a peek inside the fishbowl

15 Feb, 2017

Found Day

Posted by andrea tomkins in: Ottawa

Every second Tuesday is my day. My. Day. The newspaper is finalized and sent to the printer’s every second Monday, so the day after is my opportunity to decompress. As you can imagine, this is easier said than done. Sometimes my Tuesday is the only available day for a meeting or I get caught up in errands, but I do try my darndest to keep it clear. You see, I’ve decided that every second Tuesday is the day I devote to filling up my vessel. (This is something I wrote about awhile back in regards to writer’s block. You can read that right here.)

Regular Fishbowl readers might recall the Lost Day I had last week. Well, yesterday I decided to reclaim that day and even out the tally.

After my usual morning routine, I picked myself up, got in the car, and made my way downtown to the National Gallery. Mind you, the siren song of my book (The Witches of New York, it’s soooo gooood!) and the promise of hot beverages and fuzzy blankets was very hard to resist, but I ignored that feeling and set out anyway.

Spoiler alert: I was very happy I did.

At the National Gallery

I started my solitary, leisurely stroll through the Alex Janvier exhibition. Janvier is a contemporary indigenous artist whose work will challenge any preconceived notion you might have about aboriginal art. (By the way, he’s the fellow who designed and painted the gorgeous artwork on the domed ceiling of the Museum of History in Gatineau.)

Alex Janvier at the National Gallery


Next up: a thoughtful exhibition of the photos of Josef Sudek (1896–1976), a.k.a the “poet of Prague.” My favourite photos were his historical views of Prague, but that’s really only scratching the surface of his body of work:

Photo of Prague by Joseph Sudek.

I took a break for lunch at the cafeteria. Have you ever been? The food is good and reasonably priced. I had an apple/brie panini, a bag of chips, and a coffee for about ten bucks.

Lunch at the National Gallery

This pretty view of a snow-covered Parliament Hill was included in the lunch (what a deal!):

View from the National Gallery

After lunch, I went to visit some old friends…


.. and then settled down for some quiet contemplation in the main foyer. There were a bunch of great big red chairs facing Parliament Hill, with wide curving backs that went up higher than my head. A young couple snuggled in one of these chairs on my left, and there was a breastfeeding mother on the right. What a lovely space.

I, too, enjoyed a bright and sunny view while I wrote this blog post. :)

Quiet time at the National Gallery

As I sat there and looked out over this snowy corner of Ottawa, I listened to the quiet hum of people around me and thought about how good it felt to reclaim this day. I was reminded that I am ultimately the master of my own time, and that the Found Days outnumber Lost Days, by far.

5 Responses to "Found Day"

1 | Claudette

February 16th, 2017 at 12:06 pm


Love! :)

My favorite day of the week is usually Tuesday because it’s the first day of the week I am all alone (bliss!) after a hectic weekend and a Monday of catching up from the weekend.

So glad you had this opportunity!

2 | andrea tomkins

February 16th, 2017 at 1:55 pm


Thanks Claudette! It felt really good to get out. As I get older I’m realizing how important it is to keep my batteries charged. Took me long enough to figure out. Sigh.

3 | Misty Pratt

February 16th, 2017 at 2:42 pm


I still haven’t figured out “found days.” I went down to 4 days/week at the office, and my one day seems to fill up with so many things (yesterday it was an oil change, 1.5 hours shoveling and blowing snow, taking the dog for a walk and one hour of frantic work) Maybe 3 days at the office is the answer ;)

4 | a peek inside the fishbowl » Blog Archive Day out - a peek inside the fishbowl

February 28th, 2017 at 7:54 pm


[…] my Found Day? Since then, I have decided that I need to be proactive about getting out of the house on my day […]

5 | a peek inside the fishbowl » Blog Archive Andrea's Tuesdays: Lime Kiln Trail - a peek inside the fishbowl

March 2nd, 2017 at 8:00 pm


[…] my first Tuesday, I went to the National Gallery of Canada. Yesterday, I opted for an outdoor adventure because the weather was nice. So I grabbed my camera […]

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The Obligatory Blurb

My name is Andrea and I live in the Westboro area of Ottawa with my husband Mark and our dog Piper who is kind of a big deal on Instagram. We also have two human daughters: Emma (20) and Sarah (18). During the day I work as a writer at The Royal Ottawa Mental Health Centre. I am a longtime Ottawa blogger and I've occupied this little corner of the WWW since 1999. The Fishbowl is my whiteboard, water cooler, and journal, all rolled into one. I'm passionate about healthy living, arts and culture, family travel, great gear, good food, and sharing the best of Ottawa for families. I also love vegetables, photography, gadgets, and great design.

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