" SpiritofSaltSpring:BC:Canada:GulfIslands:SaltSpring:Salt Spring:

February 14, 2010

Hanging by a thread to my 40s

So, hanging by a thread to my 40s when I turn 49 on Monday and surrounded, last night, by the people who have made it possible for me to enjoy 16 months on Salt Spring.

There was my surrogate mom, Pauline. Her cottage was the venue (of course). She made the fabulous lasagna. She baked and iced the fantastic chocolate Valentine's cake. She cleaned her house and set up the table in spite of everything going on, even a flood as a result of her washing machine malfunctioning. Thank you so much Pauline!What would I do here without her? 

Gail, editor of The Driftwood, who helped make it possible for me to survive in the first couple of months that I arrived by giving me lots of writing work and who has been a good friend with a balanced and humourous perspective on Salt Spring as a 25-year resident with her husband Michael's pithy insights and humour as well.

Karin, who was instrumental in me even thinking I could move here and then pointing me in the direction of the fabulous albeit haunted cottage that was everything I imagined when I thought about the type of place I would want to live in on Salt Spring with its beautiful deck, little wood stove, dark hardwood floors, privacy and its abundant greenery in spring and summer.

Karin has also been an inspiration in how to live your life by your own design and in her commitment to her art even when it's really hard to get by at times. And, once again, a sense of humour that makes bad days better and can instantly throw things in perspective.

Tom and Linda, the first people I met at the Saturday Market who were also newbies there. They made it bearable on those early spring days at the market when you had to get up at 6:30 am to gain your point knowing that you'd be lucky to sell $25. Ouch!  My constant Market neighbours. They've developed into grand friends who spoil me so much that they've even moved one of their couches into their family room to accommodate me while the Olympics are on in case I want to drop by and watch them. And, who feed me, generously, and make fun of me and listen to me providing support and lots of laughs once a week at dinner. (and who helped me move into the place where I live now which, in hindsight, I hope will go down as one of the stupidest decisions I ever made, albeit a necessary one financially). Oh, and who have the kind of relationship that I probably will never find in this lifetime if the past predicts the future.

And we were also graced by Don's presence. An amazing photographer who I know will have a show, perhaps this year, that will blow people away. He shoots photos of neon signs from Vancouver and San Fransisco and I have no doubt that if he ever does show them, they'll fly off the gallery walls. Lucky me, I'm now the proud owner of one of them thanks to his generosity.

So, when I put it that way, there is a lot to be grateful for in spite of how I've been feeling in the past month here. 

Happy Valentine's Day. I can't deny that it gets a bit old to be without a saucy little Valentine to shower with affection but the love in friendships has always proven for me to be more consistent, long-lasting and sweeter in the end.

2 comments:

Charles said...

Happy (pre-) Birthday, Gayle!
It's great to hear that you are connecting with friends and community on this great island! I'm looking forward to having you here for the next 16 months!
- Charles

Gayle Mavor said...

Thank you Charles. Thoughtful of you to wish me a happy, happy...Cheers.