“Trick or treat, smell my feet,
give me something good to eat
if you don't, I don't care,
I can see your underwear”
– Anon (sung by children, adolescents and eight-year old men)
Saturday October 26 continued….
(Scott and Johnny)
After lunch, Bob lets everyone know that it is once again, time to ride. Scott recommends splitting the team up for maximum coverage. He, Dave and Laurie go in one direction while Johnny, Wendy and I head off in the other.
We hike through the forest which, despite the amount of earth moving that has been done, is in quite good shape. As we walk, Johnny tells us that he has just been hired for the ski patrol at 'Big White'. It's one of just eight positions available and John is really jazzed about having successfully secured the position. “Yeah, I did a half hour interview on Skype. I didn't think I'd get it and then they told me yesterday that I did”.
The part of the course we station ourselves at is a series of large dirt jumps. A barrier of tape, held up by shovels stuck into the ground, keeps spectators at a safe distance. A crowd waits silently behind the tape and two young track marshals look on nervously as several children duck under the tape for a better look.
“Please stay off the course”, one of the officials says, meekly. The children retreat back to the safe side of the tape. The young official seems relieved that the kids have done as requested.
A spectator shouts, “Good work”.
“Here they come”, yells another (accompanied by the bleat of a distant whistle)
A sudden whirl of spokes and gears and five riders race by. They hit the last jump at full speed and fly upwards through the air before landing successfully on the next part of the course. And then, in a flash…there gone. One of the officials gives a single blast on his whistle.
That was really fast.
Johnny knows the track marshals and together they now begin to discuss the merits of the course, modifications they would make (more height here, less back there) and what riders must do to successfully land that last jump…Mo (momentum) Speed
More riders approach. This group is noticeably slower than the last. Most make the final jump (barely). A resounding metal thud accompanies a couple of landings as bike wheels Prang (slam) into dirt. The end rider slows as he approaches the final jump…'oh oh, he's not going to make it'…he pulls up, slips under the tape barrier, rides off the course and onto the forest trail. Whew, close call
A quick blast on the whistle and Johnny and the track crew renew their discussion. Wendy asks one of the crew if they've ever injured themselves.
“Yes”, says one, “I broke my collar bone once…it wasn't that bad actually”
This begins a spirited conversation on injuries they have witnessed…T9 injuries (common to bike riders), fractured femurs, spinals, one guy had his face mushed in after flying over the handlebars and Augering (face planting)
My gawd, these kids are doing a pretty good job of busting themselves up
Johnny tells the officials about his new job at Big White…one says, I've got an interview there next week for a job with Ski Safety. Big White, Whistler, the ability of the riders and the course itself will be the dominant topics for the next hour and a half
The discussion stops for the occasional group of riders….and whistle blast…and then resumes
Finally, there is a prolonged lull…riders have stopped coming…the spectators leave…and we are alone with the track crew. After a quick check of the trail, the marshals decide that it might be time to head back. As this is being considered, Scott, Dave and Laurie hike up the trail to where we're situated. Yes, it's time to go. We hike out together
By the time we arrive back at the stage and food tent area, volunteers have begun taking down signs and electronic equipment. We're done for the day…with not one injury reported. Time for a beer. It's my first taste of a beer from the Persephone Brewing Company and…it's pretty darn good. Let's have a toast to good luck and a job well done.
The Coastal 1st Aid Crew…(L -R) Wendle, Moose, Scott, Johnny, Laurie and Dave
On the way back to his place, Scott tells Wendy and I about a video Kellei and he filmed (Scott's dad did the Audio)…it has to do with the Sechelt Creek generating station and how co-operation between the Sechelt Indian Band and BC Hydro resulted in the creation of a new (and organic) salmon spawning channel, the return of the salmon (25,000) and several environmental awards, including a UNESCO Blue Planet prize.
Scott invites us into his home to see the video. We watch the film in his 'screening room', (ingeniously soundproofed with wooden framed, felt fabric panels) and then peek into his 'office' where two powerful computers, six large monitors and a 'really good' video card give us a wonderfully detailed view of the Sunshine Coast via Google Earth satellite photos.
Wendle and I are amazed…we could stay here and play all afternoon…but we have things to do. We have a party to go to.
I get dropped off at home (for a nap) while Wendle goes to Gibsons to buy some last minute costume additions and to pick up Luke
Wendy is going to the party as a 'hippie chick' complete with a crocheted, lemon yellow, floor length, V neck dress, moccasins and the bowler hat from the Charlie Chaplin costume that she has decided NOT to wear.
Luke goes as a hippie too…rainbow striped pants and a Peruvian poncho.
I go as an American Tourist
(like this but with black socks)
We arrive at Renee's around eight-thirty. As we climb up the stairs to the deck, we hear weird mewling sounds. There is a white, wolf-like dog up there (Loki), the sounds may be coming from him. As we reach the porch, we notice a white wizard, in deep meditation. Gandalf? Merlin? Doug Henning?
Wendy is right, the house is spooktacularly decorated.
“Who knows what evil lurks in the hearts of men?”
Now that is just plain creepy
A slideshow of fantasy prints flickers silently onto the ceiling
Our hosts…Mrs. Frankie and Dr. Frighten Stein (he's mad i tells ya…MAD)
I have no idea who this dude is supposed to be but his costume is A-1 and super cool (maybe he's a gearhead). And no…that is not a cane-bong
I'm starving…what's for snackies? (waiter, there's a fly on my pate)
Batman and Der Colinmeister
Princess Mononoke and Gandalf the White
No seriously…what's to eat. I'm starving. What the hell is that in the blender?
Ooh, that is plain Nasty ('ere, 'ere)
A drunken American tourist and his Peruvian friend (possibly his gardener)
And they danced….if you look to the far left you'll see a partially hidden hippie chick doing some kind of She-Ra power move
Yes, of course I danced…one song only…'Bubblebutt'
“Bubblebutt, Bubblebutt, Bubble-Bubble-Bubblebutt”
Brian and Renee…that was Awesome. Thank You.
Da-Ba-Da-Ba-Da-Ba-Dat's all folks!
Have an udderly phantasmically horrifying Halloween (and don't put any candy apples in your treat sack)
Moose and Wendle
We love Japanese Maple. It's beautiful and it reminds us of the 'berg. We have a little one in the laneway leading up to the house. Sometimes, the sunlight catches it just right.