Friday, October 26, 2007

Shuck Alberta

Alberta is one big sandy irritant, well at least that’s what Al Gore would have you believe. I’ve been hearing a lot from Mr. Gore recently about the oil sands and their role in contributing to global warming.

First and foremost I think we as Canadians care about the environment and have always taken the steps needed to protect our beautiful country. Secondly, in my opinion the off shoot of the economic world growth, especially in China and India, will ultimately help improve living conditions around the world and over time, better equip us as a global community to deal with climate changes as well as decrease global warming.

Alberta is an irritant, just not the kind Mr. Gore implies.

As a kid I remember going to Hawaii and on every street corner there were Hawaiians selling oysters from big icy barrels. They were something like 3 for $5, maybe more I can’t remember exactly. You had a chance to grab an oyster with a pearl in it. Every tourist bought them. Sure enough, every time, you got at least one with a pearl in it.

How did they do it? It was a surprise, I mean you weren’t guaranteed to find a pearl, but it was pretty likely.

Long ago, pearls were important financial assets, comparable in price to real estate, as thousands of oysters had to be searched for just one pearl. They were rare because they were created only by chance.

Natural pearls form in oysters living in the sea without human intervention. When any irritant or parasite enters inside an oyster or mollusk the process of natural coating begins. However, natural pearls are rarely found nowadays.

On the other hand cultured pearls are formed with human help when a nucleus is implanted inside the oyster. It takes about 2-5 years to form a complete pearl depending upon techniques, where it is grown and other natural conditions. The pearls grow best when in a favorable environment. They need to have: clean, fresh or salt water, correct temperature and years to coat the grit in them to sheen of perfection.

It’s ironic that the pearl is actually an irritant to the oyster that’s trying to expel it, but one that we look upon so favorably. The Alberta Oil Sands may be an irritant to some, but a rare and beautiful jewel to others.

And just like pearls that thrive in the right conditions, your real estate continues to grow and flourish into a fine treasure.

For the time being Al Gore may continue to think the oil sands an irritant to the environment, but it takes time to grow a pearl, just as it does to make changes that will improve the environment and well being of many.

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