by Nelson Daily staff on May 13 2013
by Adrian Barnes on May 13 2013
Advanced polling turn-out mirrors 2009 numbers in Kootenay West/ Kootenay East boasts better numbersby Kyra Hoggan on May 13 2013
by Nelson Daily Sports on May 13 2013
Slocan Valley Vendettas knock off Salmo to register inaugural victory; Rossland/Trail too hot to handle for Castlegar Dam Cityby Nelson Daily Sports on May 13 2013
by John King on Thursday May 16 2013
by Kyra Hoggan on Wednesday May 15 2013
by Andre Carrel on Tuesday May 14 2013
by Charles Jeanes on Tuesday May 14 2013
by Adrian Barnes on Monday May 13 2013
OP/ED: Waltons, eat your heart out. This family knows how to have FUN
A family fun-filled day, that’s what we had planned. You know, like the ones they show on commercials with all of the slow motion laughter and delight. Well, I’m sorry to tell you, all that that just didn’t happen. I’ve now decided that family fun-filled days are only possible if you pack; a good sense of humour, a first aid kit, and low expectations. With those three things, you’ll do okay.
This is what we had planned: my family of four, my mother, and our three dogs were all going to pile in the truck and drive three hours to our new cabin. We were going to leave early, stop for brunch at our favourite restaurant, play on the beach, and explore our new chunk of paradise. We were excited to spend time bonding and enjoying the outdoors together, while the dogs romped about with reckless abandon.
Sounds nice, right?
Now this is how it actually went:
We got up in the morning and started preparing for our day. At around 10 a.m., I thought I would check in with my husband to see if he was ready to head out. Now, there is something you should know about my husband - on a normal day you can take his estimated time of departure and add about an hour to that time. This day, however, my husband wasn’t having the best luck and that one hour turned into three. We finally managed to pull out of the driveway at 1 p.m. By that time, the children were cranky and starving, I was frustrated, and my husband was just plain fed up.
Not a great start to family fun-filled day.
We made it to our favourite restaurant with rumbling tummies and saw a big ‘Closed’ sign hanging on the door. (sigh)
Okay, so scratch the early start and the lovely brunch … but that’s okay, things don’t always work out, right?
We decided to settle for fast food.
So we got our week’s worth of sodium in one meal and carried on.
My mother miraculously fell asleep between her two fighting, miserable grandsons and we somehow survived the next two hours of the drive without leaving anyone on the side of the road. There was, however, no bonding or enjoyment. Only hissing, shushing, and empty threats.
We finally arrived at the cabin and leapt out of the vehicle in excitement, only to be SWARMED by hundreds of mosquitos. Hundreds, not exaggerating. After everything that had already happened, we refused to let a bunch of vampire insects ruin our time, so we decided to make the best of it and walk to the beach.
The beach was beautiful and we actually had a really nice time. The four-year-old only fell in the water twice, the dogs only ran away once, and our skin eventually began to numb to all of the bug bites.
By the time we got back to the cabin, it was 6 p.m. and, since we had another three-hour drive home, we decided to start heading back. Despite the fact that we had a (really) late start, things hadn’t gone quite as planned, and we had been attacked by bloodsuckers, it had been a pretty good day thus far.
As we were loading the truck for the drive home, I noticed my Basset Hound’s face looked a bit … lumpy.
“Umm, honey, I think Baxter is having some sort of allergic reaction.” I said.
“He’s a dog, he’s fine,” my husband grumbled.
So away we went.
A ways into our drive, I got worried and decided to pull over and check on the dog. My husband got out to check and came back with poor Baxter cradled in his arms. His poor dog head was now the size of a watermelon and his eyes were swollen shut.
(Cue the panic)
All of a sudden, we were racing over 110 km/hr on a dirt road in the middle of nowhere to save our dog’s life.
Thankfully, we finally came across a tiny store and whipped in to see if they had any Benadryl.
There is nothing like a little adventure mixed with a medical emergency to make your day extra fun. We decided to drive in the opposite direction and see if we could find anything open in the next town. By this time the dog was extremely uncomfortable, I was hyperventilating, and the seven-year-old was crying.
We made it to a town with everyone still alive and accounted for. There was only one store open so … fingers crossed. Good news, they were out of Benadryl.
We were now completely desperate and decided that we had no other choice but to go to the local emergency room. Yes, the one for humans.
Thankfully they were not busy, the nurse on duty was a dog lover, and they were not opposed to treating a dog. They gave us drugs for Baxter, whose head was growing by the second, and we all breathed a big sigh of relief. Gotta love small towns where you can take your pet to the ER.
Mission Save Baxter – Accomplished.
The swollen dog settled down, the kids fell asleep, and we started our long trek home. We got home before midnight which, after everything, I considered a small success. We gave the dog more drugs and tucked the kids into bed. Family day was finally over.
As I was getting ready for bed that night, I thought back over our family fun-filled day. Sure, nothing had gone as planned, we’d been eaten alive, and we had trashed our truck racing all over the Kootenays to save our anaphylactic dog, but now I found myself laughing (in between scratching) at our dysfunctional day.
It was certainly unforgettable.
So, I have decided that from now on we will take Benadryl and mosquito repellant wherever we go, along with a sense of humour, and virtually no expectations. With an arsenal like that, we’ll be almost unstoppable.
Oh yeah, and I might leave the dogs at home, too.