Friends, family, and snowless in Fernie


The great white menace didn’t show up

Well ain’t that perty?!  / Laura Billett

Well ain’t that perty?! / Laura Billett

Reading week is a fantastic week, coincidentally overlapping Family Day and providing students with ample to time to work, read, or if they are lucky, relax. Some students are fortunate enough to escape Regina for warmer temperatures or for the fun-filled, snowcapped mountains. This year, I was lucky enough to experience both.

My sister, cousins, and friend-who-should-be-family, and I drove to Fernie, British Columbia for five days of what we had imagined would be skiing, hot tubbing, and enough drinking to keep us warm. I figured that being stuck with family for five days could have two results. Either we would disown each other, making the next family get-together terribly awkward, or we would get along splendidly, and it would be a magically fun getaway.

I am happy to report that the trip was a success, and I feel closer to those crazy people I call family. What did not turn out so well, however, was the skiing part of the trip — the part of the trip we all took for granted. When we arrived, we found Fernie in the midst of a melt.

Temperatures were balmy! Hot tubbing became unnecessary. I once had to sit outside, beside the hot tub, on a wooden bench, with my feet on the grass in order to find a comfortable body temperature. Yes, I sat outside in my bathing suit, looking at snow-capped mountains, in the middle of February.

Meanwhile, you poor suckers who stayed in Regina were faced with blizzards and terrible, albeit usual, temperatures well below zero. Sure, skiing sucks when the snow is either non-existent or the slush has refrozen into ice, but at least I was comfortable outside in a t-shirt.

Before anyone pelts me with some snow balls because I am rubbing my fantastic reading week weather in your frost-bitten faces, I will stop bragging about the balmy resort of Fernie.

However, what I realized after partying, laughing, skiing, and hot tubbing with my family was that Family Day is not the ridiculous excuse for a day off that I previously deemed it to be. This time spent with my family made me love them even more, and I hope they feel similarly.

While I may not have spent the amount of time I had hoped or planned to complete schoolwork (and I will likely regret this decision shortly), I am beginning to believe in the power of Family Day.

Sure, we all have ample school and other work to keep us occupied over the week break, but honestly, no one seems to ever do that work. Taking time away from the usual grind to relax and have fun with your family and friends is revitalizing. I think it is the refresher needed to get us through the rest of the long winter semester without becoming overwhelmed and unhappy. Truly, spending time with friends and family, wherever you are, is just as important as finishing that essay.

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