The meaning of existence discussed at midnight
By Morgan Hannah, Life & Style Editor
Existence hasn’t always been effortless, but it has always been worth it. I wake up in the mornings to breakfast and fresh coffee, I go to work, and I come home to clean and cook. But I also break apart each day by surmounting my fears and taking risks. Just the other day, I leaped into a kayak for the first time. With a dread of what could be below me in the ocean, and an almost full moon lighting the night sky a granite grey overhead, I sought discomfort.
My theory is the more times I do this, the more I will grow and the more I will earn from my life. As I am sure someone somewhere once said, there is frequently fun on the other side of fear. And frankly it was an adventure, too. The ocean was as smooth and transparent as glass. I could see way down to the spotted solid bottom, and kayaking was far more relaxing and effortless than I had first anticipated.
I am glad I pushed myself to slide my legs into the foreign vessel and take off from the dock. I am pleased I paddled to the centre of the harbour where placid, open water surrounded me. Bioluminescence rewarded me, flowing like ribbons from the bow of my kayak and dropping like crystals into the ocean from my paddle. I have never seen anything like bioluminescence before, and so I was completely taken by this otherworldly light made up of living organisms that produce a chemical reaction when disturbed.
The experience was made all the more surreal by our tour guide, Ron. Ron is an odd fellow, he lives on Galiano Island semi-off the grid with an easy, and “lazy” lifestyle (his words, not mine). He’s a strongly opinionated atheist who believes in the law being the highest power. Being a creationist myself, we had a lively debate about the cosmic meaning of life and who did what in terms of creating the world and all the “rules” of life. Bouncing rebuttals across the calm waters kept my focus off of my fears of deep water and sharks and was excellent for helping me to still have a good time despite these fears. Maybe my quaking in my flip flops on the dock earlier was warranted as Ron had cracked a couple of vodka coolers before our tour—as a newbie to kayaking and the ocean, this made me a touch uneasy. But after having had a drink of my own to sooth the nerves and witnessing Ron’s complete focus on exactly what would happen if we were to fall into the water, I felt a touch better. I gritted my teeth, got into the kayak, and figured it would all be worth it later, and I was right! If you ever have a chance to kayak in the dark of night to see a wonder like bioluminescence, or any other experience that might make you anxious, try it, and you may not regret it.