Sunday, August 14, 2016

Due to popular demand, I will share the following anecdotes about my son's Canadian canoe-camp job. Please be warned that they are not in chronological order and may be slightly inaccurate due to parental distraction.

* The camp's island, Garden Island, is right next to Bear Island, which is Ojibway land. It seems that all of the local tribes have softball teams and regularly play each other. They also play the camp staff every summer. As Paul describes them, the Bear Islanders are the Yankees of the league--once formidable, now aging--and on his first at-bat P managed to cover himself with glory by hitting a home run into the woods.

* Thirteen-year-old girls spend a lot of time making up songs about young male counselors.

* Northern lights over a northern lake are spectacular. Pot lasagna is delicious. In the United States wilderness canoers drink Tang and eat fried Spam, but in Canada they drink Gumperts and eat fried Klik.

* Portaging with little boys is hard because they are too small to carry anything heavy. Introverted camp counselors snag time for themselves by doing a lot of reading in public. Paul recommends Don DeLillo's Libra.

* There is a laundry hierarchy. Campers wash their clothes in buckets with scrub brushes. Counselors use the Amish washing machine (basically a hand-cranked wringer-washer). The people in charge use an electric agitator. At this camp, the people in charge are referred to collectively as The Brass. I have been trying to imagine how the Frost Place would be different if people referred to Teresa and me as The Brass.

* The base camp is on Lake Temagami in northern Ontario. According to Wikipedia, "the lands surrounding the lake are part of the Canadian Shield, one of the largest single exposure[s] of Precambrian rocks in the world which were formed after the Earth's crust cooled. Part of Lake Temagami lies in the Temagami Magnetic Anomaly, an egg shaped geologic structure stretching from Lake Wanapitei in the west to Bear Island." When Paul wakes up, I will ask him what more he can tell me about the egg-shaped Anomaly, which certainly seems to imply the presence of aliens. I wonder if they play softball.


Carlene said...

Thank you!
Now I am wondering about egg-shaped anomalies, The Brass, and softball. Hey...there's a prompt. Write a poem that includes all three.


Enjoy your boy-time!!

Ruth said...

Yes, thank you! Or write a poem including 3 anomalies or 3 seemingly disparate things.