Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Biped's Road Trip

My folks own a couple of acres up in Eagle River, which is about as far north as you can go without becoming Canadian.  Deep in the woods, far past civilization, there is a small natural clearing with nothing on it but a gravel pad and a small shed.  No electricity, no running water, no outhouse, nothing.  I half grew up in Eagle River, but I'd never driven there by myself.  This summer, I did.

This was the day of my urban safari, so I began the drive frustrated and late--after work, I'd rather desperately needed a shower.  I was already sweaty, and I wasn't going to have access to a shower for three days.  There's getting back to nature, and then there's ugh-what's-that-smell-sorry-it's-me.

Anyway, the drive.  You can't find my parents' property on any GPS system, or GoogleMaps, or anything like that.  This place is beyond such fancy devices.  My mom gave me directions, and they finished like this:

"Deerskin is the last paved road.  From there, turn left onto Valeria, which is unpaved.  Where Valeria veers left, take the track going right."

That's right, my friends:  "the track."  Two wheel ruts cutting through the pitch black forest, with no road name, and no fire number to give to the people at 911 when you call about the serial killer that is sure to be taking refuge somewhere in the near vicinity.  Of course, there is no cell phone service there, anyway.  Or even landlines.  We're talking end of the road, people.  I almost hit two porcupines on the way there, that's how deep in the boonies I was.  (Think about it:  When was the last time you saw a porcupine outside the zoo?  That's because porcupines think you're a jerk.)

Three times I had to stop my car in the middle of the road, back up, and check the half-hidden street signs I'd missed--and that was while there were still street signs.  Didn't end up really mattering, since there wasn't exactly any other traffic.  Or people within a one hundred mile radius.  About halfway there, Prada puked neatly into my purse.

Good times.

(Truth:  Eagle River is absolutely worth it.  Even though my dad invariably growls like a bear whenever I'm trying to pee.)

(Blogger won't let me insert pictures right now, so image a really good-looking sweetheart of a shepherd mix here, would you?  Actual pic to follow.)

See?  I didn't forget about you, Bob!

He's so friendly, Bob would have made friends with the porcupines.  And he totally would have braved it out with me when Dad was being such a bear.


  1. That sounds like my kind of place.

    Glad there were no serial killers there to kill you, and that the porcupines didn't... um, porcupine you.

  2. It's really pretty amazing. I like living in the city, but sometimes you just need to get away from it, you know?

  3. Absolutely. I know exactly what you mean.