As the guide details how he plans to retrieve each of us when we do fall into the chilly Cheakamus River I am thinking about hanging up my oar and making for higher ground. For you, I undertook my first white-water rafting trip, a two-hour thrill ride that was far safer than anything I expected and gave me a new appreciation for the soft-core adventures Canada offers.
I continue to be quite content to travel on my own to a town a few hours away or on a long flight around the world. It is always invigorating for me to venture out solo. Now instead of others being shocked by my willingness to travel on my own, there is a look of sympathy when I share with them that I will be going on vacation by myself. I can imagine the thoughts running through their head, "Why would a woman in her early 40s be traveling on her own? Is she newly divorced? She must be lonely."
I've been to Whistler at least two dozen times and never once bombed down one of its mountains. Not on skis, or a snowboard, or a mountain bike. Am I missing out? I've never felt like it. That's because this haven for intense outdoor sports activities is also fabulous for soft-core warm-weather enjoyment, too, including golfing, hiking, zip lining, and cycling. It's a beautiful part of the world that never bores me.
If you're visiting Vancouver and you'd like to try your hand at winter sports, the local mountains have a variety of activities for the casual winter tourist to the more adventurous and serious boarders and skiers. On clear days, you can see the city and the forests that surround it from Grouse Mountain's famous gondola, the Grouse Mountain Skyride.
When you think of Glasgow, art may not be the first thing that comes to mind. On a recent trip to Scotland's second largest city, my discovery of a vast collection of world-class fine art was not only a pleasant surprise, it was revealing of this city's cultural soul. Glasgow boasts more than 20 art museums and galleries, many of which the whole family can enjoy. Best of all, a number of them are free to the public.