Friday, 24 July 2015

The Misery of Paradise

Last year I left Savary island saying I would never return. Somewhere in my memory I had lost this thought, it wasn't forgotten, just outwayed by unmatched scenic pictures which went with a new thought of 'oh it's beautiful, it can't have been that bad..'

Savary is an island off of the coast of BC in Canada, 5 miles long and a mile wide at best. Surrounded by Pacific Ocean views, laced with mountains and dense evergreens it is undoubtedly beautiful. I personally would consider it when thinking of some of the most memorable views from around the world, possibly even list it with some of my favourites. Scattered with unique cottages and cabins (or in some cases bigger than you're average suburban house) each self designed and built, the houses themselves give the island another endearing quality. Home from home with everything you want from a tropical island holiday. So why have I left for the second year in a row with no intention of returning..

A lot of the houses, cabins and lots were bought up in the 70's. By my generations grandparents, who dedicated their time, money and love into designing and building their perfect holiday homes. My generations parents have grown up with the island as a second home. Visiting yearly to their parents beloved island retreat. The small town vibe is overwhelming and your business is 100% not just your business. But why should the people who committed their summers for 40 years to this island relinquish their reign? And that's just it. This island belongs to a different generation. A generation contended with a simpler life. Where children played all day long with the neighbours and came home when someone rang a dinner bell, usually welcoming the neighbours children as well. Not today's children who fear every bit of the unknown, other children are a threat and seek solace in the company of strangers online. Of course that's a wild and indulgent generalisation but my point is that we are evolving (not necessarily for the better in my opinion but that's a different matter entirely) and that this island is belligerently part of the past.

Don't get me wrong, a few weeks with no wifi is not enough for me to rule out a place as somewhere I would return to. However are incredible views and wildly fortunate wildlife encounters enough? There are no memories made in a solo beach trip, the mountain range will never make me laugh and I'd rather not share a bottle of wine with the nearest deer. Which brings me (finally) to the real point. Is paradise really paradise in the wrong company? Can you fully appreciate somewhere and all it has to offer without someone to enjoy it with? Savary Island is wildly romantic and I can see why any couple would vow to watch the sunset there for the rest of their sunsets. Yet for a full family that is on the verge of outgrowing family holidays it all becomes disjointed. Family life isn't left on the shore and annoyances with one another are not forgotten as soon as toes are sandy. The setting may be different but the dynamics don't change. Leaving paradise being more of an enclosure, trapping you into more games of chess than you thought humanly possible. Savary Island belongs now and should forever to the elderly couple watching the sunset together over a glass of their favourite. Because paradise is anywhere as long as you have the right person sat next to you.


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