sometimes even if you're up a creek WITH a paddle, you're still screwed

6 years ago

Sunday was the quintessential long day.

we busted out of the house for a float trip. just my husband and i and twenty(ish) drunkards. who knew just how canoe capable one can be after a 12 pack and no breakfast?? i am not speaking of myself btw as i only enjoyed one frosty summer drink before losing the rest to the river gods (story forthcoming).

it was supposed to be a simple three to four hour float followed by a bar-bq. for those of you who live nowhere close to Missouri, floating is THE summer activity, though i must be out of the loop because i had never experienced it [the joy] before... however...


does the word FLOAT not paint a picture of relaxation? just sitting back with a drink and letting the beautiful scenery float by??




this "float trip" was instead a 6 hour canoe trip, paddling continuously, endlessly, infinitely in Dante's inferno.

yesterday's heat index was 704 degrees.

we steamed like poor little mussels in a pot of grimy water.


the trip miraculously became longer and longer each time we heard from our host so when we showed up to cast off, it was a totally different route than we had planned on. the only kicking back occurred for approximately 6 minutes as i lounged in the center of an oven baked canoe, taking a break from my front paddling perch. then one of our occupants grabbed a low lying branch and the boat dumped us arse-over-end into the river.


no harm no foul, right? except the river decided to make it interesting and chose that exact spot to place a fallen tree and snarly branch pile that we ended up pinned to. do you KNOW how freaking hard the current flows against a solid mass of wood?! so there MAY have been slow motion and life flashing before one's eyes or maybe not, but we eventually all freed ourselves and the canoe with the help of 4 or 5 other (suddenly very capable and sober) people. drinking and boating should not go together-- i was not even slightly tipsy and still felt like i almost died.

i exaggerate.

but honestly, only slightly. i mean, my husband is basically superman so he could stand neck deep in a raging current and still lift the cooler out of the canoe to nest it in the tree- save the beer honey... meanwhile, i am clinging sloth-like to a random branch without my 90 dollar keen river sandals (that i had literally just taken off prior to capsizing so i could rinse off the mud- what are the odds?) i had to pull out some mad forgotten gymnastic skills to swing up on top of the mass and with pumping adrenaline leap to "safety".


you know you are desperate for a day out when you are willing to channel Meryl Streep in The River Wild sans white water, rafts and a crazed Kevin Bacon of course.


but "don't cry for me Argentina", there are contributors to that shiny silver lining on the day. even though the cooler opened just enough to spill out my rum and my coke and leaving everyone else's drinks unscathed, and we lost our towels and sunscreen, my lost shoes were retrieved!! my arms got a good workout. my tan was refreshed. we even made it home before dark. and most importantly, the law of six degrees of Kevin Bacon is still intact because now i am a river goddess comparable to Meryl Streep who was once in a movie with him. we are practically siblings.

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