Last year I had a short bout with cancer. I was fortunate in that we caught it early and dealt with it quickly.

I am in good health again. I’m feeling young and I am riding faster than I have in a few years. Life is good.

The only down side is that I have to go for preventative treatments semi regularly to reduce the chances of any recurring issues.

So once a week, when I should be riding my bike, I swing by the Campbell River Hospital and get treated. The staff is fantastic, and for an unpleasant treatment, they make it bearable with their positive attitudes. I consider myself very lucky.

Here comes the rant, so if you’re looking for my upbeat and positive outlook, that will be back next week, you can just turn the page now.

On my way into the nice new hospital with fancy coloured siding, shiny doors and windows and beautiful gardens, I am accosted with a big cloud of second hand cigarette smoke. It’s unavoidable. And I as I pass through the haze, I can’t help but notice that the nice new garden is littered with cigarette butts. I’m not talking about a few dropped in the garden. There are dozens of butts in there, and on the side walk, and in the gutter.

I lose my chance to get out for a nice healthy bike ride, so I can increase my chances of staying cancer free, but to achieve this, I have to pass through the smoking pit and apparently the garbage garden. Ironic.

Habits are habits and I understand they are hard, if not impossible, to overcome. I am no better. I’ve been trying to quit Starbucks for two years. It’s not healthy for me and it’s expensive, yet I still go there almost every day despite all the promises I make to myself. I drink more beer than I should and when I wake up with a hang over, I think I should ease off the beer … but I don’t.

Will power can be a tricky thing to control, so I’m not judging you for smoking. We all have our vices and yours are no worse than mine.

But what I don’t do, is spit coffee in people’s faces as I pass by, and when I finish my morning habit, I don’t just throw the cup on the ground and walk away. That would be rude, wouldn’t it?

So, smoke all you want. You’re an adult and can make your own decisions, I respect that. But please, don’t force me to share in your vice, and maybe look around for an ashtray before you just thrash our community with your litter.

I’m James Durand, and now that I got that off my mind, I’m Goin’ Ridin’…

Just Posted

Eddy reflects on her first Campbell River school trustee campaign

‘I knew that SOGI would be an issue, but I didn’t realize that it would be the only issue’

2018 municipal election: Few surprises on Vancouver Island

16 incumbent mayors will continue in their positions for four more years

Mayoral results from across B.C.

Voters in 162 municipalities in B.C. set to elect mayor, council, school board and more

Every vote counts: 10 tightest races in B.C.’s municipal elections

Peachland saw their election decided by just one vote

Cam Levins sets new Canadian marathon record at Toronto Waterfront Marathon

The 29-year-old from Black Creek, B.C., ran it in two hours nine minutes 25 seconds

Tommy Chong says cannabis legalization makes him proud to be a Canadian

Legendary marijuana advocate and comedian celebrates cultural milestone at Kelowna event

B.C. Youtuber to seal himself ‘in a jar’ to demonstrate impacts of climate change

Kurtis Baute wants to see how long he can last in a 1,000 cubic foot, air-tight greenhouse

One of Taiwan’s fastest trains derails, killing at least 18

The train was carrying more than 360 people

Scheer marks one-year countdown to federal election with campaign-style speech

Conservative Leader insists that it will be Justin Trudeau who ‘makes it personal’

Canada Post union announces rotating strikes in four Canadian cities

Mail will still be delivered but it will be delayed

B.C. VIEWS: Residents have had enough of catering to squatters

Media myth of homeless victims offends those who know better

B.C. Liberals’ hopes high as Nanaimo by-election approaches

Historically safe NDP seat vacated by long-time MLA Leonard Krog

Leaving B.C.’s electoral reform to a referendum is ‘ridiculous’: professor

B.C. voters getting ballots in the mail on proposal to change electoral system

Canada condemns killing of journalist in Saudi Arabia consulate in Turkey

The Saudi government claimed Jamal Khashoggi was killed in a ‘fistfight’

Most Read