Some winter blues are glorious like the sunny blue skies that we had last Wednesday. I went out for a walk and sat down in one of the Muskoka chairs to soak in the warm sunshine, daydream, and observe nature. It was quiet and blissful by the lake.
On my left, several seagulls took off and glided in the air. On my right, two Canada geese swam and a few ducks dipped in the calm harbour. The shimmering lights in the water prompted me to reflect on the first month of 2020.
January was a fun and enriching month. My extended family had a big get-together to celebrate a few family birthdays and the Lunar New Year. My friends and I met on several dates for coffee and lunch catch-ups. We’ve figured out how to embrace winter!
In between these social gatherings, I completed all my health goals and enjoyed plenty of leisure activities (8 art exhibits, 1 wildlife photography exhibit, 4 blog posts, 6 books, 31 French and 31 Spanish online sessions, 3.5 movies, and 3 recitals). I’m grateful for such a great month and an amazing start to the new year.
In case you’re curious, below are more details. I keep track of the data for my own benefit.
One of the advantages of living near the centre of a big city is the access to cultural events year round. I continue to be amazed by the quantity and quality of new art exhibits I can view for free. In January, I saw eight interesting exhibits:
- Anxious Audience by American artist Rashid Johnson.
- Black Diamond by Toronto-based artist Krystal Ball.
- Blues Klair by Belgian artist Vincent Meessen.
- Loop: An interactive light and sound installation with six giant wheels. Visitors sit down inside the wheel (zoetrope), pump the bar, and make the image cylinder turn to display the hand-drawn black and white animations.
- Feels: An installation of carved acrylic pendants in gold and turquoise colours by Emma Piirtoniemi.
- Hold Everything Dear: A contemporary exhibit by Hajra Waheed.
- Ingenuous Purpose: An exhibition featuring beautiful dog blankets and hangings made by the Kwanlin Dün Cultural Centre (KDCC) Sewing Group in Whitehorse.
- What we found after you left: A contemporary exhibit by Naeem Mohaiemen.
I made a few changes to my blog, including new header image, new tag line, updated Travel page, updated Wellness page, and added Award-free and Copyright notices on the right side bar. I also wrote four posts and hosted the first Wellness Weekend 2020 link-up:
- What Are Your Plans for 2020?
- My 10 Favourite Experiences in Ecuador
- Hiking to Peguche Waterfall (#WW2020 first link-up)
- Papallacta Hot Springs: A Delightful Stay
I enjoyed reading six books which took my imagination from places in Canada to the United States, across the Atlantic to the United Kingdom and then India:
- 26 Knots by Bindu Suresh.
- Starlight by Richard Wagamese.
- Bone Black by Carol Rose GoldenEagle.
- The Art of Racing in the Rain by Garth Stein.
- The Flatshare by Beth O’Leary.
- A Delhi Obsession by M.G. Vassanji.
I met all my health goals, felt great, and slept well in January:
- Greeted every new day with a smile.
- Meditated 15 minutes daily.
- Made 26 outdoor walks, average 8 km (5 miles) each walk.
- Completed 13 strength workouts in the gym, one hour each.
- Attended 9 yoga classes, one hour each.
- Went swimming 5 times, one hour each.
- Had 4 full rest days.
I continue learning French and Spanish lessons on Duolingo, about 30 minutes every day. It’s a good exercise for my brain!
My neighbour friends and I resumed our movie nights after the holidays. We enjoyed watching the first three movies and did not like the fourth one so we ended our evening half way through it:
- Judy starring Renee Zellweger.
- Gemini Man starring Will Smith.
- Harriet starring Cynthia Erivo.
- The Lighthouse starring Willem Dafoe and Robert Pattinson.
I enjoyed three excellent concerts, each was about one hour in duration:
- Sonatas for piano and violin by Beethoven performed by James Parker, piano and Mark Fewer, violin.
- Solo piano recital by Brazilian musician Andre Mehmari.
- Solo piano recital by Toronto-based musician Bryn Blackwood.
Similar to Travel
The Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2019 exhibition at the Royal Ontario Museum took my friend and I to exotic places visually. The amazing exhibition showcases all-new photographs from around the world reveal striking wildlife, breathtaking landscapes, and the remarkable beauty of our natural world.
After our museum visit, we walked to the new Eataly store. It’s a bustling Italian marketplace with three restaurants, nine take-away counters, and a cooking school. In the full market, we found hundreds of culinary delights imported from Italy. We agreed to return here for our next coffee and lunch meet-up.
So that was my January. How was yours? What good things happened? I’d love to hear your comments.
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