Thursday, February 25, 2010

Well its been so long!!!

Well, where do I begin. I have a few updates coming, but I thought I'd share a touching story. During the Green Traveller shoot on Haida Gwaii, I was fortunate to cross paths with someone whom I likely would never had met had i not done this pilot. Our paths intertwined right about the time I got to the northern part of the island.

Mark, Dafne and I were hoping to find a place to stay for the evening, as it had been raining like crazy. Luckily enough, Dafne knew a number of folks who lived near Towhill, and so finding lodging was fairly easy. Anyway, we stayed at the owner of the Trouthouse Restaurant and Bakery. She not only provided us with a nice place to stay, she also would invite us to shoot a specially made meal at her restaurant later that week.

Little did I know at that time, I was about to meet someone whom I would never forget. I first learned about Kimiko through Dafne and Kelli (Trouthouse Owner) that night at the house as we all gathered around a table, having a few drinks (non-alcoholic for me). I was told Kimiko was this well known lady who unfortunately had received a cancer diagnosis and had spent the last few months in Vancouver for treatment. Even sadder, she was declared terminal, and did not have much time to live. Despite undergoing severe radiation treatment, she was losing her battle, and her outlook was bleak. She lost a fair bit of weight, and could no longer walk. In fact she had spent one week subsisting solely on ice-chips and remained on an I-V.

Bottom line, the story goes, she was sent back to Haida Gwaii to die. This is where things get interesting. So she comes home, and decides to no longer pursue cancer treatment, but instead finds solace in more traditional healing. Slowly over that short period of time, she begins to get her appetite back. Not only that, I learn that her friends gathered by her side, sang to her, and beat drums. She drummed with them, and for the first time in ages, she gathered her strength and walked.

Even more amazing. After a few weeks, she had decided she would 'marry' the love of her live Andrew Von Boetticher in a union ceremony the VERY week I was on Haida Gwaii.

So here I was. Working on the Green Traveller, but I had this chance to conduct an interview of this amazing women. It didn't take long before we decided we just had to speak with her. So, guerilla-style, we brought our video camera to the Trouthouse with a boom mic, and I sat down and recorded an interview with Kimiki (who by the way was slurping back a bowl of soup).

She would share her story, her struggles and most importantly the most intimate details of her love for Andrew.

The original story aired in August of 2009. She and Andrew would be united, and be married into 2010. Sadly, in late January, she passed away. Her story I will never forget. She is a truly brave, wonderful human being. I'm told she was surrounded by those who loved her as she made her final transition.

Thanks Kimiko for sharing your story with me.

Kimiko Von Boetticher

Green Traveller taking a little pitstop to do a little CBC work

Marc and Kelli at the Trouthouse

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