Since January, I’ve been toggling life and work between the metropolises of Montreal and Calgary. Today I happened to be in Calgary, the location and dynamics and circumstances of which surfaced immense feelings of gratitude and relief. A cause of today’s events, I affirm the notion that ‘less is most definitely more:’
Leaving Chapters bookstore today in southwest Calgary, after a two-hour research session on what styles and formats make for a smart-looking, approachable, desirable and (most importantly) best-seller for my upcoming book, I headed home on my motorbike in the rain, the demands of which surfaced three key notions of gratitude and how less is most certainly more:
Right turn on red:
Montrealers who live on the Island are denied by law to turn right on a red light. There is so much I can say about the odd laws and behaviours of Montrealers (from an Albertan perspective), but I’ll refrain in this case and beckon to consider how much time is wasted sitting at a red light. I can attest that red lights are much longer in duration than they are in Calgary, and thus I will say how incredibly luxurious it was to turn right on a red tonight as I headed home in the rain.
The QST is 10% (okay, so it’s really 9.975%!! Mon dieux!), so if you add that to any purchase, and count in the GST, the cost of everything in Quebec is simply ……so much more (and somehow so much less because of this taxation series). As an Albertan, I’ve been living the luxury of no PST for so long that I have become immune to the impact of what this added 10% has done to everything I choose to partake in, to the point where I’m feeling bruised and somewhat bitter as a resident of Montreal.
As a bicyclist and motorbike rider, I have come to accept that driving my motorbike or my bicycle in Montreal could be considered attempted suicide! Firstly, one typically looks at the foundations of anything and decides if it’s worth not only keeping, but deciding if it is a solid foundation to grow on, invest in or live upon. It appears that Montreal is schizophrenic in this regard: the freeways and side roads are in a chronic state of disrepair, construction and (in my opinion) undrivable. Add to that a culture comprised of aggressive people who are always in a rush to get somewhere, love pressing their horns (really hard!), love the smell of my bumper, drive like they are heading to a final interview with Satan, and really don’t appreciate an SUV from Alberta on their roadways.
I hung out in Chapters tonight for nearly two hours scouring the best-selling books that emulate what it takes to be the very best at life, your career, relationships and the best format and style to convey this to what will become my own and my partner/co-author, of our upcoming career empowering handbook. Several days earlier, I was in a Chapters in Montreal (okay, I love books and I love Chapters), but my experience was so implicitly different that I only stayed in the Pointe-Claire store for less than twenty minutes, due to a series of events and perceptions.
I will return to Montreal soon to resume my obligations there, but I will rest tight tonight at the close of this day celebrating my new business arrangement with my partner, Catherine Brownlee, inarguable one of the world’s most connected people in the business world. Her and I have decided it’s time to launch a best-selling book to build upon her past best-seller Want to Work in Oil and Gas, to bring the content into a more contemporary light.
Tonight I savour the small luxuries that I’d previously taken for granted and celebrate the little things.
Wishing you less,