Day 288 - Sean

Day 288 - Sean (1st person I approached)
October 15, 2014 - I was out this evening and didn’t manage to start looking for today’s story until almost 10pm. I wandered around a little bit, grabbed some pizza and headed toward the grocery store. The grocer’s is located in a neighbourhood mall. I hoped I might find someone loitering. At least maybe someone coming from the gym or yoga studio that is also there. I spotted Sean walking towards me and thought for sure he would be heeding to the gym. I told him about my project, and as I was talking to him, he had this big grin on his face, as if to say ‘what are you looking for?’ He wasn’t going to the gym, he was going to get groceries, and said he didn’t mind chatting with me for a few minutes. We walked to a bench outside the grocers and sat down to chat.


Sean was born and raised in Nelson, BC (British Columbia). He has an older sister.

“My sister and I are close. I just had Thanksgiving dinner with her. We usually speak on the phone a couple of times a week as well,” he said.

“I played a lot of sports in school. I’ve always liked team sports, and playing together as a team. Rugby, soccer, water skiing and snow skiing in winter. A fairly good cross section. I narrowed it down though and I'm just play rugby now.” 


After graduating from high-school, Sean spent the summer in Nelson working in construction.

“I was pretty sure I was going to be moving to Vancouver at some point. I came down here to play rugby. I was playing for the Vancouver Rowing Club. Yeah I know,” he said.

“A rugby club called the Vancouver Rowing Club. It's at the rowing club, and they have a rugby team as well,” he said.


“I was working in construction. Then I travelled with the rugby team. I went to New Zealand with a friend and spent two months there. Then I went to Australia to play rugby with my team, and travel. I spent about nine months there. I worked as a landscaper while I was there,” he said. When Sean returned from Australia, he got some contract work with the Ministry of Forests as a firefighter.

“There’s the job application, then you go for an interview. Next is a fitness test to make sure you’re up for the job. And then it s a week-long intensive bootcamp for training,” he said. 


Sean has done three semesters studying General Sciences at Langara College (Vancouver).

“I got a concussion playing rugby in my first semester, so I took time off of school. I went on a trip with friends,  bike trail riding in Manaslu, Nepal,” he told me. Manaslu, located in the Nepalese Himalayas, is the eight highest mountain in the world.

“You have to have a guide to go on the trails. At one point we were in two small groups and our guide was with one group and the other group actually got ahead of the guide. My buddy ended up being the first person to ever be on that part of the trail. It was an incredible trip. With a great story too!” he said.


Sean is back at school.

“I’m going to complete the general sciences and then I hope to go to UBC (University of British Columbia) and study forestry. Long term I’ve been doing some research and looking at possibly going into Forestry Engineering. That would be about the construction of roads and bridges, the infrastructure. I’m definitely interested in the environment, plus it’s working outdoors and it’s a good job,” he said. Sean’s a busy guy, having spent this last summer fighting forest fires in Revelstoke, BC.

“I really enjoy the work. It’s hard work, but there’s a lot of students that are involved during the summer. There’s lots of smart people out there, working hard all summer long. It’s definitely a team effort in fire fighting.”  

Sean headed off to get his groceries and I came home to eat pizza. Somehow I think his food choices were probably far healthier than mine. #notastranger