On a busy Friday morning, our team was working away at getting the lodge ready for our next group when we heard a faint buzzing in the distance. We couldn’t see a boat or a plane, but the buzzing was growing louder and louder. John suddenly pointed at the water and asked “What is that?!” Squinting our eyes, we could see something small in the water coming towards the lodge. Although it looked like the size of some of our water wildlife like a seal, sea lion, or an otter, it appeared to be motorized. The closer it got the clearer the picture was. It was a man in a motorized canoe! A specialized canoe with a flat stern instead of a pointed one with a 2.3hp motor on it. The man got closer to the lodge and we drew closer to the edge of the dock. He shouted out to us asking if he could tie up. Quickly each of us shouted something along the lines of “yes!”. He grazed the dock gently and quickly jumped out wearing no shoes, only his socks. He looked to be in his 80s but was spritely like a younger man. As he tied up his boat, we couldn’t help but notice the lack of supplies he had in his canoe. He introduced himself as Jan and said he had come all the way from Vancouver Island. He was on a 7-day trip through Desolation Sound and his provisions included: a tent, matches, a pot, brown rice and peanuts. That’s all. We offered him a refreshment and he liked the sounds of a cup of coffee. He insisted he pay because he was at a time in his life where he could do things like this. This was the same answer he gave us when we asked him why he was making this trip. After a tour of the property and a coffee break, we learned Jan had recently become a widower. He explained that life was short and that if he was in a place in life to do the things he loved, then he should. Jan didn’t stay longer than an hour before he took off again. Although it was just a short stay, Jan will be one of our most memorable guests ever. Thanks Jan for being an inspiration and the valuable reminder that life is short.
This post was written by Pacific Coastal Cruises & Tours