Saturday, July 5, 2014
July 5 – Making plans
After weeks (well, months) of hemming and hawing and obsessing over seat sales, last night I finally booked a flight to Nova Scotia for my summer vacation. In seven years I've only missed one trip – last summer – and I'm looking forward to making up for lost time. I have a short list of must-visit places and a long list of must-visit people, and I'm looking forward to seeing those dear familiar faces, catching up on two years' worth of news. There are meals to eat and drinks to drink, games to play and babies (kids!) to marvel at, houses to admire. If previous trips are any indication, I will smile till my face hurts on a daily basis.
Going back isn't always easy, though: things have changed in the time I've been gone. Coming around a corner to discover an old beloved building has been knocked down and replaced by condos; driving downtown and getting lost because my mental map of one city has been replaced by another: on my last visit I felt those changes more keenly than I had expected to. When you have a tendency to nostalgia, it can be pretty uncomfortable when the present rubs up against the fondly (and even the not-so-fondly) remembered past. Sometimes every street corner, every highway exit and greasy diner, seems to resonate with memories, whether treasured or better forgotten.
But for all the ups and downs, there aren't many other ways I'd rather spend a week in August. A few heart pangs are a small price for happy hours with friends in one of the most beautiful places on earth. And when it gets to be a bit too much, I'll head for the ocean. After all, there's not much that an hour or two on the beach, listening to the waves, sifting through the sand for stripey pebbles, won't set to rights. I can't wait.