3 min read
07 Apr

One year ago, when I made the decision to become a nomad, I also felt I should write a blog about my experiences as an elderly nomad (I don’t like the adjective “elderly” but I have to admit that’s what I am in years if not in looks, attitude, actions, friends, opinions). I’ve been enjoying writing and especially get a kick out of some comments I get from people who read it every Sunday. 

Fortunately, being a nomad has worked out in my favour. It’s undoubtedly been one of the most exciting years of my life – and I’ve had many, both good and bad.  

The bonus to my enjoyment, is that I have saved a lot of money at the same time!!  How awesome – to have the life I want  and to save money while doing it. What a win-win situation that is. 

Living in Club Santiago the past six months, I renewed old friendships and made new ones with interesting people.  I have invitations to visit some of them when I visit granddaughter, Amanda, and her family this summer in Colorado. 

As I sit on my patio this morning, having a coffee before breakfast, and drinking in the beauty of my surroundings, I'm thinking of my return to Canada .  Only 4 days until I share the van with friends to Puerto Vallarta from there I will depart for Toronto 2 days later - April 13th

I am so excited about seeing the family (no one comes to visit me in Mexico anymore) and to meeting my three newest great-grandbabies for the first time, but, at the same time, I am saddened to leave my beloved Mexico. Then memories I have made since my arrival here November 2nd pop into my head.  

The word “memories” triggered something I read this week in a book by Michael Crichten, called “Sphere”.  I was struck by a paragraph he wrote: 

     “In a sense, all we consist of is memories.  Our personalities are constructed from memories, our lives are organized around memories, our cultures are built upon the foundation of shared memories that we call history and science.” 

I find this concept intriguing.  I can’t help wondering what Dr. Jordan Peterson would say to this? 

For example, when I think of the experiences I had in the last six months, each lasting differing lengths of time – hours or days - they are greatly condensed into tiny glimpses of the past lasting only seconds now!  

The ‘now’ is all we have. The past is gone. 

I’m not sure where I’m going with this thought but it is one that has challenged me for a long time. Perhaps Michael Crichten’s passage in “Sphere” helps explain it. 

Then I think about how powerful thought is.  Thought is in the now where our imagination dwells.  Imagination is what drives our future.  If you can imagine yourself as being or doing something you really want to do, you begin to make the imagining real by living like it is actually happening, then it does become your reality.

Imagining is precisely how I became a nomad.  The life I am now living had never entered my head as something I would, or could, do.  It was not until the moment I imagined it, did it become a possible answer to a potential money problem I faced a year ago!  I began telling everyone I knew that this was going to be my new life.  Each time I told someone, my images became stronger and plans began to develop that made the reality I am now living, to the fullest, every day.

What a force imagination is.  Positive imagination produces successful life experiences, negative thoughts produce the opposite.  I am thankful for the positive attitude that has been part of my makeup my whole life and for my vivid imagination.  

Where the imaginings, or ideas, come from, mystifies me.   Regardless, they have brought me through some bad times in the past and turned my life around. 

As I write this, I begin to wonder what my blog will look like over the coming ‘nows’ in my life.  Summer will be a quieter six months than the past winter. Will my future experiences become repetitive, boring my readers who will lose interest in what I have to say?    

Suddenly, I think of the condensed version of my business self, when I started out as a sixteen-year-old high school dropout with no thoughts of a career, to becoming a powerful figure in the Canadian cosmetics industry. 

This is a 45-minute presentation I gave to Probus Club in Collingwood, April 17, 2023, as I set out on my nomadic lifestyle.  When I concluded my speech, I was amazed to see every one of the 200 people in the audience stand, as if they were one, at precisely the same moment, to give me a standing ovation.  I thought the applause was never going to stop.     

Their reaction was an incredibly humbling few minutes in my life.  I didn’t know what to say except “Thank you! Thank you!”, repeatedly. That presentation obviously triggered hot buttons in everyone, male and female, in the room that morning.  

I am beginning to imagine - what if I broke that presentation into bites for my blog every week. That would fill some of those quiet Ottawa weeks when I have little else to write about.  Hmmmm??? 

I entitled that presentation, “Learning Is A Lifetime Experience”.  Here’s how it begins….

 “These days I’m usually introduced to people as ‘Marion Leyland, the artist.’  My corporate and entrepreneurial careers, more often than not, are unknown. 

When I was young, I had no dreams of a career.  If I’d been told then what I would become, I would have laughed. 

Because of the circuitous and fateful route my career took, what I’m about to tell you includes personal things that are necessary for you to hear so you can understand my life.  These are things I seldom tell anyone.” ……. To be continued

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