Teapot Hill

My two oldest kids and myself were in BC for a week visiting friends and family. While we were camping I asked my sister if there was a trail near by that my son and I could hike. She recommended Teapot Hill, just a few hundred meters down the road from where we were camping.

I just want to put out there that going on a hike in British Columbia IS NOT THE SAME as going on a hike in Manitoba. Johnny and I get to the parking lot for the trail and off we go. He takes off on a sprint and I start to question the “it will only take you a half hour to get there” comment that was mentioned at the campsite.

Sprinting. Up. The. MOUNTAIN

I honestly don’t know what I was anticipating. Obviously there was going to be some uphill climbing – it is a trail that overlooks the lake we were staying at. So we are going up the side of a mountain. But my prairie brain was thinking “this must be a slow, winding path up this really nice mountainside.” It was not. We went straight up. My calves were burning and my Fitbit was cheering me on for being in the “cardio zone” for the first time in a long time.

Not only were we walking on a steep incline, but we weren’t even on the actual trail yet!! Just on the road that led from the parking lot to the trail.

Once we got on the actual trail, and my heart rate levelled off slightly, it was truly a wonderful hike. Yes, there were times when I was hugging the inside of the path, so as not to drop off into the lush forest and greenery. And as I was talking to my self to just breath and take it one step at a time, my ADHD son was walking the ledge of the path like a tightrope pointing out all the “cool things” he saw and telling me to “stop, listen! Did you hear that?”

The thing about Teapot Hill is that people have placed teapots or mugs along the path. As we were walking – Johnny and I were talking and wondering how people got the teapots and mugs to the spots they were in. We were curious about the stories of why these items were left. Were they left in memory of someone? Or just because they were passing through? Were they left by regular walkers on this path? Do people come back and check on them? What stories did these teapots and mugs hold?

Tales of love? Of hurt? Of loss? Of heartbreak? Of celebration? Of happiness? Or just because they thought it would be neat to leave something here for others to see?

I don’t know what stories those mugs and teapots hold. I don’t know how far they have traveled to come to rest at Teapot Hill.

I do know that the mugs and teapots that are in my house hold a lot of stories. Stories that come in all shapes, sizes and colours – just like the mugs and teapots that were carefully placed on the trail. Stories that shared joy and sorrow, laughter and tears. Stories that have been shared with others and some that will remain silent to the outside world and only shared with the warm, tea-filled cup being held.

Maybe it was the lack of oxygen or my elevated heart rate – but this is what struck me as we were hiking this trail.

Our journeys are all different. The steps we take in life are not identical to anyone else’s. We all have stories that have been shared over a cup of tea, and we all have mountain trails we are climbing. But this I know to be true – the ones who are there on the mountain trail with you will probably be the ones you want to be sharing your tea or coffee with.

We survived (well I survived – Johnny had no issues with the hike and wanted to run back down the trail) our little climb up Teapot Hill, and we have plans to come back with a mug of our own next time we visit. Hopefully we leave a mug that is filled with memories and stories that contain lots of love, smiles and joy.

At the top of Teapot!

Always exploring

My Tribe

I don’t even know where to start with this. I just know that I need to share. I’ve always been fortunate enough to have had a Tribe, a group of close friends, an inner circle, a #bestfriendtier. There’s some that have been there since the beginning. Some who were only there for specific periods in my life, and others who have just recently shown up. Let me tell you about them, my Tribe.

These are the people who have been with you at the lowest of lows and the highest of highs. The personal cheerleaders when you need it, or the voice of reason in the middle of a storm. The ones who get excited for new opportunities that come your way. Celebrate with you. Are genuinely happy for you, and look at you like you are the best thing to happen since pickle juice Caesars. The ones who have the nicknames, and that’s the only way you identify each other. The inside jokes, the deep bellied laughs, the memories, the stories, and the finishing of sentences. They share memes, new music, shoes and even food with you.

But not only that. They pick you up, sometimes literally, off the floor. They cry with you, weep, sob, dry heave, and sit in silence. They listen. They hold you, and they pray (even when they’re not the praying type). They know exactly what to say, or not to say. They send you all of their love, and you know that they actually mean it. They check up on you, and ask how you’re doing. Usually it’s out of the blue and when you get that text you’re always relieved that they sent it. They hold your hand, and feel all the feels with you. They keep your insecurities, and your deepest of secrets close to their heart – and it’s ok, because they are your people, your Tribe. They have seen the ugly and they have made the choice to stay anyway – because they love you.

Sometimes you need to talk to them everyday. Sometimes weeks or even months pass before a text is sent or a call is made. But the thing with your Tribe is that it doesn’t matter how long it has been, you pick up right where you left off. There will be something that reminds you of them and you’ll have to share it. A song. A meme. A pet peeve. A situation. An allergy. You name it – if it reminds me of someone in my tribe – they are getting it sent to them or told about it. And chances are whatever it is that nudges you to share with them will either make them laugh out loud or smile (and not just a regular smile – one that you feel in your heart – and gives you a warm fuzzy feeling).

Everything that I’ve mentioned above has at one point or another been done for me. I would do all of that and more for any one of my Tribe in a heartbeat. Some are family, and some are friends who are family, but my love for them is fierce. And I am so thankful, and grateful for this Tribe. And I truly hope that you were thinking of your people, your tribe, your besties when you read this. Tell them you love them, or send them a ridiculous meme (if that’s how you show love). They will smile or laugh depending on what you sent them – and they will appreciate it.