Happy Mothers Day


“It is not half so important to know as to feel.”
Rachel Carson


Our grandaughters group selfie July 1, 2019 - Emma Keely photo, edited by Bruce (2)


For all mothers – thank you for carrying us forward into the world


Happy mothers day


Love ~ Bruce


“If what I say resonates with you, it is merely because we are both branches on the same tree.”


W.B. Yeats


Kohan reflection garden Slocan Lake, BC 2014-10-13  Fran Guenette photo 

Kohan Reflection Garden in New Denver BC Oct. 13-2014 – next to The Nikkei Internment Memorial Centre

Peace ~ Bruce

The way in the heart

In the sky, there is no distinction of east and west; people create distinctions out of their own minds and then believe them to be true . . . The way is not in the sky. The way is in the heart.

the Buddha

Reflection on the lake 2020-02-17 bruce witzel photo(1)(1)

Sky and clouds on the lake, Feb 17 – 2008 (with a polarizing filter)


Prayer flags 2017-02-26 bruce witzel photo

Prayer flags in our yard, Feb 26 –2017


Cheers ~ Bruce



Reflections 2020-02-17 bruce witzel photo


“The human race is challenged more than ever before to demonstrate our mastery, not over nature but of ourselves.”

Rachel Carson



Earth flag 2020-03-25 bruce witzel photo



View over Phoenix 2007-03-01  bruce witzel photo


~ Peace ~



Pieta Easter – and a John Prine Tribute

My good friend Charles Brandt  sent me this yesterday – Jesus’ mother Mary, holding him after the crucifixion. Not a rousing Easter image, but somehow to the point.

Look below for a couple more Easter COVID 19 reflections including a tribute to John Prine.


by Michelangelo  ~ Pieta

“The Pity”

Michaelangelo  sculpture - from c.branct.

photographer and source unknown



My granddaughters Britney’s Easter 2020 dough art


Britney's Easter doe art ornament




Easter morning  – “The rising sun”


Easter morning lignt  is over the lake 2020-04-12 bruce witzel photo


My Easter Tribute to John Prine


Many people have universal feelings of loss for the music legend John Prine. He died this past week, April 7 – 2020, from complications due to COVID 19.  He was 73 years old.

John wrote with humor and poignancy  – anti war songs like “Your Flag Decal Won’t Get You Into Heaven Anymore” and  “Sam Stone”…  “There’s a hole in daddy’s arm where all the money goes; Jesus Christ died for nothing, I suppose.” Prine explained later how the line came to him as an expression of the complete hopelessness of addiction.

Prine wrote the true precautionary tale “Paradise” (click link for a listen). The song became an environmental anthem – “Mr Peabody’s coal train hauled it away.”

And of course, “Angel from Montgomery.”


Angel form Montgomery cartoon


Here is a message from Johns wife, Fiona Whelan Prine:

Our beloved John died yesterday evening at Vanderbilt Medical Center in Nashville TN. We have no words to describe the grief our family is experiencing at this time. John was the love of my life and adored by our sons Jody, Jack and Tommy, daughter in law Fanny, and by our grandchildren.

John contracted Covid-19 and in spite of the incredible skill and care of his medical team at Vanderbilt he could not overcome the damage this virus inflicted on his body.

I sat with John – who was deeply sedated- in the hours before he passed and will be forever grateful for that opportunity.

My dearest wish is that people of all ages take this virus seriously and follow guidelines set by the CDC (Center for Disease Control). We send our condolences and love to the thousands of other American families who are grieving the loss of loved ones at this time – and to so many other families across the world.

Thank you from the bottom of our hearts for the outpouring of love we have received from family, friends, and fans all over the world. John will be so missed but he will continue to comfort us with his words and music and the gifts of kindness, humor and love he left for all of us to share.

In lieu of flowers or gifts at this time we would ask that a donation be made to one of the following non profits:





“When I Get to Heaven” (click to listen)

John Prine

When I get to heaven, I’m gonna shake God’s hand
Thank him for more blessings than one man can stand
Then I’m gonna get a guitar and start a rock-n-roll band
Check into a swell hotel; ain’t the afterlife grand?


Happy Easter, Dear John


john_prine photo by_Danny_Clinch                                                                                                                                              photo by Danny Clinch


Love and Cheers,





Many people who carry the COVID 19 virus have no symptoms – but they are still spreading it.


This 10 sec. graphic first shows the exponential growth rate of the virus. Then it shows a slowed pattern of growth created by our social distancing and our working or staying at home.




This discipline is crucial for our success in defeating these microbes, along with simple 20 second hand washing.



A beautiful rainbow powered garden - Powell River, BC - photo by Bruce Witzel


Cheers to all, Bruce


Wisdom of the Past – Fitting for the Present


quoted from E.F. Schumacher 


We must do what we conceive to be right and not bother our heads or burden our souls with whether we’ll be successful. Because if we don’t do the right thing, we’ll do the wrong thing and we’ll be part of the disease and not part of the cure . . .


