I was at my bike shop yesterday afternoon when the sky started shaking. Out the window was my dear car Scarlet, hidden behind a smash of rain. And the wind!
As Sygnan continued to work on on my bicycle, I glanced outside once in awhile to watch the wind whip. Wow. “Wonder what it’s like at home.”
Hours later, homeward I went. Walking into my living room, I thought about my new tent, Ben. I’d set it up in my backyard a couple of days ago. Who knows, maybe it had collapsed. As I moved farther into the room, I kept expecting to see a flap of blue nylon. Nope. With my nose to the window, all I saw was grass, plus a few lonely tent pegs.
Looking across the field behind, there was lots of brown and green but no blue. Oh my.
Judging from the wind direction, I figured my accommodation had blown past two separate condo homes. So I knocked on door number one. Maddy smiled and said that, yes, she had seen a whirl of blueness roll by, but she hadn’t seen where it had ended up.
Mary Lee answered door number two. Apparently Ben had lingered in her backyard and she was going to pick it up but then the rains came. When the sky was finished dumping, my tent had exited stage left.
Roaming through the tall grass at the edge of the condo development, I knew there was a creek ahead, about three feet across, backed by a few trees. So Ben wouldn’t have ended up in the next county.
Down the slope … and there was my tent, sitting proudly at the peak but submerged in water at the floor. Yuck!
I tried to reach for a nylon loop on the fly, but I couldn’t grab hold. So I walked around to a bridge and the other shore … same deal. Only later did I figure out that since the floor was full of water, I couldn’t have lifted it anyway.
Panicking some, I decided to knock on a neighbour’s door. Incomplete in my brain, I sought a long pole with a hook on the end, for that loop. Dear Borot tried to create something with packing tape.
“Boots! That’s what I need.” Wade into the creek, dismantle Ben, and haul the innards up the slope. John didn’t have any but Dan across the street did. Orthotics transferred and walking gracefully down the street, I picked up a long window washing pole, which I intended to use as a gauge of water depth.
Back to Borot and Petra’s place, looking like a shepherd from the Bible, although they probably didn’t wear gumboots. I started singing “Climb Every Mountain”, which got a laugh out of P and B. They decided to accompany me to the site of the crime and take pics.
I knocked on Francine’s door, since I would be rooting around in her backyard while descending to the creek. Her friend Glenn answered the door. They had already noticed Ben from the comfort of the balcony. Glenn just happens to be the fellow who built my lovely condo.
Shepherd-like, I negotiated the falling grass. Then down into the water. As I strode resolutely ahead, little wavelets lapped at the top edge of my right boot, then overflowed. Still, the water was only two feet deep. Ben was tired and cold when I got to it. I talked gently and started detaching poles and clips. One connection wouldn’t budge and I was getting plenty frustrated, not to mention wet in the feet. Finally Glenn scrambled down the slope and together we hauled the heaving mass ashore, dumping water out of it as we went.
Borot, Petra and I hauled various tent parts back to my place, where we just plopped the sorry wetness in a lump on the garage floor. We laughed quite a bit. Just think, I’m the only known human being to pick a creek for a campsite.
This morning I set Ben up and the continuing winds dried him out. This time, I put a brick on the floor, just in case.