This morning, while we were still sleeping in the darkness, I was awakened by thunder. What time was it? Since we don’t have our watches nor any other electronic device during the expedition, you never know what time it is. Sometimes, we dare ask the organizers to situate us in time.
- What time is it?
- Quarter to!
They think they are very funny… It’s always quarter to!
However, after the thunder, the flood began and the rain began to drum furiously on the camp’s metal sheet roof. I had already imagined myself in the middle of the lake, surfing between lightning bolts, soaking wet. THAT is adventure!
I fell asleep again, lulled by this sweet music until they came to wake us up for breakfast. I was glad to see the group again. I feel more comfortable with the whole group. It is good to be able to talk about everything and nothing with people who have experienced cancer like me. It’s new for me to be able to talk about illness, hospitalization, and treatment without the person in front of me feeling like he or she is caught between pity and fear of illness. Here I can talk about chemotherapy and radiation therapy in a known territory. We all share that.
What is the plan? Are we really going canoeing in the storm? Fortunately, the organizers have a plan A, a plan B, a plan C, and probably a plan D, E, F. After lunch, it was no longer raining, but the weather forecast was more thunderstorms for the rest of the day, with winds gusting up to 70 km/h. Not the best time for an outing on the lake!
We are still longing for a bit of a challenge. We don’t want to stay in the barracks all day! So we leave, with our watertight barrels on our backs, to set up our camp in the forest a little less than a kilometre from the reception office. After all the rain that fell at the end of the night, hello mud! Each one does his part so that our exile may be enjoyed.
Once we get there, we tackled the huge 3D puzzle that is our tent. When I saw the great white and orange canvas lying on the ground and all the hoops, at first I did not understand how it was possible for it to become a tent for 13 people!
And yet, under the direction of our conductor, we were able to take on the challenge of setting up the tent, with Myles’s help, who from the top of his six feet, acted as a crane to lift it all. I was pretty proud of all of us!
I also noticed Dylan, who helps the technical team and other participants as often as he can. He even helped the blogger to set up his tent. It is inspiring to see him go.
- Already lunch hour?
- Yes, it is already quarter to!
Outdoor, soup and naan bread sandwiches. Thanks to the cooks! We took the opportunity to explore the forest a little and leave behind the adults talking on their own. This moment of freedom among friends is clearly my highlight of the day.
Finally, it was time to paddle. The wind eased and the sun even showed up while we were launching the Voyageur canoes to take them to our camp, not very far away. We may not have done the planned 10 kilometres on the water, but we are already set for tomorrow and we hope to be able to explore the Poisson Blanc Reservoir, tomorrow.
What is the plan? Some people want to swim while the weather is relatively good. What, swim? It’s not for me. I have not seen them, but it seems that Emily and Jocelyn, the brave ones, jumped into the water to cool themselves off.
I preferred to go for a hike to little lake Hypocrite. Lake Hypocrite? What a surprising name! Along the way, Catherine introduced us to the little waterfall, the hemlock with their green needles on top and white under and the tall elms with their “graffitis” left by the local black bears. Up on the lakeshore, a minute of silence. Peace. Nature.
We came back just before the wind started blowing again and the sky poured over us. Fortunately, we were all well settled in the shelter.
- Look! Water is leaking in the tent!
We quickly dug a small trench outside the tent which deflected the water. Apparently, in the region, there were even wrecking tornadoes, but none of that here.
I really like the fact that we were all gathered in the big tent for supper. Vanessa, Louis and Charles-Antoine are with us to prepare and serve the meal. I went to give them a hand for the dishes to thank them.
Now is the time campfire and smores (“you want some more?”). That’s a first for me: a marshmallow with chocolate melted in a sandwich between two Graham cookies. Local specialty: add raspberries to top.
It’s quarter to, it’s bedtime. I need to rest to be “in shape” for paddling tomorrow! I leave the campfire where the most energetic are still laughing, and head back to the tent.