Holiday In the Sun by Dan Hudson 1984 - photo from exhibit at Banff museum and art gallery                                                                                                                             Holiday in the Sun – painting by Dan Hudson


We cannot say: “Hold it! I am not quite ready. Wait until I have sorted things out.” Decisions have to be taken that we are not ready for; aims have to be chosen that we cannot see clearly. This is very strange and, on the face of it, quite irrational. Human beings … hesitate, doubt, change their minds, run hither and thither, uncertain not simply of how to get what they want, but above all of what they want. . .

  At Watson's -bruce witzel photo


There is no economic problem and, in a sense, there never has been. But there is a moral problem, and moral problems are not convergent; that is, capable of being solved so future generations can live without effort. No, they are divergent problems, which have to be understood and transcended.


Downtown Montreal, Augut 2005 - bruce witzel photo


Can we rely on it that a “turning around” will be accomplished by enough people quickly enough to save the modern world? This question is often asked, but no matter what the answer, it will mislead. The answer “Yes” would lead to complacency, the answer “No” to despair. It is desirable to leave these perplexities behind us and get down to work. . .


  Photo of Painting (artist unknown)

                                                                                                              photo of painting – artist unknown


It is amazing how much theory we can do without when work actually begins.



E.F. Schumacher 

author of Guide for the Perplexed, Good Work, and Small is Beautiful



    please stay safe, wash your hands and practice social distancing.


                        cheers – Bruce


A GOOD Free read for troubled times


Blue-green Book Cover photo for The Light Never lies - by bruce witzel


My wife and partner Francis has her first 2 novels below, free till Monday at midnight. If you don’t have an e-reader you can download an app. With more time at home to consider things, starting a new series of books may be just that bit of relief we need.


Ultimately uplifting, these are stories of heartbreaking need and desperate measures. Apropos to these troubling times. Some of the links are listed below.


https://www.amazon.ca/dp/B00TTNEEB0    in Canada                                 https://www.amazon.ca/dp/B00I8XKIDK  in Canada

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00TTNEEB0  in US                                        https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00I8XKIDK  in US

(also available in other countries, though you will have to do a web search locally)





Please enjoy the 1st two books of the Crater Lake Series for free!


Crater Lake series




~ Bruce ~

Letter from India


With the COVID (20)19 pandemic transforming our daily lives, I virtually reach out to you all – especially those currently in the epicentres of the virus. For better of for worse, it is showing every person how we are all interconnected to one another. Everyone is vulnerable to the virus or its side effects.

Without suggesting any of us put on rose coloured glasses, I have a couple points of encouragement:


1. Here in Canada today a 99 year old man in a Vancouver care home was reported as being recovered from the virus.

2. Below I have copied an email that Amogh Sahaje from India sent this morning to my good friend Jack Anderson in Canada. Both men work to help promote Solar Cooking in areas of the globe which have a scarcity of cooking fuel, which I’ve previously blogged about here – cookers of the world unite.


This story illustrates one of many good works still occurring in the present moment, in spite of the durable new corona microbes. My hope is that Amogh brings you a few rays of hope and sunshine amidst these dark times.

My commentary is coloured purple.                       



Sat, 28 March 2020                               From: Amogh Sahaje (India)

                                                             To: Jack Anderson (Canada)


Hope you are well and safe in this time of crisis! Is Canada too on high alert?

Here in India we are under a lockdown and restricted from venturing  even out of the house! There is no movement allowed, except for emergencies…  Hope the pandemic situation improves, but it doesn’t seem to happen soon. Moreover the paranoia about the disease seems more of a concern to me.

Nevertheless just about at the commencement of the lockdown, me with my friends from the village could construct solar stoves for a pilot project at the district that is supported by Agro Science Centre, which is a government undertaking. Attached are the photographs of this effort. Also attached is a short video footage of cooking conducted by them at the centre.


IMG_2774 solar cooking in India



IMG_1093 by amogh sajaje



IMG_3014 solar cooker

building the oven… it’s a focusing type cooker and gets very hot!


Amogh’s innovation adapted the parabolic design (below right) and uses many small mirrors




(photo capture of the video and the stew was boiling like crazy!)

Solar cooking in India


We did eventually sell the solar stove whose photographs I had shared with you in an earlier email (of it being constructed in my village). Those who bought it made a tiktok video clip of it, which got about 3 million views yet. We are getting more orders already and are selling!


IMG_3086 solar cookers in India


Just wanted to keep you posted!


Wishing the Best, Amogh


For inspiring stories of solar cooking projects check out Solar Cookers International https://www.solarcookers.org/



Let’s all work together

to be as well as possible




Universal Responsibility


“The problems we face today, violent conflicts, destruction of nature, poverty, hunger and so on, are human-created problems which can be resolved through human effort, understanding and the development of a sense of brotherhood and sisterhood. We need to cultivate a universal responsibility for one another and the planet we share.”


The Dalai Lama


Girl in Mexico City 1991-10-19  bruce witzel photo

A little girl in Mexico City – from a slide I took October 1991


Please, stay at home now if you are able to!




%d bloggers like this: