No pigeons were harmed in the sending of this letter.
I’ve been here three weeks. I still pinch myself when I open google maps and the little blue dot says “northern hemisphere” you’re in CANADA! Im falling in love with the place, so far the warmth of springs honeymoon phase has been delightful. The crisp fresh air, the snow speckled mountains in the north and the gulf islands have definitely caught my attention.
I’m currently writing to you on a bus off to my second hike/ camping trip since I got here. First was a gorgeous place called Salt Spring Island. I went over for a Beltaine ritual. The camp ground was not quite fully reachable by public transport and it was the easiest hitch-hiking experience I’ve had. I guess I did look obviously like a tourist and my accent is a dead giveaway.
The camp ground was the middle ground between sea and forest, gorgeous during the day, pines towering above me. Rocky foreshore , bleached drift wood, the smell of salt and wet earth and the distant sound of boat air horns as they leave the shore. Looking into the sky it’s unfamiliar to me. The stars are new friends I neeed to learn, a different angle to the galaxy reminding me the southern cross is indeed down under. We set up for the ritual, creating magick, and a maypole. I joined to help tearing colourful sheets into to long ribbons to decorate with the weaving dance of spring. Round and round to the beat of the drums and 40+ chanting voices, over, under, over, under. Many songs later we sit very well rugged up around our Beltaine fire toasting marshmellows and feeling the heat bring a ruddy glow to our faces. This is a freedom that is magick. This is my culture, my celtic heritige and it feels like home.
A few days later I find myself in a room of at least 100+ handsome and bearded men. You raise an eyebrow at me wondering what on earth has brought me here. No it’s not a Canadian farming or forestry convention full of plaid, cowboy hats and big leather boots. I did however find a store that did stock the epitome of that entire stereotype and nearly walked out with a pair of leather boots myself.
No I’m at the Vancouver Mens Chorus, which is 98% gay I’m told. They’re darlings and filling the room with their delightfully booming voice the room resonates with Musical theatre tunes “Anything goes” to slight more camp wonders “Is he Gay or just European?!”
So you’re still wondering why I’m there? My wonderful friend Mama Alto, connected me with a person I’d have to describe as Vancouver’s music and theatre socialite / producer who invited me along to recruit more Canadians across a very broad age range for my Queer Tarot Project. Nothing like hitting the ground running.
I’ve officially completed 47 photoshoots, finishing the Major Arcana with 36 cards including all the duplicates. I’ve only another 45 to go, but I’m estimating maybe another 50 shoots to go to finish the Tarot Deck. Along the way creating all the individual videos that will be the card interpretations as well. The big goal tho is to make a short film / documentary, probably initally under 15 minutes to have ready for the Vancouver Queer Film Festival in March next year. Not unusual for me to do everything at once and set myself a gloriously ambitious goal. Nice in this case there’s no downside, if I can do it and make it happen I’ll be over the moon, if not the good news is these events happen over and over again year after year.
Manifestation is powerful ya’ll! I’ve been revelling in gratitude since I got here. I’m living in a beautiful house with a gorgeous room and housemate I met Burning Man a few years ago. I’ve got purchasing a vehicle in the works and decided I’d work for a few months so I could travel more extensively for the next few months after that next year. I am enjoying my own company, traveling alone and meeting all kinds of people out and about.
Thank you all so much for your letters and replies back to my emails. I’ve barely had any homesickness yet thanks to the love and conversations I’ve had at weird hours of the day back n forth to Australia and New Zealand.
I haven’t seen a moose yet. I’ve seen canada geese, a skunk at a safe distance a brown squirrel and 2 wild deer. I think half of Canada is serious about bears and the other half is writing books to pull my leg “a bear at my lunch”. I’ve walked through the bush in the dark at night scaring myself silly with the thought of a lurking cougar, to realise I’m in a populated park and the dogs everwhere aren’t going crazy barking.
The nudie beach is quite the experience, from wandering alcahol sales people to show ponys parading up and down the beach, I dont think I’ve ever been at such a busy beach surrounded by so many people completely starkers. New Zealand nudie beaches I remember, you’d just know not to approach that tent in the bushes 2m up the beach, with few people in cussing distance of one another.
It was a very warm day for spring, 26° I think, and I’m sitting there looking at the glistening water longing for a swim wondering why there’s absolutely no one swimming! Weird I think to myself, sure it’s a sheltered bay, and the water looks clean enough. So I think to myself “fuck it, I’m going in”. Thinking nothing would be nicer than laying there floating warmed by the sun, relaxing in the water. How wrong I was. Running in to get over the first dip chill I quickly realised this was no normal chill, this is the Atlantic Ocean and boy was it ICY. Running now up to my upper thighs in water, I was winded by the cold temperature change and proceeded to flail anything but gracefully face first into the freeeeeezing water. I couldn’t feel my toes almost instantly. “Okay” I thought to myself, “guess this is why there’s no one bloody swimming then!” I tried a couple more times but without a wet suit it would just be rather an unpleasant experience. Luckily the sun was divine and my skin warmed up and dried off in no time, leaving a baked and salt me to find my way home.
Anyways thats all from me tonight..
Wishing you magick and love