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Bill Mayer
What I did on my summer vacation...
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What I did on my summer Vacation...
Day one. Long drive, good friends, cocktails by the bay, Mosquitoes the size of Humming Birds; all fat with my blood. I swat them and they ooze with deep red. The moon is setting and we fall asleep to the sound of Bullfrogs. Missed sunrise, docks in, batteries charging. Lee Lee is busy evicting the mice...
 
Day two. Pizza by the river, nice long swim, cocktails on deck three, boats in. Water’s still high. Drop in on Twin Rocks for a nice chat. Boot camp starts today but not now... later...after coffee.... after fishing...okay, OKAY...before.
Day three...We pile the old life in a dumpster, nothing lasts forever. Once treasures, now rusted and rotting... worms helping it back into the earth. Feels wrong to not set them all adrift and torch them like a Viking funeral...but we crush them down and pile more old memories on top.
King Fisher, Loons, a pair with offspring, we sit quietly and listen and watch. Soft rain, surf board, the water is like glass. Another long bike ride along the lake shore down to Owens’s Point, Camp Store, Butterscotch ice cream, flat turtle next to Flat frog, maybe deep in a conversation about Casey Anthony...don't notice the car approaching...
Frog- " WTF Dude that slut was so-ooo guilty. Like totally guilty..." Turtle- "Man that DA missed his chance. They'll never__UHGHGHG----" Thump thump....
 
