Saturday, 24 August 2013


I have decided to go to Newfoundland. After all, I may never be able to make a trip like this again so I am going to go all the way. This will mean that between last July and now I will have visited every capital in Canada, including Whitehorse and Yellowknife, driven every major highway in Canada, taken my truck from the Arctic Circle to the Gulf of Mexico, and, oh yes, been diagnosed with ALS. That last little detail never seems to leave me.

There is a cost to this decision and I had to think about it. First of all, there is the money. It will mean another $1,200 - $1,500 to cover ferry, food, fuel and lodging. Secondly, there is the fact that I an really starting to miss home, family and friends. Doing this trip alone takes a fair bit of personal pushing. In some ways it would have been much easier, and much less expensive, just to have stayed at home, enjoying my summer in Calgary. Yet both of these costs seem small in comparison to the outcome. It also helps that those very friends and family are encouraging me to go.

I've made a value decision, comparing the cost of this decision with the costs of other potential decisions, and the with the benefits of this decision. Each of us makes these kinds of value decisions. We decide daily, almost by the minute, if the "cost" of something is worth the "benefit". I don't mean this in purely financial terms. I decided that the cost of staying with my wife, in emotional terms more than any other, was just too high when compared with the cost of leaving, the negative consequences which I knew would be there, both financial and emotional. I paid the price of leaving even though I am deeply committed to the concepts of marriage, commitment and responsibility.

For me, the price of going to Newfoundland is missing my friends and family for another four or five days, as well as the extra money; I spend about $250 to $300 a day on the road, all costs in. After sleeping on it, I realize that there may come a day when I really need that money, but there will never come a day when I will regret this one last time on "the rock".

Money can be made; I might go to work again in the fall, I might win the lottery, I might write a book and sell a million copies. You never know. What I do know is that life is short and precious. The cost of not living, of not doing what I can when I can, of some useless sense of self-denial because of some potential risk at some point in the future, that cost is just not worth it. There is a price for everything, and everything has its price. I have decided that this one is worth it.

1 comment:

  1. I agree with you about going for it. We need to work on our bucket lists while we can. Soon we won't be able to get out and will regret lost opportunities.