This is my beautiful friend Leah, who tomorrow begins the adventure of following her heart to Saskatoon to attend the Education Program at University of Saskatchewan.  She officially departs the island in the morning and already I miss her.

Leah and I have known each other for the last couple of years and she was my confidant when I was going through the MOST MISERABLE EDUCATIONAL EXPERIENCE OF MY LIFE.  That is, when I was completing my Bachelor of Education and fulfilling the requirements for my BC Teaching Certificate.  She was an Educational Assistant for the school where I was placed and thank goodness, I got to be with her everyday.  Oh and I assured Leah that her experience will be far superior to mine, first off because she is going to a different University than I did and as well, because she’s returning home to learn from her family, Elders and Community.  This is a great opportunity for her, for sure.  My experience was a completely different thing and although I despised the program, I have no regrets about it all.  I shared that with her too.

When Leah arrived early this afternoon, she was a bit hung over from drinking Sexy Sangria’s and I, from consuming Transcontinental Gin and Tonics.  She said she was hungry and wanted a sandwich.  Specifically, the request was “something fresh”.  **A slight interruption: I will take the opportunity right now to share that Nanaimo BC will NOT poke your culinary buttons and will NOT knock your edible cage.  The restaurant experience in this town really stinks, especially if you’ve spent a decade in Victoria BC (like I did), where food reigns… or better yet, RULES!** Anyway, I had to really think and focus past the fuzz of my brined brain to properly host Ms. Leah, I mean FML, this is the last time I’m gonna see her for a while.  Finally after much deliberation, I remembered this place on the downtown strip called “Mon Petit Choux Bakery & Cafe” (they don’t even have a website, so I can’t link it) and because I had good bread from there once, I figured this might do.

Leah chose a seat by the window and we wasted no time sorting through the menu.  And wouldn’t you know it?  There were lots of lovely, fresh sandwiches!  Perfect!

Leah ordered a fancy BLT and I ordered a roast beef with brie and garlic aioli.  We decided against the side salad (I inquired and it was that typical organic crap in-a-bag from California (whyyyy? when we have so many local farms in Nanaimo… whyyyy?) and opted instead for a coffee for Leah and double espresso for me.  For dessert we shared a delicious peach mousse item (I can’t remember it’s exact name, something like “Peach Bomb” or something) and that was absolutely delicious.

After our chow down, her and I walked around Westwood Lake and picked a few salah berries for Glee’na.  We talked and talked and advised and advised each other, and I felt close to her.  She explained to me the term “Karage” as she learned it from a new roommate.  Simply defined, Karage is “…the experience we have when we are in a moment with another. In this case, it’s an intimate exchange of two people. What karage does is encapsulates the emotion and mood of this exchange. It gives freedom by un-labeling it.”

Deep thanks for karage Leah and safe travels my friend 🙂