Posted on September 6th, 2006
After months of planning, proposing, preparing and projecting, the Reception
boys were finally on the tour they’d been dreaming about all year, well, at
least on the road to that tour. As it was their responsibility to get
themselves and their gear to Hamilton, Ontario to begin the three month
excursion, the four young men from the band rode along in the van they had
called home on so many previous excursions. Having recently overcome a
series of vehicle-related obstacles our heroes were feeling confident in
their trusty chariot’s ability to carry them successfully across our great
country, hoping the worst was behind them.
Chasing the endless dotted line of the Trans-Canada Highway through the
grandeur of the Canadian Shield, the boys had no idea what sinister debacle
was brewing under the hood. It was as they stared up at the jagged rocks
that lined the edges of the road, finding out as they flew by that Alistair
was there in ’96, and that the class of ’87 was the best ever, that the
first signs of trouble began to rise from the front of their lorry. ‘That’s
funny,’ said Nick, ‘it seems like the van is losing momentum.’ ‘Is it just
me,’ began JP, ‘or did the radio just die?’ ‘Did anyone hear that loud
banging sound just now?’ asked Andrew from the back. ‘Is that smoke rising
from under the hood?’ Jon questioned, becoming increasingly apprehensive.
Our heroes leapt from every exit as their carriage grinded to a halt on the
side of a lonely stretch of highway, each member moving swiftly to the front
of the van. Lifting the hood Nick’s mouth fell agape as he peered through
the billowing smoke emanating from the engine. ‘This probably isn’t going to
be good,’ they all conceded.
Following repeated attempts to resuscitate
their fallen companion, the boys realized that a call needed to be made. Soon CAA was there and our group was back on their way.
Arriving a short while later in the booming metropolis of White River, (pop.
1000) calls were made, and new arrangements planned all from the comfort of
the nearest convenience store. Soon a crew was dispatched from the Absolute
home base in Hamilton to rescue the boys from their precarious position.
Clearing out the contents of the van, our heroes made a make-shift room for
the night as they awaited their saviour’s arrival early the next morning.
As the sun rose over the dusty highway, a small speck began to appear in the
distance. ‘Could this be them?’ the boys began to ask themselves as they
wiped the sleep from their tired eyes. Jumping to their feet the four of
them began to walk involuntarily toward the object of their fixation like
desperate castaways to a glimmering boat on an ocean crest. As the truck
drew closer it became obvious that it was not in fact their rescuers who
approached, it was merely Big Sam, the local farmer who came into town every
morning for his cup of coffee and bottle of industrial cleaner. About ten
minutes later however the Absolute SUV did show up, and our heroes were
officially mobile once again.
Packing only the essentials into every crevice of the vehicle (the van,
trailer and any non-essential gear was left with a stranger in White River)
the boys crammed into the only remaining spaces and prepared themselves for
twelve more hours of impossibly confined travel.
Half a day and an
innumerable amount of awkward sleeping positions later, the guys finally
rendezvoused with their treasured destination.
The experience had made them all a little more world-weary and wise, but
true to their resilient and tenacious natures, our heroes were still smiling
in the end.
This account is based on a true story. Thanks to our friend Tim Penner for lending his storytelling skills to describe this epic event.