We had a wonderful three weeks in Canada seeing friends and family. Of course, there’s never enough time to see everyone or do everything that we’d like to do while we’re there, but we did the best we could and enjoyed ourselves immensely. Of course, my major regrets were that I couldn’t have sushi or the lovely microbrewed beer as I’m pregnant again, but I’ll just have to wait until next visit.
The first week we spent time with my family and recovered from jetlag – Sprocket did better than we did, especially me – jetlag in the first trimester is not a lot of fun. Sprocket had fun meeting and playing with his cousins. He and my niece G are only 9 months apart – last time we were home that was an eternity, now they play well together, well, as well as kids close to two can. My grandmother was also visiting from California so she could meet Sprocket and the newest grandkid, my nephew S. We also fit some visits with friends and their kids – everyone is multiplying! The next week we were down to Seattle to see my sister for a few days, and try and fit in mad shopping and visits with friends there. Another sister even surprised us with a visit and was finally able to meet her nephew – it was lovely to see them too. Then, in a three-ferry day, we went from Seattle over to the Olympic peninsula and then to Victoria before driving up-Island to my parents’ place on Gabriola, where the annual family reunion was in full swing. We stayed a few days after the reunion and just relaxed – it’s such a beautiful place to be, especially in the summer. Finally back to Langley to fit in a few more visits and shopping before we flew back here.
Most of the photos that I took are just family and friends, so not much interest for this travel-oriented blog. I will throw in one video of Sprocket on Gabriola – just because he’s such a daredevil:
It made us all extremely nervous the entire time, since he seemed to have little understanding of the dangers of the edge. Well at least until he fell off twice, which luckily enough just scared him enough without any injury.
I was quite sad to leave, for a number of reasons. Perhaps the most surprising one was how much I enjoyed the friendliness of Canadians and Americans. Just the ease with which we chat with strangers is something that I miss a lot here, and it’s not just the language, either. When DutchBoy first moved to Vancouver we went to the SuperValu together and I was chatting with the cashier – as we left, DutchBoy asked, “Do you know her?” and was quite surprised when I said no. Now my Dutch is to the point where I can chat fairly easily, but it’s just not done here. Of course, it was nice to know exactly what to do again too, to have things come naturally, without thinking what’s done here and what’s not and how things are said or what have you, to fit in without trying. I also enjoyed the restaurants (choice! cheap! yummy!), and found myself a bit overwhelmed by the supermarkets and stores – they’re so huge and have so much. I’ve gotten used to the size of the stores here.
But of course, the hardest part was leaving my friends and family again, especially my family, and especially my nephews and niece. As I was saying goodbye to them for the last time, my nephew J asked me when we’d see each other again. I said it would be quite a long time. He asked brightly, “Thursday?” I said, “Well, longer than that.” “Monday?” It brought tears to my eyes, also when both J and G said they’d miss me and DutchBoy and Sprocket. I do wish the cousins could see each other more.