To borrow a phrase from our old friend Charles Dickens, “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the epoch of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness”. Kind of like our life as bloggers! Before you say, Oh No, not another recap story about two old geezers walking around, this post is about The Two Old Guys who seek to entertain, educate and hopefully make you smile. To our regular readers, this year alone we have reached a milestone, over 100,000 visits and for those who may not yet read some of our 366 posts, it is easy, just Google: 2 old guys waking, look for our large yellow ‘No Exit’ logo, click on any of our posts shown and arrow to the right side of the page for a complete list of all posts.
Some excerpts of our earliest blogs: Click the Genesis category to Well, I Gotta Start Somewhere. (September 2013). This is where the two old guys got started. After taking an early retirement from our jobs, no joining societies or clubs for us as we wanted to get away from commitments, schedules and deadlines. We started hiking local Conservation Areas and Parks. We then moved on to trails the Ranger was familiar with from his affiliations with the Ganaraska Hiking Trail and the Oak Ridges Trail Associations. In the heat of that first summer we toured the countryside in the Bushwhacker’s air conditioned Tacoma four wheel drive pickup we went went in search of new trails to explore in the cooler whether of the Autumn. One day the Bushwhacker asked the Ranger “what’s up that road?” on hearing it was an No Exit road he says “yeah like I care” and off we went. We discovered that about 50% of these roads did indeed have an exit and about 80% were passable, but only in a 4 x 4 truck. This became an obsession for us! On wanting to find more, we went to County and Township Offices and found many more so unused they weren’t signed nor even established. Thanks to Mica Cee at the Cobourg County Office for her help as Bushwhacker mentioned to her maybe we should start a website on this, she was one of our first followers. And the rest as they say is history.
You Can’t Go Back: (June 26, 2014). They say you can’t go back, and whoever ‘they’ are seem to be right! The Ranger dilemma, my one room school for eight years closed in favor of a multi-room school the year I started high school. Pat and Carols’ rope tow Ski Club was replaced with a chair lift, (I missed the chair lift experience having moved to start a job in Cobourg). Some time later it closed because of climate change. Emond’s General Store soon followed. My first home in Coldsprings was sold and is now occupied by strangers. My second home, in Port Hope was sold (on marriage breakup) and later dismantled.
Of course, after the breakup, when asked how the Ranger was doing, everyone would explain “Well, he went on a diet and shed 200 lbs of worthless fat”. LOL! Soon after retirement, my employer for over forty years, the Kraft plant was closed. The old bridge at Camborne was closed (now a pedestrian walkway) and now my old high school in Cobourg is closed. Maybe I am a bit paranoid, but at my age there ain’t many places left that I can go back to!
Danger Ranger: (March 26 2014). This post is a perfect example of the Bushwhacker’s great sense of humor! I could see Ranger from his feet to his knees under the rail cars. What trains do you mean officer, we didn’t see no steenkeeng train, we weren’t on the bridge. Honest officer it must have been some stupid kids. Another example of his way with the English language. On pulling over to the side of road in his extremely high Tacoma, with a twenty foot ditch on the passenger seat and noting the door ‘waving in the breeze, and no Ranger, Honest Officer, Jeez! He was in the passenger seat when I saw him last, dunno where he went, maybe something grabbed him. Need another example of both his humor and language? One day at the crowded Waterfront Park, we pulled alongside a young couple and Ranger looks over and innocently says “get a room”, finally realizing my window was open, the Bushwhacker’s comment: Might be even funnier if the contributing male member of the bodily fluid swap club didn’t look like his name was Cooter, Buford, or Dewane. His wife beater shirt could easily be adapted to ‘Old Guy Beater’, apparel aside I’m sure Cooter wasn’t amused likely saying something like “Heay, I’m trying to get laid up against my truck door here. Now P*OFF afore I feeds ya to the gators”. I didn’t wait to see if Cooter was gonna eat the fender of my truck before he killed us, flung it into reverse and took off down the road.
Base Camp (October 11 2013) This one concerned the days before we were 2oldguyswalking. In it, Bushwhacker explained: Before we were “2 Old Guys Walking” base camp was Ranger’s house. His wife would take the kids on a State-side shopping excursion, and we’d launch an episode of “2 Middle Aged Idiots Getting Sh!t Faced”.
