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A Few Days in the Bush and What Happens ...? - The Annals of Young Geoffrey: Hope brings a turtle [entries|archive|friends|userinfo]
Young Geoffrey

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A Few Days in the Bush and What Happens ...? [Aug. 18th, 2004|08:22 pm]
Young Geoffrey
... I get bloody paralyzed, trying to catch up on everything is what happens?

This entry, I fear, will be neither dramatic nor particularly well-written; but if I don't do it now, I probably never will.

And so ... this will be a long one, but not quite so long as it might have been. If you're interested, Gentle Reader, then .

Going North

I was a bitch-goddess from hell last Tuesday, Day 4 of Not Smoking having turned me into a petulant, selfish bastard only just holding things together.

Laura had wanted to attend a drum circle at Trinity-Bellwoods Park (see "one of my earliest lj entries" for what I think of pois), where she intended to meet with some of her friends in an orgy of psychedelics and fire-play, and then drive North Wednesday morning.

Fortunately for my sanity and, possibly, our relationship, she sensed my distressed and suggested we skip the poi and head up that night. Relieved (and grateful) beyond words, I agreed and we hopped a streetcar to my place, where we made desperate love, then packed up and headed out onto the highway, arriving at my mum's around 11:00 at night.

My mother Bea, bless her, largely eschewed the jokes about my cradle-robbing tendencies and welcomed Laura with literally open arms. We settled in on her porch and talked, Laura and my mother getting to know each other, while we all awaited the coincidental arrival of my brother and his daughter.

the Beast

(Nuala was strangely camera-shy that weekend, though she didn't mind taking pictures of her own.)


But, nascent camera-bug I seem to be becoming, I digress.

None of us hit the sack until close to dawn, Laura and I attempting to share a couch on the porch, desperately aware of my neice sleeping across the wall in the living room. I ended up on the floor, partly for comfort, partly because that was the only way we could keep our hands off one another.

Settling In

The next day, we found ourselves driving the rented beast


into town and hitting a Canadian Tire, where instead of paying $200 for a tent, we found a brilliant little number for $40, which served us very well indeed. Idiot-proof (though Laura was there, so it wouldn't have much mattered if it wasn't), it required only a quick perusal of a the instructions to set up, which we did a 15 minute hike from my mum's, which might as well have been a day into the woods.

The Bush

Christ, the bush ...

I moved to Sudbury in 1973. Technically, we were within city limits, but only just. Our back yard stretched (and still does) onto Crown land that doesn't stop until you hit Georgian Bay, maybe 100 kilometres to the south. In between are ancient mountains, ground down by 3 billion years of weather (that's right, billion - the Canadian Shield is one of the oldest mountain ranges in the world) and lord knows how many glaciations, ragged forests and small lakes. I call it God's Country, because on it I feel perhaps as close to a spiritual being as it is possible for me to be.

Forgive me for providing a few examples.

view from the tent

(A view from our tent.)

more forest

more forest

more forest

All right, enough rhapsodising about the landscape.

The City

Unless I was to write and very long, and probably more boring, novel, there isn't a great deal to tell.

We spent four glorious days up there, and never mind that we saw the stars only on our last night; never mind that it rained on us every night but that one.

Laura and I both knew that four days in intense company with one another was a major test - and I am happy (happy? Hell, I am ecstatic!) to report we didn't once irritate one another, despite my tendencies towards lecturing like a nutritionist and babbling like a verbal diarhetic.

We went for drives, we went for walks, we made love on the forest floor, we hung out with my mum and my brother and my niece and with sundry great uncles; we made a fire and roasted marsh-mallows and ate (forgive me - it was Laura's idea) Beefaroni; we picked blueberries; and we laughed more than I have laughed in a very long time.

Basically, I think it safe to say that "a (very) good time was had by all", and I know how that can make for dull reportage.

Some Random Observations

  • My brother Tom and I may have finally put aside our childhood demons; not once did he push my buttons, nor I his. Instead, we talked - politics, philosophy, kids, love and family. He got me interested in his work - a largely self-educated cab-driver (well, two years of university), he is working on what will prove to be either an important piece of political-economic analysis or another crank's "analysis". He is smart and sane enough that I am betting on the former;

  • Laura proved herself even more remarkable than I had already thought she was. She has an intense curiosity and a willingness to listen when she doesn't have anything to say; she let Tom and I go at it and only interjected when she did, in fact, have something to contribute. That's a quality upon which I pride myself and it is a joy to see it in someone else - especially someone I have come to care about so deeply; and

  • finally, it's kind of nice to re-encounter vital great uncles of 79 and 89, both still active and involved with life - makes me think that, maybe, my self-styled characterization as "young" isn't quite as hubristic as I sometimes fear it is.

And so, that's it. I'm back, re-energized if not reborn and - I hope - my next entry will prove more interesting than this one.

I'll leave you with a couple 'more pictures, just because I'm so sweet on her.

And that's all folks - time to catch up on the rest of you.

[User Picture]From: touch_my_skin
2004-08-18 08:40 pm (UTC)
Great pics hun!
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[User Picture]From: ed_rex
2004-08-19 05:24 pm (UTC)
Thanks, darlin' - I'm kind of pleased about some of them.
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From: patriarch420
2004-08-19 08:43 am (UTC)
That wasn't bad hun, how long did it take you to do, anyway??

Hrmm I cant think of anything else to say... SO i'll leave it at...

1) i had a very memorable time with you
2) the pictures of the landscape turned out beautiful..although you should've thrown in one of the 290384029384023 i took of that big-ass smoke stack
3)love you, have a nice day ! :)
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[User Picture]From: ed_rex
2004-08-19 05:33 pm (UTC)
That wasn't bad hun, how long did it take you to do, anyway??

Not a fair question.

If you're asking about what actually showed up online - maybe 70 minutes.

If you count all the false starts, the deletions, and the "fuck no, the whole direction/i> is wrong, you're looking at something more like 700 minutes.

I'm reminded of a famous writer describing the process of composition, after having spent an entire day putting a coma into a sentence, then removing it, then thinking about it for a very long time - and putting the coma back.

(Not to mention the New Yorker cartoon: guy asleep on his couch; mom, whispering to their child - "Shh! Daddy's working!")

Glad you liked the pics - and I'm even gladder you didn't object to me posting some shots of you without your prior approval.

As for the Super-stack, those are a-comin', my love - you think I'm going to denigrate your contribution to the cause?

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[User Picture]From: offermeescape
2004-08-19 10:37 am (UTC)
Man, I haven't been up north in so long. You're right.. it's beautiful up there.. I'm reluctant to call it God's country because I'm wholly atheist but let's just say it has a tinge of renewal and vigour.. Glad to see you had such a good time.
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[User Picture]From: ed_rex
2004-08-19 05:37 pm (UTC)
Yeah, it is. I once (or 17 times) described it as something along the lines of, mountains you can touch.

I think my next (er, 2nd) version of Edifice Rex will include a piece I wrote in high-school - not a great story maybe, but one that includes all I feel about the "magic" of ancient lands.
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[User Picture]From: vienneau
2004-08-24 06:33 pm (UTC)

Having just spent the weekend out in Algonquin I have to ask - didn't you freeze your balls off? It was frickin' COLD where I was!

Glad to hear everything went really well!
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[User Picture]From: ed_rex
2004-08-25 05:47 pm (UTC)
Yes, it was cold. But, er, I wasn't alone.

That helped.

And it seems that I have a true Northerner's constitution - a lot of people were complaining, but even at 3 in the morning, sitting out on my mum's (screened) deck, I think I only once had to resort to a sweater-type-thing.

Must be my decades of clean-living.
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