Sunday: Justine and I sleep in…a beautiful thing, that. We ease into the day, shake Saturday night out of our hair; tea and bread guide us into the morning. There’s something about that groggy morning tea. Voices deepen. Recognition lay somewhere between percale sheets and the Sunday dew. The stinky mutt has been going stir-crazy batshit lately so we decide to take her for a walk. She’s excited and nearly jumps out of her skin at the suggestion. Grab the leash and out. It’s a beaut of a morning out here. Just the right chill in the air. April is waving her arms around. The Sunday masses are about a half hour away. We get on the trail and give the dog a good run. We let her off the leash in the school field and she runs like a golden jet over the still drowsing ground. Take our usual circle through the neighbourhood. No incident, save a run-in with an insanely aggressive Pug. By the time we wind our way back, the church bells are pealing and beautiful. The Korean Catholics on the corner have congregated. The Jamaican gospel band (across the street from the Catholics) is in full swing. The street is filled with singing voices. We stop to take them in. It’s a moment that feels downright holy. The mutt perks her ears and whimpers a bit, restless. Time to go she says. We check into Sunday, the golden dog leading the way.
Jewel the dog, Feb 2007
StreetRag is an urban weblog and podcast about the city of Edmonton, which is located in the province of Alberta, Canada. It is authored by Edmonton-based writer, web advocate, and poet Michael Gravel and is updated frequently with written urban vignettes, amateurish photographs, deuteronomous audio material, barely coherent musings and rambling ecumenical treatises. StreetRag is a love letter to a lonely prairie burg struggling with its big city ambitions and small-town feel.
The city is Edmonton. It's a subject, not a passion. E-Town is almost universally derided by outsiders as an unlivable tundra wasteland populated by oil-hungry redneck conservatives who despise the arts. All of that is true. But it's not the whole story. There is beauty here. Dusty snowfalls. Brilliant summers. A stunning river valley. A diverse arts community that flourishes. It's a place that inspires a gray relationship - not all good, not all shitty. For that reason alone it is lovable, for what is life but a grayscale?