Fern 2008

Last week was our annual trip to Fern Resort. It seemed a little different this year compared to last year:

  • The guys didn’t go golfing this year. Mike wasn’t there and Jerry is recovering from surgery, so me and Jeff decided to stick to the 5-hole course at Fern. I played once with Nicky and once with both Nicky and Ryan.
  • We didn’t go into the woods at all. There are several kilometers of trails in the woods, and you can rent bikes and pedal carts or just walk, but we just never made it there
  • Gail didn’t do any archery, which is something she loves doing at Fern. It just didn’t work out with the schedule.
  • Gail missed a day thanks to a migraine. Between lunch and dinner she stayed in the room with the blinds closed and a pillow over her head.
  • I played tennis four times, rather than the usual one, and entered two tournaments — one doubles (with Jeff) and one singles. Jeff and I won our first round match in the doubles tournament and then got beat in the second round. In the singles tournament, I got beat in the first round by some teenager (who was good enough that he didn’t even bother attending the clinic beforehand) and then lost again in the second round. Jeff made it to the finals but lost 3 games to 2.
  • the pool was amazingly warm — I just walked in, with no need to “get used to the water”, even for a few seconds. Ahhhh.

Some things were similar to previous years — I had fun playing four-way beach volleyball and water volleyball, the food was excellent as always (they had peanut butter pie twice this year), and Nicky got on stage again. Last year he helped out a magician, and this year he was called up to play Deal or No Deal for “Fern dollars”. He’s only six, so he didn’t really understand what the game was all about, so when they opened a briefcase and showed him $50 (the maximum prize), he put his hands up and said “Yay!” He was a little disappointed when they told him it meant that he didn’t win $50. The first deal offered by the “banker” was $15, and despite everyone in the audience yelling “No deal! No deal!”, Nicky took the deal. The “briefcase” he chose contained $15 anyway, so it probably wouldn’t have mattered, but he’s happy with the T-shirt we bought with his winnings.

We saw Jamie Williams perform again (man, he’s good), but this year he had a bit of a surprise — a couple of friends of his were in the audience, so he brought them up on stage and the three of them did a few songs together. This wouldn’t have been a big deal, except for the fact that one of them was NHL Hall-of-Famer Brian Trottier. The guy won six Stanley Cups, the Conn Smythe, Hart, Art Ross, Calder, and King Clancy trophies, and is considered one of the best ever to play the game — who knew he could sing, play the guitar, and write songs too?

Jeff brought his Jet-ski again this year, and Ryan and I had fun being pulled around on an inner tube at 25 mph. Nicky went for one ride and then was perfectly happy to spend the rest of the afternoon digging in the sand on the beach, so Ryan and I just kept going out for more Jet-ski rides. After Ryan was done, we untied the inner tube and Jeff took me out for a faster ride. I guess it’s been a while since I rode on a Jet-ski rather than behind one (several years), so I didn’t lean as much as I should have, so when Jeff took one corner particularly tight, I was launched. Jeff apologized profusely, but believe it or not, I thought that hitting the water at 30 mph was kind of fun. Having said that, I did lean a lot more into the corners after that…

Just like last year, when we left Fern we went north, and dropped the boys off at their grandparents’ places for the week. Another week of no lunches (well, just mine), no fighting at bedtime, no drop-off or pick-up… This is our second such week this year — the previous one was our movie week, but for this one, we want to get some more stuff done around the house. The kids are old enough now that we can get a lot of it done with them here anyway, but it’ll still be easier not having to stop for bedtime or be quiet after 8:00 or whatever. I would also like to get the forest grass cut at some point, but it just keeps raining…


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