Last Saturday, I came back from a weeklong trip in Maine.
Every summer – and I mean, EVERY summer, on the second Saturday of August, my family and I drive all the way down to Wells. My parents used to do the same when they were in their 20s. Luckily, their shabby tent has been replaced by a comfortable cottage by the sea. On a few occasions, we tried going somewhere else, but we would always leave disappointed. Not because New Brunswick’s scenery wasn’t nice or the Lac St-Jean activities weren’t fun enough, it just wasn’t Maine. Since then, we’ve made sure that our itinerary remains exactly the same.
My dad drives the van, my mom plays the co-pilot and the whole crew is in the back singing along INXS’ songs. (Remember Life Aquatic’s poster? That’s exactly what we look like. Minus the red hats.) Six hours south of Montreal, we finally arrive in Wells, open the windows and let the salted air fill our lungs. We’re good. We’ve made it.
The feeling is comparable to when you get home after a long trip and put down your heavy duffle bag on the floor. It’s cosy, it’s reassuring, it’s inviting. It’s home. Except, in our case, it’s a home we visit only once a year.
This year was even more special, considering that it was my first week off since launching my blog. I had also officially moved into my new place a week prior to our departure. Needless to say, I needed to RELAX.
This time, the schedule consisted of:
- Napping on the beach.
- Reading L’île des gauchers by Alexandre Jardin. By the way, he writes the most beautiful-not-kitschy love stories. I cry every time.
- Stuffing my face in chips.
- Drinking locally brewed beers while watching the sunset.
- Telling jokes that only my sisters and I can understand.
- Jogging along the coast.
- Sleeping again.
A full week with no work-related tasks (and wifi!) made me realize how crucial it is to make space for people you care about, culture, physical activity, quality sleep and a good laugh. Once in a while, doing absolutely nothing is also a fantastic idea. Although it’s obvious to some people, I – who loves working more than anything – had forgotten about those vital small breaks in the midst of my 12-hour shifts.
Physical and psychological room is essential to be able to create. I want to spend time looking at a white wall and let my brain wander or allow myself a three-hour long dinner with friends and let someone’s sentence spark my next post’s idea.
To produce inspiring and unique work, I have to accept that I also need to NOT work. On that note, I’m taking the rest of the day off to go see Beach House in Burlington.
So how did you relax this summer? Do you have a go-to destination that feels like a second home?