Jeff Fillmore

I met Jeff today and there’s a story to it. 

Jeff and Anne-Marie – photo by Ken

Last Sunday was laundry day – it happens. We were in Blind River and I found a nice clean place. (I won’t do laundry just anywhere.) I didn’t realize until I was folding the laundered clothes that I’d left a whole bag behind. Argh! 

Today, in Thunder Bay, I decided I needed to get the rest of the laundry done. I went to a super-clean, sparkling new place, Barb’s Laundromat on Cumberland St. N. 

Because of my forgotten laundry, I met Jeff who was also doing laundry. Jeff is walking across Canada. He’s moving back home from Maple Ridge BC to Lunenburg NS, on foot.

When I saw him pushing his trolley, a Canadian flag flying from a fishing-rod pole and a #NovaScotiaStrong flag across the hood of the tolley, it just came to me: here’s a man walking across our very big country. 

We talked in the parking lot of the laudromat and later with Ken in the parking lot of a convenience store. Jeff told us he quit his high-stress job in Vancouver and cleared out everything he owned, selling or giving it away. On the road, he’s had time to clear out the mental clutter. 

He spoke of the simple joy at having a single purpose and the beauty of the country he’s seeing at 6km/hr. He talked about the camaraderie of the truck drivers who toot their horns to salute him, of the goodwill of the policemen looking out for him and the generosity of new friends he’s making along the way. 

He’s heading east and he’s heading into his future with optimistic anticipation. It was a pleasure just being in his presence. If you’re east of Thunder Bay, look out for him on the road.  You’ll find him on FaceBook, too. Look him up. 


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