A simple post today, inspired by Sarah at The Sunday Spill and her post Because Everything Feels Lighter at Present.
We stayed here —the Banff Springs Hotel—last night. It’s incredible.
My mom worked in the dining room here in the 60s. The hotel is celebrating its 125th anniversary and she went up for an alumni weekend, except—crazy lady that she is—she didn’t stay the second night and gave it to us instead. AND she took Connor home with her; we kept Ethan and had a lovely night to ourselves.
Banff is where we went for the day on last weekend’s ill-fated Mother’s Day and, at the time, we had no idea we’d be back again so soon, and in such a beautiful setting. We met my mom in the afternoon after her visits and tours etc., and had a chance to wander around and go for dinner. She told us stories about working at the hotel, some of which I knew and some I didn’t. She talked about how she ended up there and what she did. She told us who her friends were and why that time in her life mattered.
This morning we had breakfast in a beautifully furnished lounge with windows that look out over the mountains, which we had to ourselves because apparently no one else had discovered that you can sit in there. Rich mentioned that he had wandered through the gallery that showcases the history of the hotel and saw a 1920s-era picture of people sitting on the ledge right outside the window we were sitting by. The view, apparently, looked almost exactly the same. I found myself wishing someone had perfected time travel so we could go back and surreptitiously stand there as they were having their picture taken. Wouldn’t you love to have the ability to take everything you know now and go back in time to appreciate a place as it was years and years ago? I would spend a lot of my time popping invisibly into scenes and pondering what life would have been like in the same places but at very different times.
And so it was, as you can imagine, a lovely day. An unexpected, quiet night at a nice hotel is a beautiful thing, but I’m especially grateful that I got to see my mom and hear her stories in that environment. It made me smile. It’s as close as I’ll ever get to travelling back in time to be there with her when she was young.