One of the most popular episodes of “Corner Gas”, the comedy show that put Saskatchewan on the map, brought up the concept of “stay-cation”, as a form of taking a break without the need for extensive travel.
Unfortunately for many people, that is exactly what will be the norm for the summer of 2020, as “stay-cations” may be all that families are willing to go on, given the fears and concerns of COVID-19.
Canada is doing quite well in reducing the numbers of infections, particularly here in Saskatchewan, but south of the 49th Parallel, our neighbours are not doing so well. About half of the states of America are showing increasing numbers of COVID-19, and some are showing very alarming spikes in their numbers, such as in Texas and Florida.
The proximity of the U.S. to our fair land is concerning, particularly if more Americans catch on to the scam of claiming to travel to Alaska on the pretext of vacationing in Banff or some other Canadian destination. All we need is a few families bringing COVID here to cause our numbers to explode again, such as if they vacation in a large urban area like Calgary, Toronto or Vancouver.
The view of Brent Leroy suntanning in a lawnchair in front of the gas station may not be far off for many families who may be unwilling to risk travelling very far, even within Canada.
On the other hand, a family who carefully makes their travel plans with a view to spending a week or two camping and being careful to be physically distant from fellow vacationers could still have an enjoyable time off.
We don’t need to live by fear or to govern our lives and activities by fear. We can use common sense and caution, and still be able to enjoy some down time with our family members or friends at a lake, campground or just by sightseeing through the Rockies.
There are also some very good options available right here in Saskatchewan, whether one likes to golf, fish, camp or hike, cycle or to go photographing the “Living Skies” of our province.
There may be some fewer options as some facilities are not open yet due to COVID-19, but the natural beauty of our province is open for all to see, and in the great outdoors, you are not likely to be coming into contact with the dreaded virus.
Considering that many people have been shut-in or severely restricted in their activities since March or April, getting outside in the fresh air and warm sunshine would be a very healthy and enjoyable way to spend one’s summertime.
There are, after all, a lot of parks, trails and campgrounds in the Weyburn region, or within a short drive of the southeast area, to relax and enjoy.