something amazing happens. of course, i just realized this now as i was thinking.. this was the best year ever. and the last time i thought that very thing was back in 2008, 5 years ago. and five years before that. all the way back to 1988 when i was three years old, my baby brother was born. so i suppose that's when it all began.
i didn't have many expectations for 2o13, but i was hopeful that it'd be a lot better than 2o12. and it was. my luck had certainly changed. last year so many things had gone wrong, i felt like i was in my own personal hell. it was the 'end of the world' indeed to me, the world that i had created for myself was crumbling. once i had finally stopped resisting and accepted all that had happened it got easier.
in mid february, i found out about shareholders. it's a huge annual event held in arkansas that hosts people from all over the world for a mind blowing week of lessons, activities and interactions. one had to be voted by their store to go, and then audition to the district. i won the store level vote. i felt loved.
a few weeks later into march, i was surprised to find out that i had won, and was to be sent to represent our district at the international shareholders meeting! that means i was one of 150 canadians to attend, of the 90,000 canadians that work for our company. what an honour! the day after i found out, i was in for another surprise that was truly quite unexpected.
the year previous i had lost my home, my garden, my partner and a lot of friends. but i had gained one special friend from all of it, the dude on the couch. once everyone had found somewhere to be as the community house died off, this fellow was left without a place to go. i took him with me. a year later we were still living together as roommates. late march he had to travel out of town for a week to visit family. it was a long, cold lonely week.. when he had gotten home, the very day after i'd found out i won the vote, i found out that i'd won his heart as well. we had missed each other so much while he was gone we wondered why we weren't together. and so, it began. the last day of winter.
a few weeks later i decided to do something i never thought i'd do, write my beginners. i passed with flying colours, and this hippy walked out with a license to drive. and somewhere around that same time i obtained a passport to travel, and a clean pass into the states. it was only april and already my life was changing for the better.
in may we got our own place. i was hesitant at first to make the move, i wasn't sure about the neighbourhood or the fact of living in a basement.. but i was excited learn that we would have free use of an enormous yard to do and grow whatever we please, and a fire pit to enjoy. did i mention there isn't any neighbours? so it worked out.. just when i thought there'd be a year without a garden we found someplace to grow.
and we did.. we grew as much as we could plant on such sort notice. we have a surplus of tomatoes to make sauce with all winter, and we gorged all summer on freshly grown eggplants and herbs. the berries got off to a good start, and the sunflowers made plenty of tasty fresh seeds for the fall. oh and one more thing..
the day after we moved in, i cut off my dreads. this time, by choice. for years i didn't feel comfortable with the idea of not having them, over ten years i spent moslty in dreadlock. two sets, five years each. i felt i might as well go with the flow of changes, and i wanted to shed some unnecessary weight off my shoulders. also in preparation for traveling to the southern states in early june.
it would be my first time flying since i was eleven. and that time was awful traumatic.. it embedded a deep fear of flight in me that took a lot of nerve to get over. i had sworn to never fly which i knew would limit me on travel, but i had to for this journey. i'm glad i did, four planes later [two each way] i can finally stomach soaring through the air at insane speeds and altitudes to get places faraway quickly.
had i not gone, i would have missed out on the surprise elton john concert.. truly a once in a lifetime thing. i'd never have the money or the bother to attempt to get tickets to a show like that, and here i got to see him for free. something i will truly never forget.
before all of this, i had decided that i'd like to visit nova scotia as it had been far too long since i'd been. and now that i had a new someone to bring with me, it was an extra special journey. i got to introduce matt to my old friends, and to some of my favourite places i've been. and we got to experience a few new places together like peggy's cove, and a huge inner city permaculture food farm. we got to see the pitch black skies and watch the stars and the milky way, and glide peacefully in a canoe on the lake. a little taste of what life will be like after retirement.. hopefully sooner. anyhoo..
i'm glad that we mostly relaxed for that journey. somewhere along the line i had signed up for a trip just about as action packed as the last one, and it was nice to take a breather in between. friends of mine had been trying for a long time to convince me to shoot their wedding. after saying i wouldn't a few times [i don't do weddings] they finally won me over.. with a journey to the dominican. and i couldn't be more grateful as it was an amazing experience all around.
i made a bunch of new friends that week, photographed a beautiful wedding, and had a chance to go geocaching in the sand. not to mention a few other once in a lifetime type things including swimming with dolphins, sharks and stingrays, riding a dune buggy into the jungle.. and staying at an all inclusive resort enjoying a swim up bar with all the banana mamas and pina coladas i could ever drink.
really, i still have a hard time believing it all happened, let alone in the past year.. my head is still swimming as each experience is catching up with me. i have so much to be grateful for.. some great challenges have been balanced with some great opportunities and experiences. i have no idea where my luck came from this year, but i won't complain. thirteen has always held a special place with me, perhaps that is a part of it.
peace out 2o13, thanks for everything. i think i'll need a year off to recuperate.. and garden too.