Get Me Off of This Island!

Boat Journey

“Get me off of this island!” said many desperate characters. Every character on LOST. The rich couple on Gilligan’s Island. The volleyball on Castaway. And me.

We’re on Week Three of Drummond Island. It’s a neat place, sure. There’s plenty of campsites and RV parks. There’s a Marina or two. There’s a few restaurants, an IGA, and an ice cream store. There is, however, not much else. Oh, and the shower water smells like Sulphur, i.e., rotten eggs, which kind of defeats the purpose of washing oneself.   

Luckily, it’s gorgeous— like a room with such a pretty view, any furniture is obstructive. Lake Huron is undeniably breathtaking. And, as for the island, it’s teaming with deer. We’ve made frenemies with two Sandhill Cranes who hang out at our campground, and yelp at us with their prehistoric dino bird call. It’s refreshing to unplug from existence, which I guess is what boating is about (aBOAT?!), at least to me, someone who enjoys the quiet moments of exploring the seas over dock small talk.

I’m in a routine.  I wake-up, eat breakfast, Kory drives to the boat in our truck while I stay behind to write for a few hours. Then, I either run 8 kilometers or paddle board the coastline to meet Kory at the marina for BOAT CHORES! I organize our pantries, clean windows, polish wood— normally, while listening to a New York Times or NPR podcast. A tip for all the housewives out there, you’ll never scrub as aggressively as when listening to an analysis of what Trump’s done lately.  

I met a middle-aged hairdresser/musician (flutist!) in the marina laundromat. He shared my nihilist beliefs— that everything is exceedingly temporary because the world is going to end any minute, so you might as well enjoy life while you can. How we ever got on the topic of the End of the World so quickly, I’m don’t recall. It’s a sign of the times, surely.   

The hairdresser/musician tried to defect to Canada during the first administration of George W. Bush. He said Kory and I were very lucky to have Canadian citizenship, which is true, I’m thankful, but I responded by noting it seems that even Canada is not immune to the populism sweeping over the Western world.

In other zany characters, there was a lovely Canadian woman with a chocolate lab who we met on the beach, along with our yellow lab, Cadence. “Ellie May,” the woman said to her dog, “This is a FRIEND, Cadence. Cadence is a FRIEND. Go PLAY with your FRIEND, Cadence.” She turned to us to explain, “I take new introductions as a learning opportunity. Ellie May knows over one-hundred words. But that’s nothing. My last lab, she knew words in five languages: English, Spanish, French, German, and Italian.” I suddenly felt inadequate. Cadence probably knows about twenty to thirty words—  TREAT, DOWN, GOOD GIRL, CHEESE, and ONION; Onion referring not to the vegetable, but to our cat, Onion— and she is strictly anglophone.

My mind flashed to my first summer interning at a law firm in Vancouver with three other students: two guys and a woman, nay, Goddess, who won marathons, spoke five languages, and once sang Opera for the Governor-General. She was whip smart, enthusiastic about law, and I thought, surely, if the law firm had to choose between hiring Goddess or me after the internship, I was screwed! Turns out, women aren’t always competing against each other and we both got hired in the end.  

Well, anyhow, if you find yourself on Drummond Island, here are some of our discoveries:

Best place for provisioning: IGA is the sole grocer on the island, with island prices. We thought we were clever, ordering pantry goods from Amazon. In theory, it’s a great idea! When you’re boating, you likely don’t have a vehicle to drive to a grocery store. Why not have Amazon deliver your groceries to you for FREE (with Prime) DIRECTLY TO THE MARINA?! Well, I DO NOT RECOMMEND IT, unless you want to feel like an asshole. Each tiny jar of curry paste was individually packaged in HUGE bubble wrap containers. There was so much plastic waste! Not to mention the carbon footprint of having the goods delivered to us, when there was a grocery store nearby. NEVER AGAIN JEFF BEZOS.

Restaurants: We’ve tried Esther’s, a Mexican restaurant, on Taco Tuesday; Northwoods for Fish Fry Friday; and Pins, last year for Halloween. All yummy.

Ice Cream Shop: The best part about the island!! It’s called The Tee Pee, which is probably bad cultural appropriation, but it’s hard to get mad about ice cream.  

Activities: The island is famous for its off-road vehicle trails. There’s JEEPS everywhere! Bird-watching is big here too. I’ve loved paddle boarding. I asked Kory to take me skeet shooting, but he doesn’t like guns (which is a commendable quality… until you’re in the zombie apocalypse). If you want a sauna, go to Drummond Island Resort!

OK! Time to Enjoy the Day! We hope to have the boat in the water by Wednesday!

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