It was the last day of our vacation in BC, and we decided to visit North Vancouver, just as an excuse to take the SeaBus. The bus took us across Vancouver Harbor to Lonsdale Quale Market, where we had a little stroll with the girls. They were super excited, running around as there were people and nice colors everywhere.
At some point, I don’t remember if I heard a loud noise or if it was my wife screaming, all I remember is that I turned around and saw my 2-year old’s face covered in blood, her mother kneeling to grab her. Turns out she ran headfirst at full speed into a sharp black metal pole that she didn’t see, and she had a big hole in the middle of her forehead, from which blood was pouring.
As you can imagine, we were panicked, big time. Anyway, there were some people, two nice ladies in particular, who helped us keep our cool and take action. I called 911 and asked for an ambulance. About 20 minutes later, which felt like a really long time, we were taken to a nearby hospital by two paramedics.
One of them was especially thoughtful. I explained that this was our last day in BC, and once we arrived at the hospital, I think he went out of his way to help us get seen by a nurse as fast as possible. I say that because I saw him speak to different people and we were called almost immediately after he left. His partner had left the scene much earlier, and I could tell we were not the worst-case he saw in his career.
When they asked me to register my daughter with the hospital, something weird happened. The dude at the reception told me that because we were from Quebec, I’d have to pay something like $120 for the doctor’s fee. I immediately said, “Sure, no problem”. Then one of his female colleagues told him something to the effect “No, they don’t have to pay because…” after which they launched into a brief one-minute conversation. Now up to that point, I had kept it together and managed to only think about the next action. But while the two employees were debating in front of me, I momentarily lost it. On one hand, I could tell we would probably be fine, as my baby didn’t lose consciousness and didn’t vomit. On the other, I was screaming inside: “Guys, if you want all the money I own, every bank account, I’ll give it to you right now. I’ll give you my passwords, the cards in my wallets. I don’t care. I just want my daughter to be safe.”
Anyway, when I went back to sit next to my wife, she could see my demeanor had changed and my eyes looked different. She thought I was scared, but the reality is I was terrified not of what was happening, but of what could have happened. And I was grateful to that paramedic that helped us and to the entire system around us that is there when we need it.
Funny enough, there was another nurse when we just arrived at the hospital, and he, on the other hand, was the biggest prick I ever met. I’m not a violent person and thankfully, I don’t remember what he looked like, but if I did and I was to meet him one day in a dark alley, I can’t guarantee what would happen. He wanted me to leave my wife and children (two and four-year-old) on their own, and go elsewhere. Because, you know - covid. When I said that my wife’s English was very minimal, he suggested that she leave. And when I asked “And go where?”, his answer was: “Well, anywhere but here!”. After which he gave me a dirty look and told me that I was supposed to pinch the mask on my nose. Which I did, but I stayed with my family.
This event reminded me what’s important, and what isn’t.
Money is a tool. It comes and goes, you gain some, you lose some.
My family is important. Good health is important. If you lose those, they can’t be replaced.
It also triggered some more thoughts about investing and the seriousness that can be found around it. Investing is NOT important, and it is NOT a serious activity. I’m sorry if I’m hurting your feelings, but I’m not sorry (it’s just a Canadian thing that we say).
Investing is a game. I love this game, and hopefully, I can get good at it one day, but it’s just a game. If I get rich, I hope that I’ll be good enough of a man to put that money into something productive and help others whose circumstances are less fortunate than mine.
If you also have a family, I suggest you spend some quality time with them, every day.
If you don’t…get busy.
Until next time, stay cool & stay invested!