I hope you guys have a great time. Remember, I’m not responsible for your divorce after a fortnight of travelling together! Harvey, bid us farewell as we took the wheel of our SUV and drove off from Toronto airport. It had been 10 years since our last trip together just as a couple, so it was with some excitement and much apprehension that we set out on our 15 day self-drive trip across Ontario and Quebec, two of the biggest provinces in Eastern Canada. Harvey represented Ontario tourism and had helped us plan this wonderful trip.
As I set my watch to the local time, I couldn’t help but remember something I had learnt long back. You spring in spring and fall in fall! That was the easiest way I could remember whether to turn the watch ahead or behind when the daylight saving time comes into action. DST was an alien concept to most Indians and forgetting to reset the watch could have dire consequences when travelling abroad during spring or fall. Actually, I find the concept of four distinct seasons and season change itself utterly fascinating. Having experienced year after year of only hot, hotter and hottest seasons, I had a deep-rooted wish to enjoy the distinct seasonal changes of the year. So, luckily enough, when I got a chance to visit Canada in October I jumped at the wonderful opportunity with my husband Himanshu.
From Toronto we made our way towards the ski resort of Blue Mountains which was very easy to find and quite a nice drive. I even got used to driving on the opposite side of the road as they do in North America. We checked-in and stepped out on the balcony with a cup of tea. To the right I could see the entire resort with its beautiful man-made lake where kids were rowing small boats. Their laughter and silly banter filled the air and I took in a deep breath. The air was crisp, pure and very refreshing. As I turned to the left I could see the mountains covered with row after row of trees in gold, oranges and deep reds. As the sun set, the trees bathed in the evening sun turned a fiery red and stunning gold. It was the most spectacular sight and for the next 10 minutes I was lost in this golden world. Nature had put on a spectacular show and I was surely not going to miss even a single minute! I stood there spellbound with this first glimpse of the magnificent fall colours specially put on display by the birches , beeches, poplars, oaks and of course the maples!
Thoroughly refreshed and nourished with a sumptuous breakfast, a good night’s sleep and pure air to breathe we made our way towards scenic caves the local attraction of Blue Mountains. Our first stop here was the suspension bridge, an excellent vantage point to savour the views of the Georgian Bay and the surroundings. I had always expected it to be a good view from here, but nothing had prepared me for what lay ahead. On the bridge, we were surrounded by the fall foliage which was at the peak of its autumn colour. The trees here were a brighter orange, a deeper gold, a darker brown and as red as blood. Suddenly, carrying the camera didn’t seem so painful anymore as I tried to capture each and every tree in sight. Finally, we moved from the suspension bridge towards the zip line. The ‘thunderbird’ as it’s called is a twin zip-line so we could get on it as the same time. As we got our kits ready we climbed up the zip line towers and soared in the air over the trees trying to soak in the wonderful atmosphere around us. Remembering Harvey’s words I smiled to myself as we enjoyed the twin zip line together. It was indeed fun to travel as a couple after long! Life would have been easier if I’d known that this gold makes you happier than the metal, Himanshu teased as we bid adieu to the fall foliage here and drove towards Muskoka, our next destination…