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Vol. XXVii N 10
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urban rider back on the road

Russell Copeman

2 The Senior Times September 2013 www.theseniortimes.com

Russell Copeman gains leverage in race for borough mayor
Irwin Block If you see a tall, curly-haired man on a Bixi bike in the west end, it may well be Russell Copeman, the former Liberal member of the National Assembly for N.D.G. He has a different route these days and won’t be heading downtown to his office at Concordia University where for the past five years he was a senior administrator—at least until the November 3 civic election. Copeman, 53, has taken a leave of absence from Concordia to run for borough mayor in Côte-des-Neiges—Notre-Dame-de-Grâce, under the banner of mayoral hopeful Marcel Côté and Coalition Montréal. He hopes to take over the reins of the city’s largest borough, which has 165,000 residents. He is the best-known candidate among those who have entered the race. His main opponents: Kevin Copps, brother of former federal Liberal cabinet minister Sheila Copps and successful operator of a Tim Hortons outlet in Verdun, has joined the Denis Coderre team; and Michael Simkin of Projet Montréal, a lawyer and consultant to not-forprofit community organizations. Why is Copeman returning to the political world he left in 2008, leaving aside a job he says was a “fascinating experience and very satisfying”? As associate vice-president of external relations, he’s been dealing with Day Trips Trapp Family Lodge Sept. 21 Stowe, Vermont, $125 Victoriaville Oct. 5 Tour of the Cranberry Centre, $90 A Christmas Carol, Upper Canada Playhouse Dec. 7, $85 Elvis Experience Lac Lemay Casino Dec.15, $125 Cirque du Soleil Dec. 30, $155 Bell Centre Atlantic City Oct. 21-25 4 days, 3 nights $385 pp dbl, $510 pp single Turning Stone Resort and Casino Dec.10-12 3 days, 2 nights $395 pp dble, $20 pp single the cut-and-thrust of political life. “It’s a big change, but my wife (writer Bev Akerman) and family (Alex, 27, Romney, 24, Emma, 18) were all very supportive.” When the testimony began rolling out at the Charbonneau Commission into corruption in Montreal, Copeman said he was “surprised by the depth of the problem, very distressed.” “One had heard rumours and speculation for a number of years, but the testimony seems to indicate that there was a fairly well-organized system of inflated costs, and potentially defrauding taxpayers to a degree that I really had not imagined. “We have to hope that the Charbonneau Commission will make some very concrete recommendations on how to fight what appears to be systemic fraud. “We need people of integrity in politics, but also a systemic response,” he said, and the Quebec government has started. The rot is alleged to have included the borough he wants to run. The previous borough mayor, Michael Applebaum, who went on to replace Gérald Tremblay as mayor of Montreal, has been indicted on 14 counts of fraud, conspiracy, breach of trust and corruption. Saulie Zajdel, a former borough councilor, has been indicted on five counts of fraud, corruption, breach of trust and payment of secret commissions related to construction permits issued in 2006-11. “We have to let the courts do their work,” is all he would say about these allegations. Copeman was equally discreet when asked about former federal Liberal MP Denis Coderre and his group, and that of Richard Bergeron and Projet Montréal. But he says he knows and likes Côté, whose firm SECOR produced an economic impact study for Concordia, and a similar one for McGill.
Continued on page 4

Avid cyclist Russell Copeman wants to fix crumbling urban infrastructure.

all three levels of government to advance Concordia’s interests and “really learned a lot about how the city operates.” He also taught a course in Quebec public administration. “Biking and driving around N.D.G. and seeing the state of our infrastructure, I became increasingly interested in the state of our city and borough. And we saw what was happening with the leadership of the city.” When approached by the Côté team, he says he “felt a sense of responsibility” and confidence in the group that seeks to run the city. “I felt that they were people with some experience and some desire to see positive change, and if people with integrity don’t come forward, the situation will never improve.” Public service, he says, is his only goal, and if elected he’s ready for the late-night meetings, sudden crises and

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While the finishing touches were being made on this issue, an editor took a moment to stand on the office’s front stairs and take a deep breath of the suddenly cool air. And what did she see across the street but a smattering of orange on a tree. Surely it was still green just yesterday, and yet soon our already colourful city will be awash in reds and yellows against a blue sky. For your enjoyment here is a little more colour: Men in Technicolor . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 16 Food yearns to be brown . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 20 Shades of the 1970s in Erie, Pa.. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 27 A rainbow explosion in Peru . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 36

Copeland’s vision for Blue Bonnets
Continued from page 3

“I heard him at a number of Board of Trade events and have always been impressed. He is a man of great personal integrity, an economist by training with a business background. “Marcel understands the absolute need for economic development and social development. The two go hand in hand.” Copeman says he’s committed to “integrity, transparency and accountability.” He notes that in his previous roles, as an aide to Premier Robert Bourassa and 14 years as an MNA, his integrity has never been questioned. “Improvements have to be made at city hall and the borough level in terms of the transparency issue,” he adds, without being specific. If elected, he pledges to be accountable “first and foremost to the citizens of the borough, not to a political party, not to any political master.” He suggested he would not be confined by party discipline as it functions in the parliamentary system, referencing his own tenure in Quebec City where he felt “too constrained personally for many years.” “A city administration doesn’t have to be that way.” When it comes to specifics, he com-

mits himself to “efficient delivery of public services, with an “absolute priority to repairing and maintaining roads, sidewalks and bike paths.” Because of his experience and contacts in Quebec City and Ottawa and knowledge of how governments work, Copeman says he is well-placed to elicit their cooperation and help. The vacant, city-owned Blue Bonnets raceway is a unique opportunity to erect “a model community, with up to 20,000 people.” The nearby NamurJean Talon triangle, covering 40 hectares, can add another 4,200 residents to the area when it is fully developed. “We need a mix of housing and mix of population, a range that includes social and family housing,” he said. As for working alongside sovereignist Louise Harel, the Vision Montreal leader who is part of the Côté coalition, Copeman said: “There aren’t sovereignist streets and federalist streets in Montreal, there is no sovereignist garbage and federalist garbage—as Montrealers we all have to work together. You don’t transpose those things on the municipal level.” And to those who are cynical and boycott municipal elections Copeman’s message is, “Nothing will change if people stay home on election day.” irblock@hotmail.com

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Afghan President Karzai “is not a great women’s advocate,” Weisberg says.

Fundamentalism, extremism the enemies in Afghanistan
Irwin Block From North Africa to the Middle East, the Islamic world is in turmoil and Afghanistan can be seen as a precursor. What can we expect when most foreign forces leave by the end of next year? We put the whither-Afghanistan question to Laurie Weisberg, a human-rights expert who recently returned to Montreal after a ninemonth stint working with the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees. Her mandate was to develop a policy for an estimated 1.2 million or more internally displaced Afghans, similar to a 2008 mission she carried out as a senior protection officer and adviser on internal displacement. Though she has vast experience in conflict zones ranging from former Yugoslavia to southeast Asia, she sees little value in continued Western efforts to steer the country toward accommodation and a democratic model. Just understanding the complexities of Afghan society is a major challenge. “We come in and we see a surface. With the security situation being what it is, you hardly ever visit an Afghan in his house. You don’t see how the ordinary Afghan lives,” she said in a chat at her Old Montreal condo. “When you do go out, it is always with major security. You can read the novels of Khaled Hosseini (The Kite Runner, And the Mountains Echoed), but that does not mean you understand Afghan society.” The West is pinning its hopes on Afghan President Hamid Karzai, but he might not champion gender equality or other liberal/democratic values, she observed.

“Karzai is not a great women’s advocate. Women are very much oppressed—on a tribal basis, not on a religious basis,” she said. “It’s not Islam that is the culprit. It’s fundamentalism and extremism. Once you get these true believers— religion together with politics—it means there is no room for any freedom of thought any more.” The Taliban, committed to a Sharia-based ideology, have time on their side, and Weisberg says the situation is deteriorating despite billions spent in military and economic assistance. “In 2008, I could travel in much of the country, though not in the Kandahar area. In 2012, I couldn’t go by road almost anywhere, a much deteriorated security situation.” Humanitarian agencies are increasingly being targeted. The International Committee for the Red Cross and International Organization for Migration have been attacked this year. Canada and other coalition members operated Provincial Reconstruction Teams, building schools and distributing humanitarian aid, but the Taliban viewed some of these efforts as enemy activities, she said. “If the American military gave much-needed food to an internally displaced community—and they needed it and it was done with the best of intentions—the Taliban concluded this community was cooperating with the enemy.” Returning home is usually not an option for security reasons and because those who have lived in an urban environment for years “don’t want to return to a little village way up in the mountains somewhere with no health services and no education for their children.”
Continued on page 6 www.theseniortimes.com September 2013 The Senior Times 5

Photo: Irwin Block

Western pullout threatens “modest advances,” Weisberg says
Continued from page 5

For resettlement to succeed, there have to be jobs, which are usually only available in areas that are already populated. And if a community fled the north, for example, because of alleged Taliban sympathies, their loyalty might be suspect in a new location. Afghans will have to resolve their own problems, but Weisberg warns the end may be a dark one. She foresees increased conflict in the wake of the Western pullout, with Karzai’s forces entrenching themselves in the cities, and great displacement from rural areas to urban slums. The most Westernized, entrepreneurial and liberal Afghans can be expected to leave the country, while tribal groups will ally, compete for land and resources, and engage in corrupt practices that will “trump any remnants of democratic and transparent processes,” she predicts.

“I fear that the modest advances that have been made since 2002— girls going to school, women permitted to work in limited areas, some women in political positions in Parliament, government and research— all of that will be at risk. “It makes me very sad because

“The burka makes women disappear—it erases their faces, their bodies, their identities, and they become nothing behind a blue pleated piece of cloth. “Every human being should count and be valued, but that is not what I see when I look into Afghanistan’s tomorrow.” Weisberg was able to take thousands of photographs, which she’s collected “Every human being in more than 200 albums. She gathered should count and be recipes and purchased carpets, sculpand artifacts that give her home a valued, but that is not what ture colourful and multi-textured look. I see when I look into Weisberg grew up in the 1940s, on St. Urbain near St. Viateur. She Afghanistan’s tomorrow.” is the daughter of European-born parents who worked in clothing facAfghanistan is a rich and beautiful tories. She has one son, Jesse, and country, with many warm, hospi- three stepsons with her American table and creative people. husband, Harry Scoble, who died in “But it is also a brutal society in 1988 while they were living in Boswhich women have been cruelly ton, and five grandchildren. mistreated. If they are violated, they By her own reckoning, Weisberg’s are killed to protect family honour. lifelong commitment to human-

rights work can be traced to her roots and the beliefs of her parents, Joseph and Molly. Young Laurie worked as a counselor at left-wing summer camps in the Laurentians, where ideas heard at home were amplified. “I read quite widely, even at a young age, and it (working for international human rights) seemed like the right thing to do.” Weisberg, now 70, is no longer on full-time contract with PROCAP, an inter-UN agency program that includes the UN high commissions for human rights and refugees and UNICEF, as she was for more than six years. While waiting for shorter–term assignments in the field, she plans to write of her experiences, combatting Roma resettlement in Kosovo, human trafficking in Montenegro, and other issues in which she’s been directly involved. irblock@hotmail.com

