Pleasure Park, Graham Lake, outside Brockville ON
July 2, 2009,
Maybe I’m just in a bad mood because of the rain, but this place is a total disappointment to me so far. First of all, with a name like Pleasure Park, I assumed everyone would be naked and they’re not. Second, I have never stayed in a campground where the sites were so close together. It’s like we’re in a giant trailer filing cabinet. There’s no privacy or sense of personal space, and there’s no room to spread out. As a result, I hate the people next to us. They haven’t done anything wrong; I just can’t stand having people so close to me. I have a very large personal bubble – deal wit’ it.
So far, we haven’t been able to bring in any TV stations with the antenna. Yet another reason the Pleasure Park holds no pleasure. Maybe I’ll like it better after a good night’s sleep. Walking with the dog in the dark I did see some very promising trailer decor. I’ll have a better look in the morning.
July 3, 2009
It’s been raining off and on all day so far. The park is sodden.
We made coffee and Pillsbury cinnamon buns for breakfast. They were delicious and smelled amazing while they were baking. I’m fairly confident the other campers were jealous; maybe even the ones with bacon.
Peggy, the dog, has done her best to behave so far but is having a bit of stage fright trying to go to the bathroom. I wish she would just go already; it’s not healthy to hold it like this. She has decided that she prefers to be under the trailer and keeps emerging from her hideout covered in a funky combination of grease and mud.
Liam has been really happy so far this trip and hasn’t had a single tantrum. We were briefly able to watch PBS from the States, but for the most part, he’s been playing with toys and games and occupying himself without the TV. He’s truly roughing it.
I took Liam for a walk around the campground during a rain-free window this morning. He got to see the playground, but it was pretty wet and muddy so he couldn’t do much. We watched some older kids fishing in the lake.
The swimming area off the beach is outfitted with a water trampoline and several water slides. On a hot summer day, this would be a pretty happening place. I must admit that this park is well maintained. The camp sites are kept neat and tidy. The picnic tables and fire rings are all in good condition and the bathrooms are clean and well stocked. The campers with seasonal sites have put a lot of effort into their decor and, in some cases, some money too.
We had everything we needed to make lunch, but with more clouds looming and more rain coming we got a case of cabin fever and decided to go out. We went into Brockville and grabbed some lunch at A&W, which is always a winner in my book. While we were out we decided to go shopping for books, movies and Jiffy Pop, so we can entertain ourselves while we’re stuck inside the trailer. The rain has shown no signs of letting up.
We had a rainy afternoon to fill so I decided it was time to bring out the ice cream ball. The ice cream ball is a nifty little item my sister and brother-in-law (Auntie Caroline and Uncle Neil) bought us for the trailer. I’ve saved it for just such a rainy occasion. You fill one side of the ball with the ingredients to make ice cream and you fill the other side with ice and salt. Shake and toss the ball around and after a while you end up with soft-serve ice cream. Honestly, I didn’t expect it to work, but we actually made some really tasty vanilla chocolate chip ice cream. Duncan sarcastically noted that it tasted a lot like ‘real ice cream’ just before he chomped down on a shard of plastic spoon that I’d accidently served him. Ooops, I’m glad Liam didn’t get that bowl. Anyway, the three of us agreed that the experiment was a success and we’ll look forward to making ice cream again the next time it rains.
We went into Brockville again at dinner time and ended up at a restaurant called Santa Fe where they served us up some fantastic South West style food. Liam got a kick out of watching the tortillas being made in the tortilla making machine. They had a big decorative mask hanging on the wall and Duncan told Liam that the mask was saying “Eat your supper Liam”. The next thing you know, Liam was freaking out every time he heard a rumbling noise ‘cause he thought the mask was yelling at him. His imagination is much too vivid.
The adults in the restaurant were more concerned with the giant funnel cloud outside. The picture doesn’t do it justice because it doesn’t capture the rotating, menacing, ominousness of it all. All we saw was the funnel cloud stage, but it did, apparently, touch-down in a fit of tornadic mischief by the river. It knocked over some trees and caused a bit of damage, but it didn’t hurt anybody.
We got back to the campsite to find that it’s even more claustrophobic and noisy than last night, and it’s still raining, of course.
July 4, 2009
And what a chilly July 4th it was. It was 16ºC that morning, but remarkably, it didn’t rain much at all. This day was occupied by a barbecue with Duncan’s coworkers. We had a really nice time, but Bob’s barbecue doesn’t really have anything to do with camping and involves a lot of people who may, or may not want to be in a blog; so we’ll skip over that part.
July 5, 2009
Time to go! The sun was actually out this morning, which made the task of packing up much more pleasant. All my organizational efforts before the trip made things pretty easy. We just had to put everything away, clean up and then prepare the trailer for the trip home. It went really smoothly and everyone was far less frustrated than last time.
I left the park with a sense of satisfaction. The weather had been about as bad as we were ever likely to camp in. The campground had been as overcrowded as we were ever likely to tolerate. Yet, in spite of the adversity, we’d had a successful camping trip. We’d had fun, Liam had been happy the whole time and we’d found ways to entertain ourselves through some very inclement weather. It gave me hope. If we could enjoy this trip, just imagine how much fun we’ll have when everything goes well!