Cruising Canaan

Hi there!

So I’m attempting this radical concept called “taking a weekend off.”

It’s a new thing, and I assume many of you are as unfamiliar with it as I am, so I’ll try to explain.

It apparently involves allotting two entire days toward simply relaxing, pondering, daydreaming, spending time with family, and perhaps, if you’re feeling adventurous, even doing a spot of writing and some spring sprucing of the ol’ blog template. (That menu bar is still a work in progress, by the way.)

The remarkable catch is that you must utterly refuse to address any transaction imports, note deletions, report requests, impending project deadlines, file transfer alerts, and/or helpdesk tickets while this is “weekend” thing is happening.

It’s unsettling, but it’s also quite nice. I should do it more often.

Okay! So when we left you all we had just arrived in Canaan, VT and I was lamenting the treacherousness of the staircase that leads up to our little apartment…

And now, 5 weeks later, I can say…

Nothing’s changed. It’s still a ludicrously difficult staircase to manage. But Jen and I have become slightly more adept at clambering up there without having Aetna ready on speed dial. (As long as we’re not carrying groceries.) Daphne, however, has actually become quite the pro at it.

As for Canaan itself? Well, there’s not a lot to show, really…

Here’s the intersection.

Yes, the intersection. There’s only one.

Having trouble reading that sign? Here, let me help.

Yes, “Canada. That-a-way.”

We tried it too. Totally works! You run right into the Canadian border patrol. (The last ‘Murica stop is the Ethan Allen furniture factory.)

I will confess that my mental image of this event was that we would be greeted by a phalanx of Mounties on mooseback, all eating poutine and brandishing hockey sticks while politely apologizing for not allowing us to cross…

You can imagine my disappointment when the border crossing looked more like…a Circle-K.

Fill ‘er up, eh?

Slightly disappointing.

We’re also told they’re not letting anyone across the border for a least another month, so it would appear that the rest of our time up here will be spent entirely within the confines of Canaan proper.

That’s not to say that we dislike Canaan. Quite the opposite, actually. It’s absolutely beautiful here. I think Jen and I say that to one another at least 4 or 5 times a day.

“Wow. That’s amazing. It’s so beautiful here.”

That’s the inaugural Flight of the Bumbledrone, by the way. And I apologize about the unedited footage and for any nausea that it may impart. I’m still learning to fly that thing and I can’t download my copy of Premiere Pro to edit the video because the house we’re staying in is connected to the ISP That Time Forgot.

Oh, that’s something to add, isn’t it?

Yeah, the DSL running into the house is every bit as bad as I’d originally envisioned. Worse, actually, since I think we’ve data-capped the ISP for the month and so they’ve throttled us to 300kbps. My work computer gets dropped 8-10 times a day from its VPN, which…

Waitaminute! **needle scratch**

No, no… No talking about work.
Man, this is hard.

Okay, moving on.

So, hey! Who digs hiking? Because that’s totally a thing that happened a couple weekends ago.

We drove over to a trail called Kilburn Crags just over the New Hampshire border, which promised a relatively easy walk for first-timers.

And look! A diamond-rare picture of my beautiful wife!

It was a little less than a mile in each direction, and while the trail itself was a but mucky and swampy in places, the payoff at the top was totally worth it.

The whole trek, including 30 minutes resting at the picnic table at the summit, took us about 2 hours, and it was a lovely way to spend part of the afternoon. That is, until we got back down.

Given that it’s early May in Vermont, we performed the requisite quick tick check before getting into the car. (I’m a little freaky about Lyme disease, you see…) I knocked two of the little bastards off of my pants, one off of Daphne’s, and another one off of Jen’s. We all lifted our arms, pulled our sleeves and cuffs up, pulled down our socks, checked our necks, did the Ticky Pokey and turned ourselves around…and we all appeared to be in the clear.

So we drove over to Littleton proper (which has rapidly become one of our favorite little cities up here so far), and pulled over to call in our pizza order to Gold House Pizza on Main St.

But right after I’d done so I felt this odd, quiet, gentle little tickle on my upper arm… I looked down and…

“Oh. Hey. How’s it goin’? Uh…candygram?”

I lurched upward in the driver’s seat while pinching the little bloodsucker off me and hucked it out the window.

I had just enough time to get out, “Ugh! What the hell! Where did that thing come fro-” before Jen yelled “TIIICK!” snatching another one off my arm and jettisoning it out the window toward its buddy.

Now, the words “panicked conniption fit” don’t properly do justice to the odd flipping, convulsing, and bodily searching that ensued after finding this second one. Because, at the time, it felt like they were… All. Over. Me. Exsanguination was clearly imminent within minutes. I’m gettin’ all itchy right now just thinking about it.

We actually pulled another three more of these damn wood ticks off of me while we were sitting there (thank God we were parked at the time), and after a grand total of 9 ticks being plucked off of our family, we’ve sworn off of hiking entirely up here until we can get some permethrin-coated pants and socks for the lot of us.

And perhaps a human-sized hamster ball, within which I’ll be more than happy to hike anywhere at all.

Try it now, you little arachnid bastards. I dare you.

So, aside from those events, there’s not a whole lot more to report.

We’re making what seems to be solid progress on the house front currently. In fact, hopefully by my next post I’ll have more concrete news to share. Obviously there’s a lot in the air, given the sheer insanity of the current housing market, so I don’t want to jinx anything.

For now, I’ll just leave you with this:

Talk to you soon.

j.s.

2 Comments on “Cruising Canaan

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