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International inaction has fuelled the killing in Syria: Cotler
Kristine Berey Having just returned from Israel, Mount Royal MP Irwin Cotler recently described what he calls the “critical mass of threat unlike anything that we have seen” surrounding that country. “It’s one thing when you’re reading about it, it’s another thing when it’s happening literally next door,” he said in his annual talk at the Cummings Centre. Among the threats Cotler mentioned is the increasing number of missiles Hezbollah has amassed. “When I was there in 2006, Hezbollah had 10,000 missiles capable of reaching only the northern part of Israel. Now there are 65,000 missiles capable of reaching any part of Israel and this has occurred not only during what was supposed to have been a UN-monitored ceasefire but where the Security Council resolution had called for the disarmament of Hezbollah.” Speaking eight days before the suspected use of chemical weapons in Syria, Cotler said, “At this point nothing good is happening for Syrian people who have been the targets of daily crimes against humanity, with women and children being the primary victims.” He said that at the beginning, the conflict was a civilian uprising, which should have been assisted by the international community. “Those of us who were calling for support and assistance for the people of Syria under the Responsibility to Protect were told, ‘If you intervene, what you will get is more killing, more sectarian strife.’ Everything people told us would happen if we intervened happened because we didn’t,” Cotler said, adding that inaction has fuelled the killing in Syria. He said that behind the danger surrounding Israel is the four-fold threat from Iran, including the “nuclear threat, ongoing state-sanctioned incitement to genocide, involvement in international terrorism and the final threat we should never ignore: massive domestic repression.” Cotler says he fully supports the Canadian government’s position on Israel, but that support should not become politicized and associated with voting for the Conservative Party. “That undercuts support for Israel because it links that support with a particular political party rather than with the justness of Israel’s cause.” Anticipating correctly that Parliament would be prorogued, Cotler touched on issues that most affect seniors, beginning with health care. “It is regrettable that the federal government has abandoned its involvement in health care,” Cotler said, noting that the Canada Health Act is federally legislated. “For the Harper government to say it’s a matter of exclusive provincial jurisdiction is to deny the constitutional responsibility that the federal government has for health care.” He said that the idea behind the 2004 Health Accord, which ends next year, was to set up—in partnership with the provinces—a national standard, a system of equitable access to care. “The whole idea is to concern ourselves with the protection of the vulnerable, to do something about a holistic approach to home care, emergency, palliative care.” Cotler expects the government will say the accord will not be renewed, this partnership will come to an end and the eight strategic objectives he had participated in creating will go by the wayside. Regarding pensions, former justice minister Cotler says he anticipates the age to collect will rise to 67 or 68, “even though the expert report was that the pension system is sustainable now at 65 years.” He spoke out against mandatory minimum sentencing, mentioning that the U.S. Supreme Court has ordered the release of thousands of inmates because it ruled that overcrowding amounts to cruel and unusual punishment. “They said overcrowding had to come down to 137 per cent. In Canada, the overcrowding rate is 200 per cent and it’s increasing.” Mandatory minimum sentencing is the cause and is said to affect the most vulnerable. The black and aboriginal communities, Cotler says. In terms of the environment, Cotler says we need leadership in a federal role. “Regrettably, the government is dismantling a lot of evidencebased institutions that provide us with important data in regard to what is happening in the environment and policy prescriptions of what needs to be done.” In final remarks, Cotler said that it seems as if the government has marginalized the presence of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. He recalled his time in federal government when the charter was “the centrepiece of our policy, to put that commitment into practice.”

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The timeless tunes of the 1940s seem to have a life of their own and still strike a chord with audiences of all ages. That is why the Hudson Music Club is opening its season with Still in the Mood, the sequel to last year’s sold-out revue. There will be six performances September 25-29 at the Hudson Village Theatre, 28 Wharf Rd.—two matinées on Septmeber 28 and 29, and four evening shows September 26-28. As Second World War vet Charlie reminisces with bartender Big Joe at a favourite Legion, a nine-voice choir will run through such songs as Embraceable You, My Funny Valentine and In the Mood in four-part haremony. The all-women’s barbershop quartet Over the Top will also entertain. Tickets range from $23 for seniors to $29. Info: 450-458-5361 or villagetheatre.ca

8 The Senior Times September 2013 www.theseniortimes.com

No family or residence is perfect, but we must try harder
First Person Barbara Moser
Losing my mother, Eva, in early July was nothing like I thought it would be. I thought I had done what I could to make sure she was taken care of by finding a small residence with people who seemed to love her. I placed her there seven years ago when she started showing symptoms of dementia. She was given a lovely room and we “individualized” it with pictures of family covering the walls. We moved in her favourite pieces of furniture. Everything seemed perfect, except there was little or no stimulation from what I could tell. Often when I arrived unexpectedly, she was sleeping. I let it be because they seemed to be taking very good care of her. Little by little, she lost whatever interest she had in doing small chores like setting the table and folding laundry because everything was done for her. I had The Gazette delivered (which she had once read avidly) but there was no one to read it with her. And I let that be. I wondered about some of the meals I saw being served on weekends: sandwich halves on white bread or hot dogs with made-fromfrozen fries. And I let that be. I started to worry when I met the doctor who visited once a month. He did not want to look me in the eye and was brisk and cold. He wasn’t keen on discussing my mother’s health or quality of life with me. And I let that be. Then things got worse. Our podiatrist informed me that my mother’s toenail had to come off because no one had noticed how badly infected it was. About two years ago, my mother was diagnosed with breast cancer. Again, it wasn’t the doctor who noticed the substantial lump on her breast, but the wife of the owner. The lump had been there for quite probably wouldn’t last the night, I told them to take out all the tubes and needles and let her die in peace. The four of us—Irwin and I and my daughters Amy and Molly—spent the night by her side while she got morphine and seemed much more comfortable. We sang to her, all her favourite songs, and talked to her. At one point, she seemed to come back to us. She looked into our eyes and seemed to know us. Finally in the morning she died. It was such a gradual process that I didn’t know when she was actually gone. I tell this story because I know many have gone through what I have and what my mother did. I feel guilty because I didn’t push harder to bring another doctor into the residence (although that is not easy) when the owner wouldn’t listen to my pleas. I feel guilty that I didn’t check my mother for signs of infection, didn’t take her to a doctor when she kept complaining she couldn’t walk and listened instead to the owner who said she was walking fine at the residence and as always, “it was nothing.” Later I was also told that my mother had fallen and they had put her back in bed and informed the CLSC nurse later. I have since learned this is exactly what not to do. Never move a senior who has fallen. Call 911 immediately and then inform the family. What are the lessons to be learned from my experience? Follow your instincts. Don’t let others tell you not to worry if you know something is wrong. Check for problems yourself. Don’t wait for doctors and caregivers to discover and treat your parents’ symptoms. If possible, visit often and at different times of the day and week. Look for sudden changes in weight and appetite. My mother lost a lot of weight in the last few months. Am I grateful that I found a residence that looked after my mother for seven years? Yes. Could I have done better for her by moving her? Probably not. The move would have been traumatic for her. If you have a loved one in a residence, learn from my story: Don’t let it be.

Barbara and Eva at the Times of Your Life Festival in ’89 (top) and circa 1950.

a while, the oncologist told me, but because my mother had Alzheimer’s and it was growing slowly, he would treat it with medication because surgery would be too traumatic for her. A few months ago my mother took a turn for the worse. She no longer enjoyed food at her favourite restaurants. She forgot how to use her fork and knife. She stopped smiling and making jokes. She didn’t seem to know who we were. Over a month or two she forgot how to walk. She would take two or three steps and then begin to fall. When I asked the residence about this, they said I shouldn’t worry, even when she forgot my name and ceased recognizing me altogether. It was happening too quickly. And I let it be. One day I showed up and she looked ill. She was sitting slumped over and didn’t budge or acknowledge my presence, even when I put my little dog on her lap. When I called the owner, he said she was tired from a recent activity—singing. It was clearly more than that. What was happening to my mother? I told the residence owner that she needed a doctor. But the doctor wasn’t called. And I let it be. On the evening of Saturday, July 6, the owner’s son called and told me I had to call the ER doctor right away because she had to know if I wanted

them to use extraordinary measures if my mother should lose consciousness. My mother had been sent to the hospital by the doctor during his monthly visit at 5pm. I was being informed at 11pm, ostensibly because they thought I had left town. If that was true, why were they calling me six hours later? My mom was sent alone in the ambulance, confused and in pain. When we rushed to the hospital, we were told she had sepsis, from an undetected infection. They weren’t sure if it had started in the urinary tract but that seemed possible. I was left to make quick decisions that would keep my mother alive, but for how long? I was shocked to see her so agitated and in so much pain. When the ER doctor told me that no matter what we did, she

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www.theseniortimes.com September 2013 The Senior Times 9

Photos courtesy of Barbara Moser

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Insidious Britishisms flood U.S. kit
The Word Nerd Howard Richler
A couple of years ago, the BBC asked its indigenous population to relate which barbaric Americanisms most infuriated them. This plea drew countless entries from Brits angry about the bastardization of Shakespeare’s tongue. Here is but a soupçon of the vituperative replies: n “Can I get a …” It infuriates me. It’s not New York. It’s not the ’90s. You’re not in Central Perk with the rest of the Friends. Really. n What kind of word is “gotten”? It makes me shudder. n The next time someone tells you something is the “least worst option,” tell them that their “most best option” is learning grammar. It would appear that North Americans can now equally complain about an inundation of Britishisms. Some months ago, I wrote in this column how prevalent the word “bespoke” has become in North American circles to refer to high-quality items and services. After all, it wasn’t so long ago that its usage on our continent was virtually non-existent. And bespoke is hardly the only British word or expression making inroads in the North American vernacular. Here are two others making inroads on the west side of the pond: chav. The OED defines chav: “In the United Kingdom (originally the south of England): a young person of a type characterized by brash and loutish behaviour and the wearing of designerstyle clothes (esp. sportswear); usually with connotations of a low social status.” This term is increasingly being used in North America, probably due to the insidious (and sometimes invidious) influence of YouTube. Here are two examples stemming from the U.S.A. that I spotted on the Internet: “Nah I’m not buying those sneakers man, they are so chavvy.” Someone from Boston posted the following on a language newsgroup: “Chav is gaining currency as Americans understand that not all British people are posh. Boston/Cambridge is rife with international college students, so it may just be a blip, but I’ve heard it in a suburban grocery store to refer to some hooligans outside the store.” piece of kit. When American science-fiction author John Scalzi wrote on his blog last year that the latest iPad was a “lovely piece of kit,” he was deluged by followers who thought his using the expression was highly pretentious. Scalzi retorted: “Apparently being an American, I should have settled on ‘Dude, this tablet is bananas,’ or something else equally comporting with my nation of origin.” This usage appears to be popular with American techies. For example, Zach Whitaker on ZDNet writes, “It doesn’t matter where you are in the world: a media on-the-go bag has to have every piece of kit you may or may not need.” The term kit in British English since the late 18th century has referred to equipment or a uniform. So why are we seeing an upsurge in Britishisms in North America? The trend is most prevalent in northeast parts of the continent, particularly among media commentators. According to American linguist and language columnist Ben Zimmer, whereas in the past it was a British-sounding accent that conveyed prestige in certain North American milieus, now it is Britishisms that area considers classy. Zimmer states that the emphasis nowadays is not on sounding aristocratic but on sounding intellectual. I think, however, we can’t understate how globally connected the world has become and as a result English is undergoing a process of ever-increasing internationalization. Although many words were Americanized when J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter series surfaced in 1997, the term “ginger” to refer to redheads was not and as a result of the millions of North American Potterheads, the term gained currency. Media influence also was in play with the term metrosexual, a fashion-conscious heterosexual man. This word, which blends metro and heterosexual, surfaced in England in 1994, but the American television program Queer Eye for the Straight Guy so popularized it that by January 2004 it was declared the American Society’s word of the year for 2003. Blimey. Howard’s book How Happy Became Homosexual and Other Mysterious Semantic Shifts was published in May by Ronsdale Press of Vancouver.

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THE MCGILL CENTER FOR STUDIES IN AGING
third annual walkathon
Come join us for an afternoon of fun & exercise!
When: Thursday, Sept. 19, 2013 Time: 1:00 - 5:00 (1 km to 10 km your choice) Where: 6875 LaSalle Blvd., Verdun, Que. In front of the entrance of Douglas Mental Health University Institute (LaSalle Blvd.) $20 (includes t-shirt & refreshments) Reserve today by contacting: Silvana Aguzzi 514-761-6131 ext. 6308 or ext. 6311 Please make cheque payable to: McGill Centre for Studies in Aging 6825 LaSalle Blvd., Verdun, QC H4H 1R3 Name : _____________________________ Address : ___________________________ Tel : _______________________________ w.w.w.aging.mcgill.ca

Healthy Women
The McGill University Health Centre is recruiting healthy women for a study of metabolic responses.

