If We Were Having Coffee – Sept.28/2014
Squirrels and New Arrivals
Welcome to Willow’s weekly coffee and tea garden. My name is Paul and I’m happy to be here once again in the garden tending to your needs for a cuppa, and sweets. It has gotten quite damp here recently so Willow and I have arranged some comfy chairs and sofas under the marquee where we will be warm whilst we sip our cuppa. The addition of some heaters last week has made this little nest quite toasty. I’ll be happy to bring a pot of whatever beverage you prefer – we have a wide range of teas and coffees (as you can see above ) to satisfy our world-wide readership. We can relax with a cuppa and calorie free sweets while we discuss the affairs of the week both personal and/or worldwide. How has your week been?
Here in Canada the news has been relatively quiet this week. We have this foreign worker program that is coming under fire. Apparently, some service businesses have been complaining that they cannot fill jobs with Canadian citizens so they have been importing foreign workers to fill the positions as is allowed under a special government program. These workers have been working alongside Canadians and, it seems, the foreign workers are being paid less and are being favored by management for extra hours and such as they are cheaper. In one case, Canadians were laid off and then replaced with foreign workers – which is absolutely forbidden under the program. There has been a big furor about this and some government officials have been chastised, the program is being severely limited or even removed and the companies that have allowed this are being fined. What do you think about these types of programs? Do you find that immigrant workers are being given jobs that should be filled by nationals? How is the government of your country handling the many immigrants that are fleeing oppressive regimes and/or seeking a better life in a new country?
The above picture is actually from Art, – a fellow humorous blogger – collection of photo shopped images (http://pouringmyartout.wordpress.com/). He has some hilarious images. This photo has a very Canadian winter feel for me. The fluffy attire looks similar: humans wear lined underwear, vests, heavy parkas, insulated boots, toques and sunglasses (for those readers who have not experienced a bright day on a snow covered world, it is blinding).
Although the weather here has been splendiferous this week – the warning is there about what is to come. Waiting for a ride yesterday, I was watching a half a dozen squirrels busy burying nuts in the ground, preparing for a cold winter. I happened to be speaking for a few moments with an immigrant who obviously did not have much experience with our native fauna. We were under the tree canopy as we were speaking and a busy squirrel lost his grip on a nut and as he screamed his dismay, his nut dropped through the branches and landed at the feet of my conversation partner. The poor man jumped and looked nervously upwards as he prepared to run. I quickly explained that it was just a squirrel that had dropped his nut and that that was quite common this time of year. The squirrely swearing continued from above our heads – no doubt seriously concerned that we would steal his nut.
After our conversation finished and he left, I thought for a while about what objects falling from the sky might mean to someone who had not grown up with it. And I thought how many such tiny details would have to be internalized by the newcomer– all the time not knowing which details could get them killed and which were just funny little incidents. The absolute vulnerability that would engender gives me a feeling of admiration for those who have chosen to leave their homes and friends and family and country and moved to a brand new world. Many have done so to try and make a better life for them and their loved ones, especially children. It seems to me that many such immigrants would have enough to handle already and then are forced to face suspicion and/or rejection by the locals where they live. Situations like the special programs mentioned above put them in a very negative position without them even realizing what is happening.
Above is a photo of a very popular coffee chain store in Canada with thousands of outlets. They are one of the main companies who are accused of misusing immigrants for purposes of reducing costs and putting Canadians out of work. They are a franchise system and the parent company has come down very hard on the franchisees who were abusing the program. The company has a sterling reputation here in Canada and I am sure they were not aware of what was going on – but still it happened.
If you get a chance, have a look at the story attached to the URL from the picture above – it is heart rending and is just one of the many ways that immigrants here have a rough road, regardless of our determination to treat them fairly. ( http://www.theprovince.com/health/Hortons+barista+might+just+kidney+transplant+thanks+staff+customers/7316841/story.htmland ) Do you have any thoughts on this? Or do you have a story about immigrants in your home country?
Would you like another cuppa? Willow and I are honored that you dropped by the marquee in the garden today to visit. I hope you’ve enjoyed yourself and the conversation and please feel free to look around at Willow’s other posts while you’re here. Have a great week. We look forward to seeing you here in the garden again next week.
IF WE WERE HAVING COFFEE: I would ask you if you would like another cuppa, or another cake . I’d tell you I have really come to enjoy these chats and I’d love to hear what you would tell me. Please feel free to stay as long as you like . If we were having Coffee Original idea from http://parttimemonster.wordpress.com/