There are two very cool and inspiring stories that have come to our attention lately.
1) Two brothers from the Comox Valley who we have had the privilege of coaching each year at our annual basketball camp, Nathan and Matthew Rutten emailed recently saying that they had been raising money for Biking for Baha through Lemonade Stands, Bottle Drives, selling beaded bracelets and finding donations through friends and family. We were so touched by these two special kids whose generosity and hard work have gone way beyond anything we could have ever expected. They raised $369 Dollars! Lisa and Marc, you should be proud of your boys as we definitely are.
2) Ann Lewis and her grade 6 class from Aspen Park Elementary school are putting on a fundraising Pancake Breakfast June 25th, 26th and 27th where all profits will go straight to the Michael J Fox Foundation and Biking for Baha. If you are in Comox please check it out! We cannot thank Ann and her wonderful class enough for all of their support and compassion towards the cause.
IF THESE STORIES OF THE YOUTH IN THE COMOX VALLEY DOES NOT INSPIRE US, NOTHING WILL. YOU HAVE NO IDEA HOW MUCH YOUR STORIES HAVE BOOSTED OUR SPIRITS. THANK YOU FROM THE BOTTOM OF OUR HEARTS!
About to head into Ottawa and the land of politicians, it has been extremely interesting to see how much politics and bureaucracy play a part in all aspects of life. We have got more support than we could ever imagine so we are not trying to whine or winge here, we all just find it kind of interesting how prevalent politics are and how we had no idea they would be in a situation like this. Going east we do not know as many people so we have been attempting to contact the various Parkinson’s Societies of Canada in each province (Wendy Prothero in the Comox Valley one you have been amazingly helpful and supportive so please do not think we are tainted or angry about this-It has been a great learning experience). We have received the same answer in every case, because Michael J Fox Foundation is an American Non-Profit Organization, which is not affiliated with the Parkinson’s Societies of Canada, they cannot help us. It seems as though they are actually quite territorial about this. It has been funny to us as we ignorantly thought we are all fighting for the same cure why wouldn't we all work together. Our Baha was a lawyer so he obviously felt rules, regulations and law were quite important. However one thing I loved about our Baha was he never saw things in black and white. He always stood back looked at stuff objectively and then made the correct decision regardless of the barriers presented in front of that decision. He always found a way around it. This trait went into all aspects and decisions in life and I believe was huge in his unbelievable generosity and compassion. From all of the stories I have heard I believe it is fair to say that Baha was a “terrific lawyer, terrible businessman”. For years our compassionate grandfather would do free law work for struggling families or lend money to a passionate entrepreneur, all because he felt it was the right thing to do. In most cases he never got compensated for his endless hours of work but he once mentioned to me that “If someone did not pay you back, they probably needed the money more than you did” I thought this was a brilliantly positive way to look at it. I have seen this compassion and generosity passed down to all of Baha and Grandma Mary's children, their 2 sons Dave and John, 2 very successful entrepreneurs, follow in Baha’s footsteps constantly whether it is giving a single mom a free tank of gas and some groceries or by organizing and sponsoring jerseys for a youth Filipino basketball tournament. I think Baha would have loved this and would be smiling down from up above watching these two do their work. I hope the four of us acquire this trait and have the resources to have a similar outlook on life.
Brother Russ is on a planet off his own. For some reason since the beginning of the trip we designated Russ to take care of all of our electric equipment. He carries around a waterproof case that fits on the front of our bike. Earlier in the trip Russ was heart broken as in one of the massive downpours his 20 free 6-inch Subway coupons got ruined. He was inconsolable. Yesterday going through our damp pannier bags I noticed the 600-dollar Canon Camera that I had brought along for the trip. (It was suppose to be in the Electronics Bag) Angry, I marched over to the bag, opened it up and found everything in Russ’s life that apparently has priority over my expensive camera. I found a half finished jar of Skippy Peanut Butter, toothpaste, sun tan lotion and Russ’s 25 free small pizza Pana-Go coupons that had been double zip locked bagged. What a joke!
After swimming in a gorgeous lake outside of Agama Bay Lake Superior Provincial Park. Russ decided it was his time to put on a show. Wearing his one-piece unitard spandex, he turned to me and asked “Scotty, do you think I am sexy” and started shimming across the parking lot pulling his best Beyonce imitation. Smiling and entertained, I encouraged Russ, knowing just how ridiculous he looked. At that exact moment a car full of university aged women drove by screaming excitedly and cat calling. Russ and I unbelievably shocked, looked at each other in awe. Immediately Russ began to claim that this happens to him all the time and completely embraced the fact that the girls were biebering him. What we did not know was behind Russ, Sean Neville had climbed out of the water, golden hair shimmering in the sun, newly tanned muscles glistening and was half naked trying to change behind the rock adjacent to us. When Russ found out the girls were not screaming at him, he lifelong dream to have Bieber status was taken away in one short second.
Sean Neville has taken the reigns of being a celebrity throughout Northern Ontario. In the past weeks I have heard girls scream at him while he takes his shirt off, ask for photographs with him inside a local food joint, faint when he walks past, he is pretty much getting rock star status at the moment. I think he is Jim Morrison reincarnated. This is making my crows feet and grey hair tremendously jealous and they are planning to exact revenge. Get ready sunshine the Crow and the Grey are coming for you.
Ryan “The Ox” Mackinnon:
Ryan never complains, he never gets tired, he just cycles all day, pumping his legs relentlessly. The boys and I have loaded him up with 80% of the equipment, he never gets tired. We eat all of his food, for some odd reason he never gets hungry. We drink all of his water, he never gets thirsty, the guy must have a hump like a camel. (Maybe he stores all of his water in his oversized snose-Ha ha) We have come to the conclusion that Ry Mac has been manufactured by some underground CIA agency specifically designed to cycle across Canada. We have two theories to support our conspiracy theory:
1) Ry Mac has an ON/OFF switch. He can sleep whenever he likes. As soon as Ry Mac decides he is going to sleep, within seconds he is out cold snoring louder than any legitimate human being could. When Ryan awakes, he turns his switch on and has rejuvenated to full battery life. He is stronger than ever. The boys and I have begun to test this theory, when we see that Ryan has turned his switch off, we have begun to mess with him by turning it back on. By kicking him, pinching him, pulling his hair and even frog splashes from the top rope we have began to mess with Ryan’s or should we call him “The Terminators” battery rejuvenation process. We have all noticed a real difference, as Ryan appears sluggish, tired and disorientated. Case in point he is at half battery life.
2) Whatever organization manufactured Ryan they were smart enough to install a weather detection device. Ryan knows when and where the bad weather is coming from. It could be thirty degrees out and sunny but if you see Ryan start to “Turtle” you know something is up. Instantly the weather changes. The “Turtle" is where Ryan slowly creeps his head into his jacket covering his mouth and nose only exposing his beady red eyes and pointy head, similar to a turtle. Immediately after Ryan does this buckets of rain will explode from up above. In typical secret special op tactics Ryan will never inform us of what is happening and we will be soaking wet watching these beady red eyes scan for threats to our civilization. I am excited for the day when Ry exposes himself and I can tell people the only reason I lost in some of the sprint offs for yellow jerseys was because I was competing against The Terminator 4.0 circa 2012.
Scotty Mac Out