01605/05/2013 – Multiple sclerosis is the most common neurological disease affecting young adults in Canada. Every day, three more people in Canada are diagnosed with MS. My good friend Ali’s Mumsy (pictured in the middle) has MS and every year, Ali and her sister (pictured behind Mumsy) walk for MS.

This year, I got the privilege and honour to Captain our wonderful team, KW Coffee and Stuff!

Our team raised over $450! The exact number escapes me as many collected cash pledges and submitted them at registration. The amount I raised ($140) will go towards my tally of my goal to raise $3000 through Streets of KW for various charities. As described in the fundraiser page, when I reach $3000, I will shave my head and donate my hair for wigs!

With this MS Walk, at about 20°C, clear skies, and a light breeze, we couldn’t have asked for a better day to have the walk. This wasn’t always the case. I do remember MS Walk 2011, which was in the middle of a snow storm! Canadian weather is rather unpredictable in the tween months of April and May.

018This year, I walk for Sandra (Mumsy), and I walk for all those affected by MS in some way. I also walk for MS research with the hope to one day end MS.

At the end of the walk, our team raised up our carnations, the flower for expressing love, fascination, and distinction. It is the floral representation for the quest to end MS.

This walk was so very in line with the purpose of Project Streets of KW; the purpose to raise awareness, raise money for charity, get exercise, and to enjoy the company of good friends and meet new people!

I am proud to have been part of this walk. I’m proud to know such wonderful people. The energy and camaraderie was encouraging and beautiful.

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Lots of people brought their pets out for the walk. While most dogs were happy to be out and about, we saw this poor pup who found a piece of shade and, regardless of the coaxing of his owner, wouldn’t budge. With the owners permission, we have a shot of this tired pup! Towards the end of the route, it appeared that many people were feeling the same way :)

Overall, a Sunday morning well spent!

Are there more events going on this summer that you know of? Please send me an email (yuyren [‘”at’] yuyr.net) or comment about upcoming events that would be good to be involved with as part of Streets of KW!

 

 

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04/24/2013 – When our family friends had heard that we were moving to Canada back in 1997, they told us a joke. “Do you know why it is called Kanada?” they exclaimed. “No? Why?” the curious child-me asked. “Well, an explorer had landed on the shores of Kanada.” they explained, “He looked around and said ‘Keiner Da!’”  For those who do not speak German, ‘Keiner Da’ means ‘No one’s here’.

This was certainly how I felt today as I biked through the streets in the southeast block by Westmount and Ottawa. All the streets were empty. There were a few cars passing by, but really only to get to one’s driveway in order to get out of the cold. Radcliffe Park was empty. It was rather… depressing actually.

001So as I started this project, I had first considered investing in a bike GPS. One that can integrate with my MapMyRide account or where I can upload GPX routes. My search ended in me deciding that there was a much much cheaper option. Behold, my poor man’s GPS! This time I put the paper in a plastic sleeve and duct taped it to my arm. This worked out a lot better than fumbling with a crinkled piece of paper while signalling, shoulder checking, and gathering my bearings as I did last time.

My route ended with a brief tour of McLennan Park. I saw one person with a puppy there. One. The strong winds, wet snow, and chilly weather may have had something to do with it, but it was definitely very… solitary. In case you don’t believe me about the snow, I have captured evidence (image is darker due to flash).

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The first thing I noticed about McLennan Park was that it was on a hill, and at a higher elevation than its entire surroundings. Turns out McLennan Park used to be a landfill site, which was closed in the 1970s and built over with homes. However, the area had issues with high levels of methane gas, and pipes were built to release the gas for many years. Since then the area has naturalized and became McLennan Park. The City of Kitchener invested $3M into the development of this park and it includes playgrounds, splash pad, skate park, bike trails, dog park, picnic areas, toboggan hills, and many other amenities.

Overall I think it’s a very nice park that should really be enjoyed more. I certainly didn’t pick the right time to go visit, now did I? I encourage you to check it out if you haven’t already… on a nicer day.

 

 AN: 4/26/2013 – It appears to be very important to note that it is called Mount. Trashmore. Everyone I know who is local has been reminding me of it! So here.. I am making it the official declaration! Mt. Trashmore!! 😛

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The first bike ride was completed. Area covered was around Northfield and Wissler in North Waterloo. Here are my takeaways:

  • On a Sunday afternoon, there are a lot of children on the streets
  • It takes me approximately 4 minutes/km at a casual pace
  • There are a LOT of Crescents. A LOT.
  • Wissler and Old Abbey area have very pretty houses
  • It is hard to signal left and right while holding a paper map, need a better navigation procedure

The route covered was 13 km.

How many kilometers is the total of all the streets in KW? What’s a good estimate?

The first route is planned! Due to having not biked for 12 years, I picked a small quiet neighborhood in North Waterloo to tackle. The purpose of this route is to test a few things:

  • My ability to remember how to bike (and prove/disprove the age old saying “it’s just like riding a bike!”)
  • Figure out what will kill me… (Understand my endurance and strength capabilities)
  • Test mapping and futuristic toys (Glympse tracking and MapMyRide on my devices)
  • Try not to get run over by a car (learn how to bike on roads)