This past week many thousands of our already somewhat stressed Christmas shoppers invaded the stores to take part in the infamous Black Friday shopping showdown. Thank goodness our first really big winter storm hit that same week, and instead of heading across the border where all this madness started many years ago, many stayed in Alberta and spent their hard-earned cash at home.
It is also great that our Canadian stores are now jumping on the Black Friday cash bonanza, and are all offering the same blow-out bargains that they offer state-side. After all, those wild and wacky shoppers could load up their vehicles with all sorts of festive cheer without having to sit in long lines waiting to face the often grumpy border guards. Among my Black Friday observations this time around were that our trusty Canadian dollar didn’t have as much clout across the border, and that it might be awfully tough to get exchanges once you get your U.S. bargain buy home and you didn’t like it or it wouldn’t work. By the way, in the aftermath of the 2014 Black Friday mayhem, they hosted 15,000 avid shoppers at Macy’s in New York City, and they were rioting in London over $100 colored television sets. Bottom line, if we try to shop locally, we will never go wrong, exchanges are easy, and one is never too far from the comforts of home sweet home.
Does one actually realize that in only 27 days after the Black Friday sales have swept the nation, it will be time for the biggest ‘after the holidays’ shopping spree of the year, the Boxing Day Blowout on Friday, Dec. 26? This traditional one day (now often weekend) “salebration” is that great opportunity for young and old but not faint of heart to relax after the rigours of Christmas Day, with a chance to wear off all the turkey and treats while dashing around packed stores looking for lots of hot one-time bargains. Most of those thousands of fanatic shoppers are all bound and determined to snatch those super deals that would make the perfect gifts for all occasions, including next year’s birthdays, anniversaries, weddings, and of course Christmas. Yours truly, who hasn’t had to make a list and check it twice for quite a few years, chose to pass on both these ‘shopping adventures’ this time, but I will continue to push the cart around the stores, and sincerely hope that in the busy aftermath of December, your joy of finding the perfect gifts for family and friends will be stressless and most gratifying when all the wrapping and ribbons come off on that magic morning of Thursday, Dec. 25 around your tree.
A good reason to stay in shape
During his annual medical examination, a doctor asked a middle-age man about his physical activity level. The man explained that he spends three days a week, every week, in the great outdoors. “So how do you stay in such good shape but still seem quite stressed?” asked the Doctor.
“Well, yesterday afternoon was typical…..I took a five-hour walk about, including seven miles through some really rough terrain, then waded along the edge of a lake. Later, I pushed my way through two miles of brambles, got lots of sand in my shoes and my eyes, was constantly slapping at bugs, and barely avoided stepping on a snake. I also had to climb several rocky hills, went through three bottles of water, and finally had to stop and go to the bathroom behind some big trees.”
He later explained that the mental stress of all this exercise usually leaves him so shattered that at the end of the day he has to sit down and drink a scotch and three glasses of wine with the boys.
Amazed by the story, the doctor asked, ‘You must be one heck of an outdoor man.’ ‘No’, the man quickly replied, ‘I’m just a really, really, bad golfer..’
Life’s greatest quotes.
● The greatest mistakes we can make in life is to be continually fearing we will make one.
● Wrinkles should merely indicate where smiles have been.’
● Try to create a life that feels good on the inside….not one that just looks good on the outside.
● Children have never been very good at listening to their elders, but they have never failed to imitate them.
Even if you haven’t put up your outside Christmas decorations (like me), just go ahead and have a great week, all of you.