Wednesday, August 3, 2011

My Epic Long Weekend Getaway Post

  This past weekend was a long one for us in Canada with Monday being a Civic Holiday. For those of you not familiar with the term, "civic holiday" is really just a bullshit excuse for everyone to get away and get into whatever mischief they can, while the weather's still nice enough to do it.

  My sister's boyfriend's mother was celebrating her 80th (!) birthday, her family was throwing a bash and Sandy and I were invited. The party was being held about three hours North of Toronto in Owen Sound, a city of about 22,000 people. Sandy's sister and her family also live there and we decided to tie the two in together. So on Saturday morning we packed the car and off we went.

  There's a reason we never travel on long weekends: TRAFFIC. I wish I'd taken a photo of it but you probably already know what a traffic jam looks like. Take one car and put another six inches in front of it. Now multiply that by a bazillion and that's what we kept getting in the middle of. We'd be driving through miles of open country road, the wind blowing through what's left of my hair, get to the top of a hill and BAM! there it was, stretching out for as far as my eye could see. (Which as I get older is less and less).

  Mother Nature seems to have put an internal GPS in my body which calculates the exact middle point between the last rest stop and the next one. My first and thankfully only off-road pee break came in the middle of one of these traffic jams, we pulled off to the side and I was able to walk down a short hill into an overgrown area. As I was doing my business, hearing invisible critters scurrying around me, I looked up and saw this:

  I've always loved to be where I shouldn't, so I had to go back to the car and get the camera.

  Here are some more pictures of the trip along the way; we took the same route as last year and I'm posting some of those photos here since we didn't have as much time to stop.

I love horses and took the opportunity to sneak onto a farmer's property to take these.  This year we saw a couple Palaminos at another spot that I wish I had snapped some pictures of.

There's a huge windfarm along the highway that stretches for miles, it's very dramatic. I'd never seen one until this..

tiny-ass little post office (it always catches my attention)..

  Four hours later (on a trip that should have taken three) we arrived at Sandy's sister's place and had a brief chance to visit with her grandkids and daughter. Boys being boys they were rambunctious and eager to get our attention, which they did.

  We grabbed a quick lunch and after about an hour and a half we were off to the local KAO Campground to meet up with some of my family for the birthday party. My sister and her boyfriend were already set up with my nephews at the cabin, a very cozy 12' x 12' affair with two bunks and a double bed.

We sat around and talked before heading over to the party. About a hundred people were invited and by the looks of things almost everyone showed. Inside they had a huge pot luck buffet (Sandy brought a salad) with a barbeque, lots of salads, beverages, a dessert table and live music (okay, it was one guy with a guitar singing Elvis songs, but still). Since it was a family event there were several kids and they all seemed to have a good time. I took a few photos but they're on Sandy's camera and it'll be a day or so before I can download them. I really want to get this post up so this'll have to do. Sorry! 

  When we returned to the cabin we got the tent set up for the boys...

and did your typical camping stuff..

a sure sign there were women among us...

for the morning after...


 Yeah, the other photos are on Sandy's camera. I suck. Sue me.

As dusk fell I mountain biked with my nephew into the (very dark) forest and gathered sticks to roast marshmallows.

  We awoke to a rain shower in the morning...

...which fortunately didn't last long. Then we packed the car and said goodbye to my sister and her family and headed into town to see Sandy's sister for a longer visit (but not before hitting Tim Horton's for breakfast!)

  Now, a house without two young boys is in theory pretty peaceful. Until you factor in two rabbits, two cats, two dogs and a cockatiel. By the time our visit was over I had been nuzzled and licked by just about everything around me. Not to mention witnessing an impromptu floor show of a bunny humping a dog. Apparently rabbits go more for speed than accuracy, but that's taking this post in a whole new direction.




  Yeah I kinda like the little guy. Okay so maybe I wanted to take him home.  Not shown in this post: Gus the cat, Quincy the dog-humping rabbit, Louis the cockatiel and Annabee the cat. Who is as elusive as Bigfoot but my sister-in-law swears she exists. I'll have to take her word for it.

  We left mid-afternoon and had a great, traffic-jam-free drive home in gorgeous weather. It was a busy two days but it was well worth it.


  1. OMG! the barn, the pictures. the bunny. this sounds like amazing time!

  2. What a lovely little adventure X

  3. I love how you see the adventure in everything!
    And that bunny is so cute I felt a "cuteness" tingle in my belly. Love the farm pictures, too. Great post.

  4. I envy men who can pee standing up on the side of the road, esp when stuck in f'ing traffic jams.

    Love the pictures, it sounded like a great weekend! Beer, Crown and bonfires, what can be better? Bunk beds? Awesome. :)

  5. haha that is fantastic. i love the windmill next to the old farm/house looking thing. those are my favorite to see. we have them all over utah.

    crown royal, beer, motrin. sounds like a fantastic time!

    and i love the bunny. it looks so soft and cuddly!

    ps.. so glad the rain stopped. i hate rain while camping!

  6. This looks like such a fun trip Barry! Happy birthday to your sister's boyfriend's mother! Any trip with the outdoors, a bonfire, and beer sounds like a blast to me :)

  7. Sound like a perfect weekend, without those tongues and impromptu show by those cuties. Ha..ha...I really enjoyed your post and nice pictures too (I have seen those windfarm scenes) and was laughing at the latter part of your post.

    Your comment in my blog read like sweet poetry..thanks so much for your encouragement.

    Have a good weekend ~