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Voices ᐋ ᐄᔮᔨᐧᒫᓂᐧᐃᒡ

All in a day

BY Sonny Orr Mar 2, 2023

I got up this morning, a little dry and kind of hot, the furnace gradually heating up the house. After knocking over a few things in the kitchen, I discovered the light wasn’t on and the room was lit up by the sun. Wow, the sun is getting up before me I think aloud, tossing a few more things around. Where’s the coffee when you need it most? Finally, I find the last cache of coffee pods and now the aroma of morning opens my eyelids, and my senses slowly start working again.

Ahh, the bacon sizzles, the coffee drips, the toast is slightly burnt, and eggs are cooked to perfection. No butter, no problem, cheese spread will do in a pinch. Finally, the messages pour in for my chauffeur duties – pick up kids and take them to school and daycare. 

I look out the window and it doesn’t seem too bad today. Donning a second sweater and hoodie, plus a third pair of socks and warm mittens, I step outside to start up my vehicle. I nearly faint from the hot air as the temperature has risen 20 degrees in the last six hours reaching a balmy minus six. Arrgg! Overdressed and unprepared for the sweltering heat, I drive off and eventually deliver five kids and two adults to their destinations on time.

Walking into my office, I remove my outerwear and wipe the sweat off my brow, and then realize that in five weeks, spring will be here! Almost time to get ready for goose hunting! Wow, how time flies when nature is in a rush.

After a long weekend of hockey tournaments, work is a nice respite. I attended as much as I could, but a grandfather’s duties – cooking, laundry and other household chores – needed to be done, so I did them. 

The tournament ends and the household once roaring with loud, rowdy children is quiet now. The event has drained the kids’ energies and left them tired. I enjoy the quietness the tiredness creates and look forward to waking up early in the morning to head back to work. Really.

The morning coffee starts kicking in and then realize the boil water advisory I’m reading is a day old and I quickly spit out my still savory coffee. Wow, that was close, I could have caught diphtheria or something else unpronounceable. The bottled water jugs magically appear, and my certified safe coffee is ready to consume.

Then the cell rings and the buses are out of action again. It’s the mad scramble to find the kids in a combination traffic jam and children everywhere scenario. 

After a few harrowing minutes, the precious cargo is in the car and ready to head home for lunch. Later, the task is repeated during the after-school rush, followed by a last call at the daycare. Whew, I think, just one missing gear in the web of life and kaboom! Complete madness I tell you.

Today was a double-trouble day, but I survived it. Wonder what tomorrow will bring?

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Sonny Orr is Cree from Chisasibi, and has been a columnist for the Nation for over 20 years. He regularly pens Rez Notes from the cozy social club in Whapmagoostui where he resides.