When we crossed the border at Walhalla, ND, we learnt our Southern Neighbours don’t experience the same number of long weekends as we Canadians. Today’s Civic Holiday came at just the right time.

About a 45 minute drive south lies a beautiful campground, golf course, and lake where many people in our area venture to throughout the summer. The state park is clean (except for the lake water), well kept, and surprisingly private. I now understand why everyone talked about Cavalier when I was younger.

The best part about the site wasn’t the perfectly pruned trees or the soft beach sand, but rather the fact that my phone’s plan doesn’t extend into the United States. My phone sat in the car for the entire day and I didn’t look at it until we got home around 9:30 in the evening.

I had an analog wristwatch, a bottle of water, swimming trunks, and my camera for the day. We did a tiny amount of hiking and a large amount of suntanning. We chatted with family and friends and ate some fantastic campfire steak.

And it was the most fun I’ve had all summer.

Over time, I’m finding a deep enjoyment in disconnecting from the world. So often, daily work can wait until tomorrow and a more opportune time. And increasingly, what I can’t control on the other side of my phone is a stress I don’t need to deal with.

There’s some irony in this technological revolution we are experiencing. As we progress and as the calendar flips forward, we adopt those things which make life and work easier with a quick pace.

But all those things come with their own tradeoffs. And 24-hour accessibility via my iPhone is not something I care for.

My definition of recreation continues to evolve. At one point, recreation meant traveling, experiencing different cultures, spending time with friends, and having too many drinks after the game. Today, recreation is about disconnecting, enjoying some of the niceties of life, spending time with family, and having a glass of scotch here and there.1

This is all just me growing up. But I’m a bit embarrassed for all those times when I rolled my eyes at my parents for wanting to sit back and relax. I understand now why they asked for time off.

Here’s to the rest of a relaxing summer.


  1. And gardening. I truly wish I had a garden to tend to during evenings and weekends.