If you know anything about April, you know that there is no location on planet earth that is more special to her than Two Harbors on Catalina Island. It is truly hard for me to explain to people just how much this place means to her. Today, I (Joey) am writing this blog post, in the hopes that five-ten-twenty years down the line, there will be dozens of other posts, with images from this same location, but with a whole new set of memories attached to them.
I would say that April did not experience an ordinary "summertime" growing up as a little girl. At least not "ordinary" in the sense that she went to school all year and then had the usual run-of-the-mill, cliche June through September months at summer camp or playing in the evenings on the cul-de-sac with the neighborhood kids. When school let out for the year, her family set sail (or motored) over to Cherry Cove, on the west end of Catalina Island and set up shop for three months. Her dad commuted (yes commuted) from Catalina each week so that the girls could spend their summer days soaking up the Catalina sun, snorkeling, participating in things like "the dinghy parade" and other traditions that so few people have the good fortune to experience. So many of us are familiar with taking the Catalina Express over to Avalon, hitting all of the tourist destinations only to head back to the mainland without experiencing the most special parts of this island. There are areas of Catalina, that for people like April, have become a part of who they are. So many firsts happened for April here and so many memories were made. Friendships were created and nurtured.
I came onto the Cherry Cove scene over two decades after April first visited this place but I instantly saw what it was that she enjoyed so much about being here: Remote. Unplugged (for the most part). Beautiful clear blue water. Stars that don't seem to exists on the mainland at night. Warm breezes and the sound of water all around.
This was our first trip as a family of four to Two Harbors and I know that it will not be our last. I am so grateful to be able to share this special place with my wife and children. So, a few parting words here: if there is something (or somewhere) special that your spouse loves, be sure that you take the time to enjoy these things or places together with them. For me, I often find myself challenged to get away from the day to day hustle and bustle of running a business. April has taught me so much about why it is important to not get sucked into this routine. She has shown me that there is so much out there to experience together as a family and as a couple and I am so grateful that our kids will be able to look back on their childhood memories as fondly as we do. Here is a set of images that will likely be the first in many, of our family trips to the Banning House at Two Harbors.