As I look at the various blogs posted thus far, I see I have neglected to note who I am – or anything else about me beyond a passion for quality, self prepared food.
My name is Burns Wattie – and I have never been, nor never will – be involved in the food business. I am strictly a home cooker – doing all of my work out of one of two kitchens, and preparing for myself, my family and our guests.
I’m retired – sort of. Professionally I have worked in education in Ontario – specifically with English as a Second language as a consultant, teacher and teacher educator. I still do the teacher educator part of it teaching online courses in ESL for teachers. Its safe to say I am known to this professional community.
My other passion is cycling. I have always cycled, and will look for ways NOT to use a car. Before my younger son started to work for Cyclepath I used to think that one had a single bike that met most of ones needs. How naive. Lets just say I now have 4 sets of wheels to choose from. Although I am pretty fearless on the streets of Toronto, I absolutely recognize and appreciate the importance of a dedicated, connected, safe cycling infrasturcture. For too long city planners have considered the bicycle as a form of recreation. A paradigm shift is needed here – cycling needs to be considered as a key means of transportation – both of people and goods. With this perspective, the role of the car, and the bicycle change significantly. Having cars go as fast as they can in urban areas is no longer a key traffic planning goal. I currently work with our local cycling advocacy group (undergoing a name change – but here is the site:) http://bikeunion.to/ward/22
Which brings me to my rather remarkable family, who have accomplished more than most. To get the full picture of them, I’ll refer you to http://kilometresforcommunication.com/. This rather amazing campaign was begun by my wife and son – who made it all happen through a cycling trip across Canada in 2011. My role in this has been that of support in the background – taking care of the stuff of life – including, of course, their food. Do check out Skye’s blog – it is most remarkable!
Never a day goes by without me appreciating the fact that I do not have to make choices between rent money and food money as many do. I’m hoping in my blog to show ways in which people can do a lot of that production themselves, and be able to focus on purchasing and growing food lower down on the processing ladder. In that, I am also keenly aware that I have a rare commodity – storage space. I also have toys that help me prepare food and process stuff efficiently. I know I have a long way to go to really understand how it all intersects, to properly being able to help out in helping people become more self sufficient within their current resources. I’ve begun to volunteer for the STOP – a wonderful organization doing so much already to help and enable many vulnerable people in the community. I hope to do more work with them.
So there’s a little more ….. and more to come as this unfolds.