Melody Shapiro takes her son, Davi, for a piggy back ride. Photo submitted 1 / 4 A Calgary couple and their special needs child are soaking up the slower pace this winter among snowbirds at an RV park on Vancouver Island. “They call Davi their surrogate grandchild,” said mom Melody Shapiro, describing the socially-distanced interactions between her eight-year-old son and older park residents. “He is a joy bug. He imposes his happiness on everyone.” Sarah Littlejohn, co-owner of Living Forest Oceanside Campground and RV Park in Nanaimo said “he’s a great little kid. Everyone loves him.” While COVID-19 was a factor in their decision for the temporary trek west, Shapiro and Doron Batshaw said the slower pace of life was even more important. “In Calgary, the pandemic was very confining. It’s easier to socially distance at Living Forest,” said Shapiro. When Batshaw was laid off from his job at a drilling company in March, the couple made plans to head west. Shapiro said they’re glad they booked early and found a spot while many snowbirds were unable to. “We are sick with happiness here,” said Shapiro, who home schools Davi through the Okotoks-based Centre for Learning at Home. “This is a very affordable way to live.” The couple, who have two rental properties in Alberta, are not certain where they will go once their eight-month stay at Living Forest finishes at the end of April. They may move to a different RV park for the summer or return to […]