Ranger’s home had four main attractions : No wife, no kids, a dilapidated old barn fulla fascinating crap, and a coupla huge old chestnut trees in the yard. The afore-mentioned barn constantly provided us with some form of discovery. We were forever hauling something out to inspect on the side patio. ‘Course, there was a reason we always found something new in there every time we did this. That would be ‘cause it was too damned dangerous to go inside sober, so the only time we saw the interior was on afternoons like those. As the evening advanced, so did the ungodly assault on the rum supplies, until: Then of course, later in the evening, there was the issue of those damned trees. Mocking, challenging, and chiding us with juvenile taunts. We could hear them from the patio. “Nya – nya – nya – nya – nyaaaaa, you’ll never climb us”. Leaping to our feet we cried out “The Hell we won’t ! Prepare to be boarded you bark bearing bastards !”. 40 horizontal, and 16 vertical feet later, we triumphantly stood on the branch laughing as only victorious conquerors can. Then we looked around and stopped laughing as only a pair of drunks stuck up in a tree can.
High on the Hogsback (October 8 2013) It had been 20 years since we had been on the bridge where the Hogsback trail crossed over the Pigeon River. Bushwhacker mentioned our canoe trip from years before causing Ranger to reminisce: He remembered the peaceful serenity, the wind swept river, wildlife skulking amongst the tangle of driftwood statuettes on the shoreline, the banks of cattails, the curl of water around gentle paddle strokes. Holding communion with Nature he recalled. I on the other hand, remember snickering and giggling as we tried to quietly and nonchalantly maneuver closer to shore, and that sunbathing girl. The same girl who appeared to be sunbathing in the nude. She caught sight of us (more likely heard us snorting and shushing each other, and snorting some more) and she left as the voices behind the patch of cattails shouted “damn-it” in unison and burst into laughter.
Then Ranger did something he hasn’t done in years: Then Ranger starts yodeling. God help us all. He liked yodeling. ‘Course, he was the only one, who liked his yodeling. Please note, I didn’t say he was any good at it, I just said he liked it. The horrifying and ungodly wailing scared up a young couple on the opposite bank who also vacated the area (great place for spotting wildlife eh?). If they’d have just stayed where they were, we’d never have known they were there.
After that we often discussed (it never went beyond that) of getting a coupla kayaks and heading back to the Pigeon River: So, 2 Old Guys Walking could diversify into 2 Old Guys Kayaking. Then, maybe the Pigeon River will echo to the sound of Ranger’s yodeling once again.
God help us all.
Spring Fever (March 6 2014): This post might give our readers some hope that this winter will pass, guaranteed to make us all smile, and give us a glimpse into the Bushwhacker’s love/hate with the game of Crokinole. This is a game of dexterity of Canadian origin similar to other games such as Pitchnut, Carrom, Marbles, and Shove ha’Penny. For the Bushwhacker’s sake I will go over the basic rules of play. The players take turns shooting discs across the circular board, while attempting to have them land in the higher score regions of the board, while at the same time to knock away the opponents discs. In case you missed it Bushwhacker, that ‘hole’ in the middle of the board was the ultimate challenge of the game…you never seemed to use it! And yes, I allowed you to keep score to ease the perpetual Wednesday pain of your bandage-clad shooting finger! Was this really a weekly nail infection? I seems you play this game almost as well as I yodel! It has been said many times that between the two of us we do have a brain, that’s okay, it seems to work for us and and for our readers.
So, if you take a look further back to our early days, you’ll find we’re not all, and just, about History and Trails. When we hit the 100,000 visits for the year 2020 (on Dec 6 @ 3:20 p.m. not that we were watching for it eh ?), Bushwhacker made the usual statement “That’s not bad for a reference site … really”. That’s what we’ve become. A site where people go to get historical data, or a full trail review. And that’s fine, but it doesn’t stop there. Our old, and now, “off topic” postings still have merit. Bushwhacker must tip his hat in recognition to the Ranger for suggesting this form of posting for our year’s end issue.
We hope this little trip down memory lane was as enjoyable to our readers as it was for the two old guys. From the Bushwhacker’s comprehensive maps, information and pictures of walking and hiking trails in Central Ontario, to the Ranger’s find of lost cousins and a best friend from over half a century ago. We are grateful to our readers for their many comments. They keep us inspired to continue writing! Thank You.
2 Old Guys Walking.