RAINDROPS CLING to bare branches.

RAINDROPS CLING to bare branches.

Family Day is any day you want it

People complained that there was no stat holiday in February. Now they're complaining because it's on the wrong day.

Once upon a time, a few people “boo-hoo-ed” because there wasn’t a statutory holiday in February.

Now that we have one – Family Day – people are still crying because it doesn’t coincide with the Family Day holidays in other provinces.

I suspect they are upset because they want to celebrate the new stat holiday by travelling out of province to shop for holiday sales. The Surrey Board of Trade says “because B.C’s Family Day comes on a day when the rest of North America is at work, a lot of people had to spend last Monday in the office in order to keep pace with their colleagues in other regions.”

Have to admit, I was also upset about the placement of the holiday, but only because it fell on the Monday following our Seedy Saturday in Cache Creek, thereby prompting several cancellations by people who decided to spend the long weekend out of town.

I’ve been involved with enough event planning to know that whatever day you pick, it will always be a “bad day” for some reason or another. You pick a day and you stick with it – unless it has a chance of falling on Easter Sunday or something like that.

When I was a kid, it seemed like every Saturday was Family Day. My brothers and I were home from school, my dad was home from work – and I think mom couldn’t get us all out of the house fast enough! We played baseball in the backyard, or we visited nearby friends or cousins, or we plunked outselves down in the old Chrysler Newport and went for a drive.

No movies in the backseat. No laptops. No cell phone conversations. No texting or playing solitary games. We’d spend an hour or two driving to and from our destination while driving each other crazy. Or not. On occasion, we could find distraction in the passing scenery that we could all voice a similar opinion on.

That was a family day. We grew up together, knowing what bugged each other, knowing what we each took pleasure in. We made connections.

I see some families today that live in the same house but are absolute strangers to each other. They may know the facts of each other’s lives, but they’ve never had a conversation about what they like, don’t like, how they feel about different aspects of society, never been challenged to defend their views, never shared common tasks.

These are the things that just naturally occur among families as the children are growing up, not because there’s a government-appointed Family Day once a year.

It’s a rapidly-changing world we live in, and we all need to work harder to keep our families happy and healthy and together.

Wendy Coomber is editor of the Ashcroft Cache Creek Journal

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