As the stomach turns

Winding through the Osoyoos Rockies, returning from a lovely long weekend in Vancouver, my stomach is rumbling, twisting and turning as quickly as the road is catapulting us in every possible direction. Who would have thought that a skydiver / pilot like myself would get road sick as our bike-frenzied driver makes like he is on his Honda ST1300 rather than his Ford F150 Lariat. As soon as we were able, a sudden pit stop was made (in an attempt to avert the big hurl) with me running in search of some Gravol (I had forgotten to bring along aromatherapy oils — ginger — which always seem to work for me). It being a last minute decision to come along on this trip, many things, that would have been useful for our travels, were left behind. Such as the power-cord to the Powerbook laptop, my essential oils and my pleasure book for reading. Oh well, at least I had my husband along for entertainment ….. and that is all that matters, truly.

It all began last Thursday evening when we attended Gazoo and Janice’s wedding reception. They’re new skydiving friends who have an edge for adventure. Approaching us after the reception, they asked us if we wanted to tag along to another friend’s wedding in Vancouver, leaving tomorrow after work. Game for a skydiving roadtrip, we jumped at the chance. Eleven hours night driving from door to door made for a long trip. but at least it was a very comfortable ride in their king cab, leather seats.

We have family friends of old who live in Surrey and were openly receptive to us crashing on their couch whilst exploring a weekend of possibilities. We ended up spending the day with Ron & Peggy, who gave us a quick tour of Vancouver, ending the day with the best Ethiopian meal EVER. Whirlwind indeed, fantastically fun, absolutely.

On the Sunday morning, Gazoo picked us up, after listening to a water presentation on the Kangen water system. Looking out at the blue skies, we made a speedy exit for the door and made our way to the drop zone in Abbotsford. The Pilatus Porter is their biggest draw with a beautiful valley of mountains surrounding the outskirts of the city. It was a lovely day of jumping for slaDE~ and friends. They were lucky to get in as many Porter jumps as they did: Abbotsford is a busy tandem factory indeed.

We spent the night at Leah’s place, after eating a scrumptious Thai meal at the Mango Tree restaurant, before crashing, in the company of her roaming fluffy cat.

The drive back to Calgary was long along the southern winding passage of British Columbia. A fabulous but painfully stiff journey with a 1am arrival back in the big smoke. Guess a 6am wake-up will determine whether I’m up for an early morning bike ride to work. Nighty night.

Wedding photos a-go gO!

Adobe LightroomOh what a glorious weekend! The weather was spectacular and I spent all of my day Saturday sitting at the computer, editing our wedding photos (adding special effects at times) and creating a home to host my burgeoning dreams of a huge photo gallery.

I used Adobe Lightroom to launch me into the Professional area of cataloguing, editing and designing. It’s been a really fun experiment at learning a new program. And what better method of tooling around than using our beloved wedding photographs to experiment on. Strolling through 1800 photos has been an incredible joy, a journey down memory lane (only a month ago, so still fresh and vivid and tangible — to relive that day is like experiencing a piece of heaven, over and over). Editing them has been a rather full-on task that has sucked up every spare moment that I may have to offer in my day, beyond the working hours. Logging consistently long evenings up and beyond midnight has left me rather ‘dog-tired’ when the 5am phone alarm sounds on slaDE~s cell. We have become masters of the snooze, allotting ourselves an hour or so of time just to slowly wake. However, when as tired as I have become, every sound-sleeping moment is revered and sought for. It’s at times like these that I would gently and lovingly want to throw the cell phone out the bedroom door and subtly into the toilet. But I am only half of the equation with this viewpoint, and it’s important not to have a rushed husband in the morning :), struggling to get out the door in time.

procrastinatorSo instead, I have mastered a method of procrastination which keeps me in bed until the very last moment (alone time in our small bed is precious — oh Airstream king-sized bed, I can not wait for your return!), usually gasping for air as I rush through my morning tasks (brush teeth, wash face, apply sunscreen, throw a lunch together, get dressed and run!) before either heading to yoga, physio or work. I’m pushing the time boundaries here and skating in, usually just in the nick of time. Some things never change.

