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October 04, 2008

Feels Like Home

Isn't it wierd how you can be thinking of something for so long as just one of those dreams that you don't really believe you can make happen. And then one day you decide and the only difference is your mind. You believe. And, you make it happen. And, it's so easy you think, why didn't I do this before?

I'm writing this from my one-bedroom cottage on Saltspring surrounded by trees as if I live in a botanical garden. My cabin is elevated on a hill on a property that is almost an acre. I have a beautiful deck and a woodburning stove and a jacuzzi. My furniture fits in here as if it was made for it. Even the colours work. When I look out any window, of which there are many, all I see are trees: evergreens, arbutus, leafy forest. No people. No roads. Just the forest all around. Today I saw a really big Stellar's Jay on the deck.

It's weird to arrive in a new place, open the paper and see your byline as if someone else with your name lives here. It was mental health week this past week and I'd almost forgotten that I'd written a story prior to coming so when I got the paper, I opened it and there was my name as if someone else with the same name had written it.

I have been a slave to the fire in the woodburning stove because I'm not yet seasoned at being able to make fires effortlessly. Afterall, it has only been 3 days. And, the other things I've been a slave to are the spiders. I forgot there are spiders in the country.

Last night I woke up sweating, my wool socks on and the little place too toasty from the fire - the first fire I've ever made myself - and I turned on the light to go to the bathroom only to see a big black spider on the wall of my bedroom. I stared at it. I debated killing it. I moved my bed away from the wall. I stared at it more. I checked under my pillows and lifted the duvet and when I was absolutely certain that there was not a tarantula in the bed, I pulled the duvet way up over my head and went back to sleep, creepy crawly movements in my semi-conscious dreams. Yuk. Hate spiders! Had to kill another one this morning with my hiking boot.

It is so quiet and dark here that I sleep in until 9:00 am which was unheard of for me in the city and I know in the past that type of quiet would have frightened me but now it's merely there for me to check whether such space feels like strength or fear. I can't explain what that means if it doesn't make sense.

I've gone on a walk with Sharon and her dog Thula who live with her partner on the property as well in the main house. I've gone to an exhibit of photos that depict the life of a woman living with Huntingdon's Disease, a genetically inherited brain disorder. Her mother and her sister have died of it. And, now having seen what they've been through, she is on the path to the same deterioration. The challenges some people face are unimaginable.

I've chopped a bit of wood looking exactly the way you would expect someone from the city to look when they're chopping wood:Nervous! Don't want to chop off anything now do I?

I've been to a lecture at the Baptist Church by a woman from Comox who was speaking about clearing your clutter and she and her husband drive around in a Westfalia van that is now powered by recycled vegetable oil. She has a website called Clutter's Dirty Secret.

Today I met the owner of the place I live. He's a cameraman with the television show Smallville and he seems super nice. Friendly. More than willing to fix anything. He came to weatherproof the french doors off the living room and I felt like I'd known him for a long time he was so easy to talk to.

Monday I am going to interview a professional musician named Luanne Katz who is performing at Artspring on October 18th. She is a percussionist who has performed with orchestras across the US as well as extensively as a chamber musician. Apparently, the marimba is her special love. In her e-mail to me she tells me to drive up to their gate and hit it with the car to make it open. It's a bump gate she explains. Bump it with your car and it will open. We'll see if I'm willing to do that.

So, all of that in addition to unpacking and cleaning suffice to say that unfortunately, I have no photos of the place yet to stick on the blog.

Stay tuned!

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