A Brief Brush With “Fame”

Many years ago when I first started running, I became friends with Helen … my hiking partner and a woman I’ve talked about many times in my blog.  Her high energy and enthusiasm for life have always been hugely inspiring for me.

I remember a conversation I had with her shortly after one of my very first races … a 5 km. I was discouraged by how slow I was and embarrassed to be lumbering along like a beached whale at the back of the pack.  Her words have always stuck with me … you never know who might be watching and be inspired by your effort.

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Recently, there was a reason for her words to come back to me.

Helen and I made the decision to head back out onto the Bruce Trail … 2 years after completing the end-to-end hike of this 900 km route.  We had both missed those days of adventure through the back country of Southern Ontario tracing the Escarpment from Niagara Falls to Tobermory.

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We decided to return to a section we had completed during the winter when it was covered in snow and ice.  We were both excited to see how different it would be in the glorious colours of autumn.

About half way through our hike, as we were crossing a road, we met a woman who was about to start her own hike.  Helen – always the friendly one – offered a greeting and began to chat with her.

The woman looked at her and said “I recognize you … from that Bruce Trail blog”.  Helen then turned, pointed to me and replied “oh, you mean her blog”.

It seems that this woman – Adele – had found my blog Adventures on the Bruce Trail and had been using it as a guide for her own journey.  In conversation with her, it was apparent she knew the details of our end-to-end adventure very well.  I was both flattered and amazed.

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Mother Nature is amazing – trees try to find a way to survive on the Escarpment

My original blog hadn’t been written as a guide for anyone hiking the Bruce – as Adele kindly pointed out – it was full of holes.  I had intended it only to be a diary for Helen and I to remember some of the details we might otherwise forget.  To my surprise – and delight – it had become so much more.

Meet Adele - a truly inspiring person!

Meet Adele – a truly inspiring person!

But then Adele began to tell her own story … and I was completely blown away.

Adele lives very close to the Bruce Trail much further north than where we met her.  She was inspired to put aside her sedentary lifestyle and get out onto the trail so close to her home.  At first her progress was slow and her endurance very short.

She has persisted, and over time her speed increased and she could hike longer and further.  The 3 end-to-end section badges on her bag are testament to her progress … but her journey has been much more difficult than ours.

While Helen and I have hiked in only one direction, using a car at each end point, Adele has been hiking alone. With only 1 car, she has had to complete each hike in both directions.

Since she started her journey on the Bruce, Adele has lost 100 lbs. Yes! 100!!!  Her diabetes and high blood pressure are both gone.

Adele’s hiking has literally changed her life.

While she claimed to have been inspired by us, I was completely inspired by her.

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Adele’s story really touched me.  She is proof that it is never too late to make significant and meaningful changes to our lives.

How inspiring is that?!!

About Joanne Sisco

Retired but not idle. Life is an adventure - I plan to continue to embrace it.
This entry was posted in Active Lifestyle, Attitude, Friends, Nature and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

64 Responses to A Brief Brush With “Fame”

  1. I love this story, Joanne. Yes, we never know all the tiny ways we change not only the lives around us but the lives of all those them. Rings of light rippling outward. It’s pretty awesome to think about. 🙂

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  2. nimi naren says:

    Wow..what a story. Go Adele

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  3. ceayr says:

    Inspiration comes from all around us.
    Great to see how we influence others.
    I saw you at Corina’s and thought I’d say hello.

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  4. That is very cool. But I already knew you were inspiring. 🙂

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  5. jannatwrites says:

    What a cool story. It’s a situation of mutual inspiration, and I have to think the encounter was more than just coincidence. I agree that it’s never too late to change- the mind has more power than we give it credit for 🙂

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  6. That is a truly lovely story to read Joanne. You are famous as well as lovely and inspiring.

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  7. beeblu says:

    What a wonderful story. The immense value of the blogging community right there!

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  8. Phil Taylor says:

    That’s awesome. Now I want to hike the Bruce someday.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Su Leslie says:

    This is wonderful Joanne. Your ability to reach people in quite unintended ways is such an affirmation of the power of language and of your generosity in sharing your world.

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  10. NancyTex says:

    This post was the perfect thing for me to read on this day. Thank you!

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  11. Every journey starts with baby steps first. That’s was amazing and very inspiring read. Thank you Joanne

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    • joannesisco says:

      I’ve been reminded that often we have a tendency to just drift along without any deliberate or obvious direction.
      With focus and determination, we can accomplish things that are very meaningful to us … one baby step at a time 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  12. bikerchick57 says:

    That’s a wonderful story…so inspiring. Adele is amazing and I’m glad your blog inspired her to get healthy.

