When I started writing this blog I was nowhere near to think that I’ll be going back home a couple of weeks later.
I never know what’s coming, what kind of plan my head is about to come up with. I like to be moving around, I found a sense in life wile doing it, just living out of my comfort zone, going with the flow and not following the path they’ve set for us.
The reasons to be back is simple, I decided it was the right time to head home, spend time with my family, friends and try on a more “conventional” life style, take a pause of travelling to than accomplish better my goals.
So I did, with Samsara the dog and Rufus the van we crossed Canada for a week to head back in Quebec to spend the winter with my people.
I came into this trip with a full open heart, really positive with great vibe and ready for this new adventure.
It was feeling fucking right.
Ive been trying to write this for as long as I’ve been back, I’ve change my mind so many times about how I feel, what I think, the wanders and worries about living here. Two months ago, I would of said it’s easy, I can do that, focus on myself, my family, my dog. Set goals, do my best to reach them and reasoning my mind to stay where I am, keep pushing through the “sedentary” moment and just go with the new flow I throw myself into.
At some point I felt like I was waiting on something, like in the future I guess, a future where I know I’ll be travelling but I forgot to live in the present. I felt sad feelings because I forgot my purpose on coming here.
Every day is a new challenges, each one makes me think, a lot. I spend a fair amount of time alone, voluntarily, it might seams boring or lonely to some but every moment is a blessing, I’m trying to get the best out of myself, rejuvenate, gain confidence in the in-between zone and accept what it is as it is.
I’ll admit, the love for nomadic living is calling back real hard and I’m starting to feel less myself in a customer service job. I’ve been struggling to control my thoughts about leaving somewhere warm or going back to British-Columbia but I knew on coming here and trying on this life I would miss my “freedom”. Staying home really hit me hard on a lot of life points to just confirm even more that I’m made to be on the road. I know soon I’ll leave again and it will feel amazing to go back into the wild but it’s important to keep living in the present and keep saying yes at little things like to get desert first.
It’s taking me so much energy to stay still. A lot of self control to stay and accomplish what I came here for. My short term goal is to save as much as possible. My bigger and farther goal is to end up living abroad and have the possibility to travel even more.
In order to get there, my main focus at the moment is to save a bunch so it means I’m not spending on any extras that don’t matters, I don’t eat or go out, I don’t drink, I don’t go visit friends and family as much as I expected because my ride is sucking gas money but I get shit done. I’ve still got so many late stuff to deal with like government papers, health appointment, overseas dept and so on but that’s why I’m here. I’ve been away for so long that I forgot about all those “society engagement” we have and now the past is creeping on me.
Also, I surprise myself with too many things I want to do so I set priorities with free stuff you can do when you live in a house like I’ve got the sowing machine out, a guitar always ready to be played, crafty space full of goodies, Netflix on projector, wifi at all time, a bed, a room, a kitchen, a massive desk to create, wood to bring inside, shovel on snow days, take Samy on walks and time to write.
I’m trying to be as grateful as possible for everything I’ve got, I feel very lucky of my situation, Samsara and I got pretty much my sister’s house for ourselves as she is very busy, I work at the coffee shop witch is probably the coolest job in town even tho I don’t drink coffee, I’ve spent the holidays with my family and friends witch was the first time in many years. When I look back at the past three months I’ve lived here, time has been flying by, I’ve been doing exactly what I was suppose to.
On the other side, It’s a challenge to know I’ll work for more than three months this year, Samy spends all day inside when I work so she gets super board and even more super energetic, I live in a commercial town that smells bad but is right on the ocean. I’m in the middle of the “society” they built for us 9-5, five days a week, I can’t go and get my booger’s with my fingers and flick them everywhere all the time like I use to. There is unwritten rules I’ve got to follow, It feels like no one understand how much growth I’ve been through, how much memories I’ve made, how much fucking crazy moments and stories I’ve accumulate over the years travelling.
But I prefer to choose to live the life where I make my own rules, where I’m totally free, to share the love, possibilities, positivity, the bright side, find peace and to not get sucked in.
I’m trying to find the beauty and fall in love with Le Quebec.
It seams to still be taboo to talk about abortion.
To me it’s not and I’m not ashamed of my story.
