It wasn’t a matter of
On a different path,
you’re still in my heart.
It wasn’t a matter of
It wasn’t a matter of
On a different path,
you’re still in my heart.
I decided that if I’m going to spend anytime online, I may as well try to focus some attention on this blog and writing rather than watching youtube and wasting time. I haven’t touched this blog for a long while, but I don’t care. I’ve had no reason not to write. There’s no reason to write and no reason not to write. So what to do?
Today I was walking my dog and started to have a small panic attack because I could not handle the cold wind and snow blowing in my face anymore. For some reason this winter has seemed extraordinarily long and it’s really getting to me. Everything has been covered in ice for so long I actually can’t stand it. I wish I had a dog who hated the cold and who just wanted to go out, do his business, and get back in as soon as possible. But no. I have a tiny dog who loves snow and who will still demand an hour walk even when the temperature outside is mimicking that of the death zone on Mount Everest. Speaking of Mt. Everest. I recently became pretty infatuated with the idea of climbing it. (Did you know that there’s a sherpa (Kami Rita) who has summited Everest 22 times?) I was reading about what goes on up there and it all sounds really awful and yet, kind of enticing. Then I go outside for 30 minutes when it’s winter and snowing and I remember how much I hate being cold and snap myself back to reality. I’ll just say it in writing so I can get over it… I’ll never climb Mount Everest. If I tried I honestly believe I would die 100% for sure.
Here’s the view from my apartment balcony
Doesn’t it look dismal?
Anyways so that’s an update on me. It’s cold here and I haven’t climbed Mt. Everest.
What’s new with you?
So carrying on from the last part of my adventure, our group continued driving through the night until we ended up in the parking garage of a sports complex somewhere in the lil’ town of Flims, Switzerland. We slept that night in hammocks in the women’s locker room– not the most comfortable or warm, but pretty exotic really and it does make for a funny memory.
When morning came the next day I woke and ventured out to see my surroundings properly. We were in pine and mountain territory which suited me just fine (having grown up a hop skip and jump away from the rockies). The rigging crew was already hard at work setting lines up for us to play on for the next couple of days. Adam had still not arrived by this time, so I and a few new friends set off sauntering down the path toward Caumasee Lake which is just about as beautiful as a lake can get…
We took to the paddle boat and set off to explore. We paddled, then jumped off a diving board and swam through the water which was far more icy cold than I anticipated. This lake is tucked away by these beautiful big fur trees and the water is this blue/green hue that glistens like some fairytale scene.
This place was the last stop on the waterlining tour, which was perhaps a good thing because the weather was starting to take a turn for the worse. Whereas in Sion it was swelteringly hot, in Flims it was overcast and pouring rain. I was surprised to be pulling out my toque and warmest coat on only our first week of the trip.
And our camping situation? That was something else entirely. When Adam finally arrived we had to sort out what to do. None of us wanted to set up our tents in the soaking wet grass and under the pouring rain, so we decided instead to set up in the parking garage…
Sorry for the very poor quality video, but to be honest when I was in the moment it didn’t seem like a something to capture in HQ! I just took this one quickly as an update for my mom.
As you can see we huddled all of our tents together and sectioned ourselves off with some tape. Cars rolling in must have been very surprised to see our little makeshift garage campground. That’s where we were hanging out, preparing our food and making friends when the rain was pouring down. Every time there was a break in the sky we would race back down to the lines for more fun…
I’m pretty new to this sport, but I was completely floored by the immensity of this operation and the dedication of those doing the rigging– they worked tirelessly all day through cold, wind and rain to get these waterlines up. The passion that exists within the slackline community is so rich and lovely. Everyone is adventurous, positive, and up lifting. They take care of each other. Even when the weather absolutely sucked everyone put in their best effort to battle these lines and make the most of it.
If you want to see a few of these incredible humans in action…
Remember this water is super cold, the air is hardly any better, it’s raining like crazy most of the time, and these lines are extremely difficult and challenging to walk. Meaning that these are actually super humans you’re watching! 🙂
It is really remarkable to my eyes. While I didn’t get on any of these lines, I was certainly grateful for the company, the scenery, and the adventure.
If you’re interested in seeing a little more of what I was a part of, these awesome peoples also made this video about the event, which is below!
That’s about it for part 3, thanks for reading!
Part 4 coming soon 😀
When I moved to Toronto to pursue acting two years ago I was wildly optimistic. I envisioned talk show interviews, red carpets, sparkly lights, glam dresses, set life— actually wait a minute, HAHAHA. No I didn’t. I’m a dreamer, but also a realist… which is maybe a bit contradictory. I didn’t imagine being the next insert-actor-name-here, that’s never been my goal. I did, however, imagine being able to support myself a little more comfortably with the help of the odd job here and there. I did imagine booking real acting roles with substance that were both fun and challenging to perform. I imagined that the arts culture here would help me to discover and shape my craft.
