If you have been on a vacation or camping trip, spent time on a beach or relaxed at a cottage, fished off a dock or toured the lake in a boat – heck, even if you’ve even been to an amusement park anytime between June and now – I have secretly resented you.

Okay, to be clear, I like you just fine and I only want good things for you, honestly. I genuinely wanted you to enjoy the summer, have adventures, take a break from reality and play. Absolutely. These are all good things. You deserve them. Truly. But you left me behind.

I want you to picture the way your dog looks at you when you leave for the airport. You’ve got your luggage all stacked up by the door. You are waiting for the car service to arrive to take you to the airport. Your dog knows that they are being left behind in the care of a relative who will not know how to play fetch, nor understand the need for treats at a frequency to which the dog is accustomed. You know that dog guilt face? That’s been my sad face since school let out in late June. It feels like everybody had an awesome summer but me.

Oh, I know. Cue the violins. Break out the tissues. Always a bridesmaid, never a bride. First world problems. I know, I know. But when I look in the rearview mirror of summer 2018, I can’t help but think so much of it passed me by.

Okay, there was Riverfest Elora. That was awesome. And there was that night I danced with my dear friends. There were some good times with my kids, driving somewhere (there was a lot of driving). Plus, I finally got to an Elora Mohawks game (totally worth it). The Carpenter’s birthday at a local pub was fun. But for the most part, and for reasons I won’t trouble you with, summer didn’t feel full like summer’s past.

It’s almost over and I haven’t done any of the things I believe are mandatory to enjoy summer. I have yet to swim in a lake. No long car rides to cottage country or anywhere that didn’t end in a rugby field. Several trips to the airport, but no ticket to ride. And not one chip truck beyond the borders of my town. That is a travesty.

But that’s all about to change.

I am finally getting my week of summer vacation and it will be spent at a cottage in the heart of the Kawartha Lakes. Every day I will enjoy my morning coffee watching the sun dance across the top of the waves. And if it rains, I will take an umbrella and watch the drops melt into the lake.

There will be kayak adventures, late night bonfires, walks to town for ice cream (read: sorbet) and fresh fish dinners. I can’t wait to hear the engines of boats passing by. It is one of my favourite sounds. There will be laughter with friends who have become family. There will be moments of solitude too. My extroverted self and introverted soul will each get a turn. I will unplug. I will not reply. I will not engage.

I can’t wait to sit and read a book made out of paper, with no backlit screen. I’m going to sleep, deeply, with the smell of bonfire in my hair and lake water on my skin. And it will be worth the wait. I cannot wait to sink my feet into the sand of beautiful Bobcaygeon. See you soon.