Bouncing off various shoppers, strollers and seniors in a local mall, I sought the perfect holiday gift.
An amazing array of colourful shawls, scarves and hats caught my eye. As I was fondling the merchandise (are we still allowed to say that?) the vendor let me know she had more varieties on the other side of her booth (Tierra Sol Crafts).
"These are beautiful, are they are from South America?" I enquired.
"Yes, most are from Bolivia and Peru."
"Is that home originally?" ( I'm a curious guy!)
"No, I'm from Equador."
"Equador! I've always wanted to go there! It's supposed to be a beautiful country.
"Yes" she replied "It has so many different ecosystems, from the mountains to the jungles to the Galapagos Islands."
"I used to teach scuba diving, I've always wanted to go there! So how did you end up in Canada? Oh, I'm sorry, my name is Dave."
She smiled, "I'm Patricia. My husband and I emigrated here a number of years ago, first to Toronto and then to Vancouver. I must admit, I didn't like Toronto when we moved here, too cold and the impersonal...Vancouver was much nicer."
"But you're back here now?" I countered
"Yes, and I must admit, I really like Toronto now. I suppose it is because I have friends who come from so many places that it's really hard to be racist when you live in a city like this. Back in Equador, there was a lot of racism. But it is hard to be racist when you know so many people who are white, black, brown and all different shades. So...I guess you could say I don't see colours any more."
What a beautiful irony. Surrounded by a shades and hues...Patricia finds happiness by not seeing colours.