Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Safe Passage

Suitcase Diaries Road Trip: Moving to Vancouver Island
Day 1

This image is magical and is exactly how I feel as I drive.
I'm writing from THE RICHARD LAKE MOTEL in Sudbury where Ryan Reynolds once stayed. I know this because there's a signed pic of him predominantly displayed at the reception desk. We pulled in at about 10:30; finally left Burlington around 3:30 after a tearful good bye to Flippy and Maya who will be staying at the CAT'S CASTLE until the 12th. Little Maya was a real trouper, walking around their room checking out the other residents while Flippy was having a melt down hovering in a corner in their kennel. Ron brought her a privacy tent where she could hide til she felt safe

I have been having flash backs during our drive today through southern Ontario; a place that I know well from past experiences.

I waved goodbye to the urban sprawl that is happening above the #5; something Burlington residents were promised would never happen due to the importance of our farmlands but the powers that be have not stood by their word. Rod and I marvelled that neighbours can now watch people enjoying the roller coasters at CANADA'S WONDERLAND. I don't know when this happened as it used to be in the middle of nowhere. We wondered how long it will be until residents of the neighbourhood complain about the noise.

King City, the location for my lomi trainings with Harriette and Birgit, reminded me of my lomi ohana (family). Lomi really was responsible for setting the wheels in motion for this whole adventure. As I worked with the power of intention my intentions became clearer as to who I wanted to be and one thing lead to another and here I am taking a journey I really wasn't thinking of in 2005. Thanks go out to Lynne, my flying instructor for saying to me, about lomi "You, of all people, really have to do this!"

Mount St Louis is where Nor drove to through horrendous snowstorms so that we could go downhill skiing. Across the road the cross country course where Ellen, Arnie, Rod and I enjoyed a spring skiing on corn snow wearing only sweaters and jeans being careful not to end up in the pool of water which had formed at the end of the trail cus your skis would come to a grinding halt and you'd be catapulted into the puddle in the blink of an eye.

As we pass the sign for Lake Rousseau I realize that my niece had lived up here for a few years; lucky girl! Rod and I rented a cottage on nearby Lake Muskoka in '94.  That was when I discovered my love of kayaking and the "Thacker" wave was born. My brother Rob and Dad came up with a virtual flotilla in tow including a yellow kayak. Since he had to drive at a snail's pace to accommodate the load, Dad waved on the cars behind them to encourage them to pass. However, to the mortification of my brother, Dad's arthritic fingers made it look like he was giving them "the finger" so drivers gave them "the look"as they passed.

The sign for WHITE SQUALL kayaking outfitters and school takes me back to the self-rescue training weekend with my late friend Mary. Being small, nimble and fit, it was easy peasy for me to get in and bail the craft out numerous times, not so for my much larger friend. She gained my total respect as she displayed patience, perseverance and ingenuity as she made attempt after attempt and finally, nearly totally worn out, completed one rescue.

Parry Sound carries memories of Bryan's cottage where I spent almost the whole weekend in the buff laying on a rock like a lizard when I wasn't swimming or feeding the chipmunks. Near there is a cut off for Marisa's cottage. A few years ago she hosted a wine and cheese tasting evening and sleep over for  "Council of the Sleepover" members. This was my first long drive one that I was too chicken to do the year before. And now I've embarked on the quintessential Canadian road movie experience - driving across the country to a life that fits better.

I was going to say a better life, but that isn't so. The past 27 years has been an amazing ride and I have truly been blessed with wonderful friends and clients. The past few months have been filled with emotional endings and good byes but how lucky am I to have to endure this.

The Council of the Sleepover promised me that if I returned to Ontario there would be lots of get togethers and they didn't disappoint! Thank you, thank you, thank you

The chocolates Susan and Neil dropped into the mailbox for Rod and I to savour during the journey never made it out of the house. In true comfort food fashion they comforted us during our time of need, the hectic few days of packing up our stuff.

I eat a bagel from Tim's paid for by the GC from Regina and Sandy as I drive to tunes selected for me by 2 friends Russ and Dan: one compilation CD is all about dreams whereas the other is a bit of a blast from the past - Moody Blues and the Cowboy Junkies. The walkie talkie endorsed by Andrea sits beside me and allows "little buddy" to communicate with "my guy" who leads the way in the U-haul (I'd have taken a pic of the insides of it but, being one who claims not to have a lot of stuff, I find it too embarrassing as it's packed to the gills).

On my dash is the eagle feather that I found on the island last year; the one that called me back "home". Alongside this is the beautiful safe passage basket that Sue crafted for me just for this special journey and in it is a scroll containing this poem. I'm not sure whether Sue is its author or not - she may have told me when she presented me with it but I was internally too emotional to take it all in.

I carry with me other gifts: the spectacular journal (it will be christened during dream teacher training II at Mosswood in Sept) from Di my always meant to be sister-in-law; the golden shawl from my 97 year old inspiring amiga Liliane; most special heart stones from Kalani and Flo; knitting needles from my knitting buddies Pam and Glyn; feather earrings (that I'm wearing now, that came with a fantastic necklace) from Marisa; the picture from Aust and Linda of downtown Oakville in the winter (as we won't have many of those on the island) Oakville as I remember it from when I worked across the road at Oakville Shiatsu and Massage Therapy Centre; the tree of life glass work from our "Dan's party" friends; and Rod and I will enjoy many a meal funded by Roseanne and Pete, Dave and others; the feminine pee kit from my longest time friend Janet (I promised her a product review so check in frequently to read that...)

And there are those gifts that touch my heart, fare well get togethers with: Sue and Katie; Austin and Linda; Susan and Neil; Eva; Rob, Sue, Candy and Rick; a visit from Montrealers Kathy and Jim complete with Montreal bagels from that cool 24 hr bakery and Jim's helping hands to ease Rod's load on those final workdays; Pam and my visit to Flo's where we witnessed that amazing rainbow around the sun; being drummed out for a safe journey at the last full moon fire ceremony by Janet (and the sacred spit, called by another name :-)) and the 19 other participants; Glynnie's "don't go" spontaneous burst in the middle of dinner which made us all jump and then burst out laughing at last weekend's "Council of the Sleepover" sleepover; Austin's company and help on Tuesday as we prepared to load the truck which lightened our load; the kind people at the kitty castle. Candy's last minute errands. Pam's help with the kitties, and our next door neighbour who took a ton of stuff this aft saving me from taking it to the reuse centre. The telephone chats with my sister Jude and the e-mails from so many; the list goes on and I'm sorry if I missed anyone.

People dropped by to say bon voyage (some more than once) and client's came for that one last session.

How can I leave them I ask. And, that's how it should feel. Thank you all for your kind wishes, your calls, hugs and words of encouragement and support. You are in my heart always!

And, last of all, goodbye 5305. When I came back to Ontario I never imagined I'd ever own a place of my own, have my own garden, let alone renovate it (that amazing bathroom too) with my guy. What a gift you have been!
Maya's "fuzzy" was the last thing I found when I took a final tour.

1 comment:

  1. aaaaaawwwwww, Nance - what a beautiful piece of writing -- I miss you already my friend :)

    But not to worry, we'll always be together even if divided on the physical plane -- so how about that astral travel?