Michael, Us, Canada and More
Michael and his ’94 red engine Chevy Blazer are the driver and carrier for this trip en route to Taber, Alberta. A stop over night in Wawa was a good place to rest after a 12 hour journey from Toronto.
Also on board is my monk assistant, Karuna Sindhu. The three of us are all Canadian boys. Michael even worked at the Hockey Hall of Fame on Front Street in Toronto for some time. He, like myself, trekked the nation, starting from the Beaches area of Toronto. He went eastward to Newfoundland in 2002, and three years later he started at that fairly central point once again, at the Beaches, on a westerly direction to Victoria, BC. On the two trips he backpacked it all the way, living much like an ascetic or a yogi.
As we drove through the planet’s oldest rock formation, The Canadian Shield, he was pointing out to us all the things he had done on the previous walk 9 years before, about whom he met, and then also identifying the very spots where he pitched his tent and what occurred around him. One day he woke up and four inches of snow welcomed him. Another day, a moose happened to offer company outside his wigwam, and like my own experiences, you wake up to the sound of millions of, well, at least it’s my interpretation, Krishna flutes, playing sweetly. Actually, they’re small yellow throated sparrows of the Boreal forest, and they’re supposed to be chanting, “Oh sweet Canada Canada.”
Eventually after today’s more modest mileage, and being interrupted by a bear, a yearling on the road, we arrived at Thunder Bay and the Vedic Cultural Centre to conduct a 9 Devotions Workshop, an exercise in fostering good relations of bhakti. So, while we may have pride in nation, ultimately our connection is to do more with nature and its source.
May that Source be with you!