Brawn Versus Brain

Since I’ve arrived in Canada, I’ve experienced a lot of physical work. It was expected

of me, so I’ve risen to the challenge. Accustomed to sitting at a desk in a classroom, using my mind and voice all day, which is mentally exhausting. Here, I’ve helped haul logs, split and chop wood, carry heavy generators, shoveled snow.

I've worked out mechanical things and the use of unfamiliar tools; learnt to ride a tractor, an ATV and snow- mobile. I have lifted crates of fish and gutted them out on a frozen lake and traipsed through deep snow until my legs ached with pain. If my mindset had been; I’m female, 55+, might hurt, injure or embarrass myself, I’d still be sitting in a cabin looking out the window, bored.

Am I stronger? I don’t think that happens overnight. But I’m reminded of the quote by the writer T.S. Elliot, “Only those who risk going too far, can possibly find out how far one can go”.

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