I took birth control for ten years and wile hiking in the Pyrenees, in France, high on acid, I decided I had enough so I stopped and for multiple reasons. Lower libido, spotting, missed period, all risks and synthetic hormones. My main focus was the lack of libido, it wasn’t normal and I had to fix it. Between tree planting, travelling and not having a base living situation, I hadn’t have ‘time’ or give myself ‘time’ to figure another contraceptive solutions.
So you can say or think I wasn’t responsible but it won’t change anything of what happened. Everybody makes mistakes, and I’m good at that and that’s what happened to me in Australia and a couple of weeks later I realize I was pregnant.
I’m not gonna get into details, it’s pretty straight forwards, you make the love act and an accident happen. To be clear, all this was with a respectful friend and what I want to talk about is how I realize, how I reacted, what I did, how it affected me and how I feel now.
You know how sometimes you can be unsure, you think maybe you’re pregnant and you just do a test anyway.
Well that time, I was really clueless and didn’t even realize my symptoms until I see the positive pregnancy test.
At that point of time I was really stress because of my situation, I was travelling, hitch hiking, with a puppy, a small amount of money, living pretty much on the street and I was not feeling the most mentally stable. But let me make it clear again, all this was my own choices. I wanted to travel/live like that but did not want a pregnancy at all.
After realizing I haven’t had my period, I decided to do a pregnancy test just cause I was a little late, and I’ll always remember ‘been in a public washroom of a pharmacy around Red Hill in Brisbane, doing the test just ‘in case’ but been no stress about it. Looking at the drawing appearing quite confident to be negative than realized it was positive’. I was just, like, fuck, now gotta deal with something else. I was taking this as something normal was happening and I just had to fix it. Anyway, I was used to deal with every other stuff like, where we would sleep, where I would find free or the cheapest food and where I could work to make money to eventually comeback home.
I realize a bit later my symptoms, I did not have much, other than I was super exhausted, my boobs were hard like rocks and sensitive as fuck.
I did what I had to do, took an appointment for the abortion a week after I realized I was pregnant, at about seven weeks, they put me asleep and I don’t remember a thing of the vacuum only that the gas was fucking awesome.
At the time I didn’t really feel anything about it. Everything was bing bang done, it’s history. It’s only about a year after, I realize that everything I had been through had a huge impact on me. Not necessary the pregnancy/abortion but my choices and my way of living. It was just becoming invasive and not fun anymore but I was blinded by my dream visions of freedom. I was just use to it and how things were and any other way.
So in itself the pregnancy and the abortion did not hurt me or put me down but it was in part why I wasn’t feeling so positive and myself, at the time. I had to do important changes and needed to do some adjustments for my soul, understand where I was at, accepting how I’d change and how I needed to ground myself again.
Now I feel fine to express myself about it and I think it’s a subject we should aboard more often and to not feel judge or judge at all. I understand that precautions methods are the way to go and we should all be responsible for our actions. Some woman out there don’t have the choices or they are victims and there voices should be heard. Our body our choices.
I hope to hear from other woman that had a similar story. It’s not always easy and we should all have the right to express our feelings, good or bad but most important to support each other and to stay positive.
Because they are our friends, to connect, to learn, to be protected and perhaps not be by ourselves.
While travelling, hitch hiking and tree planting, dogs were always around me. Street dogs, humans-best friends or shelter dogs. At one point of time, I started thinking that I was ready for having my own friend, I was looking in pretty much every dog shelter I came across so I would save the right puppy. In my European trip I was getting vibes that I was about to find the dog for me. I was doing walks, volunteering on farms, living on beaches and I saw more than a few puppies along my way and people with their four legged friends which made me feel inside that I was ready to take on this adventure and I began to open my eyes so I would find the right one.
After looking at numerous shelters to save a life, I decided to take a look on Gumtree (same as Craigslist or Kijiji but in Australia) just for fun, to actually find out about some cute little boxer mix puppy from a family that was living on a farm in Wollongong.
I’ve always think of a Pittbull kind like the most magical dogs but in my research about travelling with them, everywhere there was bad reviews (so unfair for the breed) and weird restriction about the breed and it made it seem almost impossible to travel with. Flying them in most of countries is really complicated or banned and one of the reasons is due to mean people (bad owners) that use them as fighting dogs. Some airline companies don’t allow the Pitbull breed or mixes to fly in order to stop the importation of these kinds of dogs used for dog fights in multiple countries. Also in my research I came to the realization that a Boxer mix was the closest breed, look-wise as a pittbull and that also didn’t have as many restrictions.
