Neon Lights


How many night skies and skylines have I gazed out at from the warmth of what I called home at the time.

Monday night, I am at our condo on the top floor of a downtown Calgary tower looking out at the neon office tower markers of Nexen and Collins Barrow – blue and red but there are also the neon purple and green of signs I can’t quite make out in the distance.

Looking at the neon green reminded me of the view from the living room of our condo in West India Quay in South East London just outside Canary Wharf.  Tonight I tried to remember what I was thinking as I looked out most nights, smoking cigarettes, as I did back then.  Was I happy? Optimistic?  Inspired?Or just a recently grown up kid saying like Mellancamp said in Small Town ” still hayseed enough to say:  Well look  who’s in the big town”. Yes that sounds about right.

Which all got me thinking of other skylines like the city view from my very first condo at 99 Harbour Square in Toronto’s Harbourfront.  We could see the fireworks over Ontario Place And listen to the music simeault-cast from a local radio station on our Technics sound system.  By night, we watched planes landing on the lighted runway of Billy Bishop Island Airport from our balcony and I have many fond memories of times spent there alone, or with my boyfriend or over dinner with family and friends looking down on bustling Harbourfront – the boat tours and buskers and general cacophony of lots of people having fun at night on the waterfront.

Then there was the two storey penthouse Condo at 1001 Bay Street with stunning views south onto the Toronto skyline. I had a wood burning fireplace in this unit at the top of a Bay Street tower.  Just across the street was Bistro 990, what me and my MBA class-mate Sonya called “our local” (gone now, another victim of the Toronto condo boom).  Just next door was The Foxes Den or what we called The Ugly Bar (feeling down on yourself. Drop By and get an instant lift from being the best looking person in the room.  I remember meeting Sonya there when she was just recovering from the flu, she looked like shit but damn it she was the best looking chick for as far as the eye could see.

Then the mountain views of the Canadian  Rockies from the great room of our house in Fernie and from my office where I sit most mornings, looking out.  And  somehow to here, where I find myself tonight feeling pensive?  Wondering how the hell I got here?  Thinking about what the future may hold next for us on this journey called life. I can barely contain the rush of emotion that thought brings.

It happens less these, emotional rushes, and thankfully less publically, although when it does I have developed strategies to contain it quickly and I have friends and family who understand that this isn’t saddness.  So if this happens to you, it’s OK.  Take a deep breath, think about something else and let your feelings follow that thought in deep breaths.  It works and its calming too!

Tomorrow I’ll write about my shopping experience at Nordstrom yesterday.  Trying on swimsuits never changes – it’s always a dreadful experience, but not without humour, thankfully.  Today’s feature is of my friend Lori and I in the restaurant conveniently located in Nordstrom.


15 minutes on the treadmill at 2.8-3.0 or kph and  5 minutes on the elliptical. After this leg presses,multi-hip and then floor routines of crunches,knee lifts, stretches and then an hour is done for the day – we do this 4x a week and its making me super- strong.

Weight remains steady around the 150 lbs mark but I’m not really trying anymore. Just eating smart and only when actually hungry. A reminder. Don’t let anyone else’s eating habits dictate yours.  I say this cause now and then I do, I go along with whats convenient or  easy.  Don’t do that.  I’m always disappointed in myself afterwards.


One thought on “Neon Lights

  1. 1sonya

    How odd Heather that you should write this today about your old hood on Bay. This past Sunday night I wandered below Bloor street – a big deal from my life in what we call “Bubbleville” where all your living needs are met in 2 blocks north of Bloor. My mission was to go to a new restaurant on Bay on the main floor of your old building. My journey there was filled with lots of memories of our days hanging out there in the joints you mention. I stopped off at the new Firken pub which used to be the ugly bar. Sad to say, the people have gotten better looking. You no longer feel like the hottest person in the room (save for the menopausal hot flashes!!)! I then headed to the restaurant and sat in the window directly across from the Bistro and squinted my eyes staring at the Condo trying to recall the charming old house and it’s interior and the incredibly fun times we had there. Such good memories. I so enjoy your blogs and they provide both updates on you and great tips and inspirations to better oneself. You, keep being awesome!!! Xo

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