Waste not, want more

No variations on a theme.

Trespassing Prey – a teaser

I wrote this story years ago, and thought it would be fun to post its intro.

My first and only [not anymore] overnight hiking trip was a collection of mishaps to be sure. Never have I felt so unprepared nor so much like entertainment for an unsympathetic but laughing supreme being.  I went with my close friend, Beth.  We didn’t run out of food or water, we didn’t encounter any real wildlife – besides some small frogs and mosquitoes, but we did get ever-so-barely lost. In time we learned that a little lost could go a long way towards trouble.

We’d been researching the hike, Mt. Cartier, just south of Revelstoke, for a number of days. Hikers assured us that we wouldn’t have a problem following the trail. This didn’t end up being entirely true, but the messenger wasn’t the problem, we were.

Beth packed the tent, the food and camping equipment.  I was to bring my cell phone (to call our ride home) and my stomach medication (so that I didn’t get sick). While packing up at Beth’s house, her dad bustled around nervously, shouting out concerns as he went.  One such comment, “It’s a bad year for cougars,” started things off on tense footing. I can’t remember the conversation exactly but it went more or less as one would expect. To her father’s mentioning cougars Beth replied, “We know,” still patient enough to keep most of the annoyance out of her voice.

-“Yeah, well what are you going to do?” he shouted with a voice full of stress, like frying bacon popping incessantly, as he went into the basement.

-“We’ll be fine, dad” Beth warned.

-He jogged back up anxious and agitated, “Take this; you need this.”

-Beth backed away, as a person is likely to do when presented with a weapon, “A knife? What will we do with this?”  Then she looked at her father’s face, where tension was visibly billowing out. “Okay dad.”

-“Keep it outside your bag so you can get to it,” he said in an authoritative tone.

-“We’ll slay that cougar in a minute flat,” I replied, trying feebly to lighten the mood.

-Unimpressed her dad eyed me seriously, “Rose, you be careful.”

-Repentant, I nod, “Okay, we will be. Don’t worry.”

-He walked around for a moment as if caged, a cougar himself, “The cougars are supposed to be bad now – I don’t know if you two should go on your own.”

-“DAAAAD!  You wouldn’t care if your son was going with one of his friends.”

-“Be-eth.  You always do what you want.  Just be careful.”

In all this, we managed to get ready, and get more paranoid about cougars.  I said goodbye to Beth and left on a first date – a story of its own. I got home late and was too excited to sleep much. In the morning, I woke up tired but very excited. I had my breakfast and was out the door to meet Beth. My friend Katie, the only person that I know willing to get up and give us a ride at 8am on a Saturday morning without incentive, picked us up.  The quick drive out there was full of chatter.

On arrival at the trailhead we bid Katie goodbye, put our names and the date on a whiteboard in case that cougar got the better of us, and set off.


September 15, 2010 - Posted by | Doing it the hard way, Hiking, Wild Animals, Writing |

1 Comment »

  1. […] me to put up more of this story I wrote a number of years ago. You can find the introduction here, if you’re so inclined. In the interest of avoiding a 12-post series, this section is […]

    Pingback by Trespassing Prey – Part 2 « Waste not, want more | November 21, 2011 | Reply

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