Travel is a regenerative escape. Suicide is not.

This outpouring of social grief over the suicides of two celebrities last week, has left me thinking… Is this social outcry, the same white noise that contributed to Kate Spade (Fashion Designer, 55) and Anthony Bourdain (Traveller/Writer/Chef, 61) taking their own lives?

The millions of people turning to social media to express sadness, and feelings of pain and loss, for people that they did not have meaningful two-way relationships with is interesting. How is it that thru media alone, can one person (celebrity) can have an impact which causes emotional, and even physical pain, to strangers? Is this genuine?

What if, in life, that celebrity felt the enormous internal pain inflicted by of a whole world of people who thought they knew him? Millions of “people” aka social accounts that wanted his attention, or a piece of his fame? What if the noise of social celebrity was absolutely deafening? What if you couldn’t get that noise out of your head? What if you felt like every hour of every day people wanted a piece of you? How would you even survive?

Is this what musician and celebrity suicides have in common?

Rather that a state of depressiveness, is suicide the ultimate “flight” choice? Meaning that when your most basic instincts are “fight” or “flight” is this what it comes down to? To fight would be to regain your privacy and find your one true inner voice. But what if that seems impossible? What if though you try, you can NEVER quiet the madness? Is this when select musicians and celebrities choose “flight?”

I can only speak to my own experience, but I have definitely been overwhelmed with demands. (I think most of us can relate.) Have you ever wanted to run away or quit work because it felt too chaotic or absolutely overwhelming? I definitely have. So that’s when I would travel. On the hard days, I would desperately cling to the anticipation of my next vacation. Escaping or getting away from my regular life was always the reprieve I wanted and needed. The chance to go exploring and mix among strangers was wonderful. I love the freeing feeling of anonymity.

Travel was my escape from reality when I owned a busy restaurant. At work I would typically be in the kitchen filling orders on a busy busy night (multitasking to finish multiple dishes simultaneously) and at the same time staff were asking questions and guests were wanting to visit/socialize have my ear. It was always chaos. At times I wanted to race out the backdoor and hide from all people and responsibilities. I would fight through it and divide my attention every way possible, but it was an awful feeling, like you’re never enough. There’s never enough time of “you” to go around. That’s just me, and on such a small scale, but I absolutely believe teachers and nurses and politicians and business owners also feel similar internal strife. And if this is our every-day lives with 30 people nagging at us for attention, imagine it on a celebrity scale. No thanks. I wouldn’t last.

So what if, the same social madness that reaches out in grief, is the same social madness that caused the tragedy? Is the only way to rest in peace, to stop the noise?

Pipe Mountain Coaster: Revelstoke BC

If you’ve been considering a trip to British Columbia this summer, or you have teens in your household, chances are you’ve already heard about the newest social media sensation… The Revelstoke Mountain Pipe Coaster.

It’s a summer must-see in the mountain resort town.

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Revelstoke Mountain Resort

In a nutshell, you buy a ticket, ride the gondola up the mountainside for about 5 minutes then board your own solo mini-car for the ride down. You can control your own speed with a handheld lever brake. There are twists and turns on this 2-3 minute (1.4 km) ride down the mountain.

There is a on-car mount available for your Go-Pro. This YouTube video shows the experience. A must-see! The views, and setting sun on the landscape are stunning.

Cost for the ride is $19 or two trips down the mountain for $29. The response has been overwhelming. While the ride anticipated about 300 people a weekend, in fact they are seeing up to 1000 riders per day right now.

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Travel tip: Go early in the day, OR send a scout up to the ticket office to purchase tickets and then return with your riders hours later at your scheduled time. Wait times in the afternoon can be up to 3 hours. Ticket sales cut off by 5 pm and the ride closes for the day at 8pm.

While you’re up at the resort, do enjoy the sunshine and incredible views from the Rockford (restaurant) patio. It is all-ages and family friendly.

Read more at their site. And receive live updates on the line-ups and wait times. Revelstoke Mountain Resort

See the run from the coaster itself. Video courtesy of my son & his GOPro.