Just two years ago today, Tom and I slipped away in Priscilla leaving Orillia, Ontario behind forever. We had ourselves, a bunch of boxes, a selection of clothes, food and of course our canine and feline family Missy, Koko, Dickens and Doyle.
Priscilla was sold last year to a new family in Port Alberni- in the centre of Vancouver Island.
Our family has changed.
We lost Doyle on August 17th at the KOA in Winnipeg. He ran from Priscilla about 1030 at night.
We never saw him again.
The last view I had of him was his puddy tail up in the air and his orange arse disappearing into the Manitoba night.
Doyle never got to see his new home here in the Cowichan.
I know I should stop but every day I check the Winnipeg Lost Cats Facebook Page looking for a glimmer of hope. Maybe some kindly Granny has taken him in and one of these days when he is taken to a vet, they'll check his chip and he'll come home to us...
Another special family member- Our Missy, made it to the Island but passed in September of last year.
That was devastating
She so wanted to stay a while longer with her Dads but that was not to be. A little BC cedar box sits on a fireplace mantle in our Master Bedroom holding her ashes. Her little knitted sweater with the red maple leaf is draped over the headboard- above my head, of our bed.
Gosh that morning leaving Pine Tree House.
I sullenly walked through every room in the house saying goodbye.
She looked so lonely and empty.
I just wanted to hug her.
How do you say goodbye to 25 happy years of your life?
The Parties, Mrs. P's visits, the Christmases, Birthdays, Thanksgivings- a Marriage.
The spot on the floor in front of the Keeping Room fireplace where Dr. Stephen sent our wonderful Kiki- our yellow lab of 17 years, over the Rainbow Bridge. ~double sigh~
|Our Pine Tree House in Orillia, Ontario|
You know, I never thought we'd ever leave that cozy, little Victoria Home but leave we did- three time zones and a few thousand miles away!
Good Gawd it took guts.
I don't know how we did it.
I do mourn and miss that house (Pine Tree House c.1882) and the familiarity that a quarter of a century of familiar places and friends brought.
I know this will sound stupid but I still wonder if given the same chance today would we have moved.
Silly, I know but this move is and was probably the biggest life-changing experience that The Mister and I have made together. I don't know how Military families do it. Moving all over the globe and rarely having a place to really call home but here we are two years later settled in this Mediterranean climate of the Cowichan Valley, in Duncan BC, in North Cowichan.
This is our home now.
|Palm Villa in the Cowichan Valley, Vancouver Island BC|
A friend from Orillia said in a text a week ago- "I hope you are not too lonely."
I hadn't thought I had given an impression of loneliness. Orillia and Ontario will always be in my heart but then again the years I lived in Mississauga were special too. What I miss most about moving here to Vancouver Island is the distance from Toronto and maybe Ontario.
I always loved Toronto.
I lived in a couple of areas of the city but my favourite was on Clark Street just off Queen Street east past the Don Valley Parkway. That was the small house I lived in when I first met Tom. An area of artsy folks, streetcars, the Beaches and a cross section of people from all over the world. It was a time when I didn't even have a car. I used transit to go everywhere.
So, yes, I miss Toronto and the shows and shopping and the Canadian National Exhibition. The EX was the best and I have so many memories of going every year. We tried the PNE here in Vancouver last year. It was a reasonable facsimile but not the Ex.
I still miss our perfect, little Pine Tree House too- and I always will.
So folks, a toast to two years ago and the day we loaded up our Prairie Schooner- better known as Priscilla, to head west to a new life.