So back to my Saturday, I finally pieced through all of Mike’s photo and cre8ted a flash photo gallery @ rvthereyet.ca/gallery.html (a flash player is needed in your browser to see the pix), on our new website rvthereyet.ca. This site will be a continually evolving, open-aired window that gives a glimpse into our traveling world on board our Airstream, chronicling from the time we purchased our ‘dream bus’ and beyond. I’m hoping to maintain my livejournal blog in a different manner (different anecdotes, pictures, quotes, videos, etc), but I guess we’ll see how much time I have on my hands in keeping both up-to-date. One will pertain to my life as I know it and the rvthereyet blog will be about our journey together. We’ll see … I’m sure they’ll be some overlap and I’m still not certain of the parameters, per se.

photo cre8tivityI’m really happy with both the gallery (cre8ted in Lightroom, my trial version) and the layout of the site itself. I ‘cheated’ (being a cre8tive web designer) in that I used a template in the design. I’m thinking that I need to buy some blog software (manually cre8ting dates and entries is a real pain!) or learn how to use wordpress. I’ve been meaning to do that for a while now, but it seems that other projects get in the way. There is ALWAYS something new to learn (in my field of design work, and of course, beyond) and perpetual digital projects to do (programs to learn / photos to edit / cre8tive photoshop works of art to birth). I must admit, I’m feeling quite guilty of late for not keeping my portfolio up to date. To be honest, it hasn’t been updated since I left school 7 years ago. I’ve used my resume as my platform for a digital portfolio of my web clients, but I need to refocus my time into both my aromatherapy and web business. Once our wedding ‘stuff’ is out of the way (thank you cards, photo books, videos watched and edited, etc), I can shift gears and step up to the digital work plate.

As I’ve quoted to many friends: “enjoying the journey is half the fun …. as it’s not just about the destination. RVThereYet is about exploring the world, one breath at a time. So I should approach all my digital tasks … a journey to be enjoyed and savoured.

a shower and a tear

Busy busy busy day! My work is moving from our current residence to Southport, a good long hike away from where we are currently. And also an hours more commute than what I have. No more leaving out the door last minute, or quick jaunts home enjoying a lazy lunch, for that matter. Sigh ….
But on the plus side, I get to bike an hour each way. Which means built in exercise. Yay! Love being able to move the body. Check back in a few weeks and ask me then how I’m enjoying the transition.

bridal showerAfter a nice savoury lunch at home (a whole hour spent on the phone scrambling to restructure my wallet contents — ID most importantly — after losing it on Friday afternoon), I returned to work somewhat down and incredibly tired. Been burning the midnight oil on both sides, and the loss in sleep is finally catching up. Trying to fit too much in within a limited time span, it seems. I normally enjoy 8 hours a night. However, I’m finding that 5 hours just doesn’t cut it! After dragging my butt back, I was asked to join Vickie in the main meeting room to discuss something important. To my total surprise, the whole dang floor was awaiting my presence. I’ll be danged! A bridal shower! I truly never thought about it and was totally caught off guard. How lovely my friends and coworkers are. And indeed, I was literally the blushing bride. Beautiful flowers, tasty summer fruit and a succulent cake was enjoyed by all. But wait! They even gave me their collection of money …. knowing that we’re not in need of any STUFF, we were blesses with a nice gifting of cash, which will go towards buying the organic king sheet set that I want. Yippee!

The generosity of people astound each and every days, often in many different ways. I am so blessed. And I am so excited, thrilled, happy. Running on adrenalin basically.

10 more sleeps to the big day πŸ™‚

News out the ying yang

Today was truly a momentous, most memorable day … full of decisions, laughter and surprises.

