HORNER’S CORNER: Keep summer memories safe

It's going to be a long, cold winter before we can make some more

Labour Day has come and gone and now we must all leave summer behind us.

It’s time to get back to work, to refocus our efforts, either at our place of business or at our school. Routine will once again hold sway over our daily lives.

I suppose it’s comforting in a way — familiar.

There is a time for adventures, but that time has passed, at least for now.

But what’s that you say? You didn’t have any summertimea adventures?

Oh I don’t think so. Whether or not you had adventures this summer really only depends on how low you are willing to set the bar.

Was rappelling seven storeys into the blackness of the rainbarrell in Horne Lake Caves an adventure? I sure thought so at the time, but realistically I was on a guided tour.

Was riding the tide with mask and snorkel at Manson’s Landing an adventure? It sure felt like it as I was swept over the creatures on the bottom like a jet fighter. Realistically though Alex and I were being swept into the safety of the shallows. Was this another ersatz adventure? Maybe.

How about kayaking from Smelt Bay on Cortes Island to Shark Spit on Marina, and from there paddling to explore mysterious Carrington Lagoon? It sure was fun, but it’s not like we were in the total wilderness or anything. There was even toilet paper in one of the outhouses!

Perhaps going to the airshow in Comox with Alex and his grandpa was an adventure — if only in trying to extricate ourselves from the parking lot once all the flying was finished.

How about walking the docks at Cowichan Bay, dreaming about sailboats? It was more of an excursion, really I suppose.

Then there was hunting for octopus on Hornby Island. We didn’t find any — again — but it was sure fun looking!

Maybe sitting on the back porch, watching the Perseid meteor shower until all hours of the night was an adventure. Perhaps hitching a ride to get ice cream for the first time ever with my son was an adventure. It sure seemed like one for him.

Normally you wouldn’t describe the guy at the Chemainus restaurant interrupting the family of Italian tourists to first go ga-ga over their baby and then begin a one-sided conversation about Sylvio Berlusconi’s bunga-bunga parties as being an adventure, but Alex and I would disagree. Talk about awkward! Yikes!

But that’s the thing. Where do we draw the line? To me, who has been kindly described as having a “rich inner life,” all of these things can be seen as adventures. Why? Because they’re memorable. These moments — and there were many of them actually — defined my summer of 2013.

I bet every one of you out there has at least one such favourite moment from the past three months that similarly defines your summer. Maybe it was something at a barbecue or a party. Maybe it was a sunset on the beach, building a sandcastle, moving to the music at a festival or visiting a friend in a far-away place.

It doesn’t have to be a big thing. Maybe it was just an unspoken moment of closeness  with the love of your life or the way your little nephew or niece laughed that time when you made a funny face.

All of you, I’m almost certain, had at least one such slice of time that in later years you’ll remember as “oh, that was in the summer of 2013.”

Hold onto that moment. Treasure it. Keep it safe. The word is it’s going to be a long, cold hard winter. We’re going to need that little bit of inner warmth.


Neil Horner is the assistant editor of The NEWS and a regular columnist.



Just Posted

(File photo)
The Parksville Civic and Technology Centre at 100 Jensen Ave. (PQB News file photo)
Parksville 2020 annual report now ready for public feedback

Documents can be viewed online; comments or questions to be submitted before noon on July 5, 2021

FILE – Perry Bellegarde, National Chief of the Assembly of First Nations, takes part in an event on Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Tuesday, July 7, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Indigenous Peoples Day must be a ‘call to action’, says Assembly of First Nations chief

Discovery of children at Kamloops residential school site must lead to change, Perry Bellegarde says

A Lotto 6/49 ticket purchased in Parksville for the June 19, 2021 draw is a $3M winner. (Submitted photo)
Winning Lotto 6/49 ticket worth $3M purchased in Parksville

Lottery prize winners have 52 weeks to claim jackpot

The border crossing into the United States is seen during the COVID-19 pandemic in Lacolle, Que. on February 12, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Paul Chiasson
VIDEO: Border quarantine to soon lift for fully vaccinated Canadians

Eligible travellers must still take multiple COVID-19 tests

Chilliwack secondary school’s principal is apologizing after a quote equating graduation with the end of slavery in the U.S. was included in the 2020-2021 yearbook. (Screenshot from submitted SnapChat)
B.C. student’s yearbook quote equates grad to end of slavery; principal cites editing error

Black former student ‘disgusted’ as CSS principal apologizes for what is called an editing error

Skeena MLA Ellis Ross. (Photo by Peter Versteege)
BC Liberal leadership candidate condemns ‘senseless violence’ of Okanagan church fires

Skeena MLA Ellis Ross says reconciliation isn’t about revenge for past tragedies

A coroner’s inquest will be taking place at the Capitol Theatre in Port Alberni for the next week. (ELENA RARDON / ALBERNI VALLEY NEWS)
Teen B.C. mom who died following police custody recalled as ‘friend to many’

Police sent Jocelyn George to hospital after intoxication had gone ‘beyond the realm’ of normal detox

FILE - In this Nov. 29, 2020, file photo, Las Vegas Raiders defensive end Carl Nassib leaves the field after an NFL football game against the Atlanta Falcons in Atlanta. Nassib on Monday, June 21, 2021, became the first active NFL player to come out as gay. Nassib announced the news on Instagram, saying he was not doing it for the attention but because “I just think that representation and visibility are so important.” (AP Photo/John Bazemore, File)
Nassib becomes first active NFL player to come out as gay

More than a dozen NFL players have come out as gay after their careers were over

Penticton Indian Band Chief Greg Gabriel speaks to the Sacred Hearts Catholic Church burning down early Monday morning, June 21, 2021. (Monique Tamminga Western News)
Penticton band chief condemns suspicious burning of 2 Catholic churches

Both Catholic church fires are deemed suspicious, says RCMP

COVID-19 daily cases reported to B.C. public health, seven-day moving average to June 17, 2021. (B.C. Centre for Disease Control)
B.C.’s COVID-19 infections drop to 90 on Sunday, 45 Monday

Pandemic spread dwindles as 77% of adults receive vaccine

Emergency vehicles are parked outside of the Wintergreen Apartments on Fourth Avenue. (SUSAN QUINN / Alberni Valley News)
Port Alberni RCMP investigate stabbing on Fourth Avenue

Two men were found with ‘significant’ injuries near Wintergreen Apartments

By protesting uninvited in First Nations’ territories, conservationists are acting in a neocolonial or paternalistic manner, says Huu-ay-aht Chief Robert Dennis. Photo by Heather Thomson
A closer look: do Vancouver Island First Nations support the war in the woods?

First Nations/environmentalist old growth alliance uneasy, if it exists at all

Most Read