When we set out on our great-east-Canada-road-trip three months ago, we had a vague idea of starting a blog to document our travels. This didn’t work out for many reasons, mostly because I’m actually a pretty private person and struggle with how much of myself to share in online spaces.
The other reason is that I am not a good travel blogger. I love trying new places to eat, but if I find something I love, I will go back again and again and probably order the exact same dish. I also a fairly easygoing traveller and am as happy to take a day off to read in a cafe as I am hiking up and down mountains (that is a lie, I am MUCH HAPPIER reading in a cafe than hiking up and down mountains, but I digress). I am also officially an old person, and my idea of nightlife is going for a few early pints and getting back to bed by 9 pm. All of those factors combined do not make for the most exciting travel blog.
But now I’m back in Toronto (for a few weeks anyway) and I find myself wanting to say something about the last three months, which were strange and wonderful and liberating and hard and I think what I want to say is this:
These days it feels like the world is going to hell in a handbasket. We see it on the news every day and every time we make the mistake of looking at an internet comment section. At times, it can feel like we’re surrounded by hatred and intolerance and bigotry and there are days when it’s a struggle to cope with it all. But it’s so important to remember that, in the midst of all the darkness, there is goodness too. Over the last three months, I’ve met the kindest, friendliest humans, who made me remember that we’re all in this together.
So here’s to Glenn and Caroline, who taught us how to harvest honey, to Bebo for sharing a bottle of wine with us with on the patio and discussing the big questions in life, to Laurence who let us monopolize Sherlock the dog’s affection for days and didn’t mind us racing in blow-up donuts across her swimming pool, to André who made us breakfast every morning and gave us travel advice for Quebec, to Sebastien for the free eggs straight from the nest, to Jenessa’s dad (whose name we never caught) who brought us freshly picked blackberries and checked on Richard when he was ill, to the retired teachers we met in St. John’s who bought us a round of drinks and joked with us for a while, to Joyann who made us three meals a day and wouldn’t let us lift a finger to help, to Lana and Roshni and the world travellers we met in their hostel for the chats, the homemade wine, and the half-assed game of Cluedo, and to Jaime and Victor for sharing a homemade Mexican feast with us.
Travel is about so much more than checking something off your bucket list or getting those Insta-worthy shots in front of famous landmarks. It’s about connecting with other people. People who are different from you but so, so alike in so many ways.
I hope the past three months have made me a better person, even just a little bit, and I look forward to whatever comes next.