The weather this past weekend could not have been more co-operative for writing about a Perfect Weekend. Now of course one person’s perfect weekend may not be another’s but when I travel I love to read about personal experiences, especially from a local’s perspective. As I have mentioned on this blog before, I was born and raised in Langley. I have watched it change and grow, and this year seemed like an appropriate time to reflect a bit on my home town. I have a birthday coming up that may or may not start with a 4 and end with an 0. So with that I thought I would share with you what my perfect weekend in Langley would include and maybe take a little trip or two down memory lane while we are at it.
Let’s start with Friday night dinner. A night off from cooking? Sounds good to me! Growing up, on our way home from school my brother and I would stop at Porters General Store in Murrayville a few times a week for a treat to take home. Maybe a piece of liquorice or a freezie if it was a warm day. We would drop our bikes outside the store in-between all the lawnmowers that owner Eldon Porter was always fixing, go inside and take a long time picking something out from the candy counter. Today there are no more lawnmowers out front and the name has been changed to Porters Coffee and Tea House, but inside all the original store fixtures, floor and cabinetry can be found. Where there used to be shelves of groceries there are now tables where you can sit and enjoy breakfast and lunch all week, and on Friday nights you can listen to Dixieland Jazz while you enjoy a pasta dinner. I have taken my kids here for breakfast and told them the stories of their uncle and I stopping here after school, and although I haven’t been able to get my brother here yet for a meal as he is living overseas, I will one day!
With a fun evening behind us a whole Saturday lies ahead. If the weekend is as warm as this past one, there is one place you are guaranteed to find us – an outdoor pool. My kids love to swim, (I am convinced my daughter is part fish). Langley has three outdoor pools: Al Anderson Memorial Pool, Aldergrove Outdoor Pool and Fort Langley Outdoor Pool. We call up some friends, pack a picnic and sunscreen and head for a half day at the pool. If you keep an eye on their schedules you can find some fun events like movie nights happening throughout the summer. Have you ever watched a movie while floating in a pool? If not, you might want to put that on your summer bucket list. If the weather decides not to co-operate with outdoor plans, you have two indoor options to choose from including WC Blair Pool or Walnut Grove Pool. I was 13 when the WC Blair pool opened, and can remember all the excitement of the new technology that made this BC’s first wave pool. Several times an hour you could, and still can, pretend you were at the beach and ride the waves. From the pool we then work our way back home with “just a few stops” at our favourite local food providers. I have perfected the route to get us almost everything we need for a week of groceries. We can get vegetables, beef, turkey, fruit, bread, cheese, flowers and more all without leaving Langley and best yet supporting our local farmers and food producers. If you call Langley home, then like us you can make a great dinner with everything you picked up. If Langley is just your temporary home, there are some great local restaurants that support our local producers and will cook you a feast full of local flavour.
Ahhh Sunday, I have mixed emotions about this day. On one hand I am happy to have one more day with no set schedule but I can’t help but know that each hour brings us a bit closer to Monday morning. The alarm clock always rings before I am ready to give up my bed, lunches need to be made, and work and school are the days priorities. All the more reason to make the best of your Sunday! Since we are talking about the Perfect Weekend, a sleep in is the first item on the agenda and then we are energized and ready to hop on our bikes. Now training for a Gran Fondo we are not, we prefer to stick to pathways and trails, but if you are comfortable out on the roads – you are in great company. Langley’s country roads make great training grounds for road racers or anyone just wanting to keep in shape while enjoying the great outdoors. Both the Township and City have resources like bike trail routes on their websites, and our goal is to try to do each trail by the end of summer. Next up – lunch! We usually find ourselves going to Fort Langley for a bite to eat as there are options from casual to linen tablecloths and it’s always delicious. I can usually get into at least a few shops with the promise of ice cream for the kids when we are done. They have some favourite stores themselves – yes the candy shop is one but the last time we popped into an antique store I was ready to go before either of the kids had finished looking and asking questions about all they saw from “the olden days”. Now, how do you end this perfect weekend? If it didn’t end at all it would be fabulous, but a glass of wine (from a Langley winery of course) on my patio or a local restaurant while thinking about the upcoming week, and better yet what to do next weekend is pretty close to perfect to me.