Tuesday, July 3, 2007

Welcome to summer weekend!

The sun has finally decided to stick around, so July now has an air of summer about it. I'm trying to stay focused in my last week of work before I head down to Texas-- but a fan will never compare to the feeling of breeze in one's hair.

Anyways, the long weekend appeared to serve as an official (if belated) summer kick-off of sorts.

Though it certainly didn't appear to be the case when my friend and I left on the three hour drive to the campsite on Friday evening (belting out 80s tunes the whole way there-- it's good to have a girlfriend you can regress with)...

It was certainly ominous driving into those clouds knowing that you were putting yourself at their mercy with but a chunk of canvas protecting you as you sleep.

Thankfully, however, nothing remained but some damp ground as we arrived at our site at around 10pm.

And what a site it was...
(I just realized that I made a rather unintentional pun)
I mentioned in a previous post that apparently the fellows we were camping with were known for their high class camping cuisine.
This reputation was not tarnished when we arrived to the smell of a fresh pot of curry and rice.
I forced myself to have a hotdog (okay, and maybe a marshmallow or two) for breakfast the next morning to convince myself I was camping.

However, not only was the camp rife with quality food, and, of course, a well stocked bar (it was certainly the first time I'd done Jagerbombs in the outdoors!)- they had constructed a car-battery run surround sound system with speakers hidden in different treed corners of the site. There was a separate kitchen shelter with two camp stoves, including (thank God!) a very innovative roughing-it-style coffee maker. The guys even made a makeshift table out of a board and several logs-- including support beams!

The funny thing about all this is that we were still remarkably roughing it. The site was very isolated with not even an outhouse within walking distance. A bear had been sighted nearby earlier in the evening.
Quite the exercise in contrasts- drinking custom made cocktails before sneaking into the bush with a flashlight and a handful of toilet paper to find a suitable tree to squat behind.

Though I only stayed for a little over 24 hours, it was refreshing to have a real break from the city. The setting was quiet and beautiful.

We were situated right across from a big rafting company, so every few hours another group of people would come drifting down our way.

Saturday morning, once everyone had nursed their hangovers (though I'm 100% with Smartbuddy on this one- I slept like a baby and woke up feeling refreshed despite a fair number of drinks consumed the evening previous), we set off to go 4x4ing up a logging road to some lake that no one was terribly sure existed.

I played DJ with my iPod in the back of a convertible jeep, and convinced my passengers that Livin' on a Prayer really set the tone. It may have been karma that I got soaked by massive mud puddles after making this selection.

The view from partway up the mountain... made even more comical by the fact that you can also see the back of a guy peeing (it was honestly the best picture!)

A train route bored through the mountain.

After contemplating a variety of forks in the road, and being nearly shaken to death by driving over a number of rock slide sites, the mysterious lake showed itself!

The water was freezing, but a brilliant shade of teal as it was glacier fed.
Unfortunately, the other thing being fed was the mosquitos.
By the time we returned to the campsite, I was a giant ball of dust, with my every crease being highlighted in dirt, and a little in my mouth from laughing so hard.


Only rant I will give about the trip is about women who can't give up their girlie roles for a day.
Two girls, including one who is supposedly an expert camper, slept in the backseat of a truck out of fear of bears (keep in mind there were eight people there, so they weren't exactly isolated), while I slept outside in a tent on my own (and passed out with nary a thought of becoming a bear's dinner- we were pretty meticulously in storing and destroying food scraps).

Also, one does not bring a tube top camping and continually reapply one's make-up.
You certainly achieved your goal of being the sexiest one there-- considering the rest of us were fresh faced, messy haired and clad in sweatshirts and dirty jeans.

But, to top it all off, one does not randomly eat berries from a bush somewhere up a mountain without a clue what they are. That is where evolution is supposed to come into play...

I hate the dumb girl act.
(but it's even worse when I'm not sure if it's an act)


The rest of the weekend was also lovely. I managed to get two days of basking in the sun at the beach with friends-- okay, one day it really was hardly sunny, but I was determined to take advantage of every last smidgen of a ray. I had an indulgent brunch with a group of girlfriends, and went to the jazz fest for a little while, which was almost better for people-watching than for the music.
I also received an improptu lesson in wines Sunday evening, where I learned to say that a red wine is "earthy" rather than "tastes a bit like dirt", before heading to the Canada Day fireworks extravaganza- which was a little underwhelming.
I sometimes think I let myself get too caught up too much in the energy of other around me-- but can someone tell me what part of being patriotic involves cursing up a storm and blowing pot smoke into people's faces at a family event?

