There are plenty of pretty incredible places on this planet of ours and more than a handful of spots where I would happily set up camp. Each spot on my list is on the list for a different reason.
The East Coast of Canada I would move to for the pace of life, the people, the delightful accents, the scenery, the ever-changing weather and the seafood.
Northern Ontario I would move to for the rugged, wild, untamed wilderness, the fact that bears, moose and wolves roam free, the starry nights and the just begging to be swum in lakes.
Ireland and Scotland I would move to because just the though of it stirs my ancestral blood. Because of how I feel at home the minute I arrive. Because I actually understand what everyone is saying despite their crazy accents. Because it's rugged, it's beautiful, it's ancient and they have delicious whisky to boot.
Instead I live in Southern Ontario. And I was reminded on the weekend why that is such a wonderful place in which to live.
On Saturday morning we headed out. We stopped at a roadside market to pick up a basket of local peaches, a basket of local tomatoes, a flatbread pizza covered in local spinach, peaches and asiago cheese. And, because we couldn't resist, we grabbed a few treats - cherry, butter and lemon meringue tarts.
Then we headed a little further down the road, past vineyards, corn fields, peach and apple orchards and wineries. We made our way to Jordan to pick up a gift for my parents. Off to their house we went, driving down backroads, up the escarpment, past fields of horses and cows that made me feel like we were driving through Europe. We joined them for a spontaneous lunch that consisted of the treats we picked up at the market.
On the way out, my father handed us some local corn on the cob (yellow corn, not peaches and cream he pointed out) and a pint of local strawberries.
We stopped at the world's best meat market to pick up so local sausage and some peameal bacon. The sausage was part of our traditional pre-race dinner and the peameal bacon was for post-race toasted tomato, bacon sandwiches.
Maybe one day I will spend an extended period of time on the East Coast of Canada, in Northern Ontario or in Ireland.
In the meantime, I have found my own little happy oasis right here.