July 10, 2014

Questing

Sir Hunchalot and Lady Gimpavere questing their way to the east.

Quests appear in the folklore of many cultures. These adventures require great exertion on the part of the participants, and the overcoming of many obstacles. They teach us important lessons about letting go, mostly of fear, because if you can overcome fear you can overcome anything.

From Gilgamesh to Lord of The Rings, stories of epic quests have relieved our minds of the trivialities of everyday life and led us into a land of adventures, tests, and magic.

When we started this crazy 6000 kilometre cross-country one way trip we were looking for a quest. We found one, and we even named it - "Sir Hunchalot and Lady Gimpavere Go On A Quest". The name reflects the fact that Linda is in a wheelchair, and I am still disabled by my herniated disk. 

Yes, two crippled questers are the heroes of this story, and it has been a continental crossing of epic proportions befitting a proper adventure. There has been fear (driving is a very dangerous activity), but there has also been rewards.

Over almost two weeks of travel we have spent every night in our van, often in beautiful locations. Because it is set up for total accessibility, the van is more suitable for our needs than most motels, or homes, or businesses. Good thing we are 100% self-sufficient because it is currently saving our butts, not to mention a ton of cash. Every night has been free so far.

The distances we need to traverse are measured in the thousands of kilometres, seemingly insurmountable. Our van has carried us through record flooding on the plains and severe thunderstorms in central Canada. It was almost hit by lightning in the northern Ontario bush. Day after day after day of eight hour, six hundred kilometre passages.

And we drive on toward our goal.

Thankfully our mobile tiny home has been performing flawlessly. It doesn't matter if we are passing over cambered, soft gravel construction zones that want to pull you into the ditch (where you would surely be eaten by monsters, or at least massive mosquitoes), or blasting along Highway 20 east through the city of Montreal, the blue bus has proved itself to be quest-worthy. 

Now we near the end of our voyage, a trip we have done together twice before. The last time we quested this way in 2001, we were younger, and Linda was still walking. This time we are still smiling, but we are road-weary.

These fearless handicapped heroes are ready for a rest. Then we are off to new horizons once again.


"What I think is that a good life is one hero journey after another. Over and over again, you are called to the realm of adventure, you are called to new horizons. Each time, there is the same problem: do I dare? 
And then if you do dare, the dangers are there, and the help also, and the fulfillment or the fiasco. There's always the possibility of a fiasco. But there's also the possibility of bliss."

- Joseph Campbell


11 comments:

  1. Well Hunchalot and Gimpavere, I'm so glad that your magical blue van has been so faithful and true. If everyday is an adventure anyway, why not send caution to the wind and trek across a continent? Godspeed for the rest of your journey. Great picture of you both!

    Who better to tell us about the importance of a quest than Joseph Campbell? What an amazing human being he was.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Miss Marla,

      We are finally in your part of the world!

      Crossing N. America has never been easy if you are going overland, and this trip was no different. But we like a proper challenge, and we are driven to manifest our dreams. We will need about a week of rest soon… maybe more.

      Joseph Campbell was a great teacher - he knew the mythical and actual realities of embarking on a journey so large it should scare you. May we all experience fulfilment in our own personal quests, both large and small.

      Delete
  2. Many thanks for sharing your quest. It is an inspiring circumstance for all. Great photo! You both look sooooo happy!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Michael,

      We are glad you are following along. We ARE soooo happy - the road is rough, but the road is good.

      Delete
  3. Hi,

    lovely photo!

    Sometimes I think of my life as a quest when things are getting tough. I might think - hmmmm, this is the equivalent of the rushing river I need to cross - don't give up!

    I hope you don't mind me offering a suggestion. A few years ago I was being tested for MS, and started researching some alternative options to assist with recovery. Luckily for me, MS wasn't the diagnosis. I found a website returntostillness.com.au. The practice is run by a naturopath who had stage 4 Parkinson's disease - he had lost his power of speech, could barely walk, and took one and a half hours to dress himself. He made a complete recovery, and now assists others with MS, Parkinson's etc..on their healing journey. He has written a book about his recovery.

    I imagine you have already explored many options, but thought I should mention this in case it had something fresh to offer.

    Have a great day,

    Madeleine.x

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Madeleine,

      Thank you so much for offering your suggestion - we will look into anything, and will be checking out the site you recommended.

      We are happy you did NOT have MS (whatever that is…), and hope that you are doing very well right now.

      Something we have learned together is to never give up. Never, never, never. Life is too great for that.

      "Return to stillness" sounds very good right now after 6000 km of activity.

      Thanks again.

      Delete
  4. Beautiful photo - such happiness!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. GK,

      Happiness, joy, life at its most demanding and fulfilling.

      Either that or we actually have gone crazy.

      Delete
  5. AnonymousJuly 12, 2014

    The happy questers! Love the photo!
    This quest has been No. Small. Feat. More like an epic leap!
    Isn't it amazing how strong and at the same time humble experiences like this make you?
    PURE AWESOMENESS!
    Terri

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Terri,

      Like many other epic leaps that Linda and I have taken, this one will only be fully understood over the coming months and years. A lot to process.

      Right now we feel pretty humbled by this experience, because even a simple, simple life can be full of seemingly insurmountable challenges.

      However, we are quite pleased that we have done as well as we have considering the circumstances. Is there anything we can't do after this? I think not.

      Let the awesomeness continue for all of us, for that is what life is all about. Let us live with the intensity of a continual quest for…

      Meaning? Answers? The right questions? Understanding? Growth? Love? All of the above is my response.

      Take care.

      Delete
  6. "Two crippled questers" but looking happier than I've seen two people look in a long time. Genuine smiles. The kind I'd like one day!
    Ann

    ReplyDelete

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