Sorry to leave you hanging on our vacation adventures like that. My next post will be about why that happened. Blame mommamammoth.
Anyway, I believe I mentioned the rain. Arriving in NS on Wednesday to blue skies and cool breezes, we really thought we were in heaven. There was a VERY heavy dew that night, but nothing unusual. Thursday dawned bright and sunny but grew increasingly overcast. Not a good beach day, but a perfect museum day. By afternoon there was a light drizzle and by evening...not so light. We gave up on eating at our campsite (screen houses don't keep out the rain very well) and headed to Timmy's for supper, then spent the evening playing games in the canteen (which the kids LOVED). Friday was partially cloudy with sunny breaks. We went to the show in the morning, and by afternoon my mom and her fiancee, who were camping with us, decided to head for home a day early. They were finding sleeping on the ground to be too aggravating for existing health concerns (next time they plan to come with one of those nifty tent trailers. Fun!). We returned to our campsite for lunch, packing and goodbyes, and then went back to the gem show. We managed to get supper at our site that night and even get it cleaned up before the rain threatened, again, and we headed for the canteen, again. It rained, lightly but steadily, through the night.
That brings us to Saturday. Overcast, gray Saturday. We managed to dry off the picnic table enough for breakfast, though we ate in our raincoats. We decided to try a walk on the beach, where I tried out my new 70-300mm lens (it's amazing! Now I REALLY feel like the mamarazzi!). Once we got a decent distance down the beach...it suddenly began pouring. Yikes! I tucked the camera under my raincoat and ran, leaving poor Hubby and kids to follow at their own pace. I made sure the camera was safe and dry and clean and packed it securely in the car so it would stay that way. Back to the canteen!
(taken from the observation post before all that gray came down on our heads)
The Princess and I eventually went to check out the local Farmer's Market, which was held INDOORS. We even found a couple of treasures. We had enough of a break in the rain to eat lunch...but then what to do? Back to the show? The museum again? Up to the canteen again for the afternoon? Buy a deck of cards and sit in the tent? (Note to self: next time, pack a deck of cards.)
Choosing a small town as a travel destination can have drawbacks. Like finding things to do on rainy days.
We decided to see if the local library was open. Proving, once again, that we are total
It WAS open. Miracle of miracles! (Our own library is not open on Saturdays. It's very sad.) The kids signed up for computer time (over books?!) and Hubby and I alternated between watching them and browsing the stacks (and this is a tiny one room library, though it had a nice selection. It was possible to do both at the same time.). While browsing, I noticed a sign for an Internet Scavenger Hunt happening that afternoon after closing and asked if the girls could stay for that too. Not only could they stay, but none of the locals showed up. Ha Ha! The sun was peeking out, so we sent Hubby and the Boy down the street to the school playground. We were almost done when we heard a loud clap of thunder and the skies opened up. Forget rain, it was like the angels were dumping buckets--and our guys were playing outside. Sure enough, they soon showed up at the door, dripping wet and asking to use the washroom. Oops. Sorry guys!
(And thanks Amy at the Parrsboro Public Library for letting us hang out for the afternoon and running your program just for us. It was great!)
Our library adventure officially over, we drove around a bit, checked out a couple of interesting looking stores and then decided to put off returning to our soggy site a little longer by going out to eat (again). We'd just have to eat a big breakfast and lunch tomorrow. We asked a local store-owner where a good family restaurant was and they recommended the local tavern. Here was our surprise for the day: our kids behaved. Normally taking our family out to eat is a BAD. PLAN. The kids never like anything on the menu, they hate waiting for the food, they finish early, they whine, they try to escape...it's frankly frightening. BUT not this time. They coloured, they played hangman, they got excited over hot chocolate...they LIKED the FOOD.
(Attention all family eating establishments: PBJ's on the menu? Brilliance. THANK YOU. That is all.)
All good times must come to an end though, and it was time to head back to the campsite. The kids were up for more time in the canteen and stories in the tent. Except...when we got back to the campsite, everything was covered by a few inches of water. It looked like we'd pitched our tent in the marsh. We opened the vestibule to find a very large puddle. LAAAAAAARGE. Possibly a pond. Then we proceeded into the main tent to find...it was raining. It was raining INSIDE the tent. Everything was completely soaked (ok, the clothes that were still packed were only damp). Hubby and I looked at each other. There was no way we could sleep like this. Time for home. There would be no tomorrow on this trip.
We put the kids in the car with the DVD player and started packing. In the pouring rain.
A few things that experience taught me:
- It is easy to pack things in bags when you don't care what goes where.
- It is impossible to correctly fold a tent in a giant puddle in the pouring rain.
- Objects that fit neatly into certain spaces when dry and carefully folded do not fit when sopping wet and rolled haphazardly. Corollary: A queen sized duvet can hold a LOT of water.
- If your car was packed so tightly on the trip in that you couldn't buy groceries until you got there, there's no way you're going to fit everything in, wet, to get home. Tough choices will need to be made.
- After making those choices, other people will be more than happy to take what you have to leave behind. This act of service will not actually help you feel better about the situation, but finding out that your significant other threw out all the s'mores ingredients instead of giving them away will make you disproportionally upset.
- You'll get over it quickly. And then you'll have a good story to tell.
- The kids won't care.
- I have a great family.
- Laundry? You thought you had laundry? You ain't seen nothing yet.
Once we got in the car, headed for home, we looked at the clock and realized that, 8 years ago at that exact time we had just been married. Happy Anniversary! No really. I might have been able to imagine better, DRIER ways to celebrate, but I couldn't be happier with my guy and our lot in life. It made me smile, even in the midst of all that wet. (And boy, were we wet! Turn the heater up!)
It only took about 45 minutes of driving to find the sun again.
We made it home, safe and sound, just before midnight and unpacked as well as we could. I'm still putting things away.
Including all the shells we found before the rain hit.