Those who know me know I love to travel. New countries, new adventures and new experiences the world is a playground. I’ve travelled from Australian to Zimbabwe and many places in between. My wife and I have kept a travel journal on mytripjournal.com since 2003. Sadly the trips prior to that are only documented in paper dairies and photos. They are vivid in my memory.
Being born in Italy and immigrating to Canada as a child my first major voyage was that first trip from Europe to North America. It was a trip I will never forget. I can still remember as I was pulled from my grandmothers arms, I would never see her again and it brings tears to my eyes thinking of that day. We traveled by bus down the mountain to the major city of Foggia to catch our train to Roma. We visited family in Foggia. My aunts and cousins cried and screamed farewell as the train pulled away from the station.
In Rome my Aunt the nun took us to visit the Vatican before escorting us to the airport. At the age of six it was my first airplane ride. We landed in Montreal, although I didn’t know this then. From Montreal we travelled by train to Toronto. Almost 20 years later I again arrived in Toronto and looking up at the ceiling of Union station a flood of memories would wash over me as I remembered my dreamlike visions of that very same ceiling as a child half asleep in my mothers arms.
From Toronto we boarded another train to take us to northern Ontario. I don’t know for certain where we went off the train, I can remember trees and lakes flashing by, turning into bare rocks and snow. The train could have ended in Sudbury or perhaps Sault St. Marie. I suspect it was Sudbury. From there we took another bus to Manitouwadge Corner. While the highway continued on, we got off here, where a taxi waited for us. We spent the night at my uncle’s house in this small town, the next day we moved into the new home that the mining company had provided for my father and his newly arrived family. And the next day I arrived in my new school.
This summer I plan to return to Manitouwadge. I haven’t lived there since 1973. I don’t believe anyone I know still lives there. Many of the people have moved away, and I hope many of them will return for this reunion visit. We all have travelled on different paths to get there and diverse paths from Manitouwadge, yet it is a place that shaped us and lives in our hearts and memory.
The world revolves around the sun and each year we travel through space even if we stay in only one place. We can travel the world over and not find ourselves. Who we are is shaped by who we know, where we have lived and where we are going. Expand your horizons travel the world.