• women of 72 years of age and older • normal weight • non-smoker Length of study: Two 3-5 day stays INVESTIGATORS: José A. Morais, MD and Stéphanie Chevalier, PhD McGill Nutrition & Food Science Centre, MUHC-Royal Victoria Hospital For more information: Please contact Research Coordinator Connie Nardolillo at

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10 The Senior Times September 2013 www.theseniortimes.com

since 1986 Publisher & Managing Editor Barbara Moser Assistant Editor Kristine Berey Copy Editor Hayley Juhl Office Manager Thelma Gearey Journalists Kristine Berey, Irwin Block Sales Manager Jacquie Soloway-Cons E-mail editor@theseniortimes.com Website theseniortimes.com Advertising Jodie Alter, Gloria Beigleman, Shirley Cohen, Sandra Schachter Printing Hebdo Litho Phone 514-484-5033 Fax 514-484-8254

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Senior Times staffers gather around their giant computer deep in the 1980s.

Published by Publications Newborn Inc. Contents copyright ©2013. All rights reserved. Legal Deposit: National Library of Canada No. D368087 Dépot légal Bibliothèque Nationale du Québec, 1993. Although every caution is taken by Publications Newborn Inc. to moni­ tor advertising in the THE SENIOR TIMES, claims made by advertisers are not necessarily endorsed by Publications Newborn Inc.

In October, The Senior Times celebrates 27 years of bringing you the issues. Our presses started rolling back when hair was big, shoulders were wide and fax machines were the best thing since the rotary-dial phone. We have tons of fun things planned for our anniversary issue, but we also want to celebrate our greatest asset, the thing we are most proud of: You. Send us your best ’80s photos—don’t be shy of those high-waisted pants and bright blue eyeshadow—and we’ll share them on theseniortimes.com and publish the best ones in our October issue. Email editor@theseniortimes.com with 1980s in the subject line.

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www.theseniortimes.com September 2013 The Senior Times 11

Find courses in a host of subjects, from philosophy to photograhy
Irwin Block Use it or lose it—the adage applies to mind as well as body. Here is a selection of the many courses offered for the inquiring mind this fall at various institutions. The Thomas More Institute has 30 unique university-level courses over 12 weeks that are not repeated, including: The Price of Inequality: How n Today’s Divided Society Endangers Our Future, a study of the 2008 market crash and its aftermath. n Skepticism, Secularism, Spinoza: The notion of a philosophical God pioneered by Baruch Spinoza forced a confrontation between medieval values and emerging modernity. The course examines the context and relevance today of his theories. n In Saecula Saeculorum: Western music from antiquity to present: A survey course with musician/conductor François Ouimet, including orchestral works performed in Montreal. 3405 Atwater. 514-935-9585, thomasmore.qc.ca The Cummings Senior Centre offers English, French, Spanish, computer courses and several lecture-style series including new ones: n Native Peoples of North America is a survey course from pre-Columbian to modern times, including current issues, with Francis Charet, PhD. n History of Political Cartoons, from the 18th century to now, with John Felvinci. n Human Rights, a global survey, with Marvin Hershorn M.A. n From the Bible to the Borscht Belt: Jewish Humour and Humourists and their connections with Jewish history, with Janie Respitz, M.A. n History and the Bible and how the Old Testament stands the test of time, with David Bensoussan. 5700 Westbury. 514-342-1234, info@cummingscentre.org Dawson College offers an array of not-for-credit courses, including languages at various levels, part of its Centre for Training and Development. n Courses in English, French (including French conversation), German, Spanish (including Spanish for travelers), Italian, Japanese and Chinese given by the Confucius Institute in Quebec. Financial markets & Investn

li m itl e ss l e arnin g

ments Strategies covers markets for equities, bonds, overnight money, options and futures. Photography courses range n from camera basics to digital and documentary photography, portraiture, Photoshop and wedding photography. n Creative writing focuses on the interests of the class in two genres. All students will be asked to write at least one piece of fiction or nonfiction or several poems, to be critiqued in class. 4001 de Maisonneuve W. 514-9330047, ctd@dawsoncollege.qc.ca The McGill Community for Lifelong Learning, led by volunteers, offers one or two 10-week study groups at a full membership of $100, or a single study group at $75. For $20 per term, you may attend lectures on Fridays and Saturdays and take part in social events. n Study groups include Demystifying Contemporary Art, Modern Latin America, The Modern Middle East, Remaking the World Order, The Second World War (Part 1),
Continued on next page

12 The Senior Times September 2013 www.theseniortimes.com

li m itl e ss l e arnin g

There are blue skies over McGill, one of the many campuses offering courses on a host of topics this fall.

Hand-picked Poetry, Igor Stravinsky, Russian Artisan, Dimitri Shostakovitch, Democracy, and The History of Telecommunications in North America. n Friday Lectures include Swing—the Big Band Sound; America’s Two Tragic Wars—Vietnam and Iraq; The Christian Right—Republican Party in Israel: A Love Affairs to the Death; Death in the Forest—the Katyn Massacre; and Yoga 1 (an introduction). n Tech Savvy workshops on various aspects of digital photography are also offered. Courses run September 16 to November 22. 688 Sherbrooke W. 514-398-8234, mcgill.ca The Creative Social Centre presents the following courses, for $5 to $8 per session: n Aerobics; painting and other media; folk and line dancing; choir. Beginners welcome. 5237 Clanranald. 514-488-0907, cscmtl.com

E.N.C.O.R.E. Educational Club for Seniors offers courses and activities covering a range of areas of interests. The cost is generally $42 per semester, plus a $20 annual membership. n Bridge; acrylic painting; Character and Circumstance, 1914-60; Ciné Club; Major Canadian Artists of the 20th Century; Montreal Theatre; Rise & Decline of Western Civilization; and The 20th Century Intellectual Migration are among offerings that stand out. Teachers include former MNA Neil Cameron, Francis X. Charet, who holds a PhD in psychology and religion, and documentary film-maker Anne Henderson. 1857 de Maisonneuve W. 514-288-7971, encoreseniors.com irblock@hotmail.com

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Here is an eclectic smattering of possibilities among the opportunities offered by learning institutions and intrepid individuals. tion to Windows and Email; Intermediate Windows; Introduction to Word; Introduction to Excel; Intermediate Excel; PowerPoint Presentations; and Facebook, Twitter and Art YouTube. Two-hour workshops in Create, sip wine and uncork your Apps, Email Attachments, Digiinner artistic abilities to produce tal Cameras, iPads, Smartphones, a masterpiece in a relaxed setting eReaders, and Privacy and Security. where there are no mistakes. 514-935-7944. atwaterlibrary.ca Explore the process of painting while sipping a great glass of wine Writing and engaging in stimulating converContemplate the purpose of poetry sation. Come for an evening or reg- and read, hear and discuss poems ister for an eight-week session. Paint, written in various styles. Create a pascanvas and wine included. Contact tiche (a stylistic imitation) and poems Debrah Gilmour at 514-488-4585, in your own voice to share. debrahgilmourart.com The final project involves the compilation of a class chapbook Computers (a simple hand-bound book) A 12-hour course in Web Design as well as voluntary participaBasics (six two-hour classes) tion in a poetry reading. An eight-hour course on Introduc- 514-744-7897, vaniercollege.qc.ca

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I recently boarded an elevator on the fourth floor of the grande bibliotheque de Montréal . A black woman dressed in Muslim clothing, with her face totally unveiled, also entered the elevator, pushing a baby stroller with a little girl in it. They spoke to each other in English as we descended floor by floor to the ground level. When the elevator doors opened, she exited and an older Caucasian man told her curtly, “On est au Canada ici.” Without missing a beat, she re-

Tolerance begins with education

sponded in perfect French and in an unruffled tone, “Et au Québec aussi.” Herein lies a pre-Charter of Quebec Values tale: While legislation may well address social inequalities of Quebec society, the answer also lies in education—teaching values to children, parents, and grandparents because learning constitutes a lifelong endeavour. Professor Norman Cornett Montreal Editorial: Values charter devalues individual rights, Page 22

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Icons and Iconography in First Nations Art, a panel led by Professor Norman Cornett, specialist in religious studies and the arts, and featuring four well-known engravers, sculptors and painters, October 5 at 2 p.m. at the Canadian Guild of Crafts, 1460 Sherbrooke W., Suite B. 514-849-6091, haveyouexperienced.wordpress.com

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“Trade, not aid” — changing the world with eco-preneurs
Kristine Berey Who has not heard of the benefits of echinacea, St. John’s wort, lavender and peppermint? They’re not just used to make tea. Medicinal plants are ubiquitous in food supplements, medications and a myriad of personal-care products, including skin creams and shampoo. According to the World Health Organization, 80 per cent of the world’s population uses medicinal plants, creating a burgeoning $60-billion international industry. It is estimated that nearly one-third of the world’s heritage of such valuable plants grows in Africa, yet only 0.01 per cent of its people have participated in the global market. For the past eight years, two very different organizations led by one woman have made great progress in helping Africans exploit their own natural resources. One group is forprofit, the other not-for-profit. “Trade, not aid” is Carole Robert’s motto. The co-founder of the BDA Foundation (biotechnology for sustainable development in Africa) and PharmAfricain, a biotech company that develops innovative organic ingredients, envisioned a business model that would create a positive impact socially, environmentally and economically. “BDA is like a school and an incubator,” Robert says. “It trains African entrepreneurs to cultivate medicinal and value-added plants with quality control meeting the expectations of the international market.” Robert refers to the students at the foundation, who undergo a rigorous selection process and of whom half are women, as “eco-preneurs.” While they learn to grow, harvest and sell medicinal plants that meet international standards and acquire entrepreneurial skills, they do this with an eye toward biodiversity. “We want the entrepreneur to exploit natural health value, you need serious research done,” Robert says. Prior to Robert’s initiative, it was a “chicken and egg” situation, she says. “Nobody invested in research and development of African plants because there was no quality-controlled supply, while nobody trained African producers in quality control because the plants were not authorized and commercialized on the developed market. “I thought, with proper effort there is no reason we can’t bring quality-control production to Africa. Starting a new business has a huge impact on an entire society, bringing dignity, independence, hope and confidence in the future. There is room for active ingredients from the African market.” BDA’s program accompanies the young entrepreneurs through their training and helps them access capital and offers support during the first years running their company. It is a certified program that brings reassurance to the buyer. “What we want to create is local enterprise, not have foreigners come in and hire producers. We cannot deliver this program alone and we have many strategic allies, including international research institutes, government organizations, foundations and universities,” Robert says. The organization needs mentors. “We are looking for people who have retired, but who are experienced and willing to hold the hand of our entrepreneurs. “We need to train them in English, because the market is in English. Having a once-a-week conversation on Skype builds a feeling of trust. There is so much room to provide guidance, advice and moral support.” Carole Robert was honoured as a Woman of Distinction in the environment category by the Women’s Y foundation on September 30. To learn more about her work or about mentoring, visit bdafoundation.org.

