Ottawa: Rideau River Nature Trail

ottawa He has acquired potassium nitrate, sulphur and charcoal to create homemade fireworks on the kitchen stove. He suffers second-degree burns over his face when the compound inadvertently explodes. He claims to be fine as he sits in Emergency shaking uncontrollably from pain and shock.

Homemade shepherd’s pie. Cheese sticks. Tuna sandwiches so long as there are no green bits and not too much mayonnaise.

I arrive expecting to see my favourite tree, an ancient elm whose physical breadth is matched by its depth of character. I learn that the tree had been removed six years ago as it was hollow and a risk to visitors. In its stead I meet a ten-week-old pug.

We are on the Rideau River Nature Trail, heading home. I follow behind but am distracted for the briefest moment. He is not there. He is crashing through the bush toward the river.