when cobblestone streets turn on light bulbs

as i ambled home this evening following a brisk jaunt around the seawall in downtown vancouver (thank you miss laurel richardson for the company and conversations!), i found myself negotiating the quaint cobblestone street on west 3rd avenue, contemplating whether to start making dinner and cleaning the house or to get rolling on laundry when i returned home (yes, happy dreary wednesday, vancouver).  when looking to cross arbutus, i paused briefly to allow a gleaming beacon of rain safety (read: cab) to roll through a stop sign and down the ominous, rain soaked hill.  ever so cautiously, i stepped into the street, nearly in front of an suv that i assumed had seen my obnoxiously green, yellow and white plaid (italicized for intentional emphasis) running jacket. wrong move.

had i not performed a slight stutter step, 'driver' would have flattened by plaid ass.

now, granted, it was nearly pouring.  street lights and loud outer wear should not excuse the near miss that occurred.  but, my lesson learned while walking away from that nearly fateful intersection was not about rain awareness and safe driving/crossing the street.  it's about consistency.

i didn't lash out.  i didn't kick his car, throw my used tupperware at his fender, or stand in the middle of the road stringing together colorful language in only partially sensical order.  i simply stopped, adjusted my approach to the intersection, and moved on when it was safe and clear to do so.  and, in walking away from that moment, i realized how a simple reminder of the importance of consistency fully grounded me in that instance.

yesterday evening, at a networking event put on by (thanks Jen, again, for hosting such a great session!), some of the speakers touched on what consistency means in our personal brands, and how to ensure that our representation remains uniform across all channels we connect through.  and, taking that conversation offline, that the why you show up and what you stand for in your face to face connections and how you interact with different environments (ie: cobble stone street near misses) ultimately speaks to that brand.

so, next time a freak out seems appropriate, i'll make sure i think twice.  i'll continue to ask myself 'if this was something in 'US Weekly', would my mom be proud of me?' or 'is this what i want to represent?'.  because freaking out in the middle of kitsilano could cost me some of that consistency.....and tupperware, depending on how far i end up throwing it.

a lotta local love

sunday mornings were meant for this. a three block stroll to a farmer's market where you meet the farmers.  i'm talking dirt under the fingernails gals and guys.  the people that I so desperately want to be one day (although probably on a back-yard 'look what i grew!' scale) chatting freshness, best places for crops to thrive, and flavor, flavor, flavor.

a beautiful sunny and clear sky (thank you very kindly, miss mother nature) provided an impressive backdrop for the market and a Picnic In The Park event that was just building momentum, with the crowds building in density minute by minute.  Honestly, my 'fight or flight' senses did take over at one point, with my sense of urgency nagging away, telling me to get moving, get the best deals and the best looking heirloom tomatoes.  why let somone else have the nicest and ripest Green Zebras? but, in enjoying the scene and in being in a light coversation about weekend shenanigans with my mum (hi mum!) whilst milling through the crowds, i settled into my most favorite, long needed and so loved feeling: the sense of belonging in a community and contributing to the creation of something amazing for a group of people.  on today's great-creation menu: awareness about local producers and the fantastic nature of what they create and in turn share with us.

people being together, in the sheer splendor of finding beauty in the experience of eating and sharing social events with the direct providers of the 'meat to the table' (straight up, there was a for real rancher and butcher there today....) builds a beautiful story to the meals we all were separating to concoct.  while I might not have made a new friend today, or might not have had friends over for dinner tonight to share my market story, best believe I have already shared the most flavorful blueberries with a friend, shared the glory that are the green beans who made it home with me, and will be showing off those Green Zebras this week at the office when i slice them up for lunch.  the value in purchasing your produce face to face from the farmer is priceless.

and the stories are endless.

xo j