Some of these visions have come true, and others not so much. Most of my circle is comprised of like-minded souls who are in the arts community in some form or another. Lots of actors, musicians, dancers, artists, writers. We’re all here for the same reason— for the opportunity to share our stories and our talents with a community that cares. We’re here to be discovered, to create, and to have a voice.
The past few months have been very introspective for me. To be perfectly honest they’ve been a bit of a struggle. I only have myself to blame, I mean, who goes galavanting around Europe for two months knowing they’d be coming home broke and stressed and still goes anyway? I have no regrets. But it does mean that I’m looking objectively at my life choice of pursuing acting and what that means for me in terms of being able to actually support myself— while ideally maintaining some form of sanity. Not to mention trying to maintain my creative charge. Life can be pretty difficult in this concrete jungle which is one of the most expensive cities in Canada. On the plus side, one of the great things about being an actor is that when you do book jobs they pay very well. I have paid an entire month’s rent based off of one commercial booking which was just a day’s work. Print jobs are nothing to shake your head at either. The reality, unfortunately, is that most of the time I’m not working. Acting jobs are not something you can count on. And in that sense, a large part of this career that I’m after is totally out of my control. Yes, I can work on my own projects and hone the craft without a booking. But I’m talking straight up just surviving in the city without losing my mind.
It feels like the plan to be an actor translates into not having a plan at all.
A lot of us turn to restaurant jobs to pull us through. I did that for my first year here, but not again. It wasn’t for me. Each day I could feel my soul abandoning my body due to the sheer monotony. I said goodbye to that job and started something else, another pursuit which also didn’t work out. I stressed so much about what to do. Then 2018 rolled in and I made a promise to myself that no matter what I wouldn’t spend any time in a job that didn’t in some way satisfy my soul. If I wasn’t working as an actor, then I would be working in the field of some of my other interests.
I decided to start my own business. It’s very slow and not bringing in much more than pennies at the moment, but I hope that with my dedication and hard work I can see it grow throughout 2018. I’m also going back to my roots this year— teaching yoga and dance— and as an added bonus, as I mentioned in the previous post, I’m also starting a few photography projects.
Where will it all lead? I have no idea. But I feel a lot better now in not having a plan and instead having many plans. Because, why not? Life is not a cookie cutter event, it’s in our own hands and in our own power to mold into whatever cookie shape we want. When times are tough, I can still smile. When times aren’t tough, I’ll appreciate it more.
Someone once told me that if my life were easy, then I probably wasn’t on my own path. Well, things aren’t easy. So I guess that means I’m headed in the right direction.
If you have any thoughts on the subject I’d be interested in hearing them.
As always, thank you for reading.
Today the sky decided to cooperate for once. Rather than showing us its usual grey and dank disposition it decided to show off with it’s brightest blue. I decided to celebrate the sky with a little walk and thought I’d better take some photos while I was at it.
Another new year is here and to mark the occasion that is 2018, I decided to pick up a couple of new hobbies. One of those is photography and the other is water colour painting. I’m not sure why I decided on the latter because I have never really had any artistic talent (which has been made evident by my first few attempts), but I figure I don’t have anything to lose and it’s something I’ve often wanted to try, so… why not?
I’ve also toyed with the idea of deleting this blog lately because I neglect it so much. Most often it manifests in my life as a source of confusion and guilt. Guilt because I’ve never been able to find the passion for it that I once had, and confusion because I can’t quite bring myself to get rid of it despite never updating it.
Where do you guys find the motivation to write and share? Is blogging dead? Should we all just start youtube channels? What is life?
Please leave your answers in the comments, especially for that last one because I so often wonder 😉
And oh yes, Happy belated new year wordpress fam ❤
It’s been a while, hasn’t it? Maybe some of you thought I died on my travels, or maybe you thought I’d given up on blogging… more than likely no one has thought of it at all! But I’m here, I’m back! I didn’t die– although I came close a couple times. When I say I came close I mean in the most hyperbolic way possible, of course. Although you might think you were close to death as well if you wandered through a forest in Denmark and ran into this:
It was the first of a few menacing mannequins/possibly demons(?) that made me think I was in the middle of a horror movie…
but then nothing happened. Still, what an adventure two months in Europe was! I think I took more than 2000 photos. So many things happened, I met so many people and I learned so much. I can’t wait to share the adventure with you all. I’ve been readjusting to regular life in Toronto for the last two weeks and though I’ve been keen to start writing, I’ve also been busy trying to get some new projects off the ground here.
