I’ve been traveling the past week – at least it feels that way – even though I haven’t gone further than 10 miles from home. It wasn’t exactly a staycation. I wasn’t on vacation, in fact, just the opposite was true. I’ve had an incredibly busy work week.
But I did manage to enjoy my week because of how I traveled.
Vancouver is a city surrounded by water. Where I live – in what is called the West End, basically right downtown – there is water on three sides of the small peninsula that constitutes the downtown core. False Creek on the south, the Pacific Ocean to the west, and Burrard Inlet to the north. The east is where the tiniest isthmus (I think that’s what it is) connects us to the rest of Canada.
Because of that, there are plenty of way to get out of downtown, most of which involve crossing water.
There are four bridges, the first three of them across False Creek: the Burrard Bridge (an art deco delight), the Granville Bridge (your typical not so exciting bridge built in the 50s or 60s just to move traffic from north to south or vice-versa), the Cambie Bridge (broad and low and fun to walk), and the Lions Gate Bridge (one of the prettiest suspension bridges around – think Golden Gate).
And then there are the boats. You can take a tiny walk-on ferry across False Creek and from one end to the other. It’s a treat even if you’re going to work. I do that pretty regularly to do some shopping on Granville Island.
But my favorite is the Seabus. It takes you from downtown Vancouver across Burrard Inlet to the north shore. Fifteen minutes of traversing one of the busiest ports on the west coast of North America. I really did feel as if I got away – how could I not when this is what I saw from my window?
I’m a huge fan of train travel (and train music) and although I didn’t travel on the train, I did spend some times drooling over the tracks. These tracks could take me almost anywhere – as long, of course, as I was traveling east. The Rockies. The prairies. The Great Lakes. The big eastern cities. The Maritimes.
So I spent the week on the water singing train songs. Seems a bit odd but kind of appropriate.
My favorite train songs? And I defy you to not find one of these songs that stick in your head and you sing for days.
Canadian Railway Trilogy
City of New Orleans
Me and Bobby Magee
In the Pines
Okay, you see what I mean? This list could go on forever – but trains are nostalgic. They’re beautiful. And that whistle? No sound is more mournful than a train whistle at night.
Instead of a staycation, I took a dreamcation or a songcation or a transportationcation. And I felt just as good as if I’d actually left town.