It was the summer of 2001; and no, there are no songs about that year. But for me it was life-changing summer. A friend and I packed up my jeep, and went on a road trip of a life time. With no particular destination in mind, and a backseat full of camping gear we set out on a week-long adventure. We meandered our way up into Northern Ontario. We stopped wherever we felt called to and set up camp for the night.
It was a hot hot summer and with no rain in the forecast we left the tarp off the tent, giving us a view of the night sky and the sounds of nature as we fell asleep each night.
Within a couple of days we found ourselves in Timmins Ontario and it was here that I first heard of the Polar Bear Express. Yes! It’s a real thing…not just a movie, but an actual train ride that takes people up to Moosonee. So I thought why not? Who wouldn’t want to go on the Polar Express? That is the real question! So we bought tickets and climbed on board for the train. It would be about a half day’s journey to arrive in Moosonee. I enjoyed watching the muskeg (grassy swamp) out the window while listening to tourists discuss how the wooden planks they saw stacked along the tracks were beaver food. BTW, it is not beaver food; it is used to level the tracks as swamp is, well, swampy (a bit of trivia that may come in handy someday – you’re welcome!). My friend was going through some emotional troubles of her own and it clearly showed on her face. A nice man approached us who went by the name of Moccasin Joe. He is a Canadian Indigenous Comedian who travels across Canada and the USA sharing and caring through laughter. Anyway, he chatted with us for a quite a bit and shared some really valuable enlightenments. He talked about how it’s important to always have laughter in your life; no matter the circumstances. He also shared how we can bring different parts of our own personality up depending on the circumstances. When challenged by my friend, he explained it’s not being two-faced, or fake. It’s about acknowledging all the different aspects and depth of our own personality, and pulling forward whatever is most helpful in the moment. Perhaps our bravery is needed, or our compassion. Each situation is different and by being open to all we have to offer from the inside; we can make a better life for ourselves. I will always be thankful to Moccasin Joe for what he taught us that day.
When we finally arrived in Moosonee, my friend and I decided to separate ways for personal reflection and exploration. I decided that I’d travel even further. I found a fisherman at the shore who agreed to take me over to Moose Factory Island. When I got to the other side I had a couple of hours to explore on my own. At one point, while walking past a cemetery, a pack of wild animals stepped out in front of me. They were part husky and part wolf. Back then I was utterly and completely terrified of dogs. Just the sight of an off leash dog could make me feel nauseous and dizzy. Slowly the wild animals surrounded me on. I just stood still in total awe of what was happening. Then they wandered into the cemetery. Their leader relaxed and laid down in front of me. It was then that I realized I wasn’t afraid. At least not anymore. Something in that moment changed in me and I was no longer afraid.
Over the course of that day I encountered every single major fear I ever had. And in each instance I had an opportunity to discover a deeper layer of trust and strength within myself. Needless to say this trip turned out to be far more than 2 girls on a road trip. I believe it had a significant effect in helping me become the person I am today. Barbara Ford is an internationally recognized Spiritual Advisor, Holistic Practitioner & Paranormal Expert. She has been featured in magazines, a book, a documentary, many TV Shows book for her excellent work. Barbara is also a published author.To book a consultation or a reading please call 289-891-7711