I Remember When

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Many stories from the past start with those three words. How often are your memories mixed up with a little bit of fiction? Maybe a little twist that adds a little something extra to the story. Here are some fond memories from my past that may have a little fiction thrown in, or not. I thought it would be fun to share the stories here then reach out to family to see how they remember them.

The gorge and the leaky tent…

My father, older brother and I used to spend some quality time at the Elora Gorge, in Southern Ontario. My father would bring home anything that floated. We’d load up the station wagon and head to the gorge. No helmets or lifejackets. Many times, we would have to swim our way out of that gorge. After numerous runs, we’d head back to our campsite to rest and tell stories. I remember, one rainy weekend, sleeping in our leaky tent and waking up to find ourselves afloat on our air mattress. Looking back, seems unbelievable our father would allow us to go down the gorge like that, seems a little risky.

Whipped cream, mosquitoes and bloodsuckers…

One summer, my cousin and a friend went on an overnight canoe trip on Lake Timiskaming. The plan was to canoe out to the island, have some fun, tell some scary stories and head back in the morning. The fun was several cans of whipped cream that we sprayed all over each other… seemed like a good idea. The mosquitoes were drawn to us in swarms, no problem, we were on an island. We jumped in the water, laughing the whole time. That’s when the bloodsuckers struck. We packed up and headed back that night; sticky, itchy and bleeding.

The Lawn Darts…

I was ten years old, plus or minus a couple years. We had a set of Lawn Darts that came out whenever we went camping. I loved the game, there was an element of danger. Object was to get the darts in the ring several yards away. When not playing the game, I’d toss them into the ground by my feet, brushing up on my technique. At some point, an older cousin or adult walked by and told me to be careful. Five minutes later, I put a dart through my foot. That same person was quick to point out; I told you so. They are now banned and I have a nice scar in the middle of my foot. I was only ten or so, what did I know.

Everyone has stories like mine and as the years go by you start to wonder whether it actually happened the way you remember. The thing about fond memories is just that… they are fond. Do you really want to go messing about with something that brings a smile when remembered? Unlike elephants, we humans have the unique ability to embellish and bring a whole new level of fun, adventure or horror to our stories.

I still plan on comparing notes though. Some of them have been around longer, giving the story that much more time to grow.

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