Now the most important question: how are you guys doing? Tell me things! Write me an email! Post a picture! Link me to your blog! I want to catch up 🙂
The first time I tried highlining I became a butterfly.
When I say that I don’t mean I bloomed into this beautiful creature that went soaring to new and wondrous heights. No, no.
I mean my belly was full of butterflies… in the “I’m so nervous I could pee” kind of way. As I was shimmying my way out onto the line, butterflies stacked on top of butterflies in the pit of my stomach until eventually my whole body was taken over and I was just a rigid sack of human nerves. An overwrought human butterfly, but without the wings or grace.
What I’m trying to say is that I was terrified. So, so nervous. And scared. And wondering what I was doing and why I was doing it. I’m afraid of heights, despite having a skydive under my belt, but that’s not even the number one reason to be anxious. The biggest reason is failing to be able to pull myself up to the line and thus being stranded and in need of rescue. You see, when you suck at highlining as much as I do, you fall a lot. And that means spending a lot of time dangling under the line. The transition from line to dangle is the fall, aka the fun part. I don’t mind falling. Honestly it’s pretty fun. The height doesn’t bother me too much, either.
The anxiety inducing/worrying/scary bit is the idea that after I fall, I’ll be trapped under the line because I won’t be strong enough to get back up. See, when you’re dangling from your leash you have no choice but to muscle your way back up over that line. Let me tell you… that shit ain’t easy. Climbing that leash like I didn’t almost fail gym semester after semester in school was not something I was looking forward to. So now you understand the butterfly reference.
The first time I sat on the line my breath was frozen in my throat, my legs dangling in the open air like two planks of wood, my eyes fixated on the impossible task in front of me: stand up. That’s it. That’s the only goal. Sounds SO easy, right? On land, when I’m just slacklining in the park, I can manage alright. I’m not walking monstrously long lines yet, but I can walk a decent one. Forwards and backwards. With much focus and effort, of course, but I can do it. Up that high in the air it’s harder. A lot harder. The line itself is heavier, it moves more, it’s a lot longer and takes a lot more skill to master. Did I do it? Not a chance.
I couldn’t stand up. I could hardly even get into position to try to stand up. I just fell and hung dangling in the air over and over. But miraculously, to my total and utter surprise, I could pull myself back up to the line. Muscles that I didn’t even know were there banded together to help me and I managed the whole day without needing a rescue.
It was exhilarating, something wholly new and different. It was challenging and exciting and it was filling me with energy. So I went back a second time. I still couldn’t stand up. But slowly I was making progress. Fine tuning my body position and reading the line a bit better with each attempt.
The third time I went back, magic happened.
I stood on the line. For like, a couple full seconds. It was bewildering. I remember as soon as I was up I thought oh my god it’s happening. I’m up! I’m up! I can’t believe it! This is amazing! Look at me everyone, I’m standing!! A miracle has happened, the most amazing thi- and then before I knew it I was down again. But let me tell you, that moment, though so painfully brief, was glorious. One of my shiniest moments to date.
If you want to see the moment in all it’s real time glory, I invite you over to my instagram where I posted the video that my beautiful wondrous friend somehow managed to capture for me.
Now I’m hooked. I am busting with excitement at the idea of actually taking a few steps on that thing. Highlining is going to be more and more a part of my life, I know.
So that’s it. An account of my first highlining adventures.
As always, much love to you all! Happy hump day!
And thank you for reading 🙂
On Saturday my boyfriend and I along with two of our best friends drove 2 hours out of Toronto to go camping. Recently my bf and I invested in a compact two person tent, sleeping pads, sleeping bags, miniature burner, and a few other camping things to prepare for a more extended backpacking trip we have planned. This was our opportunity to see how our gear fares in action for the first time.
Fun fact of the day…
I haven’t been tent camping since I was… say.. 8 or 9? years old. My family quickly moved onto trailers/campervans so camping for me has always involved a cozy home on wheels. I was excited, but also kind of nervous, about some real deal roughen it style camping… I’m a girl who really enjoys her shower. What can I say?
The campsite we decided on was situated along the beach on Lake Erie. It was a beautiful spot with the good kind of sand that’s powdery and fun to squeeze between your toes… the kind that’s fun to be buried in, you know? Sadly, when we arrived at the campground we discovered that all the sites were booked. We were out of luck, but after driving for 2 1/2 hours we weren’t exactly willing to give up on our fun weekend plans. We paid the entrance fee to be able to park there for the day. They allow you use of the beach and the picnic tables until about 10 pm and then the warden comes along and shoos everyone out.