It all started out as a conversation around returning home to Ontario. When Aaron’s fiance, Otto, decided to shy away (temporarily?) from the prospect of marriage, slaDE~ and I were flip flopping on the idea of cashing in our airline tickets or go home for a quick visit. Over the weekend, Westjet had flagged their $99 seat sale — offering up one way from Calgary to TO. On top of that, today they added an extra 5% bonus off the ticket price. Even with a cancellation fee of $84 per person on our tickets, we couldn’t turn down the opportunity of a $400+ savings in flying home on different dates. Wicked! We’d be going home after all πŸ™‚

And then came the question that literally stunned me …. the term ‘knock me over with a feather’ comes to mind. slaDE~ asked me, in his calmest coolest sexiest voice, to marry him, whilst we were at home. At first I thought slaDE~ was joking. For the past 2+ years, we have lived with open hearts living a true connection that has been marriage in the ultimate form … with heart, soul and mind, bank accounts and lives intertwined. What more could one ask for?! To us, our union (from the moment I returned from Guatemala, over 2 years ago) has been as official as one could ever hope, want or desire.

However, to be truthfully honest, an official ceremony has been tickling at the back of my mind … thoughtfully considered as a ‘someday event’, a possibility. Dating back to my young girlish days, something to be desired, but in my current mindset, not a necessary formality.

Zooming back to that moment of disbelief …. M A R R I A G E. WOW! Who would have ever thought?
And slowly, the truth and beauty of what the ceremony would mean was co-cre8ted with my best friend: an informal, non-traditional, meaningful and love-filled ceremony, on August 22, 2008. Shared with the closest of family and friends. Truth, connection and love. Ahhhhh. Now that’s what I call a party!

Sex and Marriage

to risk or not?Marriage … ah the eternal debate over an institution filled with both flaws and promise. Should I or shouldn’t I? Can I risk to be vulnerable, interdependent, gambling against all the odds with no guarantees that life won’t throw a tire-iron my way? And if things go awry in a big way, what should I do then? Remain or leave?
Huge questions …. all pursued in the new ‘Sex and the City’ movie that I savoured and devoured last night, sadly solo (all my best girls are out-of-country — and my best boy didn’t deem SATC as a big screen kind of pic). This was one feature that I longed to share, to pursue the questions that arose from the big statements boldly and brazenly lavished upon me. I LOVED EVERY MOMENT. It was such a fabulous story. And it left me with a few revelations on relationships and marriage that I by far didn’t expect from 2.5 hours of high fashion, humour and scandal. Carrie, Samantha, Miranda and Charlotte wrestle with love, sex, children, weight gain, friendship, humiliation, and forgiveness …. all in a hilariously realistic fashion (haute couture, of course ☺). Where else could one find a movie where marriage is both crushed and lauded, from every possible nuance and angle.

SPOILER ALERT
If you haven’t seen the movie yet and like surprises, stop reading now!

Carrie -- ties the knot!Carrie and Big ultimately get married but only after one is left standing at the altar on their first attempt. The most profound question from the movie, for me, which evolves from the lessons learned (in true Carrie style), is: ‘Why Marriage?’ Did she believe that without marriage, their efforts and relationship were not good enough? Do you have to be married to be real, be true and be accepted as seriously involved and committed?

This debate is something that I have struggled with in the past and sometimes find myself examining / disputing. In my heart I know that marriage is not the end-all be-all. Divorce is a reality truly close to home for so many loved ones. For myself, on the one hand, when one grows up in a hugely Catholic, sizable family where marriage is the persistently inevitable little girl’s dream, it’s hard to break out of those defining stereotypes, living fully and completely, with no holds barred, unravelling all expectations. Yet from day to day, slaDE and I live our love, married in heart, without that niggling piece of paper, pushing the evolutionary buttons which others define as ‘playing house’. With no guarantees of longevity of life and love, I can only live each day fully, acknowledging my husband as a dedicated loving fully present male who, for better or for worse, has stood by me for 6.5+ years. And I remain a beloved besotted wife. Actions speak louder than words on a piece of paper. AMEN.

Now, with the film complete, it’s up to the rest of us to release the vanquished breath, carrie on with our own lives (punnY!), come up with our own answers. And continue asking new questions, pushing buttons along the way.