the marriage.

meeks point. shuswap lake, august 7th, '16

meeks point. shuswap lake, august 7th, '16

sorrento is a small town in the interior (of b.c.) where i spent the first year of my life and most of the summers thereafter.  the town is located on the western foot of the main arm of the shuswap lake and is penetrated by the trans-canada highway. my grandparents (on both sides) moved there from alberta in the 1960's and built homes. my mother's family had a farm in the surrounding hills and my father's, a house and cabin on the waterfront. i spent my time at the cabin, with the roses.  

my grandparents have since passed and the property sold many years ago, and as time moves us to different cabins and new experiences, i find myself passing through this place again and again with this year being no exception.

 on august 3rd, my lady, myself and our dog left our cabin home, near duncan on vancouver island in the low light of the morning to catch an early ferry to the mainland and arrive later that night to the shuswap and my cousin's (mom's side) house where many family members had set up camp on a hillside overlooking the tappen valley. with my family there is no such thing as a small gathering, being that my mother's parents gave life to twenty odd humans, giving way to a herd of about 60 some odd more, and very odd at that.  and so the reason for this year's gathering would make for no small communion at all being that both sides of the family would be coming together, for on august 6th, here, the otter of the oddest, my older brother, would be married.

as a youth, there was no one person i idolized more than my brother. he being 7.5 years my senior, had all the fun stuff going on; motorbikes, skateboards, music, art, girlfriends, video games and cigarettes, to name a few. when i was four we lived in a town called millet in alberta, there he painted my face like the "ultimate warrior" and we walked down to the corner store so i could show it off, another time he was standing on our roof and i told some skid walking by "my brother is on the roof" so proud, the skid replied "make my day" and kept on. this was 1988. we used to catch snakes with the neighbour kids and keep them in an ice-cream bucket before letting them go in their backyard pool, we also used to play ninja turtles with the same kids, around the foundations of building sites in new neighbourhoods. i was four years old, running around a construction site with my twelve year old brother and his friends, nearly blind folded. my favorite memory from millet was my first experience on a skateboard, my brother had strapped a box over the deck and cut a hole in it, i sat inside and he pulled me on his bike, if i recall correctly.

in 1989, we moved to a town called eckville. here i would experience my first motorbike ride with him, and dive head first into learning how to skateboard, starting by pushing around on my knees so i could keep up with him. our bond as brothers would forever revolve around our obsession with this wooden toy. my brother was one of the only and the oldest skateboarders in this small town. slowly others would pick it up and soon there were fifteen or more kids zipping around town "scaring old ladies"(as reported by a local newspaper) on the sidewalks and causing a disturbance in the co-op parking lot. my brother taught us all the basics, slappies, ollies, nose-slides, boneless and boneless-ones and no-complys. we were hooked, it was total freedom. no one told us what to do or where to be. we invented spots and obstacles, we wore ridiculous clothes and some died their hair terrible colours. we even got into politics and attended town hall meetings to get ourselves a spot to build a skatepark. right across the street from the co-op parking lot (nearly 20 years later the park is still there).  i attribute all of these developments to my brother. he started it all, in this little rodeo town. 

music, another grand factor, he was always listening to bands that would be subject to popular discovery a year or so after he had found them. he quickly influenced all of us younger kids on what we listened to and i know of a few musicians today that will tell you he introduced them to their favorite bands. we share music still and though i have become stubborn in my choices, they are mostly from his influence. listening to the beastie boys' "licensed to ill" with him and my cousin when i was 10 as we skated around lacombe with a ghetto blaster still remains one of my favorite skateboarding moments. 

time goes as it does and in my first few years as an adult (circa 2005) my brother and i with our friend adam, moved out to vancouver. here we became closer as friends and spent our time skateboarding, hanging out at the beach and partying with our friends, a few of whom were among the younger skaters in eckville when we were kids. i think we spent more time together in this period than ever before and ever since. it was a new kind of freedom, anonymous in the big city, being anybody we wanted to be and as many of them as possible. after 5 years i decided to move away, but spent the last few months living with my brother in kitsilano, there we had many breakfasts together, lots of bacon and coffee. and spent time listening to records and making paintings, going to the jazz bar on west broadway and eating late night donairs. i am very fond of these times, as they were some of the last weeks we spent hanging out together, as two brothers who grew to be friends, moving with few cares for tomorrow. 

the roads between then and now have been long and at times quite rocky and we've drifted apart in our way. we live in different provinces and to be honest i'm not too hot at keeping in touch. my brother has always maintained an admirable commitment to skateboarding and i often envy his lust. i think his commitment to what he loves and believes in has been the key that has gotten him through doors on the other side of tough times. i think this commitment reaches to his love for new and different music, it reaches to his ideas in creation of art and function and i know it reaches to his love and care for me. he has never given me any doubt that i will do and be all of the desires i know. he has respected me when i had no respect to give, to him or to myself. he has always been a big brother, looking out for me and pushing me into the next phase of life, regardless of any conscious intent, on either side of the camp.

so on august 6th, back in sorrento, this place which gave us so much life, i stood witness to the marriage of my brother, Jeremy and his undeniably perfect soul mate, Cejaye. together they have overcome some tremendous roadblocks, quite literally at times (mt hope*), they have given love full reign of their friendship and it has bloomed into an unbreakable partnership. i see the commitment which my brother has so long given to love, finally fulfilled in his marriage to this amazing woman and to her two beautiful children who lovingly refer to him as "daddy".

i am beamingly proud of him from inside out, and i know that shines through with light from a man we will never forget.

love you jer,

your boys, d & D.