A cut-leafed Crane’s-bill.

resources and keep it for future generations. With that they can create their own economy, ” Robert says. PharmAfricain performs research and development so products meet the standards of such regulatory bodies as Health Canada. “If you want to present a new botanical for

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www.theseniortimes.com September 2013 The Senior Times 15

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Men don’t shop as often as women. Maybe they’re smarter. Think about how many hours of our lives are spent shopping. Think of the world’s resources— just how many clothes do we really need? While we’re running around shopping, men are chilling somewhere, just relaxing. Men’s clothing has come a long way from basic rainbow these days. So men, perhaps it is time for black. You can find clothes in all the colours of the you to refresh your wardrobe. C’mon. It won’t hurt. Importations J.E.A.—Polcaro is one of those secret places smack in the heart of downtown. It’s a men’s shop sporting only fine Italian labels (Versace, Cerrutti 1881, Valentino, Lubiam, Giudice, Fratelli Rossetti and D&G shoes). Suits (36-50 regular & tall) run about $475, sport jackets $295, pants $125, silk hand-made ties $25 and Egyptian cotton shirts only $65. There are beautiful designer ties by Versace & Cerrutti at $75 apiece. You will not find synthetics here, only silk, wool, linen, cashmere and cotton—ask to see their “iron-free” cotton shirts. They also offer free espresso while you shop. 1470 Peel, Suite 120. 514-844-3014. BSW You can look sharp if you shop smart at Jaf Preta-Porter, a neighbourhood corner store that has • Housing Expert for Seniors deals on men’s clothes, some with well-known Autonomous, names: Daniel Hecter, Tommy Bahamas, m.e.n.s., Assisted Living, Alberto Feraud, Jack Victor, Altea, Tombolini, Lipson, Mac, Coppley and Nautica. Long Term Care Helpful salesmen will find pants (to size 50) • Alzheimer’s Expertise and shirts (to 5XL) starting at $25, suits (to 56) at $175-$795, sport jackets $175 & up, sweaters, Residential Real Estate Broker jackets and offer free, on-the-spot alterations. Groupe Sutton Centre Ouest Inc., There are also made-to-measure suits and shirts, Real Estate Agency and some suits for athletically built men. Ask 514-497-3775 about tuxedos and rentals, and boys’ suits in sizes www.bonniesandler.com 4-20. 900 Décarie, Ville St-Laurent, 514-7440985; 619 René Lévesque, 514-877-9888; 3240 St. Martin W., 450-978-9661; Centre de liquidation, Serving the hard of hearing for over 30 years 1880 St. Martin W., 450-688-3636. jaf.ca. People will ask you where you bought your shirts if you shop at Babashu Couture, since they sell the most interesting and eye-catching men’s shirts. With an assortment of high-end styles AUDIOPROTHÉSISTE and colours, it is your one-stop shirt shop. Their gorgeous slim-fit Italian couture-like dress shirts Selected Hearing Aids are covered by RAMQ, CSST, and DVA sport a lot of detail: stitching, twin and triple buttons, two-tone collars or perhaps a hidden pattern. They offer fashionable statements with decent prices. Also available are Italian slim-fit suits in super 160s wool. There are many colours Hearing Aids that are in sizes 38-46, and one-of-a kind ties to complete Discrete and Effective that European look. Sometimes they will have a quicky sale where a shirt could be $39 instead of $139. Or they might offer a promotion of one shirt for $59, two for $99 or three for $119 (regular prices for the shirts would be $129-$149). Classic 100 per cent cotton shirts (regularly $120) can sometimes be found as low as $39. 1254 Mount Royal E. 514-904-0276, babashucouture.com.

Black film fest highlights local, global talent Rialto celebrates
Montreal is a film buff ’s paradise, where major film fests seem to take place back to back. In its ninth edition, the Montreal International Black Film Festival takes place September 18 to 29. It holds a special significance, coming one month after the 50th anniversary of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s “I Have a Dream” speech. The biggest black film festival in Canada, MIBFF’s mission is to shine a light on black realities and diversity on the world stage. More than 100 films from around the world will be screened, many of which will be premiered, including features, mid-length and shorts, documentaries and narrative films. The opening film, Chasing Shakespeare, stars Hollywood legend Danny Glover, and Graham Greene and Tantoo Cardinal, two of Canada’s best-known aboriginal actors. It tells the story of a young Native American woman’s search for her destiny and her widower husband’s attempts to reunite with her after her death. The film has created buzz from international film festivals and has won several awards. As well, Danny Glover, who is also Built in 1923 inspired by the Neo Baroque style of a Paris opera house, the Rialto Theatre’s first official function was as a movie palace. It has become a venue featuring live entertainment. The Legends of Rock n’Roll series brings you Mitch Ryder (September14) and doo wop groups The Casinos and The Clusters (October 18). The Tribute Shows will take you back through time with The Rat Pack (September 13), Imagine, a tribute to John Lennon (October 11), and the Aloha from Hawaii tribute to Elvis (November 23). Opera and classical music continue to be an integral part of programming, with La Boheme (September 21-22). 514-770-7773, theatrerialto.ca The film Denis will close the Montreal International Black Film Festival. an activist will be honoured with this year’s MIBFF’s 2013 Humanitarian Award on the festival’s opening night for his extraordinary humanitarian contributions and dedication to the fight against global injustice and inequality. For information on events and programming: 514-882-3334 , montrealblackfilm.com.

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www.theseniortimes.com September 2013 The Senior Times 17

Ovarian cancer isn’t a silent killer. When it whispers, listen
Kristine Berey Ovarian cancer has bothered medical professionals for a long time, says Dr. Lucie Gilbert, director of gynecological oncology at the MUHC, because unlike in breast, colon and other cancers, very little progress has been achieved in the last three decades. “Ovarian cancer rates are flat,” Gilbert says. “It is recognized that the reason is that the vast majority of women come to us in advanced stages.” Eighty per cent of patients are diagnosed in Stages 3 and 4. Surgery works if you catch the disease when it’s confined to the organ that it started in, Gilbert says. “We felt if we somehow could diagnose the disease when it’s still in the ovaries, we wouldn’t be in the trouble we are in.” Part of the problem is access to medical care and the fact that symptoms associated with ovarian cancer are not particularly gynecological. “Ovarian cancer is known to have symptoms that are very vague and non-specific, such as feeling bloated, urinary frequency, feeling full— these don’t seem like serious symptoms yet are known to be symptoms of ovarian cancer.” In 2007, some of the most prestigious cancer societies advised women in the U.S. that if they have these symptoms, they should see their gynecologist and have a transvaginal ultrasound and a tumour marker CA125 blood test. Based on this recommendation, Gilbert and her team set up a pilot project as a research study to see whether early diagnoses could be made if symptomatic women were given access to fast track diagnostic tests. “We’re not talking about symptoms that have been there a long time— this is not ovarian cancer.” But if new symptoms have been present for at least two weeks, check it out. “It’s the newness that is important, not the severity. If you wait for severe symptoms, it’s too late,” Gilbert says. In the study, the DOVE program (Diagnosing Ovarian Cancer Early) participants did not have to wait for a referral, as Gilbert and her team felt that that was where the problem was. Waiting to see a physician, or being sent for other tests for seemingly garden-variety symptoms or waiting before a test could be done all may delay diagnosis. “In our study we found this approach did result in diagnosing the disease earlier, but not in Stage 1, as we thought we would. We stumbled upon an accidental finding,” Gilbert said. “To our surprise we found that the worst type of cancer, High Grade Serous Cancer, which causes 90 per cent of ovarian cancer deaths, is not Gilbert says. On one hand, it is a service given to women who may have symptoms that can develop into ovarian cancer. “We want women with symptoms to go to these clinics. One in 62 has a cancer, one in 122 has ovarian cancer.” Gilbert says that to find the one, 121 women must be tested. “It is worthwhile. It may make the difference between them living and not living What we want is that women do not hesitate to bring up new symptoms, do not wait for them to get worse.” Just as cancer cells can drop on the ovary, some can end up in the uterus. Gilbert and her team are investigating a special Pap test, hoping that it will pick up signs of illness earlier than the blood test or the ultrasound. “Symptoms are a huge list and we’d like to narrow it down and streamline the process. At the moment it’s a very tedious long-hand process.” At the centres, data are collected and analyzed and women fill out a questionnaire in the hope of learning to profile the disease better and to determine more accurately who needs access to prompt medical care. Ovarian cancer is the fifth most common cause of death in Canada, and Gilbert says in Montreal each year we spend $20 million on chemotherapy just for this disease. “What we are asking women is if there is anything different happening in the ovary, go and have the test.” For more information on symptoms or medical care access, call the DOVE Diagnostic Centre: 1-866716-3267, much.ca/studies/dove

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really an ovarian cancer but appears to start in the fallopian tube.” The cancer cells “seed,” or drop onto the ovary, which Gilbert says is almost like an innocent bystander. “From the public health point of view, this is the cancer that matters. By the time we do an ultrasound we find it enlarged, in stage 3. This is why it is being diagnosed late.” Given early access to tests, women were diagnosed late but at least in an operable stage. Another finding of this study was that the subjects were not really representative of the general population of Montreal, and they decided to “take the clinic out into the community” to reach those in the highest risk group, women over 65. With the help of CIHR, Gilbert and her team got one of four large grants given across Canada, $1.5 million to open 12 satellite centres in areas where there is a higher proportion of women over 50. The initiative has a double purpose,

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18 The Senior Times September 2013 www.theseniortimes.com

Senior-friendly Montreal park inaugurated
Kristine Berey A park dedicated to seniors was inaugurated last month thanks to an initiative by the Quebec government to create senior-friendly cities. “In 2011, the mayor of Montreal confirmed the city’s commitment to Municipalite Amie des Aines, and we subscribed to different principles of that program, going from words to action,” Ville St. Laurent Mayor Alan de Sousa said in a phone interview. At the corner of Muir and Montpellier, in an area with many of seniors, Caron Park covers more than 18,000 square metres. The renovation cost $420,000, including $100,000 from the Quebec government. The first project under the program includes a sheltered stage so seniors can get involved in such activities as theatre or singing. “We also enlarged the space around the stage so people could do line dancing and we added a separate trail where seniors could try out different work-stations” to exercise, de Sousa said. There are instructions with pictures at each exercise station, which range from stretching to pushups, clearly outlining how to use the equipment. “The equipment is very user friendly, there are no lineups and the workouts can be done at the individual’s own pace,” de Sousa said. “I didn’t see anything that would preclude using the equipment in winter. It’s for everyone and the actual equipment is fairly solid, good for all the community.”

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De Sousa said Caron Park there are four similar parks in the area. “Wherever you live, hopefully you have one with close access to your home. We want to build a community in better physical shape with more attention to health.” The park was designed to be environmentally friendly, de Sousa said. “We had an environmental focus and used LED lights, which have reduced energy consumption, along the pathways.” De Sousa called the initiative a signature project for seniors in the community. They were consulted from the beginning, expressed their needs, participated in obtaining funding by visiting different ministers and saw the project grow from concept to realization. “They were active participants, and confirmed to us that we were on the right track.”

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Best Wishes for a Healthy & Happy New Year
www.theseniortimes.com September 2013 The Senior Times 19

Photo: Barbara Moser

Back to the future with the Roto-Broil 400
Flavour Guy Barry Lazar
Rare beef is red, Roquefort is blue. Carrots are orange, but I love a brown roux. As the theme of this issue is colour, I was planning on adding to this doggerel with a full colourpleasing palate. However, while raw foods come in many colours, the Flavour Guy knows that cooked food yearns to be brown. This is when onions caramelize, when toast cries out for butter, when the roast is ready and the skin crackles. This is also the point when danger is at your elbow and catastrophe is seconds away. Left a moment too long, brown turns to black and yummy yields to yech! Standing at the precipice between dinner and disaster is part of the joy of cooking for me, and I have fallen many times, my attention shifting at just the wrong time; the chicken changing irrevocably from a delectable golden brown to something indistinguishable from the coals. That is why I praise our latest kitchen gadget. While leading gastronomes are investing in expensive technology that can, for example, emulsify olive oil into ice cream, the Flavour Guy latches onto the Roto-Broil 400. Don’t look for it at WalMart or Sears; eBay is more likely. This is a futuristic cooking machine—a 17-pound stainless steel behemoth—created in the 1950s. The writing on its tempered glass front claims it can barbecue, roast, broil, toast, grill, fry and boil. Essentially, it has a large internal coil that gets hot enough to make almost any meal. One picture from an early ad shows coffee perking on the top as breakfast cooks inside. For years, our Roto-Broil 400 sat ignored in the garage. Before that, it was almost the only “modern” small kitchen appliance that my motherin-law owned. Who needed a Cuisinart, when a knife and a chopping board would do? Why buy a blender if you could handle a whisk? But a RotoBroil—“the 7-way complete electric kitchen”— how could you be without it? This summer we hauled it out, lugged it to the cottage and plugged it in. The rotisserie turned, the heating element blasted away. Our cottage oven has never worked but now we had a Roto-Broil 400! It was time to see what it could do. I shoved the twofoot-long Roto-Broil skewer through a five-pound roast and pinioned it with large metal spikes, all part of a system that originally included a recipe book for “Mr. and Mrs. Roto-Broil.” With a mechanical wheeze, the machine kicked into gear and the roast started to turn. Through the glass door, I watched the meat slowly and evenly brown. More fascinating, chunks that I had not tied properly started to flap around and then, as the roast revolved, errant pieces fell back into place. I imagined a large chicken rotating with wings waving at me as they went by. To convince myself that I was actually cooking, I occasionally opened the door and basted the meat but really, I had nothing to do but watch. Some people relax looking at fish in an aquarium. I had the Roto-Broil 400. If “zen and the art of cooking” was a TV show, this would be it. Two and a half hours later the crust had seared to a perfect dark brown and the meat was done: dinner à la mode, circa 1958. Deconstructed pesto pasta Recently we returned from a farmers’ market. We had an armload of basil leaves, succulent tomatoes, and I remembered that there was a chunk of Romano cheese in the fridge and some pine nuts. Obviously, I should make a pesto but I didn’t want to go through the effort of mixing a paste. Instead, I quickly put together a deconstructed pesto pasta. Finely chop a clove or two of garlic, slice a green onion (also called a scallion) and a large tomato into bite-size bits, tear a handful of basil into small pieces. Slowly toast a couple of tablespoons of pine nuts in an oven or frying pan until they are golden in an oven or frying pan. Make sure they don’t burn. Boil a large pot of water, and add a cup of penne pasta per person. Cook until it is almost done. It should still be toothy. Remove it from the hot water and cool it quickly in cold water. Save a cup of the hot pasta water. In a large frying pan, heat a couple of tablespoons of olive oil. Slowly sauté the garlic and scallions until they are soft but not brown. Add the tomato and cook until it starts to stew, add the basil. When the leaves wilt, add the pasta, reheat it and, as necessary, add just enough of the pasta water to make a sauce. Toss in the pine nuts with a tablespoon or two of grated Romano or other hard Italian cheese. Serve with more cheese at the table. Leftovers make for a delicious pasta salad the following day.

