My friend Laura and I decided to go on a 5 day “girls” road trip August 31 – September 5th. Much of the route was new to me, but Laura is a seasoned pro at getting in her car and heading “west” after many family trips.
Laura and I are both what I would consider “fast-paced” career gals in Calgary, Alberta Canada. Laura owns an incredible little spray tanning salon in Calgary called Sundrops Studios, and she is a creative marketing goddess, and also a successful small business owner. I am an IT consultant for an oil and gas company and take care of the service delivery side of collaboration technologies such as video conferencing, telepresence, and in essence, any technology the company uses to connect people in different locations.
Both of us love our careers and our lives and wouldn’t change it for the world. However, what we did agree on with this trip, is that it will be divine to get off the grid for a little while and enjoy some hiking, tranquility and actually being able to look towards the sky and see constellations instead of street lights. Our route for five days was as follows:
1. Vernon BC – Tiki Lodge
2. Kelowna BC – Delta Grand Okanogan Resort
3. Jasper, AB – Tekarra Lodge
4. Numtijah, AB – Numtijah Lodge (approximately 40 minutes outside Lake Louise)
5. Numtijah, AB – Numtijah Lodge (we are spending two nights here)
For some reason, tranquility in these locations eluded us. Everywhere we went, we were bombarded with either construction or screaming children. I understand as a reasonable adult that things need to be repaired, and happy children need to shriek at the top of their lungs, we did not escape it for our entire trip.
Giant Cedars – Revelstoke BC
This stop we made on the way to Vernan, British Columbia. It is a tranquil rainforest with a beautiful boardwalk that does a loop through the proud, tall cedars. It is overwhelming beautiful to the senses, between the heat and humidity on your skin, and the deep scent of cedar in the air, and especially, the chain saw in the background, grinding away the entire time as they were cleaning up the trees in the parking lot. I believe we were just stepping off the boardwalk to head back to our car when the dude with the chainsaw removed his ball cap, wiped his brow and put the chainsaw down.
Tiki Lodge in Vernon BC
Tiki Lodge has a beautiful kidney shaped pool that sits beside a quaint little outdoor restaurant complete with patio lanterns. The grass is perfectly manicured. Right next door to us (with paper thin walls), there was a very young family with small kids. The evening we settled into bed, there was squealing and carrying on next door. In the morning, as I was packing, there was a little boy peering into my window, and he wandered next door again to his mom and said, “mommy! There’s a lady next door in the window – can I go visit her?” Thank goodness she said, “no, honey”. No harm done. Laura and I went to the beautiful little restaurant beside the pool for breakfast before we left the hotel, and we enjoyed some beautiful eggs benny to the sound of a saw, as they did repairs on the building while we ate.
Delta Grand Okanagan, Kelowna BC
Delta Grand I would guess is a four or five star hotel, with a high class swagger, a full service spa, outdoor pools and hot tubs. It is not for the faint of heart, price wise. The hotel was staffed with “beautiful people” and we felt like we were in Hollywood. When we first arrived there, we couldn’t wait to get down by the pool for some lunch and drinks. There are two huge swimming pools and a hot tub, with full restaurant and bar service. We put on our bathing suits and head down to the outdoor pool with glee. One pool is in service and the second one is empty. No harm done. We go to the bar, and I order a Pina Colada and a grilled chicen sandwich and Laura orders a Ceasar, salted with no spices to drink and a ceasar salad with shrimp for lunch. No sooner do we grab our drinks, and order our lunch, the hotel starts sandblasting the second pool. We hung out by the pool for a few hours, had lunch, swam and read our books. The whole time… to the sweet sound of the sandblaster.
Tekerra Lodge Jasper Alberta
Laura was telling me as we booked the hotel that there really isn’t any choice but to relax at a place like Tekerra Lodge, since there is no television, internet access or telephones. I brought three books (one business book and two girly fluffy books) and of course, my laptop to write articles. I had a heavenly sleep and I was awake by 8 a.m. ready for breakfast. As I was lying in bed I was amazed that the only sound I could hear were the birds. This is what I was looking for! I got on my yoga pants, a sweater and some flip flops and started walking down to the dining area to purchase breakfast. No sooner was I out of my cabin, the whole walk to the dining area all I could hear was the sound of construction. Tekerra Lodge is approximately a 5-10 minute drive from Jasper and I would guess that the construction was happening in and around Jasper and I further suppose sound travels. There was no construction on Tekerra Lodge’s site that I could see, but it was loud and clear, my entire walk through the windy wilderness paths to the dining room.
Numtijah Lodge, Lake Louise
Finally we are “off the grid”. No cell phone service, no wifi. We have nothing but a cabinet full of board games and a library full of books. We have finally found some form of solace. We get to our room and open the window to smell the beautiful mountain air. As we breathe in, we are inundated with the sound of the lodge’s generator that supplies power to the building. So much for silence.
I am not sure why Laura and I were attracting so much noise throughout our vacation. Let me say that this by no means ruined our trip. However, given the rules of the law of attraction, it seems that from that first “seemingly coincidental” chain saw at the Giant Cedars Boardwalk, that we acknowledged it, had a laugh, and then moved onto our next stop to find another jarring noise in the middle of paradise yet again. Our attitude about this noise phenomenon was very much taken in stride and with humor at every step of the way. It was more curious that we could not escape it – not even in a cabin in the woods in Northern Alberta. All in all, despite the racket, it was an amazing vacation.