Although there are still three months of the year left, during which anything can happen, when I reminisce about 2017 in years to come it will be all about the summer. These summer months have been the busiest and best in living memory, almost a blur, and whatever happens for the remainder of 2017, and however wet and bleak the Fall and Winter are, we have absorbed enough energy from the events of the hot season to carry us through.
Bookended by two great music festivals (with one meh one in between), Summer 2017 was a season we grabbed by the scruff of the neck and truly made the most of. We visited several places for the first time since moving to Vancouver Island, including the Port Renfrew area on our wedding anniversary, where we saw a mama bear and cub on Botanical Beach. Far from anything manmade, in their natural habitat with the ocean as a backdrop, it was a marvellous natural scene that moved Susan to tears. Similarly, at Stamp River Provincial Park we saw salmon leaping up the waterfall there, in their extraordinary, hardwired determination to reach their spawning grounds. It is impossible for us puny humans to comprehend the strength and fortitude required to complete this Herculean task, in the last act of their species before they die. Imagine trying to hurl yourself up Niagara Falls. All we could do was watch in awe.
In Summer 2017 we made new friends, lost others to death and relocation, and received visits from others we have known for decades. We saw lots of live music, attended BBQs and parties, threw an epic block party of our own - truly one of the best days of my life - and in a world becoming crazier and seemingly closer to Armageddon every day, our community of dear friends closed ranks to look out for each other, to enjoy the good times as long as they are destined to last.
It has been a summer to remember. Now it is in the rear view mirror we will start to hunker down for what, we are told, will be a bad winter. Whatever. It will be what it will be and there's nothing anyone can do about it. Bring on the rain, bring on the snow and bring on walking to and from work in the dark. I will keep upbeat during the miserable weather by thinking about those bears, those salmon, my friends, and all the talented, wonderful people I know, folks that inspire me while the world goes to hell in a hand basket. And I will look forward to Summer 2018 in the hope it can deliver even a fraction of the magic of its predecessor.