Joy Drop: Canadian women’s hockey cup runneth over

Happy Friday, friends! This has been a particularly exciting week. Congratulations to the Canadian women’s hockey team for winning the IIHF gold (again).

Watching the players dance with the trophy on the ice is pure joy. 

This team has won three gold medals in 12 months: the 2021 world championships played last August, the 2022 Olympics in February and the 2022 world championships which wrapped up Sept. 4. They are busy being golden and I am all here for it. 

Speaking of champions, Nazem Kadri, who won a Stanley Cup with the Colorado Avalanche in June, is donating $1 million dollars to Ambulatory Care at the London Health Sciences Centre in his hometown of London, Ont. It will be named the Nazem Kadri Surgical Centre

It’s the most wonderful time of the year. The Toronto Film Festival (TIFF) has begun!

On opening night, Canada’s legend Kardinal Offishall deejayed a party to set the vibe. Kardi is arguably one of the most impactful Canadian artists and his style is unmatched. I love it when the brightest lights of Toronto shine so brightly. 

There are so many movies that I want to watch. One of them is the film Buffy Sainte-Marie: Carry It On. We love seeing brilliant artists celebrated and their impact chronicled the way Winnipeg’s Madison Thomas has in her documentary on the Canadian folk singer.

The film is based on the book Buffy Sainte-Marie: The Authorized Biography by Andrea Warner. Andrea is a friend and also a writer on the film project. I knew this project was coming but I am thrilled to see this collaboration of creators take shape. I spoke with Andrea after the premier to congratulate her and she happily told me: “I’m exhausted but it went really well and Buffy was celebrated.”

One more film that I have my eye on is Kacchey Limbu, a film from India that follows the story of two siblings playing on rival cricket teams. The protagonist is a young woman in love with the sport. I am excited to see it. I love the collision of sports with film and have always believed that sports can be a powerful vehicle for storytelling. 

Last but not least, one moment of tremendous joy for me was seeing my Burn It All Down co-host Jessica Luther in person.

Shireen Ahmed and friend Jessica Luther before Thursday’s Pearl Jam concert in Toronto. (Shireed Ahmed)

She was supposed to come to Toronto in March of 2020 with her husband, Aaron, to see Peal Jam in concert. The pandemic took over and finally, more than two years later it was rescheduled to this week. The pair came up for one day from Austin, Tex., and I was able to hug my very dear friend after not seeing her for three years. Yes, I cried. We had breakfast with our husbands and I took many selfies. 

I hope you hug your loved ones and enjoy the beautiful late-summer weather. I leave you with Pearl Jam’s Daughter. It is Aaron’s favourite song. 

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