Our First Birthday, and Advice from an Eleven-Year-Old Author!

Long time no write! Apologies for my absence from this blog. To be honest, I just didn’t know what to write! This week was the one year anniversary of opening Gigi’s Cafe, so I figured I better pop by.

We have always wanted Gigi’s to be a friendly community spot, and though 2020 was a tough year to open a community-focused business, we’re very happy with how things have gone! We love our regulars, many whom have become friends. We’re happy to be a place for people to see a friendly face and get a nice cup o’ joe and a treat or a soup.

But I don’t want to get sappy here; we’ve posted on our social media about it and had our not-too-celebratory birthday at the shop (it was just nice to be told “happy birthday” lots and have fancy chocolate espresso cupcakes!). Nowadays I try not to get too sappy, knowing that many people are struggling with this isolating winter season (it’s getting closer to spring!).

I just read that the BC government got under a bit of Twitter heat for being too sappy, in a way. They posted this “self-care bingo card,” which many people thought was insensitive to bigger struggles:

Source: https://twitter.com/BCGovNews/status/1362860474925084672

I can see where the government folks were coming from, but I agree: drinking a cup of tea might not be a foolproof way to “self-care” your way through a long year of social isolation (though I do like and respect the healing power of a nice cup of tea). They did also point out other resources for managing mental health, which hopefully are a little more substantive than tea!

But then I came across this story of an 11-year-old girl in Kitchener, Ontario, who published an anti-bullying book called Flamingo Feet and is donating all proceeds this month to the anti-bullying campaign known as Pink Shirt Day. And I read what she believes people (kids and adults) can do to get through hard times, whether it’s bullying or something else. She says this:

 So my message to kids and even adults that … keep staying confident in yourself and keep following your dreams, you know, like things will get better,” she said. “Just keep thinking that things will get better.”

Shreya Gupta, as quoted here on CBC.ca

I think that’s a pretty good reminder of something we may be apt to forget, after a year of this mess!

The book she published, by the way, is about a dancer whose peers call her “flamingo feet,” meaning to say that they think she can’t dance. I’m going to be looking out for a young person I could buy a copy for–maybe you could too?

Until next time, take care!