Well funny how things change in no time at all. I was applying for a expedition grant from Mountain Equipment Co-op so I had to write a pretty detailed trip plan and the purpose of my film idea. Once I had made a couple edits I sent it to a contact that I had in the Metis Nation of Alberta (MNA). Low and behold they loved the idea and were behind the project “Guns Blazing” as they put it.
For me personally this means a lot. While my ancestors homeland is in Saskatchewan and I feel like that is my home in a lot of ways also I have to admit to myself I am a Albertan born and mostly raised. My children were born in Banff, Alberta. ( Last of a era as maternity stuff is now done in Canmore) For me my film idea is more about these kids and their future in the ever evolving Metis Nation no matter what province. I also helps to justify the enormous personal cost in time and money. Not something that we can really afford lightly. We have bills and expenses just like everybody else. To take five months off to simply go canoeing is a luxury that comes with a fair bit of sacrifice on all parts.
My wife has to take care of two units ages 6 and 9 and anybody who has kids knows that that age they are a handful. On the other hand she also has a full time job doing mountain rescue for national parks.
My kids are a little bit more adaptive but still they have to go without dad for awhile. So the hiking, climbing and paddling we do on a regular basis comes to a halt for a bit. I will be replaced by a child care worker of some sort.
Myself I will miss them but at the same time I am doing something I have been planning to do for well over a decade. At 58 years of age this is about as old as a person can be and safely do this trip. If I waited till they got out of school I’d be 70 and I am pretty sure it just wouldn’t happen.
Having the blessing of the MN means that a lot more doors are open to me that would have been forced open. Interviews with key players, introductions, credibility with historic staff. The actual list is quite extensive. The promise to assist in fund raising is actually secondary though somewhat important.
So my conversation with MNA took place yesterday. At the same time A long term client of mine has taken up the cause. Dave Wakefield has donated some cash and is presently lobbying on behalf with friends, family and corporations.
It’s great having this feeling that things are coming along after years of planning. I guess the one thing that is starting to become apparent is I now have to actually produce something as I am excepting peoples donations. They are believing in me so now I have to believe in myself. For the first time in quite awhile I do believe I can create something that will actually make a difference. A contribution to the nation that helped me out when I needed it the most.
You can expect a lot more frequent updates about how things are coming along. The stages of development. The next step will be the creation of a formal script and shot list. So stick around and check in regularly we are going to be real busy over the next seven months.