Please stop saying summer is almost over. It’s not. There is plenty of summer ahead, okay, so just simmer down. Don’t rush through it. Ignore the back-to-school sales and ads for the Canadian National Exhibition that suggests the inevitable end to this great season. I still have one week of vacation and it’s not until the very last week of August, so shush.
Personally speaking, this summer has been amazing. I’ve done some remarkably brave things. I changed careers. I took my kids camping (one night in a tent still constitutes camping, okay?). I had a sleepover at a water buffalo farm, (awesome) where I learned that milking parlours are all fun and games until a water buffalo kicks the milker. (Also, I learned I would be a lousy farmer). But bravest of all? Being photographed in a bathing suit.
Wait. The only thing worse than being photographed in a bathing suit is being videotaped wearing one. That sounds almost as bad as it is. Let me rephrase: the only thing worse than being photographed or videotaped while wearing a bathing suit is to have a person shooting footage of you seated in a giant, inflated tube, as you go skimming across the water of a cold Muskoka lake, being dragged by a speedboat driven by a mercenary stunt driver you have only just met, (but totally trusted your life to). Your only saving grace is the figure-flattering fluorescent orange PFD that is now shoved so far under your chin you look like Humpty Dumpty. But lucky for you, there are tiny black handles on the tube to hold on to, (not awesome).
All the while someone is filming the look of sheer panic on your face, as your sun-kissed skin stretches back to your ears in the wind, wobbling ripples of flesh waving backward like the worst plastic surgery ever. Mouth agape, you swallow a bug that you are now gurgling in the vocal arrangement of screams that you think are coming out as laughter, but you can’t be sure.
Luckily, you left your glasses on shore, so you aren’t actually aware that a camera is capturing every one of your awkward air-borne bounces in and out of the tube with the rhythm and intensity of a drunk drummer, as the lens captures the unmistakably unpleasant facial gestures that result, and the wet hair-lashes that are making it near impossible to know if the ride from hell will end soon. (It won’t.) But footage later will prove you looked like a human version of the bouncy ball tethered to a wooden paddle. It gets better. The video has the audio recording of you, battling to be heard over the motor of the boat, screaming to your teenage daughter, (who happens to be flinging about wildly in the tube seat next to you), as you ask, half-jokingly, “if I pee my pants here, nobody will notice right?” She says something inaudible in reply, but you are afraid to turn your neck to read her lips because you don’t have your chiropractor on speed dial and you feel certain he would frown heavily on your current posture.
A summer of brave, bold events has been wonderful so far and I’m not done yet. Let’s not focus on what little time we have left of this season, and live every day of it right until the end. Also, let’s ban cameras.
Writing has been my passion since I learned how to hold a pencil (which I still cannot do properly). Despite my father’s insistence that I would starve to death in this career, I remain well fed and eager to write more. They say you should do what you love: I love to write.