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Sunday, December 20, 2015

a hot day's sun

Carpe Diem #881 following Basho into the deep north: Mount Atsumi; a hot day's sun; Kisagata silk tree

We set on our way from Montreal to Toronto where we planned to over night.  We stopped along the way to visit the home town of a long ago work friend.  The small town lay along the banks of the St. Lawrence River.  A little bit of drive around, snapshots of local buildings and the River and we were back on the road.  Within the hour we found ourselves needing some coffee and a snack.  A delightful riverside park in Prescott met all the needs and then some.  

As we pulled into a parking spot two men sat in the next auto listening to the end of one of my husband's preferred Saturday morning NPR programs.  Instant connection.  Checked out the Lighthouse Cafe but they were not open as yet.  We met a mom in the little park selling hot dogs for her son's college expenses.  So why not help a lad and his mom.  The nearby gently sloping grassy area was perfect.  In the shade of the tree, we enjoyed hot dogs and a beautiful view.

saintly river
glides beneath white sails
sun-washed at noon
Refreshed we sat out for the day's destination of Toronto.  One of the folks we encountered during the day mentioned a Caribbean Carnival was being held in Toronto.  Later we discovered this in no small affair with roughly 1.2 million visitors for the final parade.  The parade was to be the very next day.  We had not prebooked any type of lodging.....

We arrived in Toronto as first time visitors in a city in the midst of a gigantic party.  Streets were blocked off rendering our trusty GPS to be as lost as we were.  But Husband persevered as we did a drive about in the chaotic city.  The party folks were happy and in costumes.  We just went with the flow of traffic which was basically a snail's pace.  All was well until the need for a salle de détente and food began to make demands on our bodies.  Husband's brave driving and my navigation brought us to a parking spot directly across from a restaurant.  

A delightful meal on the front patio of the restaurant was accompanied by a story filled waiter.  Carnival goers in various attire passed by Bumpkins Restaurant on the way to the main street.  A group of regulars gathered at a nearby table.  Stories and plans were shared within that group.  What a splendid happenstance early evening we spent on the patio.

musical notes
entwined with laughter
'neath the silk tree

By now we were ready for a bed.  In a town with and extra million or so folks.  As with so many that night we were not to find a bed in Toronto.  No problem.  We will simply drive the extra hour and a half to the next destination.  Off toward the setting sun.  In blind faith of finding rest in a comfy bed.  Place after place had the ominous 'no vacancy' sign well lit.  We kept trudging into the night.  Upon arrival in Owen Sound Husband came back to the car with a serious look.  No vacancies within 150 miles.  But the manager did suggest a campground nearby.  

We were traveling in a hybrid Cmax.  Our car was full of all sorts of things none of which included a tent, tarp, sleeping bag nor any of the usual needs for a campground.  After cruising through the campground with no lights as it was 1: AM we picked an available area.  It was only about 5 feet from a tent with a hungry infant.  We did not care.  We needed sleep.  A little rearranging of the stuff in the back area of the hatchback and our seats could be reclined.  A couple of small pillows and we were good.  Well, at least better than nothing.  And we were not far from the restrooms.  This is important for senior citizens.  It was chilly so we turned on the seat heaters for a while.  Finally dug out a couple of wraps to add a little more warmth.

filtering through the silk tree
nudging sleepy eyes

Around 3:30 AM we managed to snuggle closer to each other.  At least as close as an auto with a console and gearshift in the center.  By 5:00 AM the creaky old joints were ready to get moving.  We followed the dirt road as it wound its way through the beautiful park.  A stream, ducks, geese and sleepy campers were at every turn.  Such beauty in the early morning light was an ethereal experience.  I would sharing photos but sleeping in the car gave no chance to recharge any of our devices except one phone.

Looking around the small town  and the adjoining countryside was the object of this leg of the journey. What a beautiful experience to watch the sun rise over Georgian Bay.  The pines appearing  black in the dawn horizon.  Any lingering feeling of tiredness faded with each gentle wave lapping against the pebbled shores.

long road north
ends at the edge of glacial waters
a frog jumps in

Thanks to Chèvrefeuille for daily prompts on 


Thanks to Chèvrefeuille for daily prompts on 


©  Janice 'petra domina' Adcock

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