I’ve been thinking a lot about Lara Gladych’s column “Word on the Street” for this Travel Issue. In it, she asks locals “what’s your favorite vacation, ever?” For me, that’s a tough one to answer.
As a child growing up in the Maritimes, we didn’t have a lot of money to spare, so we didn’t travel much – just to the U.S. and only as far as Bangor, Maine to shop when our dollar was doing well. Now and again we’d also take a road trip to Montreal to visit family.
When I finished University I spent a year in Banff, Alberta and after making some good money, I backpacked across Europe for about six months. I will never forget those days of meeting fellow travellers and visiting the gorgeous and unique countrysides.
Now living on the West Coast, Tofino is and will always be one of my most treasured vacation spots, especially when with my kids. It was also the place where we spread my Mom’s ashes, so it will always have mixed, and equally valuable, memories for me.
A couple of years ago, I was able to do a few getaways: a short trip with a girlfriend to San Francisco, Hawaii’s Big Island for two weeks and an all-inclusive with the family to Mexico. I was so lucky to be able to take all of these vacations in a relatively short period, and they each represent special times and relationships for me.
As the children have now entered high school, many of my “travels” have simply been travelling from place to place as I chauffeur them to and from sports and jobs. Maybe not as exciting as a vacation, but valuable in their own way as I use the time to catch up with my kids.
By the time this issue goes to press, the BC Summer Games will have finished and my jeep will have put on many miles travelling to Nanaimo and back for my daughter’s training. If you haven’t been to that part of the Island for a while, there is lots to discover and be sure to take your bike! There are countless trails and lakes to explore.
With my son graduating next year, I hope to take both kids to Spain in August and then, depending on where my 15-year-old daughter ends up for University (she’s hoping for Stanford), I’ll likely be keeping my travels close to where they both reside. For now, I still love to run the trails and roads of the Saanich Peninsula and enjoy travels on my bike discovering new adventures in our own backyard.