Sunday, September 05, 2010

Digging Traps

So, Norway Bay a cottaging community. It's not at all how I envision the stereotypical Canadian cottage. We're on a street (albeit not paved); we have neighbours who are quite close to us and we aren't directly on the water.

The cottage circa 2008 (before our most recent paint job)
We're lucky to be at the bottom of a hill, because it means we only really have neighbours behind us and to one side. There are people up the hill, but there's enough distance between us.

The Witches' Cottage
We (my quasi-cousins and I) called this place the Witches' Cottage because, when not in the sunlight, it looks so damn creepy. There's a broken window, and rarely has anyone there. I think it's the fact that it's supposed to look like a storybook gingerbread house that really used to creep me out.

Okay, maybe it still creeps me out a bit.

Of all the people on the street, there's one place that used to fill me with fear:

The Cheskwans
Back in the '90s the owners of this place (two doors down from us) used to have a Doberman. It would stare us down and growl menacingly every time we walked passed the cottage to go to the beach. I swear, the dog's eyes glinted red and you knew, you just knew, that if he got off the leash, he'd go straight for your throat.

We were all terrified of it. We'd hurry passed the place muttering, "Don't look. Don't look. DON'T MAKE EYE CONTACT FOR THE LOVE OF GOD!"

And as kids, we did the only thing we could do: tried to take our revenge on the owners to the best of our abilities.

They owned a boat, you see. It was called Wishful Thinking and it was parked in a totally awkward spot that blocked our playing path in the water down at the beach. We hated it, and frankly, we already hated the Cheskwans because of their dog. Anyone who had a dog that evil had to be evil themselves.

So, we'd dig holes in the sand around the boat. We called them Cheskwan traps and did it for years. In fact, when I moved back from Japan, one of the first things I did when I got up to the cottage was dig a Cheskwan trap. Of course, you'd have to be careful about it, because every so often you'd forget where you'd dug a pit and go falling in one yourself.

Nothing worse than falling into your own trap.

Phil fell in to one of his two summers back. We still make fun of him.

But, for all of our digging traps, the Cheskwans didn't seem to notice. In fact, it seemed like he-Cheskwan only got more evil.

The Doberman died of old age and they got a small, horrible yappy dog that lunged at people.

And in response to a neighbourhood dog that got loose, he put up a sign that read:

Any dog found on this property
Will be returned to its owner

In a paper bag

So, you see, his evilness wasn't just in our heads.

This summer, when my uncle, aunt and cousins were up, my uncle and he-Cheskwan started talking. Apparently he was upset about the holes dug around his boat that have been appearing for years.

My whole childhood has been vindicated.


Keith said...

HUZZAH! That is super amazing. Though did you ever think that perhaps your traps only fuelled the evil? I'm just saying, is all...

Also, boo to yappy dogs, but I guess also boo to huge dobermans with evil red glints... it seems like it was a loose loose.

Alyson said...

It might have. I do wonder if we made things worse for ourselves!

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