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20 The Senior Times September 2013 www.theseniortimes.com

Neighbourhood brunch restaurant now open for dinner
Irwin Block No neighbourhood is complete without a solid brunch restaurant, and that’s the role Ben & Florentine provides in the Town of Montreal shopping centre at 2356 Lucerne, adjacent to the Metropolitan Blvd. We dropped in the other day for a midday meal, attracted by the news that the restaurant has extended its hours and is now open for dinner until 9 every night. It opens at 6 am. The TMR restaurant is a bright and well-lit storefront—the old Murray’s—with tables and lots of booths. The food is prepared in an openkitchen-style enclosed section of the room. The “Quebec menu,” tailored for the chain’s 25 outlets in the province, includes waffles, pancakes and crêpes, eggs Florentine and Benedict, cereals, oatmeal, French toast, lox and bagel. The format seems popular, since another seven franchise operations are set to open across Quebec. We were greeted by a friendly waiter and immediately offered coffee as we examined the menu. Barbara chose the Giant Tuna Melt ($10.95)— tuna salad and Swiss cheese between slices of thick, toasted country bread, and served with fresh fruit and home fries, in the form of small A complete quarter chicken meal... now that’s an extraordinary deal!
Best Wishes to our Jewish Clients for the Holiday Season

$1.35 charge for maple syrup was relatively reasonable. Since I am battling the bulge, I chose the fruit explosion ($11.45)—a substantial bowl of fresh fruit and muesli. The waiter happily substituted lowfat vanilla yogurt for the English cream. It comes with a choice of croissant, bagel, or raisin bread. I chose the latter, which came lightly toasted. We enjoyed our food and were more than satisfied with the quantity and freshness. The server came by several times to ask if everything was okay. He served and refilled our glasses with water. The service was generous and friendly and the radio was kept low so as to maintain a relaxed ambiance and not upset delicate ears. With the new late-closing policy, the restaurant serves a $12.99 dinner. Among the 25 choices are a variety of salads (Greek, chicken Caesar) with soup; chicken or beef burgers; Paninis grilled cheese and smoked meat, with soup or salad; meat or vegetarian lasagna; fish ‘n chips; fettuccine BoBen & Florentine’s walls whet your appetite. lognese; and meatloaf, with soup or salad. A full dinner menu is under development, and is cubes of fried potatoes. To get her veggie fix, Bar- to be ready by the end of September. bara asked for a side of tomatoes. The restaurant is wheelchair accessible. It was quite filling, so Barbara passed on her Info: 514-733-7337. usual fresh fruit bowl ($3.75). She noted that the irblock@hotmail.com
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www.theseniortimes.com September 2013 The Senior Times 21

Photo: Barbara Moser

P

Editorial

Proposed charter of Quebec values devalues individual rights
Montrealers are shaking their heads about the priorities of this Parti Québécois government, as expressed in its obsession about defining and imposing a so-called Charter of Quebec Values. As these lines are being written, details of the charter are not yet known, but the essentials are clear: the Pauline Marois regime wants to ban public-sector employees from wearing religious symbols, but will leave the crucifix in place in the National Assembly. The backstory is equally clear: The PQ has failed to garner political support for a tougher language law, which is stalled in the National Assembly. Facing a reinvigorated Liberal Party with new leader Philippe Couillard, Marois is making a desperate attempt to manufacture a crisis and profit from it politically. The government is wrong to adopt a rigid approach dictating rules that affect an individual’s profound beliefs. This subject has evoked almost no controversy in the past few years, since several sensationalized are highly trained professionals, or have the much-needed skills and energy immigrants bring to a new land. Quebec needs immigrants and should continue to welcome them. While some Muslim immigrants are content with a secular lifestyle, others believe the hijab is prescribed as modest dress. There has yet to be a public case where a hijab-wearing teacher has been found to be proselytizing to her students in a public school or daycare. The same rules that would apply to a Christian or Hindu teacher preventing preaching religion in class would apply to her. The idea that someone who wears a religious symbol is more likely to push his or her religious views on unsuspecting students is paranoia. The best way for a Muslim woman to feel comfortable in society as she adapts to North American ways and customs is for her to work in a secular environment. Should she be forced to work in a private Muslim school, ghettoized as soon as she arrives in our open society? This is a terrible idea that defeats the goal of successful integration. Should a Jewish or Islamic doctor be forced to work in specific hospitals such as the Jewish General or a future “Muslim General”—the only hospitals where, according to some versions of the charter, they would be allowed to wear religious headgear? It recalls the strike by interns at Notre Dame Hospital in 1934 after they hired a Jewish physician, Sam Rabinovitch. Is this the direction in which the PQ wants to drag Quebec? Despite the political risks—there is a backlash against reasonable accommodation of religious practices other than Roman Catholics—Liberal leader Phillipe Couillard made it clear he would oppose a law to ban religious gear. But in line with a Liberal bill that was never passed, he would draw the line at a teacher covering her face “because of the message it would have sent about the relationship between men and women when equality is an important part of our fundamental values.” Many left-leaning sovereignists have called on the government to back off. They include municipal politician Louise Harel, who says the Quebec government should not dictate values. Québec Solidaire coleader Françoise David blasted any proposal that excludes women even as it claims to be inclusive. The Fédération autonome de l’enseignement du Québec, representing 32,000 public-school teachers, demanded the PQ scrap plans to impose a secular dress code. They urged the removal of the crucifix from the National Assembly, which both PQ and Liberal governments maintain should stay because of its historical relevance. Québec Solidaire and the teachers’ federation demand that any move to enforce French-style laicité should start by cutting state support for religious schools. Do we really want a witchhunt where we start measuring the size of a religious pendant or chase away a qualified employee because of a head covering that has religious significance? This is not the open and welcoming Quebec that most of us cherish.

stories sparked the Bouchard-Taylor Commission on reasonable accommodation. In a city that hasn’t had a demonstration its citizens don’t love, there has yet to be one demanding that a Muslim female child-care worker remove her hijab. This charter is aimed squarely at the growing population of Muslims in Quebec, estimated at almost 245,000. As conditions worsen in the Middle East, their number can be expected to grow. Many from North Africa, Syria and Lebanon get points because they speak French. Many

Canada

Hon. Irwin Cotler
P.C., O.C., M.P. Mount Royal 514-283-0171 irwincotler.ca

Hon. Stéphane Dion
P.C., M.P. Saint-Laurent– Cartierville 514-335-6655 stephanedion.liberal.ca

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Marc Garneau
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Justin Trudeau
M.P. Papineau 514-277-6020 justin.liberal.ca

May this be a New Year blessed with health, happiness & peace! Que l’année qui commence vous apporte santé, bonheur et paix!
22 The Senior Times September 2013 www.theseniortimes.com

Greetings for the Jewish New Year from your MNAs May the New Year be blessed with Health & Happiness! Que l’année qui commence vous apporte santé et bonheur!

Shana Tovah! Bonne année !
Lawrence S. Bergman MNA for D’Arcy-McGee 514-488-7028 Marguerite Blais MNA for Saint-Henri– Sainte-Anne 514-933-8796 Jean-Marc Fournier MNA for Saint-Laurent 514-747-4050

Henri-François Gautrin MNA for Verdun 514-766-7503

Geoffrey Kelley MNA for Jacques-Cartier 514-697-7663

Pierre Marsan MNA for Robert-Baldwin 514-684-9000

Guy Ouellette MNA for Chomedey 450-686-0166

François Ouimet MNA for Marquette 514-634-9720

Gilles Ouimet MNA for Fabre 450-689-5516

Robert Poëti MNA for MargueriteBourgeoys 514-368-1818

Jean Rousselle MNA for Vimont 450-628-9269

Kathleen Weil MNA for Notre-Damede-Grâce 514-489-7581

www.theseniortimes.com September 2013 The Senior Times 23

Look, listen, double-check to detect neglect
Let’s Talk About It Bonnie Sandler, BS.W.
We read stories about neglect of seniors, be it at home or in public or private residential care. It’s an unfortunate, global reality, but some of these sad situations could be prevented if families were able to have a stronger presence in the residence and be more vigilant in “supervising” the care provided. I have had concerned family members consider placing a nanny-cam-style hidden camera in the person’s living space. Often private care is hired on top of the care that is being paid for. Residences must have government accreditation, but this is not a guarantee that neglect will not occur. Neglect comes in different forms and there are not enough government standards to ensure the safety and dignity of a senior needing daily care and supervision. It’s important to keep in mind that the words neglect and abuse do not only refer to what someone might be doing to your loved one—it may also refer to what is not being done. There are obvious physical signs to look out for: sudden weight loss, unusual disorientation or confusion, bruising or marking on the body, bedsores that are not attended to, and more. The less obvious signs are toenails that have not been cut, clothes that are not washed regularly, linens that are not clean, dirty clothes in drawers, and disturbing smells in the room or on the person. Neglect can occur if care residences are not vigilant about hygiene or the general health of the resident. Urinary tract infections are a common occurrence among seniors, and if not caught and treated on time could have serious consequences. The first clue is often a change in the person’s behaviour. Tests are simple and quick and can be often done in a residence. A quick test by a family member would be to accompany the person to the bathroom when they urinate and if a stronger than usual odour is detected, request a test for a UTI. I would hope that residences work with qualified and involved geriatric physicians and the nursing staff will report to the doctor any suspicious changes in the person’s personality, eating or sleeping patterns. Those affected by dementia need close supervision since most will not be able to express what they are feeling. They may be experiencing pain. I encourage family and friends to spend time in residences and observe the interaction of staff and residents. Is staff preoccupied with cleaning and household chores or are they spending time with residents? Are residents spoken to in a respectful manner or are they ignored or spoken to in an impatient or degrading tone? Is the resident usually sleeping when you arrive? It is a good idea to perform a body check every so often to ensure that your loved one does not have any suspicious skin irritations. One of my clients in a small private home, who was receiving full care including hygiene and showering, had to have a toenail surgically removed since it was not cut regularly and had grown into the skin. If a senior falls and is unable to get up on their own, they should not be moved. 911 should be called immediately and the emergency contact person right after so that the senior is not put in an ambulance alone, frightened and in pain. I would like to see more communication between the residence and family members. Log books should be recorded in daily with free access to family members. Don’t shy away from asking too many questions. Your actions should not be seen as bothersome or be ignored. If you have serious concerns, you should report them to the local CLSC. There has to be more transparency and accountability, and accreditation of private residences need to have stricter guidelines in terms of staffing, stimulation and medical involvement.