If you’ve ever seen my instagram feed you’ll know that I’m getting fairly involved in slacklining of late. One of the first things we did, naturally, was set up a good long line to walk in between an afternoon of swimming in the lake and napping in a clump under the afternoon sun.
As the sun began to wane we had to decide what to do… drive home 2 1/2 hours defeated and disappointed? Or try our hand at rogue camping and risk being fined and kicked out of the park in the middle of the night by the warden?
In the cover of night we grabbed our packs, bolted stealthily up a sand dune and started pitching our tents in a sliver of a spot disguised by some trees along the beach. We only had the moonlight to help us see what we were doing, and we were hyper aware that the warden would be coming by any moment to makes sure no one was left in the park. It’s not like it was dangerous or anything, and it’s not like the consequences would be disastrous by any proporton, but…
…it was exciting. It was a little thrill that made me go, okay, here! This is FUN. This is life.
After pitching the tents we had to leave them behind and saunter our way back to move the car, driving a couple kms down the beach to an overnight parking lot where we could leave the car.
We walked back to the tents under the full moon, listening to the waves and the water, bare feet in the sand and the stars over our heads… it was beautiful.
We slept through the night without incident. No wardens came knocking, no tickets left on our tents. We woke up with the sun, the waves, the fresh air and packed everything up. We made our way back along the beach, this time in the morning sun.
The final treat was seeing this rainbow on the horizon. Like a little reward for doing the weekend right.
Life is like a kind of choose-your-own-adventure game. I’ve had a few tough blows as of late, but after a weekend like that I can’t help but feel invigorated and optimistic about everything that’s to come.
I hope you all had a great weekend, too! Do you guys have any fun camping stories? Or any camping horror stories even? I’m really keen for any tips and tricks from the seasoned campers out there. Feel free to share in the comments 🙂 🙂
As always, thank you for reading!
You know when you have an experience and it feels somehow like the universe conspired to put you in that specific place at that specific time? That’s happened to me often in life. Maybe it’s just because I like the idea that somehow and for some reason the universe is attempting to show me some sort of direction. Maybe it’s because there have been times where I’ve felt so lost that the second anything aligns in any sort of interesting way I’m ready to pounce like a starving cat about to sink its teeth into its prey. Or I’m just a bit of a hippy. Who knows.
I often find myself having some very interesting conversations with strangers. Sometimes inspiring, sometimes a little strange, sometimes funny. Last week I had one of the more impactful of these conversations.
I was out and about on my bike in the downtown core, casually pedalling my way through the usual hustle and bustle of Toronto: the impatient cars attempting to run me off the road, the incessant construction, the death-defying pigeons. I arrived at my destination just in time to witness the fpotd, or freakout-person-of-the-day. I may have just made that up. But I usually see at least one person having a bit of a freak out on the daily around here. I mean there are a lot of us crammed into Toronto’s downtown core so it’s only natural that at least one of us is going to snap…
This time he was a man in his late 30s, yelling brusquely about how much everyone sucks and challenging every man walking by him to a fight. Quite aggressively, too. He was getting right up in their faces demanding a punch. The hobble in his step gave away his drunkenness if the slurred yelling hadn’t already. He was quite close to me as I was locking up my bike and it was then that our eyes met for the first time. I knew in that moment that he and I were going to have an interaction. I could feel it. I stood there with some mild nerves, trivially attempting to avert my gaze from all the ruckus he was causing. I watched him try once more to provoke a fight from a passerby, and when that failed he staggered his way over to me, looking me in the eyes, and yelling:
“What’s the point? What’s the point?”
I just stood dumbly at my bike as he came closer to me…
“Why am I waking up every morning?“
I could have wrapped my arms around him our proximity was so uncomfortably close. With our eyes locked intimately he admitted, almost at a whisper,
“I don’t want to wake up anymore.”
My heart pounded in my chest as we stood there together with that knowledge. It was just raw, honest, and painful. The way he said it was so matter-of-fact it broke my heart. And this from stranger whose name I didn’t even know.
What do I do? How can I help? I’m not qualified to deal with this raving man on the street and my own life is out-of-sorts at the best of times. I don’t have anything to offer him.
Such were my thoughts as I stood there. But for some odd reason I felt like I had been given this great responsibility from the universe to offer something to this man, however small or feeble or unhelpful it may appear to be. So instead of shying away from him, I started talking to him. I asked him for his name.
Adam and I ended up spending the afternoon together in the park. We talked about life, people, ambitions, and the “point”. Here are a few things I learned about Adam in our afternoon together.
He’s spent most of the last 7 years living as a hermit trying to deal with a kind of PTSD I never found out about.
