Reach for the sky

In a world full of turmoil, there is little certainty about what lies ahead in 2019.

Dreams of peace around the globe are as distant, or perhaps more so, than in previous times, owing to the growing chasm between rich and poor. This spread continues to grow, not just between the haves and have-nots, but between countries and continents as well.

The issuance of tariffs against nations who have traded successfully in recent years has led to distrust and a sense of unease amongst partners within the global economy.

It is as if the world is off-balance amid the state of disruption that gained traction when the populist President Donald Trump was elected.

These things all add up to the potential for great conflict due to uncertainty. For now, the conflicts are limited to economics and securing trade.

Caution is due, since history dictates uncertain times almost always make way for unexpected outcomes.

All of this bad news may sound defeatist, but it is just a reflection of the time we are in. It does however make the case for doing what we can as individuals to make a better life for our family and in turn strengthen the community in which we live.

2019 should be another year that people reach for the sky.

An old friend has been doing just that for almost 20 years – reaching for the sky. We jest a bit, because the old friend happens to be a jack pine tree in the front yard. Without fail, that tree has been a point of contemplation each sunrise.

The top has almost the appearance of a crown where, depending on the season, birds will nest or stop by for a rest.

It’s a bit unsightly with branches jutting this way and that. Certainly it would not be the choice of a landscaper or arborist, but we’ve always had a soft spot for the imperfect and flawed. In its own way, that tree is like a bonsai tree, less the attention of its owner manicuring its foliage. It has been a source of comfort and contemplation through good times and bad.

This past fall however, it has grown out of sight. With a bit of manoeuvring at the bedroom window a glimpse can still be had. It is a harbinger of change in that a new perspective is needed on my part to enjoy such a friend.

With the confidence that comes from friends and goodwill, 2019 will be a good year for us all.