The next two days consist largely of shows and drives. I do two presentations at secondary schools, and two at elementary. I don’t often do high school shows and I enjoy this different program. I talk about string figure traditions around the world, about different kinds of figures, and different rules that govern the use of strings. I hand out yarn and teach them some tricks. They get right into it, and the teachers do, too. (Q&A: nothing. High school kids don’t ask questions…until the others have left the room. Then they ask: Did you really… When did you… Can you show me… )

One evening I walk around the village and come across the library, which happens to be open. I slip off my boots at the door and enter to see a few kids who know me from the school. I give them strings, and a cheery string madness takes over the room. The librarian watches, fascinated. We chat as I take out a stack of DVDs with my Victoria library card. This is the most brilliant thing I’ve discovered in this year of touring: with a library card from anywhere in BC, you have borrowing privileges all over the province.

When the shows are over, I have a day off, the first in longer than I can figure out. I wake up tired but head out for a walk down the road, through a field, along a path, onto the beach where I smack my head on a low-hanging branch, stumble on stones, slip on seaweed, then sit down on the wet ground in the rain and cry. I feel like a 2-year old, and someone should put me down for a nap. I walk myself back to the room, sleep for the rest of the day, wake up rested and cheerful. At this point I’ve been on tour for nearly four weeks; I’ve done 28 shows for about 9000 kids. I’m not quite halfway through this tour.

Beach at Port Simpson, facing the Masset Inlet

Beach at Port Simpson, facing the Masset Inlet