Ah, sweet, sweet vacation.
I just got back from 14 days of vacation at our family’s cottage. I actually haven’t had a two-week vacation in probably three years. For various reasons, I wasn’t able to get/take that sort of time off. But I was definitely due for a break.
Two weeks are, in my opinion, the right amount of time to really have a break. One week just isn’t enough. It usually takes me anywhere from 2-3 days to unwind and stop thinking/worrying about work and home stress, and then as you get ready to end your time off, you start to let your mind wander back to those same thoughts. If you are only off for a week, then you barely have a few days to actually relax stress free.
But it wasn’t just the vacation time that I needed; I was also long overdue for some dedicated time at our family’s seaside home. It had been almost three years since I had been to the cottage for a good visit. As cheesy as this sounds, my soul was void and needed to be replenished with all that would fill it from a visit to what our family lovingly calls The West Bay House.
Now, for any of you reading this that have a special place that is in your family, you will understand what I’m talking about. This is a property that has been passed through the family for well over 150 years. I’ve spent every summer but a few over my almost 40 (!!) years of life visiting this area. My parents, my brother, our families and our family friends have all made special memories here. When we talk about the West Bay House (or the other loving family homes on the property – the Upper House, the Bay House and the Lower House) we utter these words with a familiarity and affection that can only come from a home and place that emits the warmth and love of a sunny summer day.
I have been wondering what it is that makes this place so special. No doubt there is the familiarity that exists from having spent so much time there.
There is also the fact that it is located off of the Bay of Fundy and that it is truly a beautiful place. Daily we watch the ocean’s tide come in and out upon the beach.
And yes, the beach – so many adventures have taken place in the search for treasures like beach glass and shells, and even live crabs.
Of course, there are also the people. So many memories with friends and family have happened there – meals shared, cards played, long talks by the warmth of a fire. There is a comradery that occurs when unwinding and relaxing among loved ones. A shared experience of not needing to be anywhere and letting each other see the real you – sunburnt, freckled and all.
So I as I gear up and get ready to go back to work (which for the record, I am actually looking forward to!), I’m happy to have had two glorious weeks away at the cottage. I am reminded why it is important to spend time with family and friends. I also know that I will not let so much time go by before I get back. I already miss the sound of the waves…