>When I left London, Ontario over twenty years ago, I hated the Southwestern Ontario landscape. Rolling hills, red barns, straight roads everwhere. Hmph, not for me, I thought. I had just had my first European experience — three months in the south of France — and I was itching to explore the world. I left in a huff and a puff and I vowed never to return.
Twenty years of exploring later, I find myself obsessed with the same landscape which drove me away. In particular, I love the area north of London, near Lake Huron. I love the heavy air (heavy in comparison to the dry breezes of the Prairies), the rusty-tasting water, the yellow brick fair houses, the restored one-room school houses.
But most of all, I love the blue, Mediterranian-like waters of Lake Huron. Looking back, I realized that many of my happy memories are connected to the Lake. When I was younger we had a piece of property up near Goderich. We would go often during the summer and my sisters and I would run around in the woods all day long. I was always disappointed that our property wasn’t on the lake because this is where I wanted to be. I remember a trip to Point Farms, the provincial campsite near our property when I finally got to swim in the lake.
Kai and the lovely Lake Huron
Now as a mom, I have the opportunity to share Lake Huron with Kai. This summer we planned a six-week long trip away from Edmonton. We spent almost two weeks in Ontario and most of this time on Lake Huron. My sister Susan and her kids were dying to camp and the Pinery campground seemed an obvious choice — only one hour from London, we had a fair easy escape to my parents if the weather went awry.
What an absolutely lovely experience. We were only about 200 metres away from the beach, tucked in behind some dunes and pine groves. The kids spent hours and hours playing in the sand and the water, while the adults zoned out to the sound of the waves. We left all of our electronics at home and we didn’t miss them all! Because we were close to London, my parents were able to join us for dinner or activities without having to sleep in a tent or a camping mattress! Kai was truly in heaven with his cousins and the beach, even if he didn’t dare put a toe in the water!
Kai, Nicole and Brayden
Canoeing with Grandpa
When you are four, you can run around with your pants around your ankles
Building a sand castle with Simon, Klara and Kai
Why be scared of the water when you have Lightning McQueen water wings?
The two weeks in Ontario were the first chapter of our long trip. At the end of July, we flew to Hamburg for a month of excitement in Germany. More on this to come!