This past summer we went up north for two weeks of ‘family’ camp. Took five hours to get there, some of which was through this nature preserve thing where there was NO GAS STATION for like 150 km (that’s about 93 miles in American). Oblivious, I went in on a quarter of a tank, and ended up trying to keep the engine under 2000 RPM’s for 45 minutes, crawling up hills and coasting down the other side, all while listening to my wife extol the virtues of asking perfect strangers if we may use a hose to suck some gas from their tanks. And remember that gas is extra spendy here in Canada.
Managed to get out of the preserve (without stealing gas) and roll into a little station. After that it was more driving, straight north, until the paved road literally ended at a wall of trees and dirt. There were these giant non-government (mining company?) signs that signaled what you could find if you went right or left on this gravel road, which stretched on into infinity and beyond in either direction.
It was a powerful moment, crawling to a stop where the real road ended. It was like finding ourselves at the edge of the world…like all of those movies where the lead character finally finds the outer wall of the city or civilization or whatever, knowing that beyond that barrier lies the OTHER. Movies like THX 1138, The Truman Show, Dark City.
You get the idea, beyond that point on the map there were only Sea-Monsters. Or as we call them in Canada:
We turned left and eventually arrived at the entrance to the camp, which turned out to just be another long gravel road. Finally we got there and were just about to look for a place to park when a microscopic horse-thing bounded across the packed-gravel parking lot. Shocked and awed, we watched it bouncing from front legs to back, kicking at an invisible enemy. An enemy which I could only assume to be sadness, because it was by-far the happiest animal I’ve ever seen.
Turns out it was a two-week colt born of a miniature horse, so doubly-small for the horsey-kind.
There were many animals that inhabited the camp; delicious looking protein scampering everywhere. Despite this, exactly none of these animals would be slaughtered for our consumption. Instead most of what we would be served in the two weeks that we were there would be carbohydrates.
(As you may remember from the paleo diet post, carbohydrates are my enemy, though sadness would be a close second).
For example, a Sample Camp Breakfast Menu:
– Cold Cereal (non-organic, certainly GMO grains)
– Skim Milk (all life-giving fats removed, helpful enzymes obliterated by heat)
– Toast (for variety)
– Individually wrapped ‘probably not real butter’ butter cups (in plastic)
– Individually wrapped ‘probably not real fruit’ fruit cups (in plastic)
So mostly carbs and sugar, of the worst possible kinds. But to be fair, once in a while protein DID show up at breakfast in one of a few possible forms:
– Hard-boiled eggs (yay)
– Creton (a type of pate which the Internet describes as a “fatty pork spread seasoned with onions, cloves and maybe cinnamon, nutmeg or garlic.” People spread it on the ‘variety’ toast, and by ‘people’ I include my wife.)
And ONE day there were these ‘yogurts’, though the packaging proudly declared that all fat had been removed and replaced with Aspartame. I attempted to eat one but felt myself getting cancer so I tried to throw it away without any of the camp staff noticing.
Lunch was about the same, though thankfully at dinner we could expect SOME protein, but usually in pretty meager quantities.
But the thing that really blew my mind was these ultra processed dinner rolls that were in a metal bowl next to the salad. Not only did they have all the look and taste of being birthed by a soulless dinner roll making machine in China, but they were individually wrapped in plastic, like you’d see on a Bearclaw Danish at 7-11.
Then one night we went ‘out’ for dinner in the town, trying to briefly escape camp food, and the VERY FIRST THING we were served were the very same dang individually wrapped dinner rolls of evil!
I couldn’t believe it. Apparently, if it was wrapped in plastic, it was actually considered ‘classier’?
Or maybe up North it was super important to know that NO ONE had EVER touched your dinner roll, that only the loving, metal hands of some machine had touched your rolls, that they were unsoiled by human contact, right up until the moment their starchy matrix touched your lips.
I survived, barely, thanks to the Dr. Mercola protein powders I had brought with me. Never go anywhere without your Mercola.
I gained 10 pounds that week for my trouble and I didn’t even have access to beer!! Everything about that is so wrong.
But man, I’m still glad we went, getting to drive to the end of the world…and seeing how happy that baby micro-horse thingy* was?
*Sample, not picture of actual mini-horse from camp.
NEXT WEEK, ON THE CRUNCHY DUNGEON: