Traveling Lessons – Canada

Every year I write an article about my travels abroad. In 2015 I visited the UK, in 2016 Greece, in 2017 Russia and in 2018 I had a chance to go to Canada, which, among other things, taught me about manifesting…


It’s late at night and I am finishing packing for my flight to Canada the next morning. The suitcase is ready to go; I’m just collecting all my cosmetics into a small cosmetics bag when I discover that I am running short on face powder. “It’s a great thing I’ve got a second container,” I think and pull the second jar off a shelf in the bathroom cabinet…

On my way to Canada, I make a stop in Portland, Oregon, and while getting ready during one of the mornings in my hotel room, I see that there’s very little powder left in the jar. I look for the second one and fail to find it anywhere. “Hmmm… I actually don’t remember putting it into the suitcase. I bet it’s still sitting on the counter in my bathroom back home…” I realize. “It’s OK. This is probably enough for my stay in Canada, and I’ll get more when I come back…”

The first day in the homeland of stunning maple trees, I am visiting University of British Columbia and spending the night at the university hotel, very conveniently located right there, on campus. When I get ready the following morning, I realize that all the powder is gone now. “Hmmm… What do I do now?…” a thought arrives. “It’s fine. I’ll figure something out later. I’m changing hotels and moving downtown this afternoon. I don’t really know if they have Ulta in Canada (the store chain where I purchase the powder in the US), but somehow it will be resolved. I’ll be OK…” I quit thinking about it and get on with my day.

On the second day, I still have some meetings at the school and after noon I am free to take a taxi to move to another hotel in the center of Vancouver – it’s time to see the city and do all the usual touristy things!

On my 20-minute ride to the heart of the city, I look through the cab window, curious to learn how people live here. We go through various neighborhoods with nice, big houses – “These must be their residential suburbs,” I guess; then the scenery changes to more urban sites and I know we’ve entered the city. Gradually there are more shops, restaurants, and tall apartment buildings, the traffic becomes heavier, and I notice many more pedestrians on the streets.

I keep looking through the window at the quickly-changing typical scenery of a big city; then my cab suddenly slows down drastically before coming to a complete stop in the middle of a street because of heavy traffic. I look outside and see a big retail store. The name sounds familiar – I’m sure I’ve heard it before somewhere – but I can’t recall what they sell. I look at the window posters, then notice the shelf stands inside the shop through the open doors, and I realize it’s a cosmetics store. “Oh! That’s good to know!” I take a mental note of it when my taxi starts moving again.

In less than one minute, my taxi is parked in front of a big hotel and it hits me that that cosmetics store is just a few steps away from where I’m staying – I can definitely walk there any time! “Oh, that’s great!” I think.

I drop off my suitcase at the front desk and continue with the taxi driver to one of the recommended sites – Stanley Park! After a horse tour around it, I begin a slow walk back to the hotel while taking hundreds of photos on the way. Halfway to the hotel, I get lunch at another place recommended to me – a nice and cozy healthy food restaurant. I take my time to eat while people watching and enjoying a little rest.

When I am walking again, I check Google Maps and see that that cosmetics store is actually right on my way to the hotel. In ten minutes I am inside the store. “Hello, welcome to Sephora, can I help you find anything?” a friendly host welcomes me. I ask her if they sell my cosmetics brand and cross my fingers. “Yes, it’s right there, in the back of the store.” The lady responds with a pleasant smile. “Phew,” I sigh and proceed to the shelves that she has pointed at and see the name of the company that I need. After studying the shelves for several minutes, I conclude they don’t carry my product. “It makes sense,” I hear a thought in my mind. “That would be just too easy if you could find what you use in the States in the very first, random cosmetics store you accidentally run into in a foreign country. That simply couldn’t happen!”

I am convinced they don’t carry my product, but before leaving, I run through all the shelves just one last time. “Is this it??!!” I reach for a jar and read the label. IT IS!!! “NO WAY!!! REALLY??? NO!!!!! THIS CAN’T BE!!! REALLY??? THIS SIMPLE???” I silently keep staring at the jar in my hands several more seconds in total disbelief.

After an easy checkout, I walk the few meters left to my hotel’s front door while still feeling amazed. “What are the chances of everything lining up so perfectly to make this the most effortless resolution of a problem in my life???” I rewind the mental tape and restore the sequence of events:

I happened to have two hotels booked for my trip and I moved to the second one exactly on the day when I ran out of powder. The hotel happened to be right in the middle of a shopping area, my taxi driver happened to stop right in front of this shop, which happened to be a few steps away from my hotel’s front door. They happened to carry my cosmetics brand and happened to have exactly the same product that I use in the US and I was able to purchase it with no issues whatsoever! There wasn’t even a line that I had to wait in. What are the chances of all of these things lining up like that?…

While sitting on the bed of my hotel room, I keep looking at the little face powder container sitting on the table right in front of me – undeniable proof that what spiritual teachers tell us about manifesting is actually true:

Every problem comes with a solution built into it, and when we don’t sweat it, when we don’t make a big deal out of it, when we don’t become emotionally attached to a particular outcome and thus, don’t create any obstacles or blockages of energy, the things that we want or need just show up. The path to them is easily created by the Universe and laid out right in front of us so that all that’s left for us to do is simply walk it. Everything else is taken care of. Simply. Easily. Effortlessly.

“Ask and it is given!” they say. It really is! Just like that! When we don’t get in the way, it really is! Life is supposed to be simple. We are the ones who make it complicated with our thinking about it…

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Photo by Aditya Chinchure on Unsplash

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