Thursday, November 30, 2023


I don't usually get overwhelmed by emotions, but I can easily control them when they happen in daily life. 

In the past, I had two experiences where I was someplace and was totally overwhelmed by feelings I couldn't describe, and I don't know why they were so powerful. 

The first was at the Anne Frank House (Museum) in Amsterdam. That was a profound experience that I'll never forget. It makes you want to scream that the family stayed hidden for so long, only to be betrayed by a "friend." It's much more complex than that, but you get the idea. 

M and I went to that Museum together, and it was simple, it was emotional, and we both came away feeling overwhelmed. 

The second time was at the Quilts of Valour booth at Quilt Canada in Toronto in 2016 or 2017. The show had yet to open for the day, and I was chatting to someone from Quilts of Valour. I had these overwhelming waves (and I mean WAVES) of intense emotions that ran through me that were indescribable. I wanted to sit down and sob my heart out. I wanted to cry for everyone whose life was changed by the war and for everyone who died or was injured or lost. It was the most intense emotional feeling, and I don't know where it originated. 

The third time was yesterday when I went on my little adventure to the Canadian Museum for Human Rights. 

Canadian Museum for Human Rights

The outside is quite unusual and I had no idea what to expect. The front entrance is almost like entering a cave and really didn't feel welcoming, but perhaps that was because of the content inside. 

Once inside, there are long ramps to get to the second floor. Hmm -- not very inviting or exciting - just like the front entrance. 

A long winding ramp to the second floor

Since I only had a little time, it was suggested I visit the permanent exhibits on the 2nd and 4th floors and the view tower on the 8th. 

Here's the thing about this Museum. The curators have put together very powerful displays with lots of visual impact. The amount of information posted is sparse but well done, and it shows that sometimes, a little says a lot. 

This wall is a timeline of 100 events that have affected human rights around the globe, starting CENTURIES ago.

Powerful wall of changes to improve human rights

This is a POWERFUL message. Why? Well, it shows that many changes have happened over HISTORY, and despite all those changes over MANY centuries, we still have issues today. I wonder if we are in a better or worse or status quo situation! 

The other thing that was front and center of this was the timing. I didn't know or remember that it was in 1982 - I was an ADULT then, that the Charter of Rights and Freedoms was created to protect female equality. YES -- that was only FORTY years ago, which is NOT that long ago!! WOW -- that blew my mind. Remember, this is in Canada - a first-world nation. We've come far, but imagine the situations in some of the other countries around the world.  

The Charter of Rights and Freedoms in 1982

There are even more recent attempts worldwide to protect women, children, ethnicities, genders, etc, from abuse and violence and to have the same rights as others. It's shocking! Even more shocking is that one could ask yourself - "has anything changed?" A law will not change society - it can help protect, but until SOCIETY CHANGES, we are no further ahead than centuries ago. 

On a lighter note, I went to the top to get a view of the city. It's impressive, and I needed that quiet break. But then again, the emotions of being in that building were overwhelming. 

A view from the top

I took this picture because as I read it, it reminded me of a current (and not so distant) scenario regarding a leader in another country (close to me - not the person, but the country), and that same person is attempting to run again in a very senior political position. The similarities are uncanny!!! 

Does that not scare the crap out of you? 

What is upsetting in this situation is that we are NOT learning by looking back at history. Some people are prepared to wipe out the past, pretend that the bad people, bad decisions, etc, did NOT exist. How can we do that? What we must do is embrace that history -- it is what has formed who we are today. We must learn from that history so we don't regress or make those same mistakes. And SOME states south of me have REGRESSED in their position of women's rights. That is EXTREMELY disturbing and extremely scary. 

I don't know why "we" (whoever they are) are so intent on making the world one big happy place. We should focus on what to do TODAY instead of erasing something that can't be changed. That concept just boggles my mind. 

I barely skimmed the surface of what is in that Museum, and there is a great exhibit coming up next year. I might just have to get out here to visit. I suggest you either come multiple days or come first thing and visit for an hour or two and then come back later in the day. Even though the displays are extremely well thought out and simple, there is too much to cover in one day!

On a lighter note, here's the sign outside Carellen Sewing Center! Thanks to Barb and Micheal for hosting me for three days. It was great fun, and I can't wait to return to Winnipeg! I wonder what weather they will dream up for me!!

The sign at Carellen Sewing Center

Now I'm heading to the airport shortly. Good lord, these time zone changes are killing me. I swear my plane was to leave at 8 AM. Then I got a note saying my plane was delayed by 50 minutes, and we are now leaving at 7:50 AM. Oops -- I guess the original flight was at 7 AM in this time zone! Oh well - I'm mere minutes from the airport and have loads of time to shower, pack the car, and get to the airport. 

Then it's home and back to work this afternoon, as there is much to prepare for the weekend classes!!!

And a huge thank you to two friends, one who lives in Winnipeg, who suggested I visit the Museum for Human Rights. Otherwise, I didn't even remember that it was here. If you are here - it's well worth a visit. 

Have a great day!!!



  1. I wish attendance at this 'experience' were mandatory. Same for the Holocaust Museum in D.C. here in the USA. I spend nearly 5h there and weeped a lot! My parents were young adults near Rotterdam through the war. The horrors are unimaginable and I wish everyone was required to listen to a survivor. They have several interviews that can be viewed.

    I sadly live in one of the US states of ignorance and going more backwards every year here. And conservatives are flocking here in huge numbers.

    I place my faith in the youngest 2 generations to redirect human rights legislation. A girl can dream, right?

    Safe travels!!

    1. Yes -- a girl can dream! Let's hope our dreams get answered!

  2. Please don't call my president Hitler. Talk about getting along!!

    1. That is why I did NOT mention any names. I was referring to the description - of how both have the ability to have unrestrained rapture over their audiences. It is a COMPARISON, not name calling. And in this world of FREEDOM of speech, I am entitled to my opinion. I am sorry if I offended you.