August 11, 2013
Why hello there!
It has been eons since I last blogged about my unusual or comical barding adventures, and a great deal has happened since January. Since shifting more of my writing to www.michaelaverill.com, I haven’t had stories that I felt different enough to post separately. As I sit pondering for a moment in Conception Bay (good place for it), Newfoundland, I am recounting the variety of goofy tales I have amassed that I believe would be entertaining to share. Thus, after a long departure from this realm, I feel it is time to revive THE BARD BLOG!! Happy swimming white tigers everywhere!
The story I feel fit to share today is one that came from my time on Prince Edward Island in July. Through a wicked chain of connections I ended up at a wonderful family birthday party on the north side of the island near Cavendish. The land is so gorgeous on PEI, and in this particular region, beautifully open glowing green fields meet white sand beach and endless ocean.
The folks I was staying with lived just off the beach, about a 2 min walk from sandy dunes that go on for miles. It was a clear starry night, so I decided to put up my tent with the cover off. There were no city lights to compete with, so every star was visible with the backdrop sound of waves crashing.
I went down to the beach with a group from the house going for a night swim. As they had their dip, I started unraveling my tent and gear. On their way back they informed me that foxes parade around the beach at night, no real threat, but just to be aware they are around. They disappeared into the darkness, and I continued to raise my temporary barn.
A couple of things started going through my mind. Firstly, I had never seen a real fox before, so I was partially excited, but also mildly edgy at the same time not knowing what their behaviour is like. Secondly, I hadn’t really realized it until that moment, but that was the first time in my life I’d ever been in a big open space like that camping solo without a friend or family member nearby, and my phone was out of range.
I had a pretty powerful flashlight with me to help set up, and every once and a while I’d shine it around to see how far it would illuminate the beach. One on of these occasions, I happened to see a single, small, circular, orangey flash in the distance…..the like I would compare seeing cat/raccoon, or deer eyes reflected from car lights. I immediate reaction was…..FOX!……but there was something strange about it all……I carried on running the poles through the sleeves of the tent, then stood up, rotated in lighthouse fashion with my light to do my fox survey, and BLAM!!! There it was again…..It was closer this time, but the strange thing about it was there was only one eye. I thought to myself…”I’m being stalked by a one eyed fox!!”
I finished the basics of my tent foundation, threw my gear in hurriedly, and now wondered how peacefully I’d be sleeping with a garnish of adrenaline now running through my body.
Weirdness progressed…..With my last flashlight survey, I caught glimpse of the reflected single eye, this time 12 feet in the air! My inner dialogue was as follows – “HOLY #%*!$!!!! A FLYING ONE EYED FOX!”
When I actually stood in one place for a minute and focused on one spot with my light, I started seeing more flashes, but independent of light being shone on it. I turned off my torch and observed, and sure enough, the occasional orange flash would ignite the darkness. At that moment I realized what was going down…….FIRE FLIES!!!!
I had never encountered one before. I’d always heard about them in songs and stories, but I wasn’t 100% positive they actually existed. News flash! They do……….introducing ignorant west coaster to the Maritimes!….yup…..I’ll have you know there are a few funny tunes developing around stories like this, and I am looking forward to sharing them with you ;).
So, when in the Maritimes setting up your tent in the dark, beware the devious flying one eyed fox! Sneaky buggars they are!
Words of wisdom from…