Monday evening at 6:00 p.m. I had cycled past Dundas and Sterling, on of my usual routes, on my way home. I saw media trucks and a reporter doing an interview.
Tuesday morning at 6:00 a.m. in the taxi on the way to a shoot, I heard the news that a cyclist had been killed at Dundas and Sterling.
This morning, I read that cyclist was Jenna Morrison. She has been labeled many things: yoga teacher, mother, life partner, four months pregnant, dancer, nonjudgmental, a spiritual person who loved life.
To me, she was an acquaintance.
I used to take classes at the studio she owned in Kensington Market. Now Spiritwind Internal Arts. I remember her because she was welcoming, interesting, vibrant, and attractive. Simply, a lovely person.
Because of the line of work I am in, I have many acquaintances.
That cab ride yesterday morning took me to The Alzheimer Society where I spent the day making more acquaintances. I was shooting a public service announcement on the importance of early diagnosis.
It was a powerful day.
People with the disease gave testimonials about their experience. They spoke about shame, pride, anger, frustration, hope, hopelessness, acceptance, denial, befriending the disease and the importance of treatment and support and getting the most out of the life they have left. They were accompanied by their spouses who double as caregivers.
There was much laughter and a few tears.
A thirteen year old girl, Sarah, participating in the video project, spoke about her grandfather's struggle with dementia. When asked if there was one thing she could tell people who are dealing with the disease she said, "Cherish the moments you have with them, because one day they'll be gone."
Like Jenna Morrison, I am glad to have made her acquaintance.
Toronto cyclists are invited to meet at Bloor and Spadina at 7:30 a.m. on Nov. 14. The group plans to ride to the site of the accident.