Auspicious is a wonderful word that best describes everything about the past 2 days for me.  Favorable, promising, positive, fortunate, lucky, opportune are all synonyms but none completely define the many moments we had in the past 2 days as well as auspicious does. Reflecting back on the past 2 days, everything fell into place perfectly, even our moment of crisis. The weather couldn’t have been better- perfect hiking weather (especially compared to today’s thunderstorm). As hiking partners we were well matched; our vision of this trip, our physical abilities, our determination and our willingness to be flexible all seemed to be auspiciously in tune.

Weeks before, we had booked a place to stay; a small self contained cottage; located near Lion’s Head midway between Tobermory and Wiarton. When I first called to inquire, I instantly liked Lin, the co-owner of the place. We spoke for an extended time and she provided a wealth of information about the area. She described the local sections of the Bruce Trail in compelling details noting that our planned dates – June 1-3 would be the perfect time to hike these parts because all the trilliums and wild orchids were in bloom. When she told me that she and her partner, Carl, who were both artists called their place the “Dragonfly studio”, it felt like I was destined to be there, given my own personal affinity to dragonflies. Serendipity! karma! Magdalena agreed; we would modify our plans to start in Tobermory and rigidly move along from end to end.  We could complete the trail in any way that suited us. We could always come back and do the section from Tobermory to Lion’s Head another time.We booked it for 2 nights. It turned out to be an auspicious decision!

It was our first insight;  in order for auspicious things to happen we need to be flexible, open, not bound to rigid decisions.

Our next encounter with flexibility was when we found that Makhudu was not available for the dates we had booked and Dana had hurt his ankle and did not feel up to hiking. It was not that difficult for us to decide to go anyway. After all this was our adventure and they were just “along for the ride”. But then  Dana offered  to be our chef and chauffeur; taxiing us to and from the trail heads and cooking all our meals. What a great offer! We could just enjoy ourselves and not have to think about anything else. And it was auspicious that he was there to doctor my sore ankle after our first day of hiking when we learned  another lesson in flexibility.

A final auspicious moment. On the drive home, we decided that we wanted to have dinner at quaint little restaurant with home cooked food. We chose downtown Orangeville as the place to stop, mostly because we expected to be there around dinner time and would need a stretch and pee break by then, but also because we liked the downtown strip. When we got there, we discovered the main drag was closed to traffic; there was music, people milling around; signs of a festival. We detoured around, parked and walked up a small side street where a band playing on the street outside a busy little restaurant called Soulyve serving Caribbean food. It was exactly what we were looking for;  a minimal menu, an awesome  smell and very busy – the signs of good food for sure.  We stood for a moment surveying the scene; the only available seating was a small interior table for 2 and there was a long line-up for take-out. As we were debating, a couple seated at a prime location by the window, overlooking the street, offered to take the small table and give us theirs.  Sitting by the open window, with the breeze blowing in, listening to the music by the very talented “homeless band” and eating the biggest, best roti ever; what a perfect ending to the first chapter of our journey.  Heading  home, we agreed that this would become a “regular” stopover …marian


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