Take Me Outside

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I. Am. Canadian.


I’m staring out the window of a hotel in Jasper on the verge of tears, looking at fresh snow in the mountains peeking through low lying clouds, a gentle breeze on the lake below and a Canadian flag at half-mast.
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Take Me Outside Day 2014

3 years ago today, I had just crossed the Alberta border into BC and had less than 900 km to go to finish running across Canada. After 9 months of running, my body was strong, but my mind was tired.

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Answer Found in Solving Climate Change

A recent discovery is making waves across North America and around the world
today as scientists, academics and children claim a solution to the climate change
crisis.
I’m tiring quickly of my newsfeed being bombarded with bold claims and teasers
that just beg the reader to click and read on. My favourite to mock are the ones that
entail lists, and end with the tagline “I couldn’t believe No. 7” or some nonsense like
that. So in the spirit of playing along and joining the masses of trying to “sell” this
story, the title and tagline were my best attempt.
Climate change does have an answer though. And I think it’s a pretty simple one.
For just over 10 years, I’ve had a best friend of sorts. She’s an 11 year old Siberian
husky whose name is Koona. She has chased squirrels, raccoons and deer, has had
standoffs with both bears and moose, and has on occasion bit friends as well as my
parents. She has craved affection from countless strangers, cuddled on the couch
with many friends and howls when I leave her for too long. Over 10 years, I have
made a deep connection with this dog. She has been a constant in my life and it’s
extremely difficult to think of my life without her in it. My relationship with Koona is
a strong one.
For non-dog owners, this can be a tough sell. It was for me before I adopted Koona.
Sure, I could have learned about dogs. There is much to learn about this species that
ultimately derives from the wolf. I could have learned about her characteristics,
her habits, her physiology, and perhaps even a bit of how her brain functions. In
fact, you could teach me all there is to know about dogs, but there would still be
something missing – a relationship. Learning about dogs doesn’t equal having a
relationship with them. I have spent 10 years with Koona and the bond I feel with
her is strong and powerful. That relationship has grown because of the time we’ve
spent together.
Climate Change is really no different. We can learn all we want about the Earth’s
warming and debate until we’re blue in the face why this is happening. But none
of this will ultimately help solve the climate change crisis. Having a relationship
with the environment, with the great outdoors might though. And herein lies both
the problem and the solution. In broad strokes, humans are collectively spending
more time inside and less time outside. In large part, this is due to our growing
relationship with technology – specifically devices. While our connection to screens
is flourishing, our relationship with the outdoors is wilting. How can we care about
climate change if we’re not spending time outside and building a relationship with
it?
If we could find better balance, developing that relationship to the great outdoors
is pretty simple. It’s just a matter of spending time together. And it’s surprising
how good of a friend the outdoors can become. Science is telling us loudly that
the outdoors reduces stress, builds self-esteem, helps students in school, keeps
us physically and mentally happy AND reduces crime. It’s a relationship that only
requires one thing from us – spending time together. The more time we spend
together, the stronger that bond will become. And the stronger that bond becomes,
maybe – just maybe, we’ll start to care more about this planet we’re living on and
start finding solutions for how to treat it better.
So the answer is in fact simple. Spend more time outside. Watch the relationship
grow. ….

A recent discovery is making waves across North America and around the world 
today as scientists, academics and children claim a solution to the climate change 
crisis.

 

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George-inner

George

CBC's George Stroumboulopoulos agreed to chat and give his two cents about being a city boy, his use of social media and how important it is for him to disconnect sometimes and find a little piece of nature in Toronto.  Our phone conversation is just a click away!

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Jeremy Fisher Interview

A couple of weeks ago, I went to my first folk festival in Canmore, Alberta.  My pre-conceived notions of hippies frolicking in the mud, playing hackysack, and dancing in their free-spirited way were only partly true.  Most of the people I ran into were 9 to 5ers and just really love good music.  It was a great weekend of music and one of the crowd favourites was Jeremy Fisher. 

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inthemedia
Times Colonist Times Colonist Thursday, 27 October 2011 00:00 Colin Harris ended his ninemonth, cross-Canada odyssey Tuesday by dipping his foot...
CTV News CTV News Wednesday, 26 October 2011 00:00 COLWOOD — Colin Harris arrived at Royal Roads University, following a 7,600 kilo...
CHEK News CHEK News Wednesday, 26 October 2011 00:00 Bruce Kirkpatrick for CHEK news was also on hand at today's end of run festivities....
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