Mystic Beach, Vancouver Island

I loaded my 60L backpack with a sleeping mat, sleeping bag, some clothes, and my camera. I was well prepared for weekend of camping knowing that the plans would most likely fall through. I didn’t care. All I knew was that I was going to see a good friend and that I had taken time off from a weekend job that I’d been reluctant to give up shifts for the past nine years. (The fact that I’d potentially be working a “real job” was also a factor, but let’s just put that aside.)

This weekend was an invitation to break routines, what I missed most about traveling. I miss not knowing who you’d meet, what you’d be doing, and how you’d enjoy the experience. I missed letting go of all control.  Vancouver Island is not Kenya or Croatia, but I’ll take it. It’s way from “home.” I’m learning to redefine traveling as going somewhere 2000 km away.

Our plans kept changing from meandering and camping along the Portland coast, to hiking to a hidden beach near Bamfield, to camping at Mystic Beach. In the end, we settled for hot soup on Mystic Beach as if we were camping. It didn’t matter what we did. I was up for it. I got to share this “haphazard” experience with such an amazing friend whom has pushed me beyond what I thought I was capable of. I was reminded that it didn’t matter where we went; it was all about who you were with. As cliche as it may seem, it was true.

Almost every weekend, I’ve been challenged to forgo my minimum wage job. My favourite comment being “You’re still here!!!!” Yes, you’re not imagining things. I’m still here. At the end of the month, my nine year undergraduate journey will come to an end.  And I think Joanne is ready for a “real’ job. But, hey, who says I my goal wasn’t to reach 10 years at the weekend job?


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