When I arrive in Australia and found those cute boxer mix puppies, I fell in love and felt like it was the right time, the right breed and I was feeling it inside. I asked the man if I could come visit and the next day I was on my way, I saw the puppies and decided to get on with that journey. I got Samsara at two months, she was super tiny, shy and she was the only one that didn’t jump right on me and I thought she was the nicest to do so. She was so calm, quiet, and beautiful with her black spot and gold colour. I never, at that point of time, had any thoughts that it could go wrong in any way, I was just so happy to see that I was there for her and she was there for me. I took her in my arms, right away, it felt like the time was slowing down and she didn’t leave my side from there.
I came up with her name, one night under the stars near Sydney. I was having good times and great conversations about different beliefs and sharing words that meant good things with a friend. Then I remember mentioning to watch the movie Baraka an older version of the movie ‘Samsara’ and that was it!
I had a tree planting job lined up, in Sydney, but I was too excited about Samy’s and I adventure to come so I decided to keep on travelling with her instead of working.
So we drove off for a few days all the way to Byron Bay to meet another friend.
Everything in my head made sense, we would drive, hitch hike, she would be my partner in crime, she would be my bodyguard and my best friend. She was following me everywhere, she was so shy and scared of everyone else. She wasn’t a puppy that was going at people and I loved it because I felt the same way myself, at the time I didn’t felt like getting close to anyone but her.
A lot of people told me it was a bad idea to get a dog whilst travelling or to just get a dog in general. Friends and family were asking me what I was gonna do when I would get back to Canada and in my head, it wasn’t even a question, it was silly, of course I was gonna bring her back with me. I didn’t care of the consequences I was in the present moment. I was just gonna make it work and I really did work my ass off to do so.
I think, however, how many people tell you some things, you got to experience it for yourself.
I realize now, how having a dog is a big deal but back then I wasn’t making it a big deal.
Without admitting it, I won’t lie, getting Sammy, was one of the worst ideas I’ve ever had. But who doesn’t make bad decisions in life. Not me, I do – all the time but, Yes, I’m grateful for everything. I share love with her, I’m glad I’m with her now and proud of all the good moments we created but I must admit, at one point everything started going sideways, I was losing a bit of hope and things were getting harder and harder to accomplish.
I did not want to admit to myself that travelling with a dog was different, a big adaptation and maybe not so easy. It took me two years to finally admit it to myself that I had made a mistake. Everybody that is taking care of a dog knows that it change your life. It’s like a relationship, any kind of relationship changes your life. You have to accept it. I was just pushing the thoughts away and pretending that nothing had changed. I was still free but I had now another being with me to take care of.
Part of the way I was living in Australia was in my car and another part in a tent, in the bushes, at the beach like a real bum. I’ve always believed in everything happening for a reason and I took on my responsibilities to get a puppy very seriously. I knew it wouldn’t be easy and I did as much as I could to make the best of the situation. Samsara got me through a lot of hard times but also she was the cause of some of those harder times. It was like a vicious cycle because I loved her and I was determined to make it work.
You got to live with your life choices, deal with them positively and without shame.
I brought Sammy back from Australia thinking we would live the bum life together forever. I certainly didn’t think that it would be hard to share that with her. Actually, living the ‘bum life’ and the travel life together ain’t hard. The problem gets when I need to work, if I’m not there to take care of her, she has to stay inside too long. I think because she is so used to being free, outside and being together 24/7, as soon as I’m out looking for a job, we get in a house, I start working for eight hours straight or when I don’t have the energy to be there for her that’s when it gets unfair. I thought I would live in nature, at the beach all my life but when I start doing or thinking about a more conventional lifestyle that’s when I start to feel the pain. It’s really isn’t fair for Sammy or even for any dogs really.
I always knew that dogs weren’t meant to live inside. With my experience now, I’m certainly convinced that third world country dogs have the best life. They get fed all the time with left over, bum around with their friends all day everyday, like cats. In Mexico, Samsara, was always free like all the other dogs and she was way more happy, relaxed and nicer than ever.
