should also mention that there was a Summerland newspaper reporter out to cover our morning presentation. Similarly, a Penticton journalist came to cover our afternoon presentation at Penticton High School. It was nice to see some local papers out supporting our local initiative. Tracy also made the big times with a CBC radio interview but I’m sure she’ll write about that…

Okay peace and love and Christmas to everyone xo 

I wanted to steal Chris & Karina's dog, Bruiser, from the house of the Portuguese.I wanted to steal Chris & Karina’s dog, Bruiser, from the house of the Portuguese.




  1. We had an amazing time with you lovely ladies!!!

    Brewser misses you Brielle. Spent the day waiting for you to come home….. but you never did. Then he forgot what he was waiting for when we fed him dinner.

    -With love your portugese cousin/mama!

  2. Hey you two, just catching up with your progress, we met at Quebec city Reading council a few months ago. Glad to see you haven’t slowed down much!
    Hope you have a great holiday season. We’ve been pushing the P7 as much as we can here in la belle province.
    Best wishes from Cathy in Quebec City.

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