“Thank god we only have an hour or so to go,” I moaned. “My back is killing me. These seats are crappy.” We were in a small car, overstuffed with–possibly–unnecessary items, leaving too small a space for two larger bodies. My brother and I are headed to Nakusp, a small village surrounded by mountains, lakes, and rivers, in South Central British Columbia.
Our Uncle Jack moved there in his early twenties, as there were lots of forestry jobs. Jack, being a loner, bought some property somewhere around there, and lived all the rest of his days in the wilderness. Whatever. He willed this property to us, and in order for us to claim it, we have to spend no less than three weeks, living in the small cabin.
“All I can say is, there better damn well be some electricity.”
A sigh from the passenger seat, “It will be fine. I’m looking forward to the peace and quiet.”
“Christ, that’s your answer for everything,” I said. Lukas was infuriating, with his lackadaisical attitude, as if this was nothing more to him than a bloody vacation. “Did you get the part about it being a village?” I asked, trying to get my point across. “That means it is small, and who knows where this cabin is. Does it have a toilet or a stupid, stinking outhouse?”
Lukas replied, “I don’t know Sis, but we’ll find out pretty quick.” He turned his head to look out the window. He was avoiding me, again.
“I need you to drive the last hour. My eyes are getting tired.”
There were a few logging trucks that passed us about half an hour ago, but none since, so I pulled partially off the road, to the narrow gravel strip that separated the two lane road from a five-foot ditch. I figured we would have enough time to switch, while it was quiet.
I groaned as I squeezed out from the driver’s seat, “This is bloody ridiculous. We are already in the middle of nowhere. I can’t believe we have to stay there. Tell me the point of all this. Tell me this is worth it.” I’m sure Lukas tuned me out as he wandered down the ditch.
“I can’t hear you. Give me a minute. I’m just taking a leak.”
Getting in the passenger side was much easier with no steering wheel in the way. “This is a little better,” I said to myself, stretching my legs out in front. With a raised voice, “Are you coming or what?” I ask. “What’s taking you so long?”
The driver’s door opens, and he proceeds to fold himself into the seat. “You know, it wouldn’t hurt you to loosen up a little,” He said.
“Just get us the hell there.”
There was silence for most of the duration, aside from a few condescending remarks thrown at my brother. “Could you drive any slower? I should’ve just driven the rest of the way. We would have been there by now.” I was in a foul mood, with no patience left. I stuck it out making sure to sigh and grumble at regular intervals.
“I do believe this is the road,” He said. Slowing to a crawl, he made a sharp right onto a dirt road. Pothole after pothole, for ten minutes straight, we made our way to the front door of a Rancher style wood house, not cabin.
“This can’t be right,” I said. “You turned down the wrong road. Idiot,” I mumbled.
“Nope. This is it,” He said, heading for the door. “This looks great! I knew it would be. Uncle Jack made lots of money, you know?”
“Whatever,” I said. I hated that he always had to be right, and usually was.
© Gerri Leathley 2014