A tired dog is a happy dog a friend always told me.
Dogs aren’t meant for everyone and there aren’t a toy or a birthday gift either.
I fucking love my dog and that’s what makes it hard.
I don’t think it’s should be a taboo to talk about how we feel about our animals, rehoming our furry friends, to talk about anything or any bad decisions we would of make.
There was a time were things got really out of control or out of my control and I was thinking about finding her a new home. But we finally worked it out together, I’m way too picky and I would have had a lot of criteria to find the perfect people for her. I have set myself that if one day someone of high quality standards comes into the picture than I would take in consideration to maybe let her go but for now, I’m happy that we share our life together, I’m trying to not think about the future and to stay positive with Sammy. The most important is that she gets exercise everyday, that we both get along, enjoy the present moment together and get as much love from each other that we possibly can.
In two years of sharing my life with Slammy a lot happened and changed.
It’s when I’ve accepted all those changes that we really bound together.
She teaches me so much. It as pretty much confirmed me that I don’t think I could have kids. I have learn to be responsible not just for myself but for both of us. She makes me wake up, walk and go outside in times were I would of lay like a potato. She give me energy. She makes me more aware of my limits and my patience. How to love unconditionally. Learn about other peoples point of view. I know that I’m giving her the most love and the best life she could get. I know that it’s maybe not the most stable living way but she doesn’t seem to be affected by that because she is full of life, a happy dog and anyways it’s the only life she has known.
She can be fucking annoying but
I love her so much, she is the goofiest, cutest, wild ass, bad ass bitch I know.
A quote by Jaskson Kiddard that my friend posted and I really felt a connection with it.
Anything that annoys you is for teaching you patience.
Anyone who abandons you is for
teaching you how to stand up
on your own two feet.
Anything that angers you is for teaching you forgiveness and compassion.
Anything that has power over you is for teaching you how to take your power back.
Anything you hate is for
teaching you unconditional love.
Anything you fear is for
teaching you courage to
overcome your fear.
Anything you can’t control is for teaching you how to let go and trust the Universe
I left in April 2012 to go out west with two of my friends. We chose a red Dodge Caravan to complete our team and get on the road. It was not my first time travelling but it was the first trip that really opened my eyes, ears and heart.
It felt like, before that, I was blind, deaf and lost. Life lessons were coming in one side and going out the other. I was another confused, lost soul in the 9 to 5, Monday to Friday hairdresser life.
So I embarked in this road trip to maybe get answers, learn English, find myself or my purpose, not knowing what was next and that it would literally change my life.
Since my brother and sister have been out west before, it was a dream of mine to go as well. Some of my friends came home from Whistler telling me all their beautiful stories. Hearing these stories, which sounded like the best summer ever, I was feeling that it was finally the right time for me to fulfil my dreams. With F and V, we than planned to travel across America followed by living in Whistler for a year.
We decided to do the road trip in three weeks and then head north. We started in Quebec, where we were all living at the time. F was really good at organizing and planning things like where to stop, where to sleep and how long to drive in a day. I thought to myself that it was maybe too much preparation but it was convenient and I was the kind of person to just go with the flow so I went with it. I was just really super stoked to finally take a big step towards freedom.
Learning a new language…
At first, it was very challenging being in America, as I wasn’t speaking a word of English but I didn’t let that bring me down. We arrived in New-York and our brakes smelled like shit, we were pretty worried as we’ve just bought the van a couple of weeks before and changed all the brake pads. We parked downtown in a non-parking spot to look at the situation. Picture this, three, young, dumb French Canadian girls looking at their car like they’ve never seen a car before, in the middle of downtown New York. We certainly did not look super smart but it was a part of the adventure and that’s the kind of stuff you want to happen so that you have a story.
The next day we took the van to the mechanics to do a check up and change the oil. Whilst we were heading there, we practiced our English. As I was the worst one at it, I decided it was a great opportunity to start learning the language so I learned what to say to the mechanic. “I want to change oil.” We got there and the man look straight at me (I’m guessing he said something along those line) “What would you like today?” I replied, “I want ……..” and in a few minutes, I forgot the tiny words, I froze up and I couldn’t talk anymore. I was so shy, I was desperately looking at both my friends for help, which they quickly did. That’s how I first stepped into the world of learning English, because, I would never want to feel embarrassed about the language ever again!
