Sometimes you just need a few days off. Summer hit, and with our schedules being what they were, we just never got around to booking any out-of-town trips for our week off. And then we realized: we live in an awesome city, have an awesome yard, and really just needed some time to relax. This is what we did.
Wednesday July 17
Humpday, and as things worked out, the mid-point of our staycation. The sun was up. The breeze was mild. The kid was rested. And I had a fresh batch of strawberry jam to spread onto my morning toast. How could I complain?
At the continued risk of buzz marketing a (pretty great, actually) local facility, I’ll just note that we go out to Fort Edmonton Park a lot. In fact, we’ve been annual pass holders for at least six contiguous years –maybe more– renewing each year in the spring and visiting every few weeks for a wander.
Fort Edmonton is one of the worlds largest living history museums, a bunch of live actors populating a re-creation and a restoration of the local area as it was a little over a century ago during the settlement of this fine city of ours. We may not have a history spanning multiple millennia or anything, but the buck and a half worth we do have has been quite storied and relatable to the common folks in a way that all that ancient historical ruins stuff just isn’t.
Or, maybe I’m just up-selling. Whatever.
We enjoy it, and having such an awesome facility just a five minute drive from our house is quite cool.
Our visits are also often enough that I don’t mind using it as an kind of photo experimenting location, trying out different modes on my camera, or popping on a never-would-have-thought-of-that lens, and sticking it out for a a two hour trot through the park. On this particular day I loaded on my 100mm macro lens and dropped the camera into an old-timey sepia mode. Sepia has a way of pulling out the textures of things in a way that is similar –but not quite like– black and white.
And, like I wrote above– it’s old-timey.
A couple hours of Fort Edmonton left us tired and warm. I had planned ahead and set up the little backyard pool before we had gone out for the day, and within a few minutes of finishing lunch, Claire was in her swimsuit and half the neighbor kids were splashing about in our backyard.
It’s definitive summertime, the backyard pool.
When I grew up we had this hard green plastic pool in the shape of a turtle or a frog or something. The head was a little slide. And when I was a little older than Claire some of our neighbor kids came over and were splashing about, we were having a water fight of some kind, and the support bracket for the slide got busted off, y’know, because kids are so darned careful. But whatever. It still held water.
Now I get to be the grown up, the supervising adult, watching the kids invent little water games and fight over limited toys and high ground in water-gun battles.
Our yard –particularly since sawing that hole in the fence– has become a destination. We have cool toys and I’m not afraid to let the kids enjoy themselves back there. They also know they can spray me with a water gun and I’ll just give them a playful scowl and threaten them with the hose.
But before we knew it the afternoon had lazy-dazed by and it was early evening. Claire and Karin took a drive with me in the direction of the running room, stopping a few hundred meters short: their destination was actually the Wednesday evening farmers market in the same parking lot. We took a turn through there together, then I was off to run hills.
But Brad, you protest. You’re on vacation! And running?
Alas, by the time I get through this nine day break I’ll have logged about seventy-five klicks in my ongoing training efforts. Albeit that includes a pair of long Sunday runs, but still. Dedication, huh?
We were running hill repeats. If you read my other running posts you probably already know that Wednesdays are hill nights and hill nights are bout strength training. It’s a love-hate relationship. Last night was a little more on the hate side of the equation. But running a set of ten hill repeats for a total distance of about twelve kilometers by time we were done… well, it felt good to go home, collapse into the couch with a cool drink and some corny television, and wonder what was in store for the next day of stay-cation.