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24 The Senior Times September 2013 www.theseniortimes.com

Analysis

Time to face the culture of corruption
Irwin Block I met a city councillor friend at a play this winter who tried to minimize the explosive testimony at the Charbonneau inquiry into collusion and corruption in Montreal’s construction industry. “I don’t believe half of what is being said,” remarked the councilor, who is considered progressive and honest. Unfortunately for my friend, if even half of what is being recounted in the hearings is corroborated, it indicates that a culture of corrupt practices has been allowed to grow for more than a decade in the Census Metropolitan Area of Montreal, which covers 3.8 million people, and the good people in government have done nothing to stop it. This system links construction firms, often with Mafia ties, and major engineering offices to illegal practices by elected and high-ranking municipal officials and managers in Montreal, Laval and rapidly growing off-island communities. In the spring, when hearings were extended into 2015, evidence surfaced that illegal campaign donations by major engineering firms had been made to provincial Liberal and Parti Québécois campaign coffers. Corrupt practices involving municipalities included rigged contracts to enable Mafia payoffs, brazen cash kickbacks to elected officials and managers, illegal campaign contributions, lim-

Montreal’s skyline under the smog of corruption.

iting competition for construction contracts to a favoured few with the right connections, and threats to discourage competition. This criminal system has developed in a moral and ethical vacuum, as well-paid officials participated in or tolerated corrupt practices and whistle-blowers have been virtually non-existent—except for the courageous few who leaked information anonymously to the media. Among the most egregious examples: former city of Montreal engineer Gilles Surprenant said he accepted more than $730,000 in kickbacks from a dozen contractors who submitted inflated bids. Former city of Montreal engineer Luc Leclerc admitted he had accepted more than $500,000 in kickbacks from construction firms.
Continued on page 26

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He also admitted accepting vacations, hockey tickets and home renovations and described a golf vacation with reputed Mafia kingpin Vito Rizzuto, whom he called “charming and funny.” When these revelations are considered in parallel with raids and arrests by the Quebec Provincial Police anti-corruption unit and criminal charges laid, what is unfolding is the biggest corruption scandal in Quebec. The depressing testimony and spate of resignations of elected officials, including mayors Gérald Tremblay and Michael Applebaum of Montreal, mayor Gilles Vaillancourt of Laval and high-ranking managers, appear to justify the 2010 Maclean’s Magazine cover story calling Quebec the most corrupt province. Vaillancourt, alleged to be ringleader who operated a system of collusion and bribery from 1996 to 2010, was indicted on 12 charges, including conspiracy, fraud, influence peddling, breach of trust and gangsterism. Applebaum, who replaced Tremblay, has been indicted on 14 charges, including fraud, corruption, breach of trust and conspiracy. Former city councilor Saulie Zajdel faces five counts of breach of trust, fraud, corruption and secret commissions. Before the Charbonneau hearings started, Frank Zampino, Tremblay’s former right-hand man as executive committee chairman, had been charged with fraud, conspiracy and breach of trust as the mastermind of a scheme to favour one company in the awarding of a $300-million contract. Certainly, this inquiry dwarfs in its impact and as a system the findings of the Cliche Commission into violence in the construction industry held in 1974, which boiled down to the use of violence by four affiliates of the Quebec Federation of Labour to monopolize jobs and exclude workers who joined non-QFL unions. Even the Sponsorship Scandal, in which the federal Liberals siphoned off funds to promote federalism in Quebec after the 1995 referendum, pales in comparison. The system of corrupt practices laid out before the Charbonneau Commission includes testimony that engineering firms got around restrictions on political party donations by corporations and unions. Eight of Quebec’s 10 largest engineering firms have been cited for illegal donations to the provincial

Liberals and PQ. Alex Norris, a former Gazette investigative reporter and now a Montreal city councillor with Projet Montréal—the only grass-roots political party among the city’s three formations—blames the city’s political leadership for willful blindness. They are beholden to the suppliers and contractors who work for the city and largely responsible for funding their election campaigns, he argues. How about the civil service? Could it be that the advent of a professional and non-partisan provincial civil service in the 1960s lacked an ethical component at the municipal level? Is corruption a Quebec thing? Blame it on the Mafia? Hardly. In September 2004, veteran St. Laurent city councilor Irving Grundman pleaded guilty, along with councilor René Dussault, to municipal corruption charges after being caught in a sting in relation to land rezoning. Grundman was sentenced to 23 months of community service and fined $50,000. In the transaction recorded by police videotape, Grundman, who claims he was taking kickbacks for his political party, not himself, says to Dussault: “I’ve done this for quite a few years, OK, and so far so good.” Where were the whistle blowers? According to commission investigator Guy Desrosiers, as far back as 1997 city hall authorities were told of problems in the public-works department and ways to correct them. Nothing was done and the rot spread. Not waiting for an ethical revolution, the PQ government has stepped in to stop what cabinet minister Jean-François Lisée calls “scoundrels, low-lifes and criminals” from doing business with the city. Firms contracted to carry out road and sewer projects costing $100,000 or more will have to be accredited with the Autorité des marchés financiers, a monitoring agency. The time has come for political leaders in Quebec to face up to this apparent moral and ethical deficit among some lawmakers and too many public servants. If the current crop cannot provide moral leadership and ensure honest government, they deserve to be turfed out. irblock@hotmail.com This analysis was first published in the summer/fall edition of Inroads, the Canadian Journal of Opinion. www.inroadsjournal.com.

Urban adventure in Erie, Pennsylvannia, reveals gems
Hayley Juhl It’s like the 1970s happened and Erie said, “Uh, no thanks.” And it’s not just that the signage and architecture echoes the first half of the century, it’s that things have remained here mostly untouched. Erie’s growth was seriously stunted as manufacturing jobs shrank and the lake trade faded in the 1970s, followed closely by the North American exodus to the suburbs. Tree-lined streets with wide sidewalks showcase war-time houses, modest and subdued, with deep verandas and neat little lawns. Fireflies light up darkened avenues. Businesses sing their names and services in thick, swirly type or fat square fonts. Some of the businesses are operating still, some are shuttered and forgotten. The Peninsula Motel lasted long enough to have window air-conditioners installed but has since been locked up, boarded up and given over to the elements. Its boxy, neat brickwork is discoloured, its dramatic two-storey windows grimy

It’s like Erie, Pa., never aged. Miss Jilly, bottom right, might also never grow up.

and neglected. In the ’50s and ’60s, like much of charming Erie, it must have been a beacon for weary travels and locals looking for … respite. The Erie Times-News excitedly reported in May that a potential buyer (the motel is listed at $195,000) has stepped forward and—even better, the paper exclaims—is an Erie-area resident. Neighbours of the motel say they don’t mind whether it’s ren- the eyesore taken care of. ovated or demolished, they just want But it’s a charming eyesore in a city that refuses to age. luanshya@yahoo.com
Photo: Kevin Burkholder

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www.theseniortimes.com September 2013 The Senior Times 27

Photos: Hayley Juhl

Eisenhower Interstate system “firsts” are entirely subjective
Hayley Juhl Near the end of an epic month-long road trip that spanned 19 states and two provinces, my trusty 10-year-old truck rolled along what is billed with typical Kansas enthusiasm as The First Completed Section of The Interstate System. Though my family and I had become mostly jaded by the hyperbole of roadside signage, this drew contented smiles all around. The interstate system has led us to Louisiana, Texas, California, Colorado—dozens upon dozens of spectacular places. And while country roads offer charm and adventure pivotal to any successful road trip, the interstates veining across the country are crucial to travellers. The first section of interstate! But our excitement might have been misplaced. The word “first,” when it comes to the Dwight D. Eisenhower National System of Interstate and Defense Highways, is subjective. President Franklin D. Roosevelt got the interstate wheels turning in 1941 by commissioning a report on the feasibility of a trans-American highway. Three years later, 40,000 miles of highway were approved, on the understanding that they would link not only major American cities, but also provide access to Canada and Mexico. Routes were chosen, dreams were dreamed, but no money was earmarked for the ambitious project until the 1950s, and even then the cash came in trickles. Enter Eisenhower, who moved into the Oval Office in 1953. He wanted this road, and he wanted it bad. With his prodding, the project grew to 41,000 miles (as of 2002, it was nearly 47,000) and became a reality across the nation. On June 29, 1956, he put his presidential John Doe on the Federal-Aid Highway Act. On August 2, Missouri signed two contracts under the act—for what would become the trailhead of the storied Route 66 and for the future Mark Twain Expressway, I70. It proudly boasts that it’s “the first project in the United States on which actual con-

Two sunsets for the price of one in Wyoming, I80, and the stunning beauty of the Colorado River on the I90.

struction was started under the provisions of the new Federal-Aid Highway Act of 1956.” Not too sexy on a road sign, but it sounds legitimate. So what of Kansas? That state signed a contract under the act on August 31, but work had already begun on the strip of blacktop I’d be driving over 57 years later. Thanks to that head start, that section was finished first and got its ribbon-cutting ceremony before Missouri, making it the first completed project under the act. We got our thrill in Kansas, but we’ve driven on both “firsts.” In fact, we’ve driven more than 13,000 miles of the Eisenhower Interstate System. Just 33,000 to go. luanshya@yahoo.com This was originally published on the Life’s a Trip blog, juhlbox.wordpress.com.

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28 The Senior Times September 2013 www.theseniortimes.com

Photo: Melani Litwack

Photo: Hayley Juhl

A “private residence for seniors” is defined in the Quebec Health and Social Services Act as all or part of a building inhabited mainly by people 65 and over. In addition to providing space, at least two of the following services must be offered: meals, nursing, personal assistance, domestic help, leisure activities and special security. Personal services are defined by regulation as personal hygiene, eating aid, mobility aid, transfer aid and distribution of medications. The cost of these services may be included in the rent or paid in another manner. Before it can operate legally, the residence must obtain a temporary certificate of compliance, which is valid for one year and not renewable, and a permanent certificate of compliance, which remains valid for three years and is renewable. This certificate is issued by a health and social service agency for the area in which the residence is located. No one should contract with or enter a private residence without verifying that it has obtained the necessary certificate of compliance. It is the responsibility of any professional to carry out such verification before referring anyone to a residence. To qualify for a certificate of compliance, a residence must meet certain health and social criteria set out by the government as a series of conditions. The first one states that the resident and his close relatives “must be treated with courtesy, fairness and understanding and with respect for their dignity, autonomy and needs.” A person considering living in a residence or his close relative or representative must be given a written statement containing “in clear and simple terms,” among other things, what services are offered and their cost, the complaint procedure and the code of conduct that applies to

“Private residence” and “personal services” clearly defined in law

eral health and safety of residents with the order of the agency or forand liability insurance. When the feit its certification. Legal Ease residence does not meet the above Private seniors’ residences are busiJoyce Blond requirements at the end of the one- nesses and are run as such. Their year period, a permanent certificate interests and those of the residents Frank of compliance will be refused. may not always coincide. When B.A., B.C.L., LL.M. It is the responsibility of the Health their actions threaten the wellbeand Social Services Agency for the ing of their residents or cause them area in which the residence is lo- damage, the law provides recourse staff and residents. cated to inspect each residence to through the complaint procedure, Another noteworthy provision ensure that the regulations are fol- the Human Rights Commission or states that the operator of the resi- lowed and that there are no situa- the civil courts. Unfortunately, these dence may not resort to force, isola- tions or practices that could pose a procedures can be extremely expention, mechanical means or a chemical threat to the residents. Where cor- sive and stressful and consequently substance to control a resident’s be- rective measures are necessary, the often remain unused. haviour. Such means can only be owner of the residence must comply used exceptionally and temporarily in case of an emergency where it is necessary to protect someone, but in no case can a chemical substance be used. In cases of emergency where forbidden control measures were used, a report must be made to the relevant health and social services Mine the knowledge of our columnists agency. Another condition pertains to the The Senior Times will host an information session with columnists meals provided to residents, which Bonnie Sandler, Joyce Blond Frank and Deborah Leahy on October 4 must offer varied menus that confrom 1 to 3 pm at the offices of the newspaper, 4077 Décarie. form to Canada’s Food Guide to Those who wish to meet with them should make an appointment by callHealthy Eating. A further requireing 514-484-5033 or emailing editor@theseniortimes.com with Consulment is that every resident whose tation in the subject. Individual, 15-minute consultations will be provided. health, life or integrity is in danger must receive the care and services required by his condition. There must also be a call-for-help system available to each resident adapted to his specific needs. At least one employee of the age of majority with up-to-date training by a certified specialist in cardiopulmonary resuscitation, standard first aid and moving patients safely must always be present in the residence. There are many other provisions relating to residents’ personal information, safety, housekeeping, emergency intervention, first aid, equipment maintenance, fire safety, emergency phone numbers, administration of medication, gen-

TM

www.jjcardinal.ca

Shanah Tovah to our extended family and friends
www.theseniortimes.com September 2013 The Senior Times 29

The Capistrano Home
Accredited Home of Donald Berman Maimonides Residential assisted living for seniors in NDG.
Everyone is welcome! Digie Capistrano 514-813-4322

What the heck is an annuity anyway?