We continue on our journey passing through many states. We decided to go pass the east coast pretty fast so we would go visit places like Yellow Stone, Grand Canyon, Las Vegas and Mammoth Mountain out in the wild, wild west. It was very nice, charming and incredibly mind blowing to see all those places for the first time. Especially when it’s almost the first time you get out of your ‘hometown’. It made me feel like an adult even if I felt like I was playing Barbie two days before.
We mostly camped in a campground, sometimes we would sleep in random spots and the odd times we would pay for a room. Nothing was really hard core, road tripping, van life, crazy with the very scheduled organization and our lack of free spirit, and balls but everything was very satisfying as far as feeling away from home and my taste for liberty was starting to settle.
Three girls in the same small space was fine for a while but there was definitely some tension building up. After three very good weeks of road tripping all over the US, we were finally getting to our destination: Whistler. We’d pre rented an apartment in the market place before leaving so we’d be all set up right away. It was pretty luxury but quite small for three people and one room, although, we’d made it work for the most part. We’d all found jobs, made friends, snowboarded for the summer season, party hard and then at one point, like all girls stories goes, all of our confrontations became too intense. V decided to leave to go travel with her new boyfriend and myself and F decided it would be best if we would take on separate places to live.
Wake up call…
At 21, just before all of us had split up, it was at that time were I told myself, looking through my eyes, straight into my soul, in the mirror, that I would wake up. That I would start to live for myself, take all my courage to follow my dreams and be happy. I’ll always remember that specific moment, it was so powerful, I felt like I’d reached a life orgasm. I had to run to work to avoid to be late but when I got there, I was crying of happiness and everyone was wandering what was going on. I was saying that it was tears of joy and I too didn’t know what was going on with me but I was certainly feeling fucking good inside.
For months, I felt like I was on top of the world, I was losing weight, feeling prettier, fucking any guys I wanted, being really active and outdoorsy and partying even harder. I was meeting people from all over the world all eagerly feeling as adventurous as me. All that was giving me energy, courage and even more of a travel bug. I made up a plan with the intention of leaving for the summer to go fruit picking, in the Okanagan, to make money fast and leave to Europe. I wanted to go live crazy adventures, see the world, explore and on the way, stop in Germany to see one of my many sidekicks but the one that turned my heart upside down.
Before the dreams comes real life, establish plans and meet people…
After we’ve all split up, another friend, M, was back from travelling in Australia and together we hangout for a wile and felt a real connection that was pure love and friendship right away. That’s when you became really yourself that you make important relationships happen. She also was very calm, a lot more down to earth and head on the shoulder than the average people I was meeting in Whistler. Meanwhile this great time, she was coming through, to visit, before leaving for tree planting.
It was the first time I was hearing about tree planting other than just words in the air, here and there. She was so pumped about it that I felt like I could also do it if she was doing it. One night, together and with some other French Canadian friends, we had a pizza party. We all started sharing a conversations about tree planting when one guy, I don’t remember his name, was talking about it like he’d had been doing it his whole life. He was telling stories with so much passion, excitement and crazy details that we thought he was a veteran. We realized that he’d never done it before and one of his best friends was planting for a while and told him all about it. I was on such a ‘high on life’ at that point, plus with both of them talking about planting like it was a life changer, obviously, I wanted to go and felt like it was destiny. I didn’t care about fruit picking anymore I just wanted the damn trees and tha money that was coming with it. My new friend without a name ended up getting me in contact with his friend that put me in contact with a Foreman for the season. I was so fucking fired up, I quite my two jobs, like I said, I was a hairdresser at the time plus I was working in a random store. I went to tell them chow bye, I’m going plant trees for three months.
What a lucky gal…
I call my family, my mom was proud of me, she’s always proud no matters what I do. I called my dad, he said that I was not gonna make it because when he was 18 years old he went to plant and lasted only a month. I called my sister and she said that one of her ex’s left her when he found another girl while he was at tree planting. With all the best advice from my family, I certainly did not give up, I bought my first awesome working boots at the thrift store and five days later, May 2013, I was going tree planting for the first time! That’s when life really shifted and where everything started to be crazy and real adventures were in front of me.
Side words for who found my first tree planting job…
Everything always ends up making sense….
