Monday, August 01, 2005

Family Day


I'm not a fan of family outings. We usually leave a few hours later than we wish, my mom gets so stressed out about everything going right that she takes her stress out on us and the outing itself tends to be dull. But it's obligatory, especially for good-for-nothing adult-kids such as myself living at home for free - so I told my mom I'd go as long as Catherine is going which usually makes the trip more bearable.
So for BC day we took the boat out to Indian Arm - gorgeous scenery with weird cliff houses. I hoped that the entire trip would consist of silent boating, wind against my face, salt water everywhere, evergreens piling into hills and mountains. But eventually, to my despair, my parents decided to dock and interrupted the serene silence. That means actually talking to the family and hanging out. My brother wandered off for a smoke, Catherine and I followed while my parents stayed with the boat. Jeff stood at the end of a path before a large rocky waterfall. A yellow sign to his left read 'Do not climb the falls' and an Asian family ahead of us were picnicing on a large gray rock, the height of an old Canadian war house. Yellow signs have no influence on Inkpen sisters so Catherine and I began to climb the rocks barefooted in bathing suits.
The texture is smooth and rough - somehow our feet stuck to the rock like a spider on the ceiling. It reminded me of hiking in Australia. We had to use all our limbs to get up - Catherine called me Smegal (from Lord of the Rings) and I replied, "My precious!!!" in Smegal's snarly voice. About twenty minutes of monkey scrambling and a few minutes here an there of rest by smaller waterfalls and shallow pools, we almost made it to the top. Some pools were so deep that the water was black.
It wasn't so much our need to climb down as my hunger starting to bug me that influenced our decend. I slid a couple of times, scraped my elbow and knee. It's good to scrape yourself up once in a while. Way below, we saw a man in a white shirt and long khakis - we thought our parents called the park ranger. He waited at the bottom for us but it turned out he was just some guy wondering how the climb went. That waterfall turned a dull family outing into a good adventure. Well - it did for me - Jeff made himself a little bed on the boat using lifejackets and fell asleep. The next day I woke up with stiff legs and sore pecks - the good-using-your-muscles-kind - and a red sunburnt face - now I've got plenty of Vitamin D!

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