The only time I was ever held at gunpoint was by a Canadian…and other contradictions in my life.

This is a true story. I was seventeen (or sixteen, maybe), we were staying at a cabin in western Ontario, somewhere slightly north of Georgian Bay and my parents and I had decided to wander down the private road the cabin was on.

Bad idea. We were on a teeny tiny peninsula, overlooking Lake Wahwashkesh when an extremely grumpy man, with the look of the hastily dressed, came running out of the fancy house a couple of hundred yards away, brandishing a firearm. As best I can recollect, it was a small caliber rifle, but he was not happy. And he was pointing it at us. In a manner that suggested he knew how to handle it. He pointed out that this was a private road.

I think he was aware that he had accidentally bagged a clutch of American middle-class liberals, but he went into his home to call the man we were renting from (who pointed out that if anyone wanted to make a big deal of the ‘private road’ thing, he could close his, and then the guy would have a problem, and he should not be waving firearms at his tenants).

So… He let us go, with the gun pointing down, and we never went that way again, and life interrupted, so we didn’t rent there anymore.


I use this story a lot, because life does not always fit into neat boxes. Neither do people.


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