As some of you might know, tree planting really did rock my world.
Everyone I shared with that I was going tree planting pretty much told me I wouldn’t make it but on a more positive note that it would change my life forever. I really didn’t think much out of that and I also had no expectations before going there because I didn’t know a thing about planting other than the videos that I’ve watch online (at the time, they didn’t had many fancy ones). My goal was to make money fast and go.
To come back to the French Canadian guy that I don’t remember the name from the pizza night in Whistler, he was the only one that could see my potential, without judging he was kind enough to hook me up with he’s friend and found the job that would change my life, for real.
After planting trees for a couple of years and travelling a bunch, I visited my family. My brother and I were talking about my time in Whistler and he was telling me that the guy, I don’t remember his name, he knew him as well and a couple of months after he’d hook me up with a tree planting job he had died from cancer.
How fucking special is that, I mean, this guy didn’t even know that he change my life, for real. I was so sad to hear about his death but also it opened me to a whole new way of seeing after life. To think about him and one of his last times on earth was to change someone else life for the best. I can feel that he knows though, it’s weird, I’m so grateful for that man passing through my life at the right time.
Because of him I am now who I am and I would not want to change a thing.
I have learn so much through all my travels but especially with planting and this man is the reason why I first went there, you know!
Rest in Peace, I’ll always remember you as the mysterious man who changed my life.
As far as I can remember my mom always told me to go travel when I would have the chance. One of the last times I went to see her, I asked why she was so worried about me travelling if she pushed me to do so. She replied that in her mind she saw me discovering the world for a couple of months and then coming back home, but she never thought that I’d been gone for years.
On the same line…
My best friend from home once told me; one day you will have to comeback.
At first I felt sour about it, I thought no one could tell me what to do or how to feel about my travels. But after awhile I realize that they were both right, yes, I will have to comeback but nothing or no one can force me to stay. Going back home is healthy and to live your own life is as well. It took me sometimes to find the balance between feeling pressured by my excessive travelling thoughts and home. It’s important to spend time with your family and friends, love them and share precious moments together. But there are no rules that say we have to settle and/or comeback to the area we where born to keep on living.
I just want to explore all the possibilities.
I believe that our parents put us on earth to do something good. Therefore, to be rich inside and appreciate the planet we live on.
School of life they say.
Travelling opened my way of thinking and how to see life. I became wiser, stronger, more confident and it kept my heart, body and soul young. I don’t see a downside to it or yet.
It’s a trill for me to not knowing, to wander, to go, to try and to get lost. Because every day I change, I learn, I grow and I feel alive. That’s what happiness is to me. The feeling of been there at that exact moment.
I lead my life by my feelings and my heart. Where I feel I should be at that moment and where my heart tells me to go. As long as I feel right to be where I am at that moment, I’ll stay. Times to times it can be hard to be somewhere, not because of the place itself but it can be mentally challenging. If I see there is a lesson to get from it or I feel a sense of growth in that point in time, I would not leave just by convenience, the place doesn’t make a difference only you make it. I’ll always try to see the positive out of every situation. There are a lot of ups and downs and sideways. Some hard times are longer than the easier times but in the end, all these obstacles are when I feel myself the most.
Do it wile your still young, they also say… Well age doesn’t matters, I say…
It’s much easier in today’s world to be free but still some people don’t feel comfortable. I totally understand when everything you want is in front of you and you are not wondering what’s over there. But too many people are still afraid, afraid of their own self and of the outside world. Afraid of what they have heard or seen, to be judged by their peers, to disappoint their parents/friends or this and that. But I think everyone should at least, once, try to get outside of their comfort zone to see what the world has to offer. So maybe they can see within themselves and that there is so much more to discover, learn and growth to be done. To realize what has been persuaded into our heads since we were born is not necessarily the way to go.
I don’t know when or where nor if I would ever stop one day. Only time will tell but for now I am glad of my passes adventures and excited for the ones to come.
I’m just talking about travelling and how it makes me feel, I hope it can start your wild fire inside you.
I wish everyone to find happiness or at least to see the solutions and not only the problems.
Life is beautiful, worth living and full of surprises.
Live for yourself and your beliefs and you will see that it is worth more than all the money.
When you appreciate, trust and be real to yourself you find peace.
Don’t be scared and be open, there will be wonders.