Saturday, February 5

Home ; where my heart is.

For the past three days I have watched my facebook community become aflutter as one by one, Grand Mananers started coming together to help a family win a simple contest. It started with a facebook status – Kim Rayner had entered a tshirt design in a contest. If she won, the tshirt would be produced and a cut of the proceeds would be given to her family to help with the expenses of their international adoption journey. As soon as I saw, being a steady reader of Kims blog (check it out - im following it) and a huge supporter of international adoption, I immediately took the steps to vote for her tshirt. She is an amazing woman with a great family – I knew they deserved to win. I didn’t know how far my vote would go but little did I know it was so much bigger than just my vote. I quickly began to see the statuses - Grand Mananers letting all their friends, on and off the island, know about the contest and strongly urging them to take 5 seconds and vote. Three days later.. she won the contest with 967 votes.

Grand Manan is, has always been, and will always be my home. As much as I have hated this place at times, the hate would never ever be able to amount the love I feel for it and these people I’m surrounded by. My love for travel will never steer me away from the fact that I grew up in an (although at times challenging and frustrating) truly amazing community. A community where when you truly need help, you can bet your ass someone has your back.

For example, when I started my Orphanage Project I had told no one about it besides my mother. Within 24 hours I had over 50 guests, 5 messages inquiring about my project and already one donation. Over the past few months I have had 15 extremely generous donations. I know that isn’t many but I have a HUGE suitcase full of essentials and toys and 300$ worth of donations to buy things on site once I get to Guatemala. That is an AMAZING response to a simple request for donations of baby wipes. Not only that, but I have had so much support, even without a donation, someone asking about the orphanage, asking how the project is going – it means something to me and informing people is so important! No matter what you do around here it seems like someone has your back, somewhere. I know not everyone feels that way but I see it every single day.

I will miss home. I will miss so many things about it. I will be gone at least six months, maybe longer with no visits home and little contact with my family and friends. The thought of it can be overwhelming but the fact that I have so many amazing memories of my life here helps.

True happiness includes appreciating and loving the little things and that is what makes up my complete adoration for Grand Manan. So as I say goodbye (in only 4 short days!) I will keep in mind all the reasons why this place means something to me.

I will miss the smell of the ocean, the smell of spring, the smell of winter, even the smell of bait.
I will miss that first swim out to Millers pond with a drink in hand and the best of friends in tow.
I will miss my moms hugs and her smell and her pizza.
I will miss not being able to go anywhere without seeing someone I know.
I will miss being a 30 second drive from the most comfortable place besides my home – my Uncle and Aunts home.
I will miss penny candy trips to Castalia Convenience with my bestie.
I will miss stealing spoonfuls of spaghetti sauce from Debbies kitchen.
I will miss Rachel – the closest I have to a sister, my very first friend.
I will miss trips to the city for dancing all night with my best friends.
I will miss making a dance floor with Maddy wherever we are.
I will miss the comfort of Vernes.
I will miss the ocean so much.
I will miss family dinners at my Grandmothers house.
I will miss Saturday afternoon shifts with Bernie and Cassie.
I will miss Jersey Shore night at Sheri’s.
I will miss tea time once summer hits.
I will miss parties out to camp..or parties anywhere.
I will miss pre-drinks at Snibbys house.
I will miss not even being able to go for a walk without someone stopping and asking if you need a drive.
I will miss the comfort of my bed.
I will miss the sheer excitement with Court when "that's all" comes on at a party.
I will miss Canada Day celebrations.
I will miss “new person” fever.
I will miss cheeseburgers at Hannahs.
I will miss the sense of community.
And most of all.. I will miss not having to throw my toilet paper in the garbage can.
I Love you Grand Manan and I love all my friends and family so much! I will miss you all more than you could ever imagine. Thank you for being amazing to me and supportive of me through everything. I hope everyone has an amazing year and please continue to keep in touch with me. I will update this blog as much as possible and creep all your facebooks! Haha. My main rule is that if you get a boyfriend, a baby or a ring I want an email. :)

Big Love.

4 comments:

  1. Hey Bailey, you are amazing! The idea of the adventure you're about to embark on would scare the crap out of me, but at the same time I find myself a little envious. It's totally awesome that you're just going for it and doing what you want to do. So few people do that and I'm willing to bet that even the nay sayers are a little bit jealous that you are living your dream. You're absolutely right, why the heck not? You're not married, no kids, it's the perfect time in your life to do it. Have these experiences while you're young and can enjoy them to the fullest. You are about to make memories and have experiences that most people only fantasize about. ANYONE can go to college, get a degree and get a job. NOT everyone can follow their heart. Sure need money to support yourself, but who says you have to do it the conventional way? I LOVE that you are such a free spirit and that you have such a desire to get out there and taste life! TASTE IT!!!! Grab it with both hands and take huge bites. I will be here on FB following you as you post from where ever you may be, and eating up your adventures as you write about them. I may be too chicken to have ever attempted an adventure like the one you're about to take, but you can bet you butt I'm going to enjoy every minute you share, every photo, all of it. The good the bad and the ugly. (ha ha! Couldn't help it) I CAN'T wait.

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  2. I am SOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO proud of you, Bailey! We'll miss you, too...your smiling face at Vern's and your rants on Facebook!
    LOVE the picture...it so "Bailey"...young and free and soaking up every minute of life.
    You go, Girl!

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  3. Hey Bailey, that contest was unreal. I never dreamed, first of all that my design would even be considered a finalist, let alone a winner. lol We are all so blessed to be living in a place where others care so much about others causes and that when all else fails everyone pulls together to make anything happen. I want to wish you the best of luck on your journeys and pray for safe travels. xo
    Take care!!

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