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There comes a time in every man’s summer where he just needs to get the fuck out of town, go somewhere remote and live like a complete savage for a few days. Eating food cooked over an open fire that he built with his own hands (newspaper and lighter fluid optional), hiking to beautiful natural sights, getting some dirt under his fingernails and maybe, if he’s lucky, taking a shit in the woods.
Yes, I’m talking about camping.
And let me tell you, I’m way past due for a vacation. I’ve been slugging it out at work for about two years with very little extended vacation time taken. Getting iMessages from my friend and former colleague who left the company at the end of June and took all of July off (half of it in his hometown of Kelowna, British Columbia) isn’t helping soothe my itch to commune with nature. I mean, good for him but… hey, what about good for me?
I have a couple of days booked around a weekend in August in which to vacation with a campsite booked in the Western Alberta interior on the peninsula jutting into a lake. It’s actually more of a large reservoir created by the construction of a dam way back in the day but only time will tell if this was a huge mistake or not. Review will be pending.
Last year, we hit up Fish Lake campground on Shunda Lake near Nordegg in September and, if it wouldn’t have been so fucking cold at night… the whole trip would have been glorious. Plus, the dog loved it. We’ll see how this new spot compares.
I recognize that this is a terrible bit of prose however it is a part of me growing up.
Now I shall speak simply
And hope you can hear my call.
It’s from within that I reach
To speak of an emotion that has long since been dormant.
Understanding an origin is of no consequence now
My heart now is a speeding train
And nothing can stop it.
In Canada, it’s the Victoria Day long weekend. Today is Sunday and I’m on my back yard deck getting shitcanned in the sun because… well, I can.
A lot of people opt to camp on the May long weekend. Particularly in Canada… this is our first decent opportunity to escape the bonds of winter and really live it up. Granted, it’s not a California summer here yet but we Canadians are an exuberant group and want to celebrate (nicely) whenever we can.
Even when the lakes and the night might be cold enough to make your testicles retract into your body in ways you haven’t known in 20+ years. We are still out there. Because we love to party and enjoy the weather.
However, I am not camping. Obviously. I just said so…. weren’t you paying attention? Anyway, I am looking to book campsites for the upcoming season to camp on because spots fill up fast.
I long to escape from this existence.
Last night, my friends and next door neighbours were victims of a violent home invasion last night. They are your average married couple with four young children and were enjoying a quiet night at home. Mr A was outside having a cigar and a vehicle drove up onto their back parking pad and started to try and make their way into the yard. He tried to prevent them from entering which is where I’d assume he got the butt of a gun to the face. They kicked the back door of the house in, dragged Mr A inside and then proceeded to beat the shit out of him in front of Mrs A who was holding their baby.
One of the most unfortunate parts of this is that this was a total case of mistaken identity. They were looking for drugs, thinking the A’s house was a drug house. What the police told us was that this may have been a gang type drug attack. Rather than go and buy their drugs to sell, sometimes these jackasses will raid another known drug house and steal the drugs. Obviously, these guys were dumber than shit and took a wrong turn somewhere thinking that this house was a drug house.
Luckily (or unluckily in a way) their two year old daughter walked down the stairs to the living room where the A’s were being assaulted and it was then that these fucking douchebags finally realize they have the wrong house. So they bail out of the house, jump in their vehicle and screw off. If she hadn’t come down, who knows what would have happened. The A’s could be dead right now.
Mr A was a bloody mess and taken away by ambulance to the hospital. Mrs A had dropped their four children off with me and my two sons to keep them occupied and cared. It’s honestly been years since I’ve held a baby. But in the meantime, family members were showing up to our house and the non-stop parade of police officers through my house asking questions of Mrs A about the events of the evening. My boys were a big help though.
The grandparents showed up and took the four kids home with them at 2:00 am so I had a chance to go and look for their dog who was scared out of the house when these thugs kicked the door in. I was out walking all of the paths and popular dog spots that I know of in our neighbourhood but didn’t have any luck. I was out for over an hour and lost my shoes in some mud which forced me to walk home with mud covered bare feet on rock covered road for about 5 blocks. I felt like a hobbit but I got off lucky in comparison. Anyway, as of now, she still remains missing.
I made my way home to shut the back door of their house, the forensic team was done and the police needed to make sure the house was secure before leaving the scene. I grabbed my drill and toolbox and screwed a 2×4 over the door and busted up door frame to close the door solidly. When I stepped downstairs into the living room, I was stunned. The floor in their living room was smeared with his blood all over. Mr A lost a lot of blood and it was everywhere; smeared over a big area, with pools of blood here and there, blood spatters on the wall, on the sofa, all over the kid’s toys.
Mr A is afraid to see his kids and scare them with his condition. He took over 100 stitches to his head and face to close up the wounds and I’m sure he had a lot of scratches and extensive bruising. I haven’t seen him yet either. But the kids are worried about him so I’m sure they will be together very soon and start to heal as a family. Our household will do everything we can to support them too.