Oh holy crap I cannot tell you how good it feels to be on this side of yesterday.
It's been one of those weeks. You know when you say yes to everything and then suddenly realise it all seems to need doing at the exact same time, procrastination or not, and there's nothing you can do to hold this snowball of madness back?
As well as doing the usual work for my MSc, this week I've been running a science week stall, desperately reprogramming my experiment in time for the start date (yesterday!), helping to run a cooking class, preparing for and running the experiment, volunteering and definitely not revising for my stats exam which was yesterday morning and which I have probably not done my best on. Oh well.
Every single day and every single evening has been full of something. Some of the evenings have been so fun; like Thursday night when I had a course mate over to stay ready for the exam in the morning and we ate risotto and drank prosecco and wet ourselves laughing with a couple more friends. That was amazing.
But I am so glad to feel this armchair beneath my arse right now, I can't even express the joy.
If you're interested in psychology experiments and want to hear about the research I started today, may I suggest you head on over to my other blog The Psychology Café... otherwise, back to Canada!
It has to be said, some of those early mornings were 100% worth it. Opening scene from The Notebook anyone?
I could have quite happily stayed at that campsite for an extra day just to laze beside the lake and go for a swim and chill out (and not go near the van for a while).
But no! There were plans to be carried out and adventures to be had!
We caught the Georgian Bay ferry across one small corner of the absolutely humungous Lake Superior over to Tobermory.
Lots of us had skipped breakfast in the rush to pack up camp and get to the ferry so we treated ourselves to breakfast muffins, pancakes and apple crumble on the boat before having a stroll around the decks.
I still couldn't get my head around how big the lake was. Sure, I'd seen it on maps but I hadn't quite got it into my head just how absolutely blooming huge it was. In most directions, there was simply shimmering water with perhaps the occasional island to break up the horizon. Having grown up in Thanet, where the ghost of mainland Europe is pretty much always visible in the distance, it was strange to think that this lake was wider than the English Channel.
On the other side was Tobermory, a cute little "seaside" town full of gift shops. I made my first grown-up purchase since the days before starting uni (some tea towels for our new flat, how exciting) and we loaded up on alcohol for camping that evening.
We split into two groups; those who wanted to stay in the town and those who wanted to go to Bruce Peninsula National Park nearby for a walk and a spot of swimming in the lake.
However when we got to Bruce Peninsula, it was full.
Yep, the entire National Park was full up.
So instead we went to the "Singing Sands" beach which I affectionately termed the "Shitty Muds" due to the fact that there was no sand there, only mud. I grew up in Margate and therefore feel relatively qualified to talk about what constitutes "sands" and what constitutes mud. Boring, dull mud that you can't build sandcastles in and makes you fall over and stains your jeans.
Even worse, the lake was really shallow here for ages - no matter how far I ran out, I couldn't find water that was deeper than ankle height. So I sulked and got some of my alcohol plunder out of my backpack and proceeded to get a little drunk and strip off every time the sun came out (I know, I know, I should have just let it go..)
After an hour or so, we went back and managed to get into Bruce Peninsula. It was so much better!
Just look at that water! It reminded me ever so much of the stony beaches in Puglia next to Michele's summer house.
Unfortunately we didn't have time to sit and chill and go for a swim because we'd spent all our spare time on the Shitty Muds. I may be smiling here but it was all for show; I was dying inside.
After that teasing glimpse of paradise, we hiked back around to the van, spotting critters (including a beaver!) along the way.
And then we finished the day as we finished most of those days, sitting around a campfire, getting a little too drunk and sharing stories of what we'd been up to.
Oh how I miss summer evenings!