"Protecting Saturday" - Our Day Trip to Jasper

Getting out of the city has been at the top of my priority list for a few weeks now; but between travelling around for Thanksgiving, work, and trying to fit in Mark's school schedule, we haven't had a ton of down time to just do whatever we wanted. We didn't truly have a "work/school-free" Saturday to spend adventuring. Friday I mentioned the idea of making a day trip to Jasper, not even really knowing if I was even serious about it. Mark and I both had a hard time resisting the idea, and with a little prioritizing, we left the house at 630am Saturday morning and hit the road.

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I can't remember the last time that I acted like a true tourist in a place that I've been to dozens of times before. We embraced our Saturday as if we were visiting Jasper for the very first time. Taking in the sights, the sounds, the wildlife. With no agenda we were free to spend the entire day rush-and-worry free. We visited the Athabasca Falls, which are actually one attraction that neither of us had seen before. We joined the abundance of tourists wandering in awe of such incredible beauty. The river rolls over the falls into these whirpool-like basins, called "potholes", and then continues to flow. The riverbed was scattered with countless inukshuks, and the water was the most beautiful shade of blue. It sounds so silly expressing this, but I am always utterly baffled by the beauty of our backyard. Canada's Rockies are some of the most unbelievable and beautiful nature-made structures I have ever seen, and it's breathtaking to witness such a wonder, despite the number of times I've seen them before.

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We drove up to Marmot Basin, and parked the truck simply to take in the view from 1935 meters above sea level. My favourite part of the day was taking in the quiet. We were the only people on the long winding road up to the ski resort, and once turning the truck off, we were surrounded by silence. I've missed the quite, I've missed being able to hear the wind rustling the tree branches. I've missed the slow, soft trickling of mountain water.

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In the latest volume of Kinfolk, there's an article that really touched my heart. Volume nine of Kinfolk is all about re-learning how to enjoy the weekends. It encourages us to re-create the boundaries between "work and off-hours" and focus on "re-learning how to do nothing, live more adventurously, and embrace those two days, which are meant equally for rejuvination and invigoration". One article in particular titled, "Protecting Saturday" by Austin Sailsbury had such an impact on me, that I couldn't resist sharing this excerpt with you:

"Whatever the season, protecting Saturday is about getting away without a plan--or making a plan and then completely ignoring it as we wallow in spontaneity and rest. On the best of these self-imposed Sabbath days, we sit together closer and for longer. We hear each other's words and silences better, and we rediscover the reasons we first found each other captivating. On protected Saturdays, we inhabit a private island, safe from the cares of the mainland and its 24-hour news cycle, with it's relentless stream of updates and alerts and incoming messages. Once there, we're able to live out all the chapters of morning, noon and night as they naturally unfold. And there, on our island of protected days, we build upon the past, dream of the future and--perhaps most importantly--enjoy the subtle wonder of the present".