A little interview from the summer.
Thanks to Dianne Meili, author of the much-loved book: Those Who Know – Profiles of Alberta’s Native Elders
Aaron Paquette: A tough one right off the bat! All the good answers are honesty, loyalty, that kind of thing, but if someone’s your friend, hopefully they already have that in spades. I think I’d have to say the ability to sit with you in silence, neither one feeling forced to break the awkward moment because the moment isn’t awkward at all! It’s just you and an old friend sitting there. Well, now that I put it that way it sounds kind of boring…
W: What is it that really makes you mad?
A.P.: People throwing their trash out the window of their car. Who do they think is going to clean it up anyway? Me? They’re probably right, but that’s a little presumptuous on their part, don’t you think? Seriously, though, it really bothers me. It speaks of a complete absence of gratitude for the earth we live on and share. I can’t really blame anyone, because who do you blame? In the end everyone does the best they can with what they’ve got at the moment. If you don’t have gratitude, it’s because no one gave that gift to you, or if they did you didn’t understand it. I guess it’s why we have a whole lifetime to learn it.
W: When are you at your happiest?
A.P.: I should probably say that it’s when I’m painting, but really it’s when I’m with my family. There’s just something special about being able to tell old stories and love them every time, and to be able to take tragedy and turn it into laughter. Even though your family can make you go crazy sometimes, getting through it is healing and it’s when I learn the most.
W: What one word best describes you when you are at your worst?
W: What one person do you most admire and why?
A.P.: Myself. My humility. Ha ha, just kidding. It’s got to be my mom, for giving it her best every day of our lives. They don’t give awards for that, but they sure as heck should.
W: What is the most difficult thing you’ve ever had to do?
A.P.: Getting to the point where I knew what it really meant to let go. Once I finally reached that, actually letting go was the easy part.
W: What is your greatest accomplishment?
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