For a moment, I forgot that truism: Wherever you go, there you are. But this vacation really is bringing it home for me, as mediocre-to-horrid weather converges with omnipresent construction, phone conversations with convalescing parents and now, a sick kid.
Yeah, first time I've ever left her alone and, 3 days later, she's flat out. Probably mono. Note: This is a kid who rarely gets any bugs, not even a cold. I spent much of the day yesterday on the phone with the doctor's office. I have a fantastic group of friends, all of whom are on a roster of check in, and they've been amazing. Sandra opted to work from home yesterday aft and brought Miranda lots of soft, healthy food. Hilary, a pediatrician, has been chatting, check-in texting with her and looking at photos of her throat. Of course, M's best friend and boyfriend are omnipresent. But I'm really far away. As are my parents. And Scott's parents are in no shape to assist, not that they've ever been involved in that way. I've been in constant contact with Hilly to ensure that I needn't end this trip altogether. She's convinced, even if the outcome is mono (and she suspects it is), that M will be fine for 4 more days without constant mother-intervention, however, this is a sort of damned if you do or damned if you don't kind of scenario.
What I haven't mentioned sooner - because it's so par for the course - is that I've been in pretty significant pain since just before we left. New spot, though! I may have subluxated my tailbone, though I can't imagine how - or it's just a novel place for myofascial pain referral. I've got a bunch of chiro and osteopath appts when I get back, but sitting isn't working out so well. Mercifully, I can perch for meals, but not comfortably, which is likely undercutting enjoyment of my fave activity - eating.
And, not to harp on stupid inconvenience, but I come to this place because it's gorgeous - and gotta say, there's SO much significant construction going on right now (like right outside my window and everywhere else) that it's impossible to walk around, much less to enjoy the architecture. Furthermore, it's like QC blew its brains out on the 400th celebration and, frankly, it's looking tired. What I've always loved about this place is that the Disney Village component is well-tempered by great food and beautiful vistas. This time, the meal scene has been fairly pedestrian - I actually had to send a meal back at one of my long-time favourite restaurants. This shocks me because, honestly, the food in Quebec is impeccable. Not to mention, it's gone from whimsical here to tourist-centrale. Not my thing.
I do get that outdoor summer construction is how we sidestep decay. I'm really sensitive to it right now because Toronto is in a bizarre conflation of construction projects which basically makes any sort of transit near-impossible. (Even walking to work on the side-streets is a traffic jam and it's wall-to-wall chaos everywhere.) I didn't realize to what extent I was counting on a quiet and ease.
To mitigate my (let's just call it) disappointment, we opted to do something totally spur of the moment: We're going to the bucolic Baie St. Paul tomorrow - for an overnight stay at La Ferme. Lord, I hope the weather improves (as they've promised it will) because that's a long time in a car for rain. Also, I'm going to be driving for the first time in 5 years so I'd do well with the best of conditions. Scott and I have talked frequently about renting a place in the Charlevoix, in future, in lieu of this QC pilgrimage. This will give us a chance to explore some options because I don't think we'll be back to QC any time soon.
One very exciting potentiality, once we get to the Baie, is a take a tour of the food garden with the chef. The hotel is in a pristine river delta and the eluvial soil makes for awesome produce in spectacular environs. I would LOVE to tour a working farm with the guy making the food.
As today is destined to be gloomy, I sense we'll hang in the hotel (not that I'm looking for extra time to brood or feel anxious) and then go to the Musee (literally across the road). Tonight, we have plans at L'Initiale - perhaps the only QC food destination I've never been to because, utterly bizarrely, it has been closed for one reason or another, every single time I've ever been here. As you can tell, my mood isn't stellar, and my food-to-date experiences haven't wowed me (though most have been more than adequate). I don't want to get my hopes up because that's the path of dissatisfaction, but I would love a crazy-awesome dinner-experience, replete with amazing food and wine, perfect service and beautiful ambiance.
On a final note, I find it interesting how blogs diverge from Instagram, that wonderful, just-in-time repository of fine moments. My Instagram feed has been as honest as this post - capturing the intensity of my feelings at any given time. And yet, Instagram evades the totality, the complexity. Maybe that's why it's so popular. One doesn't have to engage with the mood of the post-er. One has no thought of the turn round the corner or the next 12 shots that don't express instantaneous perfection.
I'm a complex person going through a complicated phase. My complications would seem petty to those who struggle infinitely more, but they are real to me and I must work actively to vanquish them. I wonder if there's any way to pull this vacay back from the edge - to find the solitude and total detachment from what I've left behind. If I can't do it here, then where can I? Which takes me full circle: Wherever I go, there am I.
If only I could be everywhere at once.