Today was not at all what it was supposed to be.
I was supposed to wake up and go to college to speak with new recruits about the program I'm in. I was supposed to come home and go out in the evening for a night out on the town with some friends.
But, Mother Nature had other ideas.
The 9,57,489th snow storm of the season began yesterday afternoon. I was at school, working away on the computer in a deserted office, when I glanced out the window and saw the first speckles of snowfall. I thought to myself, "The weather guy must be wrong. This has to be one of those "psych!" sort of deals." I was pretty sure even an hour after it started snowing furiously, that it would stop, and I would be able to enjoy my last weekend before school started again, doing the things I wanted to do.
24 hours later, I found myself at my computer, reading over an e-mail that spoke of the cancelation of the event happening at college. Which meant, I had the morning/afternoon free to do... well, whatever!
The storm was still bellowing outside, so my automatic impulse was to crawl back into bed and sleep away the sleepies!
Saturday was March 8th... International Womens Day...
... and I was in desperate need of a story.
So, resigning myself to the fact that sleep was not such a good idea, I called a friend who I knew was covering an event taking place at a couple of the local universities... I asked if I could tag along with her... despite the storm... despite the fact that it was a cold, windy, Saturday morning.
I automatically assumed that because of the storm, no one... man or woman, would venture out of the house.
I assumed wrong.
When I got to that auditorium, what I saw was something I never would have imagined. It was something right out of a TV documentary... something I knew happened... but not on snowy Saturdays... let alone, just around the corner!
Women... of all ages, races, shapes... mothers, friends, daughters and sisters... all of these women were crowded into the small auditorium, more animated and with more character than I had seen in a group in a very long time. There were signs, slogans, petitions, pins, buttons, scarves... all showcasing the variety of movements and support networks that were represented at this Rally in honour of International Womens Day.
They then proceeded to brave the cold and marched along Bloor to Yonge, then down Yonge to Ryerson University.
Just like me, my friend acknowledged that she too had never experienced something like this before. I mean, despite the weather, when most people chose to stay home (like I had wanted to) these women (and quite a few men) chose to come out and march in solidarity for causes that they held near to their hearts.
This was not how I imagined spending my Saturday at all. However, I am glad I did. It reconfirmed a lot of things for me. For one thing, I know that the weather is just a factor not an absolute hinderance.
On the other side, I wondered about whether there was something on this planet that I believed in so strongly ... that I would drop everything and rally in support of it. I don't know if there is just yet. I guess I'm still learning.
Still, all of those women out there today... wow! I was honoured to be around each and every one of them. Yes, even the scraggly and animated bag lady who kept screaming, "What about India?" during every speech or announcement in that auditorium.
My friends and I didn't end up going out tonight. I was a bit disappointed about it, because it would have been a good way to end my week. This cancellation is mostly due to the weather so hopefully a rain-check is in order.
I proceeded to spend the evening, reading through a large chunk of Eat Pray Love (a book I have come to love as much as chocolate... and anyone who knows me, realizes how big of a deal that is!).
This was a good compromise for the weather, I think.