I'm midway through week 2 of 2 weeks of additional cottaging, over and above that week we spent at the beginning of August with my family. When you have kids, there is nothing better, vacation wise. We rented a cottage with Dr. Rei and Hanbo and baby Zoony and it was perfect. It was perfect because they are perfect people and best friends. It was perfect because you never have to worry about haggling over who gets what room at the cottage, or money, or anything that can remotely be a chafe with other people because they are exactly like us and they know how to be and are chill and fair and make things easy.
Things I'm Going to Strive to Always Remember:
the intonation of how Zoony says "yeah" and "I don't have it"
city slicker sees a beaver dam, loses her G-D mind.
my kids floating in the lake
The Dotytron calling me "Future" every time I donned this sun hat
watching my three kids launch themselves off the dock, in Twin B's case, preceded by his own cheer: "Go, Lindsay!"
Hanbo asking Twin A if he's going to do a cannonball, and Twin A replying, matter-of-factly, "No. My feet are too smoll-uh [small]"
- a blue heron taking off in flight during one of our runs
this GIANT frog, who was a dead ringer for Michigan J. Frog
- watching Dr. Rei do a choreographed 90s video dance to Dotyron DJing
- arguing with everyone on the dock about Peter Thiel and his relative goodness/badness
- recording the first episode of my podcast with Dr. Rei...it's a good one guys, it's gonna be our ticket out of this two-bit town
- a visit with some K-W friends
- discovering the Swiss Bear Schnitzel House and Tarts store in Apsley, Ontario
- the terrifying appearance of a bold water snake, our first day at the cottage
- Hanbo riding hard for me learning how to dive
- So. Much. Laughter.
- a week that went by too fast for words
From there we drove from the Haliburton area to Prince Edward County and we're holed up in a house built in the 1820s with wide-planked hardwood floors and exposed beams on the main floor. We're here with the Dotytron's mum and sister for the first half and then we'll be joined by the Roomie and family, our friend Montréal I, and our friend Pingy. This house is about a 4 minute drive from North Beach Provincial Park, which is a more chill, low-key version of Sandbanks, so we've spent about 4-5 hours of the past two days camped out there. The glacial sand deposits made thin strips of beach that made a little calm lake one one side of the strip, and angry, wild, Lake Ontario on the other side. We set up shop on the calm side and let the kids splash in calm waters with the minnows and roll around in the sand dunes. Today we convinced the kids to go to the wavy side and I watched the Wonder Twins continue to show their general fearlessness and life gusto, by hurling their bodies head-first into 2 foot tall waves (which is almost their height?) and living out a less sexy version of Madonna's "Cherish" video, with about 100000 times more metric tonnes of lake water consumed.
Things I'm Going to Strive to Always Remember:
- the sight of Twin B running towards...anything. His little legs egg beater out in opposite directions and his heels comes thisclose to touching his bum, like a little drunken leprechaun.
- getting thrashed by the waves and rinsing sand out of every unmentionable nook and cranny
- Twin B in the car, as we got looped around some farms, after taking a wrong turn, "Are we going to a little farm? Is that a little farm?" *pause* "Oooh! I see a little farm! I see a little farm dere!" Twin B's stream of consciousness and his little exaggerated, "ooh!" and exhalations of surprise and joy, are so endearing. That kid is basically like a giant St. Bernard in human form.
- Momma D doing her obligatory small-town bakery run and coming back with half the things in a store. There's nothing Momma D loves more than a small-town bakery.
- playing games with my outlaw sis and Dotytron, laughing at all kinds of in-jokes
- getting an annotated close-listen of Alanis Morissette's Jagged Little Pill, courtesy of my outlaw sis
- Twin A's "bobs" in the water. He knocks his head back, pauses for a millisecond, and then throws his whole face into the water with gusto. He also has a way of pronouncing the o-sound in words like "bob" that makes him sound so funny...almost like a Jersey boy.
- my nature boy kids. Never wearing shoes, if we'll allow it. And the shoes are the thin edge of the wedge. If they had their druthers, they'd be naked running around and tackling each other all the time. They are rambunctious, feral, wild boys...especially the Wonder Twins. They do best allowed to just express that side of themselves, much to the chagrin of most adults.
I'm so grateful for this opportunity to give them these memories. Of seeing so much of the beauty of this province. To be in nature and to glory in being wild and dirty and unkempt and unstructured. I love the rhythm of packing coolers and dragging deconstructed loose lunches to the dock and back. I love watching the circuit of bodies in and out of puddle jumpers and the lake. Teeth chattering and hooded towels stretched out like capes or wings, the sound of fat, flat feet slapping the worn wood of a dock, the scrape of shovels in wet sand, the cycle of making and unmaking in double-time. I loved watching Dr. Rei, Hanbo, the Dotytron and I positively decimate a 1 lb baked brie in about 5 minutes and then push the tray away from us in self-disgust. I love that my kids will know some of Ontario's provincial parks and be used to hiking trails and camping. I love that the Big Yam learned how to cast at the Dr. Rei and Hanbo cottage. In fact, he got so into it that he stepped right off the dock one morning. I love detaching from social media and spotty internet coverage and shedding the layers of caring. I love this all.