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Newly constructed. 5 condos available: Studio, 31/2 41/2 and penthouse for rent. Long & short term rentals available. Starting at $1095.00. Walking distance to Angrignon metro, Angrignon Park and Carrefour Angrignon. 15 mins to downtown, with easy access to highway 20. Spectacular view. Interior parking and storage. Indoor pool, fitness room wtih sauna. Stainless steel appliances. Mike Giampaolo 514-926-0808 or 514-364-1114 www.gmelatti.ca

Best Wishes for a Happy New Year
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30 The Senior Times September 2013 www.theseniortimes.com

while RRIFs are suitable for most retirees, they aren’t for everybody. For some, an annuity may a better choice. Financial Fitness be An annuity will generate fixed monthly payDeborah Leahy ments without the need to worry about managing investments or making difficult financial decisions. An RRIF, on the other hand, requires you to continue to manage investments in much the When it comes to retirement income, registered same way you did with your RRSP. This can be as retirement income funds (RRIFs) are by far the simple as regularly renewing GICs or as complex most popular choice for Canadians. as managing a portfolio of individual securities. About 80 per cent of us convert our registered An annuity is a contract with a financial instiretirement savings plans (RRSPs) to RRIFs. But tution that provides regular income in exchange for a lump sum of money. The regular payments consist of a combination of the repayment of part of the principal of your original investment, plus Tel: 514-939-7247 Fax: 514-939-2699 income earned by the investment. Annuities are offered primarily by life-insurance companies. JOYCE BLOND FRANK To better understand how an annuity works, B.A., B.C.L., LL.M. Avocat-Attorney think of it as a mortgage in reverse. With a mortgage, a lender gives you a sum of money that you Family and Elder Law repay through a series of regular payments over time. Interest is charged on the outstanding bal1310 Greene Ave. Suite 660 ance. With an annuity, you provide money to an Westmount institution that pays you back through a series of regular payments, along with interest or other inLynda Pitt-Taylor come generated by your outstanding principal. Geriatric consultant Annuity payments are usually fixed throughout - Seniors’ accommodations the life of the contract, and are established when - Home care - Respite care you purchase the annuity. The level of payments - Case management - Alzheimer’s expertise is dependent on a number of factors. NECTION One is the length of the annuity. Some annuities N S CO provide income until age 90, while others provide Free initial consultation an income stream for life (and in some cases it 514-369-2185 877-878-6676 can continue to your spouse). Longer periods of connectionsservicesforseniors.com expected payouts reduce payments, if all other factors are equal. Another important element is prevailing interest rates at the time you buy the annuity. The higher EternEl Monuments the rate, the more income you receive. This inEric Suissa come does not change if rates change, since payments are fixed, so the purchase of an annuity is Sensitive to the emotional needs of families. more attractive during times of higher rates. We look forward to serving your needs. Other factors include age and gender. 5477 Paré, Suite 101, Mont-Royal When you purchase an annuity with funds from Tel.:514 658 9355 • Cell.: 514 655 3328 an RRSP, annual payments are taxable. Until that point, the money hasn’t been taxed because you www.eternElmonuments.com received an income-tax deduction for the original RRSP contribution and your investments grew sheltered from tax inside your retirement plan. While annuities are a good solution for those who need a regular income stream and want a simple financial life in retirement, they have disadvantages. The primary drawback is that you have little control over your money or level of income. With an RRIF, you can easily change your investment strategy and alter the amount of income you draw from the plan. You’ll need to establish what is most important to you about your income stream before choosing your retirement option. If you still want to retain some control over your retirement income, consider both an annuity and an RRIF. This way you’ll have the best of both worlds—a simple source of regular income and a portion of your portfolio over which you have greater control. Deborah Leahy is an investment adviser with Edward Jones, member of the Canadian Investor Protection Fund.
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www.theseniortimes.com September 2013 The Senior Times 31

What’s happening
Gardens of Light • until Nov. 3 The Botanical Garden transforms into a night time wonderland with lanterns. Until Sept. 28 tickets also grant access to Mosaicultures. 4101 Sherbrooke E. espacepourlavie.ca Autumn Songs • Sept. 28-29 Ikebana exhibit. 1-5pm. Chapelle Historique du Bon-Pasteur, 100 Sherbrooke E. 514-872-5338 The Clothesline • reopens Thurs. Sept. 12 Thurs. 1-4pm, first Saturday of the month 11am – 3pm. St Thomas Church, 6897 Somerled, N.D.G. 514-484-2750 st.thomas.ndg@gmail.com Garage sale and BBQ • Sat. Sept. 14 8:30am - 2pm. Dorval-Strathmore United Church, 310 Brookhaven, Dorval. 514-793-9879.

Art

Craft Fair • Sat. Sept. 21 10am-3pm. Church of St. John the Baptist, 233 Ste. Claire, Pointe Claire

Bon Appétit Dinner Club Visit restaurants around the city. 514-264-8951 Club Gourmand Wine and dine every other Friday at 6:30pm in a variety of restaurants. 514-935-4880

Clubs and Groups

The Riverside Ramblers (starts Sept. 17) For active men and women 50 years and over. Tues/Fri. 10am. Annual membership fee: $15. 666 Woodland, Verdun. 514-767-9967. Helvetia Seniors Club Thurs. Sept. 19 • Prof. Josef Schmidt discusses writing mini-memoirs in the style of former general-consul Albert Mehr’s Traces. Lunch follows. 11am-2pm. 6151 Monkland. 450-687-5256

Bazaars and Sales

Hope and Cope, Jewish General Hospital Communicaid for Hearing Impaired Persons (CHIP) Seven-week bereavement support group begins Lip-reading (speech reading) courses begin Sept. this month. To register: 514 -340-8222 x8535 . 12. MAB building, 7000 Sherbrooke W. Montreal Urban Hikers 514-488-5552 x4500 hearhear.org Sat. Sept. 21 • Little Italy 9:30. Meet at the NE corner of Jean Talon and St. Denis (Jean Talon Dawson Community Centre walking groups métro). $2 donation. Walk & Talk (starts Sept. 11) Sat. Oct. 5 • Île St. Bernard in the Autumn Brisk walking with an animator, informative talks 9:30am. Bus from Angrignon métro. Cost $20. and group support. Wed. 10-11:15am. 8 weeks/ Confirm before Sept 27. $35 plus $15 annual membership card. 514-938-4910 montrealurbanhikers.ca

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New Hope Community Centre Chair yoga begins Sept. 6. Eight sessions, Friday, 12:45-1:45 pm. Members /$40, $50 for non-members includes an annual $10 membership fee. West Island Singles Walking Club Tues. & Thurs. at McDonald’s south of Hwy. 40 on St. Charles. Walk: 1-2pm followed by social time. 514-630-0909 sylvia_c@hotmail.ca Shrine Circus • Sept. 12-22 Be amazed! Centropolis, 1799 Pierre-Peladeau, Laval. Tickets $30, $40. shrinecircus.ca Unitarian Church • Sun. Sept. 22 An afternoon of potluck, arts, games, drumming, and discussion activities open to all. Noon-3pm, free. Potluck and activities follow the service from 10:30-11:30am. 5035 de Maisoneuve W. 514-485-7999, www.ucmtl.ca Dance • Sat. Sept. 28 Music by The Classics. 8pm. $10 ($8.50 until Sept. 21) Lachine Royal Canadian Legion 85/90, 3015 Henri-Dunant, Lachine 514-637-8002 Theresa Foundation benefit • Sat. Sept. 28 Supporting the Grandmothers of Mnjale village in Malawi. Cash bar, raffle and silent auction. Suggested donation: $20 or $10 students and seniors. Westmount Park Church, 305 Lansdowne. theresafoundation.com

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All hands on board as students head back to school
HERE AT SUN YOUTH Guest columnist Robert Ravensbergen
Every year, children return to school intent on working hard. But they also require play, experimentation and community to stay motivated beyond the expectations of their formal education. With this in mind, Sun Youth is hosting the Montreal Model Train Exhibition. This annual tradition offers historical model trains from the 1920s through to the 1960s, and includes exhibits on the history of model trains and famous toy sets like the Thomas the Tank Engine series. New this year will be a playroom made possible by Mega Brands featuring train-related toys to play with. The first 800 children to attend will receive a small gift from Mega Brands. “These trains have really served to inspire a sense of history in many young people,” says Ivan Dow, chief organizer of the event. “People forget that trains were once cutting-edge technology, and their history can teach us each lessons about the present day.” Children and their families are encouraged to play with the models, allowing them to grasp every element of detail and craftsmanship involved. “For young children, only just beginning to develop their skills and their talents, being able to

Generations Foundation Natalie Bercovici
Generations Foundation is in harmony with Mother Nature. From hot summer days at country camps to fresh produce, youngsters enjoy the bounty that nature has to offer. During the school year, students will enjoy a hot breakfast on chilly mornings, have nutritious lunches and energy snacks in the morning and during their after-school activity programs to keep them going till suppertime. It is always a challenge to find foods that do not contain nuts or lots of sugar, salt or additives. We are in need of new and larger refrigerators to supply 7,700 schoolchildren. Supermarkets must be visited several times a week to meet the demand. Students will also receive an assortment of donated school supplies packed into individual bags by volunteers and delivered to schools and CLSCs. Back to School Bagel-o-Thon October 3: Call 514-487-8051 to order your bagels in advance, then pick up your order before 10 am or join us for breakfast at St. Viateur Bagel and Café, 5629 Monkland. generationsfoundation.com.

Photo: Ivan Dow

Children play and learn at the train exhibition.

observe the amount of thoughtfulness put into each of these sets is a tremendous opportunity to understand how they might incorporate the same approach into their own life.” Past shows have captured the essence of historical model trains, which blazed their way across the frontiers of our continent and still serve to capture our imagination, and this year’s show is expected to be no different. People of all ages are welcome to visit the exhibition at the Sun Youth Building, 4251 St. Urbain, from 10 am to 6 pm September 28 and 29. Complementary parking will be available at the Home Depot on 100 Beaubien W., from which a bus will be available to shuttle visitors to the show at Sun Youth.

