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...a glimpse into life on Vancouver Island, needle felting, photography, food, gardening, etcetera...etcetera
"Happiness always looks small when you hold it in your hands, but let it go, and at once you learn how big and precious it is."
Maxim Gorky

Thursday, July 21, 2016

On not being Roy and Grace...

One of my first 'dates' with Tom was going to look at a house he was interested in buying.
A year later I moved into the house and the following year we were married there in the garden.
That was 17 1/2 years ago and now we are preparing to say goodbye to this house...
For the first 13 or so years our neighbours across the road were an older couple
named Roy and Grace Kennedy. They had lived in the house they built for 60 years.
Roy was a machinist who could make and fix all manners of things.
He had the funkiest ride-on lawn mower that used to cough and sputter and 
it would take him 2 or three days to cut his front grass of about a third of an acre.
He was a tinkerer. Always busy in his shop.
His wife Grace was a city girl from the mainland and she once told me
"I never liked it here."
Imagine living somewhere for 60 years and never liking it or at least learning to like it?!
I had my days like that here sometimes though.
Years and years ago I felt I didn't have a lot going on here.
I had left my job and friends and most of my family back in the city and even though
it was only a 45 minute drive away, I still felt a bit isolated and lonely.
So Tom had a beautiful separate 10 x 20 studio built for me.
It was my escape, my haven, my saviour in times of darkness.
It was where I went to allow my creativity to flourish, to experiment without
the need to clear it all away at supper time.
In the end I made a life here.
I made some dear dear friends.
I became involved with the yoga community, the foodie community
and started working at the local flower shop.
I became involved in the Fine Arts show and exhibited there several years in a row, 
and again made some close friends through the arts community.
From day 1 we always had a garden...
It got bigger, fuller, structures were built.
Some plants thrived, some failed...all a learning process.
Several cats have come to rest here.
We had chickens, goats, horses and bees...
And of course, for 12 years, we had Griffin...
So much a part of our landscape that I still think I see him out of the corner of my eye
lying on the porch or surveying his Kingdom from his perch on a mossy rock by the back door...
So how do you leave it all behind?
You don't.
You carry it all with you in your heart and soul.
As the Be Good Tanya's sing
"You pass through places and places pass through you.
And you carry them with you 
on the soles of your travelin' shoes"
How true!
This place will always be part of who we are.
Who we were.
Who we've become.
We hope to have someone buy it who will carry on where 
we are leaving off.
Health reasons will carry us to a more manageable home closer to the city
where we will dream up new schemes and adventures.
Different pictures will form in our heads and take us down other
dusty, intriguing roads.
It's a lesson in letting some things go.
But never the memories...the picnics in the secret garden, the walks to the lake,
the warmth of the fire on windy, wet days and snowy, quiet nights.
Big full moons through the bedroom window.
The pulse of this place is here in our hearts.
And we leave some of our own blood, sweat and tears in the soil.
Our voices may be heard in the trees.
Our laughter, the barks, meows, clucks and whinnies...
all arrive to greet whoever may unlock these doors.