William Matheson (nova_one) wrote,
William Matheson

15. Final Sunday

Again, this is a story of yesterday. After doing a little post-breakfast cleanup, I went up to the neighbours' where the cousins and uncles were discussing the potential for going golfing. Alas, a tournament was being played; I'm going to guess it was the "St. Mary's River Backyard Open." I did my e-thing and Alex and Matt went to Antigonish.

For lunch, I made grilled cheese sandwiches for everyone, and then we went out in the kayaks to go fishing. Well, I was just going along for the ride - I've experienced fishing and have little to no desire to experience it again. Anyway, I thought it would be like riding a bike and I'd explore the lakes while they fished. But the upper body strength required to get around "effortlessly" is beyond me and I struggled to keep up - though they were in a double and I was but a single, so it was a little bit stacked to begin with.

Confronted with the necessity of getting my feet in the water (there's no wharf to speak of), I left my socks and sneakers on the shore and went barefoot. I didn't see the need to go back for my sandals, but I realized should have when we had to get through a shallow brook between two lakes - the bed was very rocky and hard on the feet. Fortunately, Uncle C. stepped back and pulled me through it.

When we got to where we were going there was evidence of camp having been made before - along with their beer cans and other debris. Ick. I'd end up packing it all up and cleaning it out for recycling back at the house. I even found a knife in a pouch in a grocery bag - I deducted that it wasn't garbage and left it where I found it.

All Stuart and Uncle C. caught were perch - little bony things, not the trout they were looking for. "Well, if we had to survive on perch, we'd do pretty well," Stuart remarked. Uncle C. kept flinging his reel into the water when he cast and comically asked us to remind him to hang onto it when casting. He'd start to cast. "OK, hang onto your reel-" Splash. "That was not the time," he said of my too-late reminder. While they had no luck, somebody had been catching trout in the area - some time ago our neighbours had been given a bunch of them, so they cooked them all and sent four down to the house, and we couldn't get it all eaten and left one or two for the crows.

I would have liked to have gone exploring on foot - there was a fairly well-beaten portage path to the next lake, and there was a fork from it leading uphill somewhere - but I couldn't get very far on bare feet. So, not really interested in fishing, I sat on a rock, drank a beer or two, and listened to the stream. I thought for a bit about writing this and other things I might write. For me the problem is conflict - I'm too nice to make plausible ones. OK, sometimes I am not so very nice, so a better term might be naïve. Anyway, I suspect it's one of the missing ingredients from my collection of half-baked ideas. I always look for win-win situations, so it goes without saying that my fiction bores even me as I write it.

Coming back was an epic struggle - the last stretch was across the open lake back to the house and it seemed to go on forever. I'd thrash and strain and groan and the scene'd barely have shifted. I'd bang my knuckles on the sides and sometimes a wave or my balance would precipitate a little tip to let some water in, a problem that can quickly snowball if you're not careful. When I finally landed, I had to rest for some time before attempting to get out. My arms were so weak that I almost couldn't use them to lift myself up.

If I go kayaking again, it will probably be downstream on a river. Or I suppose I could practice here - just going out for short jaunts and making them longer and longer as I build up my strength. That sounds a lot like work. Well, we'll see. I was really frustrated yesterday - although I'm glad I went out, that frustration is not something I care to experience again. (Of course I'll be frustrated again by something, but I avoid frustration if I can help it.)

I watched two hours of Family Guy and cleaned up the kitchen during the commercial breaks. Then I joined my cousins and Matt up at the cottage. We played an epic drinking game with several stages - one round-the-table dealing stage, one pyramid-layout matching stage, and then a ride-the-bus stage for the points "winner". But our first time through we didn't shuffle after the second (matching) stage, so the riding-the-bus kept ending in matched cards (you get to guess "lower" or "higher", and matching is neither). After torturing Stuart for what seemed like 20 minutes, we actually made the dealer responsible shuffle, redeal, and ride the bus himself. It was pretty hilarious. For my part, I escaped most of the punishment and I didn't end up having to ride the bus. For a large group a more social game like Kings would have been better, but for four people this game was alright.

Then we played Scattergories. We don't know who won - I was the only one who counted up all of my unchallenged / unmatched answers. I'm pedantic enough that I don't face challenges very often, but I don't often get the most points either - I think that people with a plethora of kinda-sorta-acceptable mediocre answers clean up because only some of their borderline answers get challenged. We might have spent too long on the epic drinking game and we didn't have a lot of energy left for anything else. I went to bed after Scattergories - one nice thing about hanging out at the cottage, my bed is just a little walk down the hill away.

My mother's coming down today. Maybe I should go out in the kayak. j/k The plan is to have hamburgers and hot dogs tonight, and I went out to get slices of cheese and hamburger buns and mustard. They say I'm a good shopper, but I'm really looking out for my own interest. :-)
Tags: family life, sherbrooke, summer 2012

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