The Children Are Misplaced in the Forest

This would be considered illegal activity in Oak Park.

The brother of Mother Goose has attended Deer Hunting Camp for the past thirty six years. The camp is attended every November by approximately six men armed with deer rifles and dressed in blaze orange outfits. One of our planned activities for this spring break vacation was to visit the site of the camp — we simply call it The Shack. One of our UNPLANNED activities was losing the goslings in the dense forest on the trek out to The Shack.

Heigh ho heigh ho! Into the forest we go!

The young people had set out down the trail, hiking very rapidly and talking excitedly about the possibility of spotting deer, bear, and bald eagles. The older people walked much slower, carrying heavy backpacks and lumber (for some reason?), and of course, Mother Goose walks with a severe limp because of her overzealous 5K training. I stayed in the very back of our caravan of hikers — the weak and old and feeble must draw the timber wolves away from the rest of the family.

The perspective of Mother Goose, lagging further and further behind...

My brother Dana knows a short cut to the Shack, hiking up and over a wide ridge in the forest. As the youngsters were far ahead of us, we took the short cut without informing them of our plans…possibly a poor decision on our part… We arrived at the Shack before the youngsters and waited for their arrival. And we waited. And we waited. Eventually, Mother Goose reasoned with herself that the children must have somehow lost their way and headed back down the trail to look for the missing goslings.

Limping along and in much pain, Mother Goose found evidence that the young people had been nearly to the Shack, but had evidently turned back towards the pick up trucks. That would mean they had backtracked down the trail to the parking area 1/2 mile away. With tears streaming down her feathery cheeks, Mother Goose called to them as loudly as she could, “HONK HONNKKK HOOONNNNNKKKK” but there was no answer. Brother Dana hiked briskly past Mother Goose in a bold effort to locate the children in the ever thickening and threatening woody environment where surely there could be wild and hungry animals lurking behind every tree.

Dense woodlands...where are the children?

At last we were reunited with the misplaced young hikers. They had begun to worry about their elders — thinking that we had fallen and could not get up, or had been attacked by psycho bad guys in the woods, they had gone searching for us all along the trail.

They seemed somewhat chagrined to discover that we were all OK and had obviously tried to trick them by taking the short cut over the ridge.

All the family arrived at the Shack eventually — Mother Goose lastly of all because she had to crawl the final mile of the trail.

Mother Goose at the Shack.

The "Necessary Room" -- no shirt, no shoes, no service.

We enjoyed a wonderful weenie roast, and then afterwards met up with sis-in-law Linda (aka Loon) for some dining, dancing and cocktails at Bimbo’s Octagon in picturesque Side Lake, Minnesota. All in all, a good time was had by all. And all’s well that ends well, despite the misplacement of the children.

A wonderful weenie roast.

Hot wings and great pizza at Bimbo's.


8 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Three Well Beings
    Mar 29, 2012 @ 13:55:08

    Here I go again with all that laughing…I am sympathetic to losing the children, I really am, but since it all ended well I’ll focus on the missteps…each of which is just hilarious! “…the weak and old and feeble must draw the timber wolves away from the rest of the family” –ha!! ha! I LOVE the shack, but not so the Necessary Room! Except that I suppose when necessary…you get my drift! May the remainder of your visit be entirely “incident free.” Debra


    • Natalie
      Mar 30, 2012 @ 08:53:04

      The hunters have thoughtfully provided a styrofoam seat for their necessary room so that their buns (and ours) don’t feel the chill… And how nice to leave the door off so that we can all enjoy the view whilst we sit…


  2. Dianna
    Mar 29, 2012 @ 14:59:38

    But , DEAR Mother Goose, were you not supposed to be resting your injured ankle….???


    • Natalie
      Mar 30, 2012 @ 08:56:08

      Yes, Dianna, very good point. And with just two days to go, I’m wondering if maybe, perhaps and possibly I have some sort of a hairline fracture in that ankle. I will prop it up over my head today and tomorrow which will alleviate the inflammation and swelling and provide hours of amusement to the family…


  3. yearstricken
    Mar 30, 2012 @ 14:56:37

    I loved the line ” the weak and old and feeble must draw the timber wolves away from the rest of the family.” You are a funny goose.


  4. Eric Winger
    Mar 31, 2012 @ 15:35:27

    Glad the lost children are found. … And I am curious, is Bimbo’s Octagon truly an octagon?

    fyi – My mother grew up around Cloquet, MN. Doesn’t look like that’s too far from Side Lake.

    Glad you had a good trip.



    • Natalie
      Apr 01, 2012 @ 06:23:43

      Eric, it figures that you’ve got Minnesota blood — that explains a LOT. There’s also a community of Wingers who live near my dad in Debs, Minnesota. All very nice folks! And the Octagon is pretty octagonal, surprisingly so actually.


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