McAdam aka City Camp

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City Camp
aka
How McAdam Got Its Name

“Can we come in?” “May we visit?”
“Can we look around?” “Of course.”
Tourists, travelers on a day trip, curious,
with time to kill, asking the usual questions.
Volunteer guides, packed with information,
walk with them from room to room.
Outside, tourists slap bare arms, necks,
mosquitoes, black fly, always the black fly.

“McAdam, McAdam. This is McAdam.”
The train shuffles to a halt. Children open
carriage doors, climb down, run to the central
building, choosing one of its thirty-four doors.
Inside: newsagent, Ganong chocolates, soda
bar, dining room, snacks, drinks, everything
a city child needs on holiday. Hotel above.
A day room booked. Much better for first-class
tourists than the common waiting room.
Better, an overnight stay. Take the next train.
Refreshments, a break in the journey. Porters
ferrying suitcases upstairs, stacking luggage.
“Quite nice.” “So primitive, my dear. NQOC.”

Outside, the children slap bare arms, necks,
mosquitoes, black fly, always the black fly.

“Is this McAdam?” “No, sorry. It’s City Camp.”
“Where’s McAdam’s Camp?” A finger points
to a faint trail leading through thick dark woods.
“How long?” “Couple of hours, a day, on foot.
Depends.” Woodsmen born and bred, they pick
up their packs ignoring the black fly as they walk.

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