In spite of living in a small community that has a lake in the middle of town, every summer we spent our Sundays as a family at a small cabin on a lake about 30 miles away from town.
We called it simply “The Island”.
We never questioned how my father came to own a small island on a lake surrounded by Crown land. Personally, I like to think a poker game might have been involved. Regardless, the end result was that we were the only people on the lake, with no one around for several miles.
As kids, it seemed kind of cool to have this private place to go, but as we got older it lost its cool factor. All our friends, and the things we wanted to do, were in town.
It was here that we spent endless hours in the water swimming, learning how to water-ski, and exercising our imaginations with games of make-believe. We had a homemade swing made from logs and rope, a small sand beach, and stacks of board games and comic books. We were never at a loss for ways to amuse ourselves … even it was simply annoying one another.
On the flip-side, it was a dark little 2 bedroom cabin with no electricity and no running water. It was here that I developed an aversion to any bug or crawly thing. The outhouse was a place of horror where I fine-tuned my life-long dislike of spiders.
It was at The Island that I discovered I wasn’t really the ‘outdoorsy’ type. I was a magnet for mosquitoes, black flies, and basically anything that would bite. I was constantly covered in itchy welts. The moment I stepped outside, my blood seemed to shout to the insect world that the free all-you-can-eat buffet was open. I wasn’t going to mention the leeches and blood-suckers in the water, but they too loomed large in my summer nightmares.
The original old cabin was torn down years ago and a new, larger cabin was rebuilt by my older brother with large windows overlooking the lake. He added a generator for electricity and an indoor port-a-potty.
The Island is now owned by the youngest of my siblings. She’s kept it in the family as a legacy for her children who lived a number of years in the North and developed a love for The Island that I never did.
She calls it Alcatraz.
Thank you for visiting today. I hope you will enjoy today’s treat of an Ice Cream Sandwich.