Well, just yesterday Al sent around an email to the group to let us know he will not be hiking with us this Thursday. His wife is in the hospital with heart issues and is undergoing a series of tests. Hopefully she will be all right, but Al is understandably not willing to be out of reach for the day. He asked if anyone is willing to step in, and I foolishly said that I would be willing to go up to Church Mountain, rather than Lake Ann (which is long and mostly without any shade) if someone would share the leadership duties with me.
Now I'm wishing I hadn't volunteered, since now I'm on the spot. I've tried very hard not to get into a leadership position on the hikes, because I like to complain about how other people do it and how much better I'd be at it (not!). But so far, nobody has stepped up so maybe I can still back out. We'll see what happens. The smoke from the BC forest fires is still an issue, with a weather change in sight but not soon enough for Thursday.
In the meantime, I've stocked up on repellent and bought a long-sleeved shirt. Sigh. Wish I'd kept my mouth shut.