Two of my brothers work as electricians, occupations for which they must undergo regular testing to ensure that the radiation in their systems is still in a healthy range. And I have another electrician brother who says in jest that he must be checked for fibre content – he works at Quaker.
How lucky are we to have a factory in Peterborough that makes the entire city smell like rice cakes on a regular basis? In fact, how lucky are we to have so many of the things that we do in the three communities we work? We have Fleming College, Trent University, tourist attractions, the Trent System waterway, the Whetung gallery, museums and a free zoo!
Sometimes we look across at another job and think how much better that job is, or look to another area of the province – more urban, less urban, fuller of industry, or with more attractions – and we can start to feel like we are missing out, that we are behind in some arbitrary timeline or that we somehow have less.
I once read an inspiring quote by Aristotle, or Plato maybe, the message of which was that the grass being greener on the other side of the fence is usually due to a septic bed issue. There is a tendency to want what we don’t have, and I think we are all hard wired for this as primal survival gift. We are supposed to be scanning our environment for ideas to grow on, to improve our lives with and to stretch up to. However, this tendency often leads to a feeling that we are somehow not measuring up or that anywhere is better than where we are.
A good friend likes to remind me to stay in my own lane and work on my own strokes. There is no way to know the full picture of difficulty and or challenge faced by people who seem to have it all; celebrate what they have, strive to improve your own strokes from the learning and then celebrate that.
And then take a moment to remember, when you feel like there is a better place to live with better jobs and greener grass, none of those places smell like popcorn the way Peterborough does – ever.