Well, ninety minutes came and went as we neared the location given to us on our instruction sheet; passing through a small town, we were to drive five miles on the gravel road out of town, and then turn left on the road that would be at the five mile marker. I turned my mileage counter to zero to ensure accuracy, but when we arrived at the five mile/eight kilometre point, we were sitting in the middle of nowhere, with no cross roads in sight at all - just a lot of gravel road stretched on either end of us, and marshy ditches on both sides. What to do, what to do.... We kept driving for another five miles, came across one dead-end road that we took to its end, and then turned around and wound our way back again. We re-drove the route from town, this time marking for both kilometres and miles in case I had miscalculated. I hadn't. There was only one road between the town and the supposed marker point, and we tried that one, too; we ended up on a ranch property somewhere in the boondocks, and were asked by someone standing there to "kindly leave the property." We bolted. We checked at two other points on the largely unpopulated route to see if anyone knew were the road or the farm was. One person had never heard of either; the other sent us on a wild goose chase based on where he thought the sheep farm was.
After three-quarters of an hour spent searching the area, and with a few tears shed on both of our parts, Matthew and I decided jointly that it was time to give up - after all, we were more than a half hour late by this time. The only saving grace was that as we made the u-turn in the road to turn back towards home, we were privileged to see a mama deer and her brand spanking new, spotted, spindly-legged little fawn saunter across the road right in front of us. I was too slow on the draw to grab for my camera, but it made the morning's events so much more worthwhile!
In the end, after another ninety minutes' drive back to the city, during which Matthew and I talked and sang and talked some more, we decided not to let the rest of our beautiful day go to waste. By the time 12:30 came around, our moods were re-charged and we found a lovely park just inside the city perimeter. We took our time over the picnic lunch we had been drooling over for the previous four hours, relaxed for an hour in the playground, and went for a leisurely walk. Turned out to be ok after all.
I guess instead of learning about sheep, today's homeschool lessons were about learning to manage frustration, and about unexpected silver linings.
(My favourite of the pics, below - this is the face I so love!)
Oh, and might I just say that boys are very lucky to be able to make a quick stop at the side of the road when nature requires it!
* Thanks for your comments, folks! Sharla, I agree - I find that sometimes the best lessons are non-school related. Gwen, I'd never heard of those 'feminine aids' for campouts - but I looked them both up on the internet and wow - who knew??! Well, clearly, YOU did! And Jessa, you are very kind - thank you! Blessings!