Healing powers of the forest – cedars, hummingbirds, hotsprings and hippies

I thought I’d do a quick update while I encroach upon this lovely cafe’s hospitality. Question and Answer style.

Q: How is Luna Doing?

A: She is still alive, even after some very hairy abandoned forestry roads leading to certain springs. We were pushing her the maximum limit of her sagging suspension and iffy transmission. I have discovered there is a certain amount of discomfort and nervousness that accompanies driving this van. A perpetual “what if..?”

But she has made it everywhere so far! We just got back from a gnarly hotspring visit involving a 15km long, intensely potholed ex-logging road that took about 45m to drive. I was holding my breath as we traipsed over some very perilous terrain and climbed into some serious altitude (snow!). But Luna is a champ!


Luna happily resting after an exhausting climb.


The cooking set-up for breakfast today. Kale salad with millet, sauerkraut and flax 🙂 

The shelving set-up in the back has been working really well. It’s a great space for cooking meals and storing food. I created this van as a single-person RV, so having both of us in here is a bit chaotic. In a few days we’ll be at a Buddhist retreat center on the west coast and they are providing a bed, so no worries.


The weather has been epic. 30C+ on this day meant we needed to rig up a shanty-style shade structure.

The window covers have been partially successful. Warning to all people using Reflectix covers – they expand slightly in the heat. Because of this, a few of the covers don’t slot nicely into the windows anymore and we’ve had to use duct tape to hold them up. I think I want to totally remove the cardboard and use velcro to hold the reflective stuff in place by itself (this will be a future project). However, the heat blockage is excellent – after all day in the scorching sun, the soft-shell coolers in the van are still holding veggies nice and cool.

On that note: Kale is a surprisingly robust travel food! After the broccoli was almost dead and the bok choy looking wilted, the kale was krisp and krunchy. Take note, fellow travellers. Take note.


Luna on her first ferry ride.

She even had the chance to ride a boat – one of multiple ferries she’ll be riding during the summer adventures. No seasickness.

Q: How are the hotsprings?

A: Amazing! We’ve set up a home base at a sacred spring in interior BC. This place is awe-inspiring. I won’t mention spring names here, but you can see for yourself in the following pictures.


Top view of the three pools in a row


The big pool and a lovely view of the surrounding cedar forest.

The majestic cedars make this place feel like a cathedral. It’s one of those places you find yourself whispering without knowing why. The water trickles out from a tree root and fills the top pool with hot, hot bliss. There is lots of lithium, magnesium, calcium and barely any sulphur in these springs.


The top pool, with hot water falling down into subsequent pools.

The people here are devoted to the springs. We have a new friend in the form of an old, retired hippie who has been frequenting these springs since 1969. (That’s forty-four years!) When we asked him if they’ve changed at all, he just grinned: “Nope.” I don’t know about you, but that’s MY idea of a quality retreat. Unchanged and preserved in all its sanctity. I met a beautiful woman who spent an hour cleaning up discarded beer cans and candles from careless spring-goers, carefully creating a cedar bough and bark altar before quietly walking away. Clothing is not necessary in these springs, leading to more authentic and pure interaction with fellow spring enthusiasts. It is a tranquil and healing place.

Yesterday, we drove a short distance (and a crazy road) to a different set of springs with a distinctly different flavour.


The carefully made tub, filled directly from the nearby spring.

These springs are right on a river. We were about a day late to the party – the melting snow raised the river to the point that it flooded the riverside hot pools, forcing us to move inland a bit and enjoy the tub that had been built. Not a terrible alternative at all! Luxurious yet still firmly rustic — and, of course, there was nothing in that tub but untreated spring water. We met a man who works four months per year and drives across North America for the other eight, visiting springs, camping on beaches and enjoying the world. These sort of people are incredibly inspirational. The extraordinary community of gentle and creative souls is another reason why hot springs are important in my life. It was also an honour to be visited by a hummingbird, whizzing and zipping around the springs in search of something.

Those springs were nice, but our loyalty lies with the first springs nestled in their rich cedar forest. The energy there is more subtle and the patrons tend to bring more mindfulness into their conduct.

Q: How is life going?

A: Fun! Intense! Healing! Serious! Playful!

The springs tend to act like a spiritual accelerator. I find that the detoxification process brings up emotional as well as physical toxins, leading to a lot of emotional ups and downs. We are meditating twice daily — trying to find the most heavenly locations (and succeeding) — which of course further exaggerates the process. It’s a rollercoaster!


A nearby mountain framed by cedar boughs. Mmm.

But it is impossible to resist the calming and grounding influence of these cedars. And the mountains. And the lakes. And the deer, elk and bears. The eagles, owls, crows and swallows. It’s too much to stand up too — one must return to the root, the source of human existence!

To summarize – we are doing very well. Growth is happening. Life is happening. Sleep has been warm, we are eating well and — OH YEAH, I forgot to mention, the massive amount of herbs and supplements has been amazing! We are drinking crazy teas and loving life.

OK – time to get going. Peace out everyone!

PS: Here is a picture of a stegosaurus with sunglasses eating a massive dill pickle. While reading the paper.

a stegosaurus with sunglasses eating a massive dill pickle.

a stegosaurus with sunglasses eating a massive dill pickle.


5 thoughts on “Healing powers of the forest – cedars, hummingbirds, hotsprings and hippies

  1. Ed Van Bastelaar

    Sounds like a fun summer ahead. I’m sure there will be some bumps on this “road less travelled”. The bumps are a source of knowledge in a primal sort of way. Cheers! Ed

    1. sillysadhaka Post author

      Hi Ed, I agree that there will be bumps on this path. In fact, I’m writing this while waiting for the van’s alternator to be replaced 😛


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