www.theseniortimes.com September 2013 The Senior Times 33

Comment

Portents of what could be in Israel — peaceful co-existence
ject the possibility of some Jewish settlements remaining in the new At a newsstand in Tel Aviv, I was state. looking for a copy of the day’s Most people of good will on both Ha’aretz, the left-of-centre daily, sides in Israel and in the occupied when an American-born senior ad- West Bank agree that talking and vised me to buy the Jerusalem Post, searching for compromise is better which is centre-right. than the alternative, a return to acts When I refused, he launched into a of war and terror. diatribe about the Arabs, claiming it was futile to re-enter peace negotiaJust getting to the table has been tions. a Byzantine exercise. Israel agreed to “Look what’s going on in Egypt, release the first 26 of 104 long-term in Syria. It’s as if they’re going back Palestinian prisoners, which raised in time, from the 14th to the 13th protests in Israel because most were century and heading to the 12th,” he serving terms for murder or accescharged. sory to murder. It was early in August and those on To counter the effect, Israeli Prime the left were hopeful the renewed ef- Minister Benjamin Netanyahu anfort to make headway in talks with nounced plans to build 1,187 apartPalestinian President Mahmoud ments, 800 in East Jerusalem and the Abbas would bear fruit. rest in West Bank settlements, inThose on the right are very skep- cluding outlying ones. An additional tical, as the American pointed out, 900 units are to be built in the East misquoting Abbas, claiming he had Jerusalem suburb of Gilo, formerly said there would be “no Jews” in a part of Beit Jalla. future Palestine. What Abbas had Talks are happening, and Abbas said was no Israeli civilians or sol- has said his goal is a final settlement diers. He later told a delegation from that could be implemented in stages, left-wing Meretz that he did not re- similar to Israel’s gradual withdrawal Irwin Block from Sinai after the Sadat-Begin We cannot even come to an underpeace deal of March 26, 1979. standing of what we really want.” Sadat’s reward: two years and seven months later, he was assassinated by Then there is Syria, emerging then members of Islamic Jihad. as a crisis with 1.8 million refugees having fled to Jordan, Lebanon, Waiting for take-out pizza in a Turkey and Iraq. And as these Jerusalem restaurant, a family mem- lines were being written, the world ber and I had a discussion about the awaited a response to the use of peace process and why he was so chemical weapons that might have skeptical. killed up to 1,300 civilians. Yes, he agreed, the occupation has While in Tel Aviv we spent time in its ugly side. But he’s prepared to live a relative’s gorgeous new apartment. with it rather than raise false hopes We got to stay in the safe room, with in what he considers to be a futile a sealed window and door that are exercise. designed to withstand a rocket at“How can you negotiate peace tack, or worse. This is the reality of the neighbourHasidic and Orthodox Jews hood, and part of the background that must be understood in the crowd into the same context of the peace process and allowing the West Bank to become a shops as Arab women buffer zone as a Palestinian state that and their children separates Israel from potential attackers. It is only 15 kilometres from from East Jersusalem. Tulkarm to Natanya. when Abbas cannot speak for Gaza?” he asked of the strip controlled by A vision of the future is there for Hamas, which says it will never rec- all to see in Jerusalem, in the pedesognize a Jewish state. trian mall that is now King George “Abbas is weak, he does not have and Ben Yehuda Sts., in and around enough support or authority to per- Zion Square. suade Palestinians to accept a deal,” On a typically busy Thursday or he said. Saturday night, Hasidic and OrthoHe is convinced that the funda- dox Jews crowd into the same shops mental problem is the growing as Arab women and their children strength of Islamic fundamentalism, from East Jersusalem. its refusal to accept Jewish control of They love the freedom of the street, a land mass in the heart of the terri- the shared interest in a nice blouse or tory that stretches from Morocco to a pair of jeans. Indonesia in southeast Asia. They sit in the same outdoor restaurants, not at the same table but At the time, secularists and pro- side by side, sip coffee, enjoy an ice gressive Egyptians were protesting cream and savour the moment. against the democratically elected No police or security guards are Morsi regime. It became captive to visible. Crowds gather around buskthe goals of the Muslim Brotherhood ers, and throw coins into a hat or just and in that sense betrayed the aims enjoy the vibe. Prices are not cheap, of the Tahrir Square revolution that but the cafés are packed. led to the overthrow of strongman The same scene is repeated in the Hosni Mubarak. more upscale restaurants of Emek Now Mubarak has been freed from Refaim, the German colony, in Jeruprison and the army is in charge. Ac- salem. And in Tel Aviv the cafés are cording to Anwar Sadat, a politician packed every night, and stay open and nephew of the slain president, way past midnight. Morsi had to go. Had he remained Compared with what is happening as president, “we would have had an- in Syria and Egypt, with all the difother hundred years of the Brother- ficulties inherent in any peace plan hood in power,” he told Robert Fisk and the uncertainty of approval in a of the Independent. referendum, this scene is a portent of “Real democracy in this part of what could be. the world doesn’t really fit. We need Israel alongside an independent awareness, education, to make peo- Palestine linked in a loose confedple understand all our values. eration? As Theodore Herzl wrote of “We Egyptians talk of all this civili- the prospect for a Jewish homeland: zation we had for 7,000 years, but we “If you will it, it is no dream.” have buried all that our fathers did. irblock@hotmail.com

(438) 338-1001

34 The Senior Times September 2013 www.theseniortimes.com

McGill concerts affordable and exciting
Appreciating classical music is a learning experience that can only be developed through listening. No amount of discussion, persuasion or explanation—even illustrated through the use of recordings—can substitute for the direct and emotionally charged experience of being part of music making, even if the only instrument you have is your ear. It is never too late to discover the power of live music, whether it’s a graduate-student recital or a concert by professionals. The McGill music faculty offers a huge selection of works to discover, free or at very modest prices almost every day throughout the year. Here are just a few selections to discover until the end of 2013. n September 9, oboeist Jacqueline Leclair accompanied by pianist Sara Laimon will present works by Telemann, Wvorinen, Tomasi, Poulenc and Arvo Pärt. n September 21, Opera McGill will present Sonnets & Songs, a Shakespeare Serenade n September 27, in partnership with Instituto Italiano di Cultura and within the framework of the “Journées de la culture,” the rarely heard Les Sequenze and other works by 20th century composer Luciano Berio will be performed. n October 3, Malcolm Bilson will perform sonatas by Mozart, Beethoven and Schubert on the fortepiano, a precursor to the modern piano. n October 4 and 5, Kristan Toczko, winner of last year’s McGill Concerto competition will join the McGill Symphony featuring Alberto Ginastera’s Harp Concerto. Verdi and Dvorak are also on the program. n October 10, violinist Mark Fewer and pianist Philip Chiu will play sonatas by Mozart. n October 18, the McGill Baroque Orchestra and Cappella Antica will perform Antonio Vivaldi’s celestial Gloria along with this same composer’s rarely heard concertos for four and two violins. n November 3, the McGill Symphony undertakes an ambitious program playing at the Maison Symphonique, with Watern, Verdi, contemporary composer Saariaho and the magnificent Daphnis and Chloe Suite by Maurice Ravel. n November 7, pianist Sara Laimon will present miniature solos pieces for piano. n November 11, soprano Anja Strauss accompanied by pianist Kyoko Hashimoto will perform one of the most accessible of 20th century Paul Hindemith’s works, Das Marienleben. n November 15, in Dialogues across the Centuries, 17th century French music and the last sonatas by Debussy will be presented. December 3 and 4, McGill professor Axel n Strauss performs Johannes Brahms’ violin concerto in D, one of the pillars of the violin repertoire. n Fridays at 12:30: McGill Noon-Hour Organ Recital Series, November 1,8,15,22,29, December 6, 2013. The series continues into the new year. For venues, hours and other events visit mcgill. ca/music/events or phone the box office at 514398-4547.

Sing. sing out loud by joining a choir
If you love to sing, why not join one of the many choirs in and near Montreal looking for new members? For an extended list of choirs around the city, visit chorale.qc.ca. Voices for Hope, a large community choir in the West Island, sings Broadway and Pops music. No audition required. Douglas Knight, 514-630-0331. Choeur Classique Vaudreuil-Soulanges, an Île Perrot choir directed by Jean-Pascal Hamelin,is recruiting male voices for its upcoming season. Candidates must have choral experience and be willing to practice between Tuesday evening rehearsals. Info: Jacques, 514-808-2782, or Anne, 450-455-6356. The Stewart Hall Singers, directed by Douglas Knight, is auditioning for the 2013-14 season. Their November 30 concert, A Baroque Christmas, will feature selections from Bach’s masterworks, an extended anthem by Handel and other seasonal favourites. Rehearsals are Monday evenings in Pointe Claire Village. 514-630-0331, info@stewarthallsingers.ca. The Lyric Theatre Singers are looking for singers with a good stage presence who are passionate about performing and love to sing songs from Bach to Broadway. Reading music is a welcome asset but not necessary. Info: 514-797-5252, lyrictheatrecompany.com

Take your place in history
The Chateau Ramezay is recruiting volunteer history guides. At an open house September 16 from 10 am to 2 pm, potential volunteers are invited find out more about participating in living history programs for children, weekend guiding or group tours for students and tourists. A nine-session training program is provided starting September 26. 280 Notre-Dame E. 514-861-3708 Ext. 225, chateauramezay.qc.ca

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One way of earning a living is asking for tips to photograph children.

These ladies in the Sacred Valley were eager to sell their crafts.

This woman earns a living by posing with her llama.

36 The Senior Times September 2013 www.theseniortimes.com

Our winter vacation 2012-13 in and around Cusco

Our favourite people in Peru
Photographed by Barbara Moser, Irwin Block and Molly Newborn
This lovely Santa was our server at the dining room of our Cusco hotel, Los Ninos.

A mother sews a purse that she will sell to tourists.

Ramon, Carmen and baby Tatiano were our private tour guides in the Sacred Valley. The best tour was with this family.

This girl poses with her llama for tips.

Jessica, 12, who lives in a village near Cusco, kindly helped me find my way to my bus when I was lost. I gave her and her sisters Canadian souvenirs.

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Australia

T

ravelling by bus down the east coast of Australia I found a little hippie-chic town that many tourists—from backpackers to the wealthy—frequent to laze in sun and enjoy the beautiful coastal scenery. Take Haight-Ashbury to a pristine Australian surf beach, add a few millionaires and such high-class celebrities as Elle Macpherson and Nicole Kidman and you have arrived at Byron Bay. No shoes, no shirt, no problem! Barefoot dread-heads sit side by side with posh millionaires at vegan cafés. Mega mansions line the nearby

No shirt, no shoes,
coast while drum circles and street guitarists resembling young Bob Dylan line the main street. Somehow everyone gets along. Byron Bay, with a population of less than 5,600, was appropriately named for the poet Lord Byron and many streets are named after other English writers and philosophers. Surfers discovered the beach in the ’60s, the counterculture moved in and established (against the establishment) this hippy, happy beach town. I checked in to my hostel and met my roommates: Julie was a backpacker from Finland with an adventurous eight-month itinerary throughout the South Pacific; David was from Calgary and had worked for a year in the oil industry, saved all his money and was blowing it all on a year-long vacation doodling around Australia. Sven from Sweden was also on an extended vacation. The two boys had met several weeks earlier in Surfer’s Paradise (yes, there is a town called Surfer’s Paradise) and travelled together down to Byron Bay. They had planned to stay for two or three days, but it had been more than a month and Beavis and Butthead were still lazing in the Bay.

I was not surprised. It was rather humid, which frizzed my hair like never before. Friendly giant lizards roamed between the buildings and in the gardens. Julie and I explored the town, enjoyed a nice vegetarian dinner and then took a leisurely walk down the sandy beach and up to Cape Byron— a headland at the most eastern point of mainland Australia. The next day I headed back to Cape Byron to hike up to the lighthouse, built in 1901. It is a popular little trail for tourists. Fully aware of the strong Australian sun, I responsibly smoth-

38 The Senior Times September 2013 www.theseniortimes.com

ered my freckly face and body with SPF 85 and was on my way. The path was stunning. I stopped along a rocky beach and took a dip. It was hot and muggy—no help to my hairdo. The sun was bearing down on me. A little snake crossed my path and gave me quite a fright. When I reached the top, I sat at a little café next to the lighthouse and chuckled to myself when I saw so many tourists red as lobsters. I seemed to be the only smart person around, who didn’t forget to apply sunscreen. I smugly reapplied my SPF 85 and walked down the hill. I had another little fright that evening when I looked in the mirror and saw a red face. I guess I hadn’t been as smart as I thought. I later discovered that freckle faces like me must frequently reapply or just stay out of the sun altogether. The Australian sun is no joke. The next day, with frizzy hair and a crimson face, I took a bus to nearby Nimbin, 70 kilometres west of Byron Bay. The barefoot, shirtless bus driver warned me about the cookies sold around town. Colorful Nimbin has a population of less than 350, with about 10,000 people living in the surrounding area. It is known for its escapist subculture and cannabis counterculture. Hippies moved there in

no problem
the ’70s and formed communes in search of an alternative lifestyle. I moseyed down the main drag filled with psychedelic stores, colourful fashion, candles, incense, counterculture signs and spiritually motivated artwork. A woman who looked like she had been trippin’ since the ’60s approached me wanting to sell me “special” cookies. She was the first of many. Marijuana is celebrated here. The Nimbin museum was the highlight. In an “effort to communicate the history of Nimbin through the eyes of a hippie,” an old shop was converted slowly over the years by a handful of local artists who took old junk and made it into a beautiful collage of designs, signs and artwork. It espouses the old hippie values and philosophy, and of course aims to “end prohibition.” When I returned to my hostel in Byron Bay I told David about my day. He said he too had visited Nimbin and had such a great time that he stayed there for two weeks! I suppose he met a lady named Mary Jane and she charmed him into staying for a while. The next day I took an overnight bus down to Sydney. It is a surprise my hair was not in dreadlocks by then. mollynewborn@gmail.com

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24-hour security Arts and crafts Game and billiard rooms Animated activities Health employee 24 hours Surveillance cameras Housekeeping Indoor/outdoor parking Residents’ committee Library & Internet salon Hair salon Indoor swimming pool Sauna and spa Dining room where families are always welcome, with excellent all-you-can-eat meals prepared by our certified chef. *

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40 The Senior Times September 2013 www.theseniortimes.com