Hope Won!

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For the people who know me, they were surprised when one day had passed and I hadn’t written about the U.S. Presidential Election and the fact that Barack Obama had won!  There were several reasons why.  Most importantly, in the early hours of Tuesday, November 4th, my good friend Al Best lost his battle with cancer.  I was numb.  By Wednesday, one of my co-workers commented that she was shocked I hadn’t mentioned Barack Obama’s name in two days.  That numbnes again.  I couldn’t think straight, let alone sit down at a keyboard and write something that made sense, let alone celebrate the man who I had rallied behind for 20 months.

I picked the title of my blog from the t-shirt Oprah Winfrey was wearing the day after the election.  And I thought “that’s it”!  Hope Won!  I am neither American  or African-American, but I too felt Hope had won.  This impressive young Senator from Illinois represented Hope from not only Americans, but people throughout the world!   He represented change from the ‘crooked’ perception we had of government.  And not only the American government but governments throughout the world.  He represented something different than the ‘same old, same old’!   And we were all cheering for him, because if the United States could bring forward this kind of change, maybe the countries we live in could do the same.  We too, are sick and tired of the ‘same old, same old’!

My good friend Gary Kelly, another Canadian, was fortunate enough to be in California on November 4th, and sat in a bar Election night.  There were people disappointed and people elated, but what a priviledge to be there to witness it all. 

And in my closing comments, I would like to say to the world, ‘be patient’.  This man has quite a mess to clean up.  It’s not going to be done in one month, and not in one year.   Confidence in the United States is already on the increase, and after January 20th it will be full force.  But remember Barack Obama is only human, and as smart and personable that he is, it will take some time to clean up the garbage.  After Bill Clinton left office, the economy in the United states was very vibrant.  In 8 short years, it’s in the toilet.  Be patient.  It will be done.

Congratulations Mr. President!

A Tribute To Al Best!

A good friend and co-worker of mine lost his battle to cancer in the early hours of Tuesday morning.  Al Best!  He didn’t garner national media attention trying to save the world like Bono of U2, but he made the world a better place for the people who were priviledged enough to know and love him.

I don’t know if I have ever met anyone with a sense of humor like Al Best!  Some Al-isms… “I’m so hungry, my gut thinks my throat is cut” is the first one that comes to my mind;  And on Tuesday when I didn’t think it was possible to smile, his good friend Todd Goodyear texted me with that saying, and Todd, you made me smile.  Thank you.  Another one of my favorites “There’s a big difference between scratching your ass and tearing a piece out of it”.   Al put everything into perspective very simply, and didn’t stress about too much.

He was a man who loved his family so much and they came first.  That was one of the great qualities about this human being.  One of them… Because there were many more.  One of the greatest gifts he gave the world is that everyone who came in contact with Al, left with a smile on their face.  How many people can say that about another person.

My thoughts and prayers and love go out to all his family and friends.  Al Best, it was an honour to know you.