He loves dogs.
He has a mother nearby who he loves, but doesn’t see much. And he credits her for his plugging along this far in life.
He hates materialism, but he has a thing for motorcycles.
He’s very articulate.
He finds the park very peaceful and likes to spend his afternoons under the trees.
He’s given up on people and tends to dwell on the bad nature of others.
He’s possibly dealing with some mental health issues.
He’s a bit of an alcoholic.
He has very beautiful eyes and wild curly hair.
Most importantly, he has the capacity to be very kind, generous, and outgoing.
He’s a real person with a complicated backstory. Along for this ride with the rest of us.
As we walked around together we got quite a few dubious looks from strangers. Adam was pretty drunk if you recall and so good at drawing attention to us, but it didn’t bother me. I tried to get to the bottom of why he was picking fights with people on the street. Apparently dealing with physical pain is a good distraction from dealing with mental pain, hence the provocations. He wanted bruises. He invited physical pain. I guess I can understand the immediate logic in that. It’s somehow simpler, isn’t it? Our minds are a difficult thing to master or even understand minutely. But even acknowledging that I still had to argue how unfair it was to the poor random people he was challenging. Nobody wants to be provoked into a fight on a sunny afternoon, or even a rainy afternoon for that matter. I just told him what he already knew, that it wouldn’t solve anything going on inside him, and that he’d have to make up his mind to deal with it another way.
But mostly, I just listened. I listened to whatever he wanted to tell me and offered whatever I could. I opened up to him about some of my own struggles which I thought he might relate to. It was a very mutual exchange. We were just two humans in a park talking about life.
For a man who had admittedly “given up on people”, he was certainly very kind to me. Which, to my mind, just shows he needs a helping hand to remind him that he can still become the best version of himself. Maybe with a little encouragement from a stranger. A little acknowledgement. A smile. Eye contact. An ear or two to hear what he has to say and take it seriously. Did I really help him? I don’t know. But I think he was grateful for the interaction just as I was.
I can’t imagine what it’s like to be homeless, it makes me sad to see so many people struggling without a roof over their head on the daily. It’s a bit hard to admit, but when I was younger I used to walk by homeless people and pretend not to see them. You always hear how giving money doesn’t help them/increases the problem/whatever. But whatever the truth is to that doesn’t excuse the purposeful act of looking away from another person who is reaching out for help. A smile, or a brief glance, or a hello… these things can go a long way. People feel invisible because others treat them so.
Let’s always treat each other kindly, please.
Just rambling… thanks for reading.
A little heartbreak this morning.
There was a slight chill, fog hanging in the air, and some rain drizzling down as I left my apartment to dawdle my way over to the local coffee shop for a latte. One minute after leaving my apartment I stumbled upon this precious baby bird….
The poor little thing was lying in the middle of the sidewalk belly up. The rain was coming down on him, the cold surrounding him. It was a strange place to find him, there weren’t many trees in the area and I saw no sign of a nest. You would think his nest was blown over by a strong gust of wind, and maybe it was, but I didn’t find any evidence of that. It’s a mystery how he ended up there. He must’ve just hatched.
On the grass to the side I saw another baby bird just like him, but he was already dead. This little one, however, had some life in him. His beak was opening and closing as if waiting for his mother to give him some food. It was so heart wrenching to see him lying there, so helpless. I didn’t really know what to do. I very carefully scooped him up into the palm of my hand. He was so delicate and tiny and precious. The thought of leaving him there was completely impossible. It seemed unlikely that any mother bird was coming back, and his situation was desperate. I called my boyfriend and asked him to start googling what to do in this kind of situation and made my way back to the apartment with this tiny life in the palm of my hand.
And that’s where he took his last breath. By the time I got back to the apartment, all his movement had ceased and he was just a little body that couldn’t hold onto life anymore. For whatever reason, his life was not meant to be. He was created, he developed into that tiny bird within his egg, only to hatch and end up belly up on the sidewalk in the cold rain. He should have hatched into a cozy nest with his mama at the ready and with his brothers and sisters around keeping each other warm. He should have been able to open his eyes and discover his surroundings. To grow his feathers, to fly, to live the life he was given… so awful to see that torn away from something so young and new.
We ended up burying him in a garden outside the building along with his brother.
It was very sad.
I’m so sorry your life was cut short, little bird. I’m sorry that I found you too late to help you. I’m glad I could be there to hold you for your last few breaths, though. I’m glad that you didn’t die cold and forgotten on the sidewalk. I hope you had a little comfort in the palm of my hand. Your life was short, but someone cared about you and loved you for the little while you were here.
RIP, little bird.