I love traveling, and I have many, many stories about trips that I have taken that were amazing.
As for family vacations, my favorite one of all time is our trip to Gettysburg when I was younger. I wrote about this before, and as you know, I gave my grandmother a heart attack. We decided that leaping over crevices 2.5’ wide and 80’ deep was a great idea. Sorry, mom, but I’d do it again.
Two other vacations stick out in my mind as well.
We traveled to Fort Lauderdale, Florida for a sled hockey tournament, and while there – we discovered so many cool critters and plant life. The birds were my favorite, but truthfully, the nonstop sunshine sold it. On the plane, taking off from Lauderdale, I cried and turned to my ex-husband and grandmother, saying, “I need to live here, this feels like home.”
And we did. My ex and I lived together in Florida for 6 years, and I moved away in 2020, but he remains. I don’t think I want to go back to Florida. To visit, yes, but live – no. It is far too expensive, and the governor sucks. The people though, are hilarious.
The final vacation that really sticks with me is another sled hockey tournament, but this time in San Jose, California. I had never been to the West Coast yet, and it was an incredible experience! We not only had dinner with the San Jose Shark’s team, but we were able to go to their home arena and take pictures with the team.
It wasn’t the gameplay, nor the amazing Shark’s opportunity. It was the trip to the Sequoia National Park. We drove all the way up the mountain to check out the Redwoods Basin. Then we went to see the tallest and biggest tree in the forest. It was so humbling to sit within the tree. It’s massive trunk encircling my tiny existence. It felt like a hug from an ancient ancestor. The feeling of the roots coursing through me. It was surreal.
In the heart of Redwoods Basin stands,
Nature's grandest, oldest guardian of lands.
A colossus of time, an ancient embrace,
The Sequoia's might, an eternal grace.
Roots delve deep, intertwining the earth,
Drawing strength from ages of humble birth.
Whispers of the wind, they sway and bend,
As life's tapestry weaves, an endless blend.
Beneath the sky's expanse, it stands alone,
A towering presence, its majesty honed.
Moss-laden branches reach for heavens above,
A testament to resilience, nature's love.
Through centuries, seasons come and go,
Witnessing tales of joy and woe.
A silent sentinel, steadfast and true,
The giant Sequoia, the chosen few.
Oh, oldest and biggest, noble and wise,
Your grandeur captures mortal eyes.
In the depths of Redwood’s Basin, you reside,
An ode to nature's splendor, forever to abide.
©️ Arwen-Wynter Oakley 2023