I grew up falling out of canoes, watching my dad build make-shift sails from branches, rope and sleeping bags as we cruised through the lakes of Northern Ontario.
Sometimes when I close my eyes, I remember lying in the canoe and looking up at the sky, water moving underneath my back, and my dad patiently casting his rod into the lake. I would always get excited when he would catch a big fish, and we would bring it back to our campsite as he took the necessary measures to prepare it for our dinner. (Yuck, right? Actually, that’s not true at all. I haven’t ever been grossed out by it 🙂 More fascinated!)
My dad has this big smile. Like, really big when he’s doing something he loves. I like to think that maybe I inherited some of that from him.
Sometimes when I hike or discover a brand new place, I notice that I just can’t stop smiling. My face is stuck. (But there’s definitely worse ways to have your face stay).
Rob and I had a truly epic summer of being mostly homeless and living out of the back of his Pathfinder. Though we had minimal living space… we had the best adventures. Finding new places and taking back roads that led to dead ends – and from those dead ends we would wander and find incredible places to stop and cook a meal on our teeny tiny camp stove.
One spot we wandered to was Chain Lakes, past Pemberton. When I lose cell phone service there’s a part of me that panics, and another part of me that’s 100% liberated, because whatever I experience from there on out, I’ve found on my own, using my own instincts.
Fishing at Chain Lakes, wandering through the forest, watching the sun sparkle over the water and then set behind the mountains, I had that smile. The one my dad gave me. And I wouldn’t have it any other way.