I’ve long been intrigued by the Island of Misfit Toys from the TV’s “Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer” (1964: Romeo Muller; Dir. Larry Roemer; Rankin/Bass). Yes, the toys are different, but what’s really wrong with them? A train with square wheels might seem obvious, but you have to dig to learn Dolly’s on the Island because she’s depressed; Charlie just has an unusual name for his job. It makes me wonder whether inclusion in the mainstream by well-meaning outsiders is the right answer for the Toys, or whether they’re better off (more whole) on their Island. While experts argue each side, I drift between extremes. Fast forward to 2013 when I was feeling more like Dolly than myself. My generous friend Liz lent me her wee cabin in the magical Blaeberry outside Golden BC, kicking off a transformative and inspirational adventure. When I finally descended from the bench to visit the townsite, I was drawn to a dark bar with no visible name/hours and an array of kind, funny, quirky people. I exhaled. And it felt amazing. While the regulars might not welcome the Toy comparison, I make it with affection and appreciation. The place remains important to me, so my adventure continues. Rudolph can keep the mainstream: I’m more comfortable with the Misfit Toys whose stories are much more like my own.