One typical Monday morning in September, Londoners narrowly avoided collision with each other in their rush-hour dance through Paddington Station. Navigating the crowd, I slipped on the slick marble floor as I headed for my train to Somerset. A drop of water splashed against my face and I looked up. It was raining inside the station. These were not the tear-shaped raindrops teachers taught us to draw as children but flat cushions of water that pooled on the platform.
One day last spring, at the height of calving season, Wes Olson pulled his white Parks Canada Ford F-250 pick-up truck off a gravel road that winds through Grasslands National Park, near the Saskatchewan-Montana border. He grabbed his binoculars from the dashboard, and scanned the distance. The plains extended toward the horizon like an inland sea. Both the outside and inside of Olson’s truck were caked in mud—it was the wettest spring on record—but he was immaculate in faded green jeans and a matching Parks Canada shirt.
“Ride’s closed down!” the carnie shouted. He was wearing a purple windbreaker that, along with all the carnival signs and rides—the Tilt-a-Whirl, the Gravitron, the salt-and-pepper shakers—looked like it was transported directly from 1982. Eye of the Tiger blasted from speakers.