Barry’s Bay two and a half hours North East from Ottawa – June 5th to June 9th, Ontario
Barry's Bay two and a half hours North East from Ottawa - June 5th to June 9th
After a book reading session back from Montreal, I waited intently for Andrea to pick me up from the station. As she arrived the adventure had started with the Emery's Kayaks strapped to the top of the car. As I hopped in time was short as I only just over an hour to get ready. Stimpy and the girls sat in the back as we headed home. After a mad hour of eating lunch, washing and packing my bag we loaded the car and hit the highway to Barry's Bay. The journey took just over two and half hours although it seemed like 10 minutes as we laughed and joked all the way there. As we pulled in to Barry's Bay we stopped in the supermarket car park and waited for the others to join us, Scott and Andrea's close friends from across the street, 'Scott and Isabelle' along with Stimpy and Juliet. Scott headed to the fishing store while Andrea headed in to pick up the last pieces of food for the weekend. As the others arrived we pulled out the detailed map of four streets and drove to the cottage. Laughing at my map reading skill, which I will say were pretty good, other than telling Scott he needed to turn just as we headed past the junction.
After checking in with the landlord we got straight to work on the activates although time was starting to get on. The rods came out, the bait went on and the lines splashed in the water. This was the time I would catch a fish, well that's what I kept telling myself although I feared I might just eat my words. Then suddenly almost immediately I had a nibble, although the little git got away, my face glowed with a smile of how I could tease Rachel and blame her for our failings in New Zealand. Although things went downhill from there, Scott one and tow managed both to reel in a catch but me and the girls failed. Not to down hearted I hopped in houses Canoe and set off on the lake for the sunset, fighting off the pesky black flies as the attempted to inflict he same damage the New Zealand sand flies had only weeks before. Scott cruised across the lake in his kayak, fishing rod in hand although not having much luck as the sun descended leaving the sky slightly pink in the distance. As I headed back in I passed my rod to Katrin on the pier and tried to pull myself in, 'the definitive word there was try…' As I leant across a Lune, 'a Canadian Duck' that would taste great with Hoi sin Sauce and cucumber let out its call on the water ahead. The echo caught my attention as the famous call rippled across the lake; soon I would be causing most of those ripples as I plunged straight in to the water, fully clothed. Katrin stood; no Katrin fell to her knees in laughter as I dragged myself on deck now soaked right through to the pants. Feeling sorry for myself I undressed and headed in for a shower with Andrea laughing and Isabelle saying, "Were Canadians, we can't do that!"
After a warm shower we ate well thanks to the women and spent the evening in the comfort of a hot log fire playing Balderdash a game of trying to trick your opponents in to thinking you have the correct description for a ridicules word. Although like most things the game obviously took a slightly rude turn with a description of a "Uni Boob." Laughing as Andrea read out the description it only went downhill from there. Time wore on and tiredness set in as we all headed for bed laughing at some of the descriptions. Laughter did ring out one more time as Andrea headed in to her room only to see my T Shirt swirling around the ceiling on the fan in an attempt to dry the lake soaked clothing.
The next morning we awoke for a spot of early morning fishing although Scott managed to divert the attention away from my poor fishing by dropping Andrea's camera in to the lake… As he headed inside to break the news we all contemplated jumping in the lake and swimming across to the next island. Thankfully things picked up with a breakfast fit for a king prepared once again by the ladies and Scott had done well to cool the situation with the camera as I suggested now she had an excuse to upgrade to a brand new, state of the art camera, Andrea agreed as she said Scott could buy it for her jokingly.
The cottage adventure was underway and it was set to be packed full of action as the Canadian activities. I laid on the deck chatting with Andrea as Scott and Juliet paddled out on the Kayaks, Stimpy ran around freely enjoying the company of the chip monks, although his seemed confused as to why they did not want to play as they ran in fear of their lives. Katrin and Scott two were attempting more fishing as the sun opened out on to the lake and made for a glorious day. As Scott and Juliet returned I picked up the oar and headed for a kayak myself, fighting against the wind I pulled in to a sheltered cove where I tried fishing from the kayak and watched a water snake passed me by. With the wind in my favor for the return journey I headed back to the cottage after about an hour on the water. In the blink of an eye I was back, this time dry as I successfully pulled myself in where I joined the rest for lunch and a few rounds of mastermind.
After letting the food settle after lunch, the Scott's and Isabelle headed off for a bike ride as the rest of us relaxed indulging in the sun, I finished my book while the others slept. As the others returned the girls and I had already got ourselves prepared for a journey out on to the lake. Scott joined us on the adventure as we packed the canoe full of rods and tackle. It was not long until we were off paddling down the lake looking for the ideal fishing spot. Our first stop was less than successful as were attacked by giant ants and Scott fell as he attempted to get back in to his Kayak, (note he is Canadian and Canadian's don't do that, 'Isabelle') As I laughed for a brief minute only to do my best to help him get in to his Kayak.
