Sunday, June 01, 2008

That little feeling

My Saturday routine always consists of listening to the radio while trying to sleep in, getting up and doing some light housework, and then retreating to the “spa” in the afternoon to meet up with friends. The “spa” is a running joke between a few of my friends in town. In actuality, we go to the only cafĂ© in town to have tea, scones, muffins, and soup. We’d like to think of ourselves as cultured folk living in a cosmopolitan centre, taking in concerts and operas, and treating ourselves to the spa every weekend.

Every week, I’d ask at the counter in a hopeful voice, “Do you have chai this week?” And almost every time, I’d receive the bad news that they were out. I’d plunk myself down, usually at the big long table, and shed my layers as I wait for my friends. Sometimes, I would dig a novel out of my bag to pass the time; mostly, I would just sit and watch the people around me. I’d see people trickle in and out, wave to familiar acquaintances, listen to the drone of the blender as it made smoothies for wide-eyed children.

I like having those moments to collect my thoughts before my friends arrive. It gives me time to formulate how to explain the latest dilemma that’s been cooking in my life, or at least the latest angle on an ongoing dilemma. In the past few months, the hot topic of discussion has been whether my decision to leave Inuvik is indeed the right one. I’ve struggled with it, finally finding the courage to tell the principal I wasn’t coming back. I’ve started looking into going back to school, and have found myself up against a wall as I tried to talk to advisors in various universities in order to figure out the prerequisites I would need for the Master of Science program I want to get into for fall of 2009. I have made detailed Venn diagrams of the courses and programs, and have applied to three universities as a non-degree student to take the courses I would need (because it would be too easy if the courses are all available at one institution). In short, the more I find out, the more I think I’m attempting the logistically impossible.

What is a woman who loves literature and who had devoted her education to English literature doing thinking about taking a Master of Science? Why would a person who loves her job and loves her town think of leaving both job and town in order to go back to school for another three to four years, and with no guarantee that she would even get into the program? Why would she give up financial security and two months off every summer in order to do something that she’s not even that sure of? Why go through all this, when she’s completely terrified?

Well, it’s all in a little feeling. It’s all in an inkling that, regardless of how much I love it here, there’s something that comes next. My friends at the “spa” all understand this feeling. After all, they’re all here in Inuvik because of that little feeling. They’ve left friends and families and secure jobs to come to the arctic, thanks to that little feeling. And they know with certainty that they’ll leave the arctic sometime down the line, when that little feeling visits them again.

That little feeling – It’s all I have to go by. I’m hoping that everything will turn out fine; however, in the infinite wisdom that I’ve gathered from my “spa” days, I know that everything will always be fine in the end. If it’s not, then it’s not the end.


  1. Oh, how well I know the little feeling! Beautifully described, and so resonating with where I am in my life right now.

    All the best of luck and blessings on whatever road you decide to take, VivaceMusica!

  2. Yes, the Saturday daze at the "spa" were special. I feel a sadness for you that you will be leaving that secure little spot among friends and acquaintances in Inuvik.

  3. hey! The 'spa' retreat sounds really cool. I'll try it out with my frnds! Hehehe! What makes you happy, what drives you on, what ties you up in knots, these things are constantly changing as your soul breathes in constantly and learns new things. Whatever decision you make, just enjoy the journey, the future will look brighter if you light up the present. Take care ya, and keep smiling.........

  4. Oh me too! I want to go to that spa :)