Before I launch into Day Twelve, I’d like an appetizer – the evening of Day 11. I was in McBride, BC and I was hungry. The friendly front desk clerk pointed me to the Gigglin’ Grizzly Pub down the highway. Inside, there was a huge painting of a bear over the bar. He looked pretty hungry and I was hoping he was looking forward to nachos, not me.
My waitress was a blossom of energy, just so happy with all her customers. I was hoping that she’d hang around me some so we could talk but she favoured the local fellows. One guy sure looked like a cowboy to me – a rough white shirt, shiny belt buckle, jeans and a black ten-gallon hat. Everybody was having fun.
I sat back from the bar so I could see SportsCentre on TSN – I love the plays of the day. A mug of locally brewed beer and a Deerly Beloved pizza (ham and pineapple) and I was all set. I sat at a huge wooden table in a cozy black leather chair. Ahhh.
I left the pub around 11:00. If I turned right out of the parking lot, I could have retraced my steps back to the motel, but that isn’t as much fun so I turned left. I figured McBride was a small place so it wouldn’t be a problem. I just followed street lights. That would keep me in town. It also took me into a cul-de-sac. I laughed. As the song says, “There’s a motel for me. Somewhere a motel for me.” Okay, Bruce – no more singing. Maybe twenty minutes later, I found my way home.
Now … really Day Twelve. I was checking out when the front desk clerk and I started talking. Andrew is a Buddhist. Me too. He’s been on silent meditation retreats. Me too. We chatted for half an hour. And here I sit, trying to remember what he said. I can’t. What I do remember is telling myself during our conversation to make note of things so I could write you about it in the blog. But that just takes me away from the here and now, so the heck with it. Well, having said that, can I think of anything that Andrew said? … … Still no. Here’s a quote that I love, and it fits:
People won’t remember what you say
They won’t remember what you do
But they’ll always remember how they felt when they were with you
I felt great.
Then it was a long and winding road from McBride to Kamloops, punctuated with a series of slowly climbing motor homes. Since I had agreed to meet my old friend Lynne at 4:00 pm, I started getting nervous. I like being on time. As I continued on my journey at well below the speed limit, I gradually … let go. A tremendous sense of peace washed over me. “Bruce, you are free.” Indeed. I even let go of seeing Lynne, although I dearly wanted to. It had been 29 years. Lynne’s assistant had told me on the phone that she had a family gathering after seeing me, so maybe she would already be gone. It’s okay. All of life is okay, even my pains and illnesses.
As it turned out, I was well late but Lynne and I still had two hours to talk about old times and new times. Precious moments all. I can’t remember what we said.
My evening and overnight was spent in the home of Luana and Larry Chamness near Barriere, BC. They live in a log cabin without running water. And that wasn’t important. Sitting with them in the backyard under their giant cedar trees was. We talked and talked about life, family, Jody and the universe. But I can’t remember the details. All I knew was that I was home.
“Home is where the heart is.” My heart is travelling these days and home keeps emerging around the next bend.