As Katrin and me headed out in the world's most unstable canoe we attempted badly to steer ourselves to the next stop, I was in hysterics as Katrin's driving only took us in every other direction other than the one we wanted to be in, luckily we managed to stay balanced and avoid the tipping the canoe on its side. Eventually we made it to a nice sand spit, out the way of the wind and there Scott, the girls and me fished for a while, well we tickled the water with the rods, I would hardly call it fishing. Knowing it was not going to be our day we packed our things and set off back to the cottage, the wind was strong so Scott and I took up the challenge of the canoe. With Scott in the back and me in the front we paddled hard into the wind across the lake, avoiding the oncoming waves. With the cottage in sight and the girls now in front of us we stayed relatively close to the edge, suddenly a wave caught my eye; we had turned side on, in a desperate attempt to get us back facing the waves we were over and in the water along with all the stuff. I stood immediately finding my feet as Scott splashed around trying to grab stuff only to suddenly realise he could stand, laughing we chucked things back in the boat which was now filled with water. A Canadian lumberjack shouted from the shore, "You Ok" as we headed in he helped us empty the boat as we laughed about how bad the canoe actually was. Then Scott let out a cry, "my sunglasses" I touched my head after borrowing some of Scott's glasses, a $300 pair of aviators only to realise they were gone too. In a desperate attempt we headed in the lake again, navigated my lumberjack we felt around for the glasses, knowing my luck with sun glasses I had never pictured it to be this bad. Then Scott cheered as he spotted his, with me failing he said not to worry as they had been found in Gatwick airport originally, then my foot brushed over something, instantly I dived under as I jumped to the surface with a smile, glasses in hand Scott said, and "The curse is broken".
As we laughed and joked about a happy ending we paddled back to the cottage, knowing that once the girls had told the other we would be trying to explain our mishap. As we arrived back the other laughed as we turned up soaked through to the bone, I headed for the shower, now freezing cold in the wetness. Behind me I heard a shriek and a scream along with '"#'@; as Andrea quickly regretted the decision to jump in to the lake.
As the evening arrived, us all now warmer after a shower and the fires burning to heat the place up we enjoyed a BBQ dinner with a spot of fishing, I briefly mention the fishing as the outcome was the same as it had been the entire trip. The night came to a close as we tuned in to the hockey on the box although that was an absolute shocker as Detroit thumped Pittsburgh. Tired and warn down we all headed for bed shortly after ready for the next day which would also spell the end of the weekend.
The next day the weather was more overcast with a spatter of rain so the outdoor activities were less active than the day before, however after a fresh breakfast we did try our luck for the last time at fishing once more. As expected it returned little, the lake was in the same mood as the Pacific Ocean had been so we called it a day and headed inside. Back through the mess door of the cottage the heat of a log fire could be felt as I brushed open the door. After a few laughs in the living room over mastermind once more, Scott the girls and I took on the challenge of Scrabble, the girls double teamed me and Scott which paid off in the end as we both fell to their younger minds. As the afternoon arrived we ate as much of the left over's as possible before Juliet introduced me to the violent game of spit, a card game so bruttle not even Floyd Mayweather could handle.
Come 14.00 the clean up was complete and the vehicles were packed, we headed back to Ottawa, tired and weary I dozed in the front awaiting our return. As we arrived back I found out the news that a friend of ours that we had met in Fiji had been involved in a fatal accident in New Zealand which ended the day on a low, after a quick dinner, we all hit the sack, exhausted from the weekends activities. The next day Andrea and I messed about on the computers in the morning in the attempt to create a masterpiece before heading out for lunch in a small shopping mall. Known as the old peoples mall the floor was littered with skin and grey hairs, well that's what Scott told me to expect, (apologies to all the elderly) As we sat down in enjoyed a Teriyaki soup we watched as the world passed by one by one walking stick after walking stick the pace of the elderly world was much slower and relaxing than the one were normally used too.
Later in the day I cooked up pad Thai for the family, although at the start it looked like my luck with the cooking had run out but I think I pulled it round in the end, although Pad Thai will be one I miss out in future. After dinner I headed out with Scott and Juliet to her ultimate Frisbee practice and Scott and I spent the next 2 hours playing our own version of the game, both of us now looking like pro's as we jumped through the air and threw the Frisbee backhand and forehand. As the sun set we headed home for an evening of relaxation and laughter with the Emery's hot tub and the Jon Stewart show. The following day was an even quieter affair as I got the last few bits ready for my trip to New York, Andrea and I cooked up our own Asian soup called 'Wokabec' which we realised was that good we cooked it again in the evening for the rest of the family with a little help from the girls. In to the evening Scott and me sat with a bear and watched the penultimate game in the hockey, a Pittsburgh win would take it to a 7th game which I would be in New York to see, and they did, bring on Times Sq I thought. After finishing off in the hot tub with some pretzels I hit the sack and the next day New York was calling, after another day of computing and packing I walked to the bus station with Andrea for a night on the bus. New York here I come.