While waiting for a ferry
The flipping sound of fat raindrops on broad leaf trees is surrounded. There is full of smell of wet alive forest. I took deep breath time after time, and felt fresh air in my lungs. I tried to not forget this place. I was happy and chill by just being there.
One summer, I had been working and staying at a few farms in a small island of Canada for 1 or 2 months. The day was leaving the last farm, also the day was leaving this island. I went toward to the ferry terminal with complicated emotion after greeting to people who looked after me like old farmer couple John & Janice, and neighbors. To the ferry terminal, Janice gave me a lift.
Around the ferry terminal, there was a long lines by a lot of cars. I've heard from somebody what because the number of ferry is limited in a day, this is often seen in this island. As the proof when I put my head through the window I could see local people were outside of cars, and were doing stretching, and walking around. Janice said brightly "We're gonna have another 1 hour, maybe." The fact was not changed, but I said "what? 1 hour?" without thinking. In the stopped engined little quiet car, we sometimes talked and sometimes no talk naturally. The conversation at the moment is still talking to my life.
I was answering Janice's question.
"My brothers? Yeah I've never talked about them before. Well, I have 2 older brothers and 1 younger sister. The one of brothers has his own business, and the other is a veterinarian. My sister is a nurse, and I was working at a company in Tokyo tho I quit,,, and after that I was working at your farm."
Janice said "uh-huh" with laughing brightly. I kept saying this with joking..
"The brothers and sister were very good at studying in schools. They always had top score. They could do anything really... well I wasn't a boy like them tho" This was kind of my no-fail joke, because if I say this people often laughed until the time.
However, Janice who was talking brightly, suddenly stopped laughing and said this.
"You said like you are not smart, but that can be very dangerous. What if people can be good at school works, so what? Schools often want people remember things quickly and preciously, but the true meaning of smart is not like that. I think thinking by themselves about any stuffs and taking actions are much more important."
I was surprised by her unexpected answer, then Janice kept talking slowly about her life stories.
"I was a car racer before,,, it's unexpected, isn't it? But in a few years, I quit the job and started to have a job that can do horse riding. Maybe I like to drive and ride something. Then after a few years, I started to be a member of singers at church and be a teacher of sing, and met John then got my children... And the next, I started to want to build own house by myself! so I had my children at the same time I started to go to university for studying design of architecture. After that finally to build one, I came to this island and bought a land, me and my husband John and one of my friend who was a carpenter cut the trees down first, and we started to build a house using the trees as materials. We really worked hard everyday morning to night, and in 1 year we built one. While we were building the house we stayed at some tents like camping everyday. My children was going to elementary school from the tents. At the time was so hard, also really fun."
At the moment I knew her past story that cannot imagine from her appearance for the first time. Such as the main character of novels free-spirit life story I was surprised and moved. I asked her like a child does "Then what happen after that?". Janice kept talking.
"After that we built a bigger house as a hostel. We got earn from it, at the same time we started to have a farm, grew vegetables and had kind of self-sufficient life. We wanted to share the wonderful life to other people, if there is a person who want to have an experience of farming I welcomed him or her. You are the one of them who I welcomed."
I was kind of shocked about the fact of a person who is living with free-spirit and having fun exists in this world. I was staring blankly at the sight of nature, and taking breath for fresh air from the opened window. Perhaps, everyone has own stories that others cannot imagine by the each appearance. We really cannot know each other except having communications. I regret myself who did not have communication proactively while in the farm. How concentrate and look for only myself. Even though, the people welcomed me warmly, and looked after me well...
After a while, Janice kept talking gently.
"There is a way of thinking called inside the box, and outside the box. About inside the box means the world of common sense what society said. You know like going to school, working at a company, making own family, buying cars and houses with loans,,, something like that, very typically life? It can be called an ordinary life, or a good life. On the other hand, outside the box is different world of that. It means the world that is not with the common sense and the society what people used to...
I think to notice the world of outside, and going to outside is very precious, because there are really excited adventures, freedom and wonderful meetings, and there are another shape of life and happiness. Of course there are responsibilities and risks too. But I've chosen to live outside of the boxes since one day. And I feel right with my life to be honest...
I think you just stepped outside of the box. To step outside is needed courage really, so it is wonderful truly! But the most difficult things to do for the next is staying there. The reason why is we were born and raised in inside the box. People feel benefit outside and going there and having good times tho, after a while they will get tired of being outside. Then step by step they feel it isn't right to be outside, and miss inside the box world. So far I've seen many people went back to inside. But you know, it is definitely not bad to going back. The another shape of life and happiness are waiting."
The sight that people on the street came back to their cars told me the ferry is coming soon. Janice still didn't turn on the engine, and keep talking to me quietly.
"If you like to be outside the box, you just can stay, and if you want to back inside you can go back whenever. Of course, you can get lost, and you can be worried. You know my age, but I still sometimes cannot decide which way I should go. It's not the things like right or wrong. Nobody can force you, and you can force nobody... Just always try to be conscious of being positive.
You are going to long journey to Alaska. On the way, at the destination, and one day going back to your country you will have a lot of meetings. Sounds excited! If you want to come back here, you whenever can come back. There is a place for you. Be careful and good luck."
I feel the time to wait ferry was planed. Perhaps, any meetings, any happens and anytime, we cannot understand at the moment, but the everything is needed. I'd like to take care of talking with people who I will meet, because they meet me in this huge world, and in my limited life time.
And, I think I will live outside the box for a while more, but inside or outside, which one is good for me as the truth?
While I was thinking, the ferry was arrived.
Janice started to turn on engine slowly again.