Funny how a night that calls for a pint of Guinness ends up banging the table shouting for more schooners at the Plains.
But what a night! Sunshine, drinks and enough gristle-and-gossip work banter to stamp out whatever pang of sentimentality I had when I left my SGI cubicle for the last time.
Now it’s only forward, on to something I’ve dreamed about for what seems like ages. I’m officially unemployed, technically homeless, and crackling at the prospect of finally setting off on Wednesday.
Wednesday! My trip was always described in fuzzy indefinites – sometime soon, maybe next year, this summer, around June. Now it’s Wednesday. Five days away.
I know it won’t actually sink in until my skinny butt is hurtling towards Whitehorse in a Greyhound, but I do feel a certain rush of excitement I unconsciously held back until now. I didn’t want to jinx this, didn’t want to leak my anticipation for fear it would float away, and my trip with it. Focus is what has gotten me to this point, but today I’m allowing myself some fool-grin daydreams of what’s to come. I close my eyes and I’m there already.
Let’s be honest, though. For better or worse, my imagination has always had too many plugs in the socket . . .
I sometimes build things up too much and then, amazingly, I get disappointed. All I’ll venture at this point is a feeling, the moment when I roll out of Inuvik and look ahead at the sky, hear the trees slow dance in the breeze and take in that first breath of incredible northern air. Freedom.
Of course, it could be raining and I might get splashed with mud by a logging truck instead. Que sera, sera . . .