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  • jolwajda

Tofino.



I drove out of my last stop on this trip heading to the ferry to take me to Nanaimo, B.C. I left extra early in the morning. The sun was just coming up over the mountains, reflecting off of the windows on the buildings of the Vancouver skyline, making it just a touch prettier than it already was, if that was even possible. I listened to the album, "Nice, Nice, Very Nice" by Dan Mangan, an album I all but forgot about until I put the C.D. on in my friend's car the previous day. As I sang along to the song, "Road Regrets" I reflected on the month that I just had, and I thought to myself that I didn't have a goddamn one regarding this adventure. I have spent this whole journey waiting for the other shoe to drop, if you will. It’s something I've grown very accustomed to in my life over the years. Whenever something good would happen to me, I would be terrified for it to go off the rails eventually, because, well it usually did. But when I started this journey, I told myself I wasn't going to put any negative thoughts out into the universe, and if and when particular situations came up, I would roll with it. I'd adapt. I'd overcome. I told myself I had to be flexible with circumstances I couldn't control. I told myself that this trip was going to go super in my fucking favour for once. And you know what? It did. Every single thing. Every visit was better than I anticipated. Every reconnection, even more meaningful than I envisioned. Did I... did I just manifest something for the first time? I never fully believed in the power of manifestation before. I am certainly a believer now though. I believe that the energy you put out into the universe will be returned. Maybe not right away. Maybe you have to mentally feel like you are tied to the back of a truck and getting dragged through the mud for what feels like forever before it happens, but if you hold on long enough and tight enough, eventually the truck will stall,the universe will help you up to dust off your knees, and the road rash will heal. Trust me. The reason I departed so early that morning to the ferry was… well, because I had no fucking clue what I was doing. After driving solo for over 7000 kilometres, this was my Everest. I don’t know why, but it was the scariest leg of the trip for me. So, like I said, I showed up early, like very early, like the only vehicle in line early. After my ticket was authorized, I followed the directions that the first attendant had given me, but I had no other car to follow, because again, super fucking early. So, I pulled up to what I thought was the designated line for parking for the ferry, and sat in my car not sure what to do. After a few minutes, another attendant walked in front of where I had stopped. Young guy, probably mid-twenties. He looked down at my front licence plate, looked up at me and smiled. I rolled down my window, said hello, and asked him "Is this the lane I’m supposed to be in for Nanaimo? It’s my first time taking the ferry!" He smiled again, and replied with, "You are right where you are supposed to be." I thanked him, rolled up the window, and started to cry. For the first time in a very, very long while, I did feel like I was in fact where I was supposed to

be.


Geographically, and more importantly, spiritually. One of the perks about being the first in line was that I was the first to board. So while other cars were stuck looking at bumpers in front of them, and cement walls to either side of them, I was at the very tip of the ship, looking out onto the Pacific ocean, mountains all around me, and Vancouver Island on the horizon. I was also the first to depart from the ferry in Nanaimo. I drove off the boat heading into town, stopping for essentials before I departed for my final destination, and ultimately, my new home. I drove to the grocery store and picked up chicken, veggies, fruit, coconut water, and chocolate. Then I drove to the liquor store and picked myself up a bottle of Meiomi Pinot noir. I had treated myself to a little Air-bnb in Ucluelet for two nights before travelling the last 40 or so kilometres to Tofino, and wanted to be well prepared. There is a song that I’m incredibly fond of. If you couldn’t already tell from my blog posts, music is a big thing for me. I have had a few bands over the last twenty years that are tried and true. Soundtracks to my life, you could call them. This particular one is by Wintersleep. For some unknown reason I have never been able to find the song Early in the Morning by Wintersleep on Spotify. I’ve searched all of the discography and it doesn’t come up, so my fall back is finding it on YouTube. There is no video for the song, just a picture accompanied with the music. The picture is of the sun shining down through the green lush coniferous forest. You can’t see the mountains in the background of the image, but you know they are there. I have stayed up many a night struggling with what I’ve gone through in the last few years, listening to that particular song and staring at that particular picture. I don’t know how to describe it but everything about that still shot is just so goddamn beautiful to me. I was about forty minutes out from Nanaimo driving to Ucluelet when I came across it in real life form. I turned the bend on a very curvy winding road, and then all of a sudden, there it was, right in front of me. And, you guessed it, I immediately started to cry. Obviously there has been a theme on this road trip, and it’s that I can’t seem to keep my shit together, but for the first time in my entire life, it’s been nothing but tears of gratitude. So I let them flow, and then I phoned one of my best friends, Erik. He answered, he could hear it right away in my voice. “What’s wrong??” he asked immediately, I replied by choking out, “… fuck Erik, it’s just… it’s just so fucking beautiful. I can’t get over it.” And I couldn’t. I still can’t, actually. I showed up to my Air-bnb at dusk, unpacked, and sat out on the little patio for a glass of wine. I could hear what I thought was maybe a distressed dog in the distance. I listened more closely. It was actually seals. I could hear seals in the distance. Well, ain’t that some shit. I’ve been in Tofino for about two weeks now, and I am utterly and completely enamoured with the place. Every single thing about it. Even the grossly overpriced groceries. I would love to say I don’t plan on leaving anytime soon, but as I’ve learned, making plans is for suckers. I think it’s a silly thing to do. I’m more into striving towards goals, and one of my biggest goals in the foreseeable future is to make this beautiful little piece of land on the very tip of the west coast surrounded by the Pacific Ocean where I reside for as long as I can. Let the manifesting begin. JW

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