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  13. Wow. What an amazing way for words to come back to you and be demonstrated. How wonderful to realize what a difference you’ve made to someone else’s journey….and how brilliant for them to make such a difference to yours now! Way to go to both you (and Helen) and Adele!

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  14. Thanks Joanne for sharing Adele’s story. Carol and I are hiking the Bruce Trail end to end and Carol forwards your blogs which encourage and inspire. It was heartwarming to read about Adele – we always note that more women than men seem to be on the trail and often we enjoy the companionship as much as the exercise. In Adele’s case she enjoys the health benefits that come with the beauty and sense of accomplishment.

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    • joannesisco says:

      Thank you Cheryl for this comment. I’m aware of your journey with Carol and enjoy reliving it through the photos Carold posts 🙂

      I had very limited hiking experience when we started the Bruce and we had an aggressive goal to finish in one year. It is remarkable what we are capable of achieving and overcoming when we simply start putting one foot in front of the other.

      I am so impressed with Adele because she’s doing this alone, totally self-motivated with so many odds stacked against her.

      She’s discovered what we all discover on the Bruce. The more time you spend out there, the more it draws you back 🙂

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  15. hilarymb says:

    Hi Joanne – isn’t blogging fun – you inspired her, and now she inspires us through her achievements – really fascinating to read and to see your photos. Incredible – what a great thought. I agree the guide would be an interesting project … and you could involve Adele too ..

    Fun read – inspiring absolutely … cheers Hilary

    PS in fact my blog put a journalist in Cape Town with a cousin of my mother’s, whose relative was important to South Africa 120 – 80 years ago … Jenny lives in Vancouver Island, and is over … I’m driving her around and that journalist will also be over. I hope I can get to meet her …funny old life – blogging is!

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    • joannesisco says:

      Although so many others have said it – including me – it’s still a WOW!! when blogging delivers a real life connection to a person who would otherwise remain a complete stranger.

      I hope you get to meet her too! There will be so many stories to share!

      Like

  16. Solveig says:

    Wow I think that this is great! I guess we bloggers never really know who we might be inspiring with our words. 🙂

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    • joannesisco says:

      That’s basically it, isn’t it. We know the people who have chosen to *follow* us with comments and likes, but we don’t know about the quiet ones who read silently in the background.
      I was flattered beyond all reasonable measures.

      Liked by 1 person

  17. Sue Slaght says:

    Well first let me say in all the time I have known you here I had no idea you had a second blog! I love that it made such a profound impact for a reader and how amazing that you would. One t like that. So cool!

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    • joannesisco says:

      Thanks Sue. I started blogging as a way to remember our Bruce Trail adventure and it developed a small following of family and friends.

      I discovered I really liked blogging and so I started this 2nd blog with a more generic *theme* as our journey on the Bruce came to an end.

      It never ceases to amaze me how much traffic the Bruce Trail blog continues to get even though I said “Farewell” 2 years ago.

      Liked by 1 person

  18. Amazing that you ran into Adele! You an

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  19. treerabold says:

    That is so inspiring! Way to go Adele!
    How exciting for her and for you. isn’t it nice to know you made a difference in someone’s life! great post!

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  20. You and Adele are both inspiring. Helen, too!

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  21. Yes, well people recognize me from my blog all the time. Getting a bit hard to keep the paparazzi away…just kidding. Seriously though, how wonderful it is that you inspired someone in such a way. I didn’t know diabetes was curable.

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  22. mickscogs says:

    What a fantastic story Joanne. And again, what beautiful country. You are blessed. I’ll never get there, but must check that blog.

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  23. Helen was and is so right, “… you never know who might be watching and be inspired by your effort.” You can pat yourself on the back Joanne, and if you don’t I will virtually. You’re an inspiration. ❤ ❤ ❤
    Wow, this is such an inspiring post. Adele had a lot of guts to go it alone. Bravo.

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  24. I love what Helen said to you about never knowing who might be watching and be inspired. Then, to have that sentiment demonstrated so well with Adele’s story is amazingly serendipitous. That trail is really gorgeous all dressed up in it’s autumn splendor.

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  25. Heyjude says:

    How wonderful! As are those trees and that sky 🙂
    Maybe you should revisit your Bruce Trail blog and rewrite it as a guide?

    Like

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