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A Farewell Note from Jack by Jack Toronto

UBC Campus

UBC Campus

A Farewell Note from Jack
By Jack Toronto

Dear Readers,

My life has changed and I’m extremely busy rather than just vigorously active. On September 7 I took my first class of Philosophy 220A, Symbolic Logic, at UBC. I’ve wanted to take such a course since the spring of 1964 and I suspect I’m the only kid on the block to have nursed a symbolic logic dream for that length of time. My classmates are bright kids about 50 years younger than I am and it is a job to keep up with the pace of instruction (rapid) and the volume (high) of assignments to be completed online between classes. I love it but I’m seeing the sun rise much more often than I have since retiring eight years ago. I’m also taking trombone lessons, playing with the Delta Music Makers band and performing with The Carnival Band whenever I have a free moment to put on my clown nose and hit the streets. At my church, Ladner United, I coordinate the Music Leadership Team and I’m working to organize a trip by six teens to Scotland next summer where they will help a friend of mine run a program for Primary School children. Have I mentioned that I need to stay in touch with my wife, our kids and grandchildren and take care of a few tasks around home?

It’s time for Jack to step away from being a writer for The Afro News.

In my first column I wrote, “The rhythms of Ghana are in my bones. Drumming, chanting, the cacophony of the multitude of tongues in the market, and daily life structured by the rising and setting of the sun. Without street lamps seeing anything at night depends on the cycles of the moon. After an overnight thunderstorm when clouds linger elementary school students may be late for class because they can’t estimate time by the height of the sun in the sky. Planting, growth and harvest are ruled by rain’s arrival in late March and the dry season ushered in by the Harmattan wind blowing south from the Sahara from late November to the middle of March filling the air with fine dust, cracking the skin of lips and hands and plunging morning temperatures to 25o Celsius.”

These words are as true now as they were then and I need to express my deep gratitude to Publisher and Editor Honoré Gbedze for inviting me to share my Ghana memories in TAN. Over two years Jack’s musings have evolved to include comments on current African topics as well as reflections on life in general. Writing is a passion for me and I have been fortunate to have been able to share some of it on these pages.

Who knows? Maybe Jack will be able to contribute articles in the future but for now it’s time to say farewell.

Yours sincerely

Jack Toronto

John Clement aka Jack Toronto

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About Jack Toronto

John Clement aka Jack Toronto, a retired teacher, is delighted to contribute to The Afro News drawing on his experiences as a CUSO teacher in Tamale, Northern Region, Ghana from 1966 to 1968. These formative years left an indelible mark on his life as he made the transition from lifelong student to adult active in the world.

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