I wasn’t expecting my trip to the island to be relevant to the blog at all, but of course life’s full of surprises. First I spent three days at my mom’s, helping out around the house and eating super-yummy food, catching up with Victoria peeps in between times. Then spent a night at a friend’s house in Victoria, followed by a train trip to Nanaimo to spend a day or two with my cutie-pie. Except I wasn’t in Nanaimo ten minutes before she whisked me off to another part of the island entirely to meet a true nomad, Hitchhike Mike. Mike has been travelling and living outside for over two and a half decades, collecting stories and ideas and friends, and I don’t think I’ve met anyone happier. He’s a driftwood artist: he’s spent years hand-splitting cedar logs that he finds on the beach and building them into forest homes for himself. Currently he’s living in a cabin with “real glass windows”, building miles of enchanted trails and playthings on the unbelievably beautiful property that it’s a part of. He was incredibly warm and welcoming to Leona and I, invited us to stay the night and took us on a tour the next morning. He showed us his ‘amphitheater’ staircase, another staircase that forced you to place your feet in funny places like a dance instructor, a huge fishnet hammock/trampoline, a fifty-foot hollow tree stump that he built rungs inside to climb up the middle, and many swings, benches and lookouts designed to help appreciate the incredible rocky coastline. Unforgettable.