However, all in all, the weekend did a good job of launching a summer state of mind.


Heart Of Darkness said...

Haha, the "sunny" pictures look like Swedish summer...!

I envy you, going camping, on own decision. I don't camp. I've got a tent, it's pink, and never used... See, wilderness doesn't agree with my J- Pliner... LOL

But the pictures are smashing! I'm kinda starting to rethink my strategy - it might be worth sleeping on the ground and be feasted on my all kind of flying bastards commonly known as flies, mosquitos and such, to see all that...!

Might... :D

SMARTBuddy said...

Wow, amasing photos! Good to see you're making the most of living somewhere so beautiful. The weather is crappy over here too and we're obviously not quite as dedicated to the cause. Oh, and thanks a lot for the tag (if thats what you call it?!)

Ultra Toast Mosha God said...

It saddens me that some girls play dumb to impress guys. It's even sadder that it often works.

It looks like a beautiful site.

What incredible views!

I want me some o' that.

Ant said...

Oh Canada. The Big Country is truly beautiful - that looks like a fab weekend...

Wine pretension is also a beautiful thing no? It still does taste like dirt, but the ponces just don't want to admit that...

captain corky said...

Amazing pictures. I love too camp. It's going to be a year before I can go, but I really want to do it again.

You guys should have tied the tube top, makeup wearing woman to a tree and left her there.

LMizzle said...

man, I am going to the beach even if it's cloudy. yay!

iFreud said...

I loved your pictures and narrative! You make me laugh (eating the berries and the dirty wine were my favs).

It sounds like you had a refreshing and fun time!

eric313 said...

Princess, the pictures were excellent.
You have a great eye for scenery. Hope you found inner peace amongst all the rocks. Great post.

eric313 said...

It's cool that you met my friend and over at her blog, michelle's spells. She's a wonderful writer, teacher and a great friend. Be cool to her! I know you wuold.

Heart Of Darkness said...

ryc: My favorite Carlin is "May the forces of evil become confused on their way to your house"! ;)

Crashdummie said...

Omg, sounds like you guyz had fun – and wow, what a view! But don’t think I’m a camping girl. No, not cuz I have this dumb girl act going on (which btw is totally hilarious) but the whole lack of a proper bathroom and kitchen is way to cheeky for me.

Heart Of Darkness said...

I used teh link you left Crashy... please, be so kind now and tell me what you really think of me! ;)

Princess Pointful said...

HoD- I'm gonna say it's worth it- even if you just decide you hate if after that one trip. Besides, your pink tent is yearning for the outdoors!

Smartbuddy- It feels wrong to be so blessed to live in such a beautiful area and not take advantage of it!

Ultra- Yeah, I can't figure out which gender is worse for indulging in that little game.

Ant- Yep, makes me a feel a little patriotic.
While I am becoming more of wine drinker, I can't get that involved in the whole ritual around it. It feels so pretentious- I just drink what tastes good, and don't worry about why it tastes good.

Corky- It'd been too long for me, too! Yeah, I could have bound her with the remains of halter tops.

Lmizzle- You better believe it! You will be within walking distance of English Bay!

iFreud- Thanks! I did have a lovely time.

Eric- Thanks! :) Michelle looks to be a pretty incredible writer...

HoD- He is one of the more quoteworthy folks out there, isn't he?

Crashy- Haha... fair enough, you have to be aware of what you can and can't tolerate!

HoD- Done and done!

Dorky Dad said...

Aaah, guys: Find a picturesque mountainous scene that would play well on any postcard ... and pee on it. Gosh.

eric313 said...

She is. Her words and structures are simple and complex, delicate and tough. She was the first person to get me to read Bukowski and Raymond Carver, and convinced me to follow my dream and not just an easy, well-beaten path to a modest or slightly better living. Some would not think that is a very good thing, but I do, and I'm sure you agree.

cdp said...

Gorgeous! I recently went camping for the first time in many years, and loved reading about your experience. Ps, an awesome quote: "where I learned to say that a red wine is "earthy" rather than 'tastes a bit like dirt'"

Found you via indie bloggers. Love your stuff!

Anonymous said...

Lovely pictures -what a great place!

Jocelyn said...

Terrific weekend! And I agree about dumb girls camping. Get over it, ladies.

We just camped outside of Yellowstone and had to lie about what the on-site bearbox was, so my kids wouldn't get terrors.

Indiana James said...
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