Day four (Tuesday). Beat sunrise by an hour, long bike ride, watched waves rolling in on the lake shore... kicking boot camp's ass.... coffee brewing. Waiting for the sun... I am smiling. Here comes the sun...Stuff more old stuff in the dumpster...Another long bike ride, a swim in the bay, finally check e-mail. Mr. Pickle drops by for a chat but his Scottish accent is so strong I can't understand a word. We head for sanctuary at Vito's.... Poutine...ah it's like Heaven.
Day Five ...Heavy discussions on carbon dating, Lesa's Birthday today, two more days and everyone arrives. Lee Lee finished Zak and Dash's room. Forest working on "Better living with chemistry." Layed in bed and watched sunrise. Thanks to a Japanese scientist's invention of synthetic blood, Mosquitoes have progressed from legendary monsters to fellow citizens overnight. Religious leaders and government officials around the world have chosen their sides, but in the small Canadian town of Brighton, the jury is still out.....
Fish and chips, soft rain, cool breeze, afternoon nap with a blanket. North wind blows me down. Cocktails on deck two. All hats off to Forest as head chemist ...Last night "Gulf Oil Spill," tonight "Better Living Through Chemistry." BBQ Chicken...little cute potatoes...sweet corn. Jen and Adrian's baby boy coming soon (next week). Greta and Jason's in October? Oh boy more babies...
The light at sunset is clear and yellow...long bike ride trying to catch moonrise but it's already up and huge. No deer but three skinny red foxes curiously approach me check me out...There is no one outside the cottages, it's like a Zombie apocalypse... 
The misquotes humming sounds distinctly like Darth Vader's breathing as they hover near by. They have seen me. I beat it for the house, slam the door and lock it behind me.
Day six...Wind out of the north, no clouds in sight, I stare out at the bay watching lines of Cormorants in formation stream by. Gold Finces, Marsh Swallows, Swans, Today Lee will call and have the old memories taken away...long bike ride, clear blue sky, water flat and so clear.... I paddle the Peterborough up the bay, a great way to meet the neighbors. Who all come out with knife and fork, licking their lips, drooling? They don't make canoes like that anymore.
What day is it?
paddle, row, ride, hike , swim, paint ,ZUMBA....
repeat, paddle, row ,ride, hike, swim, paint, ZUMBA....
paddle ,row ,ride, hike, swim, paint, ZUMBA...
Charlie Maxwell here today...little Max is now Middle Max...
Ice cream, happy hour, woke up to storm, batten down the hatches...storm is a big blow. caves in the tent, spreads everything all around the yard, swimming raft is in. canoe painted, tent is up and dry.... we rescue a another vintage bike...
Calm before, water is like glass, another storm in the distance approaching, black clouds, huge thunder heads, hit the cool lake air and winds twist and swirl. We watch them approach for hours in the distance. The lightning twisting through the clouds, then hits full force. You can feel the windows pulse with the force of the winds. Then huge green flash on the hill above Brighton and all of the lights across the bay go black. Seconds later, power is out for us too. We scramble for candles, headlamps and ice-cold bottles of tequila. Kind of nice to unplug. We play cards by candlelight and watch the lightning blast Brighton across the bay.... In the morning we cook breakfast on the grill, apple wood bacon, cheese omelets, toast and coffee.... still no power no cell phones...no Internet ...Today we dove on the old wreck at Salt Point. Scuba dudes, Skip and Forest bring up pirate booty.... I just snorkel along the ribs of the old boat; hard to believe it's in such good shape after so much time...
Day seven,...Forest and I stay up late and watch Young Frankenstein, repeating every line before it's said. All of them...
the water like glass again, so dig out the oars and the little rowboat. A long row down to Calf Pasture, and a brisk row home only to find the bathroom door closed. I knock and a growl GGRRRRR...Echoes back from behind the door. I knock again.... GGRRRR.... I knock again...I go get coffee and wait patiently.
We head off to Trenton hospital with Forest and a sore throat. $325 for triage, plus Dr. plus meds the lady at the info desk estimates $500.... Canadian healthcare works for Canadians...We head off to find a clinic in Belleville; $50...
Set the tree on fire, a little panic but everything is fine, Jeanie no need to worry...Surfs up Presquille Bay, Skip and Kyle rock the boat. Jamie the giant returns with all of our good friends, cocktails. Kids arrive today.
Everyone is finally Jonesing
For fast food, so we're off to Belleville.... Lee Lee wants a Diet Coke, nothing will fill this void...even cleaning up mouse poo. (Kidding, we know nothing beats mouse poo...).
We hit the A&W in force; Lee and I order "Teen Burger Combos”. A large single bypass burger, large fry and ice-cold mug of A&W Rootbeer, Lee gets a Diet Coke. The kids order various other family member burgers, Mamma Burger, Papa Burger, Grumpy Burger...onion rings, Root beer floats...We stuff ourselves until we're bloated.
Everyone returns tonight for a big party weekend. Finally we unleash The Kraken (rum), Dark and Stormy sunset, Increases the chance of conception.... Happy Birthday Caley Venn...
According to local Brighton Council Person D.B Cornwall, we are officially melting today...Finally the heat is here, 91f and the breeze off the bay is like a warm tropical wind. Hottest day since 1948...think we'll be sleeping with the fishes in the bay. We build a pirate ship out of a fruit crate and launch it. It sails straight and true until a large wave shifts her ballast and Davy Jones takes her down...Dinner at Twin Rocks, white hots, Coney’s and Catching up with Uncle Bill and Aunt Marion.
Finally the wind shifts, cool north wind blows the sky clean. We sit by the fire and watch shooting stars zip across the sky. Tiny satellites gliding effortlessly. We all pull our chairs from the circle around the fire and randomly spread ourselves so we can sit in the dark and we tell tales of great Lunker-heads and Banshees that steel children away in the night.... The night is so perfect none of us want to go to sleep.
So we don't.
Recipe for getting Fifteen people on 4x8 swimming rafts: Start with generous amounts of Gin, Vodka, and Rum...add ice...shake vigorously.
Morning so still, Jason and I take a long paddle through the marsh, I bike to the Light house and back, Lee and I take a ride down through the campsites and trails we have not been yet this year. I have been riding along the cottages for a couple weeks now, and this is what I noticed.
Observations along the way; if you ride along the cottages between 7:30 and 8:00 you will notice every dog owner going for a Poo-walk. The difference is they will not be carrying the Poo in a bag. If it is a lady walking, the dog will be big. If it is a man walking, the dog will be tiny. In fact the bigger the man, the smaller the dog. If you are a man walking a big dog, you are required to wear a "silly" women's hat. Though I have not tested my theory, I am thinking this phenomenon is not limited to the cottagers here on Presquille or Ontario for that matter.
Today so calm and warm even Lee Lee and Wendy are in swimming, tubing, laughing, not cleaning up mouse poo...Zak and I have taken to turning the canoe over on top if them (with a little help) and scream loud from underneath, we roll it over and sink it like a mighty pirate ship...Skip lands a delicious big bass, tube, boat, canoe, bike, picnic on lake shore...low country boil, old friends. Mojitoes, Mexican Train, Croqanole, Speed, Chess...Dash finally falls asleep. long bike ride, three deer, rode through the campsites. Campers just waking, a few fires crackling, a few half asleep campers stumble toward the latrines in a zombie like walk. I head for a sprint to the cottage for a nice swim, shampoo and a shave, coffee’s brewing...
What day is it? The Land of Ont, painted sky's, and days that never end...OKAY...back on point, push ups, crunches, pull ups...but after coffee...Mount Madoriama watch out...here we come. But after coffee...
Calathumpian Parade returns to Lilac Lane and all the crew is scrounging up make shift costumes. We’re all supposed to gather at 6:00 for big parade, then cocktails. I am thinking cocktail, and then parade, then cocktails...I never laughed (or squawked) so hard in my life...too funny. You guys are crazy...pictures to come I am sure....Lee Lee is dressed like her mom, walking like she just got off a cruise boat. Lesa in hot pink, hot pants and tight midriff, dressed like Jean too. Too many funny costumes to list...Potluck dinner and BBQ in-between the Shire's and Venn's cottages.
Bonfire in the meadow, (no Jean we didn't set the point on fire. Cottages should still be here when you guys come up) late after bug: 30.My throat is sore from Screeching Loudly.... RROBERRRRT.... AAWWWKK.... ROBERT.... AAAWWWKK...AAWWWKK....
In the morning the wind has switched back to the north, so I flip the boat to the other side of the dock. Everyone is asleep. Long ride the opposite way around the point. The wind is chilly so I race back along a new path, back toward Calf Pasture. Near the campgrounds I see a man and a lady walking three dogs. The man is walking a large dog; he does not have on a ladies hat. The woman has two large dogs and a mans hat....
I arrive home to find everyone asleep but the coffee I left brewing is hot and ready. I fry a pound of bacon. I love bacon.
Skip is up and heads off to town in search of eggs.
Many warm hugs and stories. Like the marsh walk we took Zak on. With tall tree fort in the middle of the marsh and 100-year-old Horse Cedars bent like horse saddles you could sit on and ride. We hid behind trees and jumped out to scare Lee.... Near the end I asked him how he liked the marsh and he said, "Bill, you know I am a video game guy." 
    It is sad to leave all of our old friends, we will miss them.... but we've been gone a long time...Met a bunch of new family and new friends, thrown some old stuff away... Zak's first day of school is a week off and we missed all of our good friends back home. Sure would be great to have them all up to the cottage, if it wasn't for the "one bathroom..."


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