Rita Walker (Blog Twenty-six):  By Dan Watt and Taylor Norris

Rita Walker (Blog Twenty-five):  By Dan Watt and Taylor Norris

If you work at or hang around a place that people from around the world go to such as fitness centres, pubs, or any business near the sea, and you listen and wait, you might just notice more similarities than differences.

https://www.webmd.com/vitamins-and-supplements/features/iron-supplements#1

https://www.who.int/ipcs/assessment/public_health/cadmium/en/

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2016/feb/25/indigenous-australians-and-canadians-destroyed-by-same-colonialism

https://www.irishcentral.com/culture/great-similarities-between-experiences-of-the-irish-and-native-americans

She sits on her couch listening to Mazzy Star’s “Into Dust” while facing the door windows that look over the Grand River.  On the other side of the river she can see maple trees whose leaves are turning from green to yellow and red.  In her lap is Kanayago’s paper on workplaces she has or is working at.  Rita skims through the hemp sheets, vaguely noting and marking any grammatical corrections.  Initially Kanayago worked for mining companies as an apprentice to a metallurgist.  On the last page she sees the heading: Kanetic Reusable Batteries.

I am a lab technician for Kanetic Reusable Batteries.  My job is to discover how much of a heavy metal, such as cadmium, mercury, and lead is needed to give the batteries the longest life time.  The batteries I work on specifically are for mining machinery.  Unfortunately I need a lot of iron to do this.

Kanayago’s last statement about needing iron confuses Rita.  She doesn’t understand why Kanayago would need so much iron.  There is no mention about the heavy metals being dumped into the Grand River.  More worrisome is that the Grand River Conservation Authority either doesn’t know about the pollution or is ignoring it.  With each new government comes the addition or subtraction of conservation laws.

She gets up and touches the trunk of the weeping willow focusing on Rae.  But all she sees is Rae sitting on a log with her back to Rita.  Rae’s raven hair whips around in the wind while her body stays still and silent.  It can be so hard being the bridge between peoples while belonging to both.  Yet there are so many similarities when you look at the world before colonialism.  It’s those similarities Rita wants to bring to light once and if she can bring all the elementals together to stop Kaneki from destroying everything.  “Saying nothing is not a solution,” she whispers to Rae.  But Rae doesn’t reply.

Rita closes her eyes.  Tomorrow is Saturday.  She will have to park her car near the Brantford branch of the Conservation Authority and polymorph into something else to get inside undetected.  She wishes Oya’s apprentice would show up at her class.  A bird or fly could get inside much easier than a mouse or cat.

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