We missed them as soon as they left and truly hope to stay in touch with them and meet up again. The Dales are very good people and so much fun to talk to.
We were scheduled to float the river tonight, and the day just flew by. Before I knew it, it was time to put together something to eat on the river, so I made tuna salad sandwiches, packed a bag of chips, two small (his and hers) thermos of coffee, snacks, wipes, camera, kleenex, etc., then packed the small cooler with soft drinks and the sandwiches.
We had been told to make sure to wear shoes that we didn’t mind getting muddy and bring mosquito repellant. We both opted to put on jeans to further ward off mosquitoes and we both grabbed jackets for after the sun set. The high today was 79 degrees, but we knew it would get chilly after sundown. At the last minute, since I don’t do well sitting on hard surfaces for long, I grabbed my “butt pillow” out of the truck and we were set!
We drove to the Rec Center to find a group of about 20 ready to float the Missouri River, including us and the guides. We all signed our release forms then loaded up in two vans, each pulling trailers loaded with canoes and kayaks for the 10 mile trip to our “starting point” on the river.
We were all outfitted with life jackets and assigned to our perspective canoe or kayak. DeWayne and I were given a canoe and two oars. DeWayne would be in the front providing the “power” and I was to sit in the back and “steer”. Okie dokie, we’re set and ready to go!
Everybody pushed off and we were on our way for an 8 mile trip down the river. The water was as smooth as glass and just gorgeous! We floated past beautiful scenery and I snapped pictures every chance I got. The beavers put on a show for us, swimming alongside for a while before they would slap the water with their tails and disappear, then reappear shortly to repeat the show.
There were deer in several places and I got so engrossed trying to get pictures of the first bunch of deer we saw that I let go of my oar and it slipped out of the boat and had to be retrieved.
I was hungry by the time we got under way, so I hastily ate most of my sandwich and a few chips between paddling the boat. It was too early for DeWayne to eat, so we just floated along, visiting with other members of the party as they floated close by and just enjoyed the beautiful surroundings and the quiet of the river.
We were a little past half way down the river when DeWayne took a break to eat his sandwich. It was tricky trying to hand him a sandwich without tipping the canoe, but we managed okay. I had packed an almost empty sack of potato chips that had a clothespin on it to keep it closed and he wanted those, so I passed those to him without incident. But then…….
I don’t remember exactly what DeWayne was doing, but for some reason, he shifted his weight and the next thing I knew, we were tipping over! It was like a dream in slow motion! One second I’m thinking, “OH SH#@!” and the next second……KERSPLUUUUSH!!!
When I came up to the surface, I saw DeWayne pop up out of the water with a look of total shock on his face that was priceless! I could just hear him thinking, “What the h___ just happened”?!!!
And the next thing I saw was one of the kayakers (a young guy) coming close to help (I thought), but all he wanted was PICTURES of the fat, 50-something woman floating around in the middle of the river (along with her butt pillow) after unceremoniously falling out of a canoe! So I
The canoe didn’t sink, but tipped upside down, so DeWayne and the guides got it turned upright, then towed it to the bank so the water could be dumped out of it. All our “stuff” was floating around either in the canoe or in the river, so this one and that one were plucking items out of the water and bringing them to us. Our jackets were soaked along with everything else, DeWayne’s cell phone was ruined, and the camera sank like a rock, along with all my pictures.
Now, at this point, we’re both soaked, wearing wet jeans that hung like weights, and shoes full of water, but we were okay other than embarrassed over our “little mishap”, lol. Two of the guys on the trip gave us fleece jackets to put on, but the sun had just set, so we weren’t really cold at that point. We parked our wet butts back in the canoe, along with all our soggy and dripping possessions, or what was left of them, grabbed our oars and were once again floating the Missouri river when DeWayne discovered he was still holding on to the clothes pin from the potato chip bag and unceremoniously threw it in the river, lol.
Then……..we started laughing! I was afraid we might tip the boat over again if we couldn’t contain ourselves soon, so we eventually were able to collect ourselves enough to try and finish the trip without “getting wet” again. And of course, those wet jeans were getting cold fast, so that was sobering in itself.
It seemed like an eternity to finish the last mile, get the canoes and kayaks loaded on the trailers and make the ten mile trip back to the base. We didn’t hang around long, let me tell ya! We gave back our loaned jackets, so it didn’t take but a minute for our top halves to be as cold as the bottoms. We jumped in the truck and headed straight for the RV! Once here, we wasted no time getting out of those soaked clothes and into a hot shower. Once that was done, we were busy throwing away soaked articles out of our bag, then throwing bag and wet clothes out onto the picnic table to be dealt with tomorrow.
Finally, we were warm, dry and sipping on hot cups of coffee when it hit us again and we laughed til we hurt. Then we were just TIRED and settled in to read email (me) and a good book (DeWayne) for a while. DeWayne gave it up half an hour ago and went to bed and I just couldn’t help thanking him for a great evening and for taking me for “a swim”.
I gotta say that although it wasn’t all that “fun” when it happened, neither of us is any worse for wear and now we have something we can look back on and laugh about for the rest of our lives.
Besides, I wanted a better camera and was going to have to wait til Christmas to get a new one. Now I get to buy that new camera and DeWayne will go ahead and take advantage of the new phone they’ve been offering. Can’t beat that, now can ya?
I just wish I had my pictures of Tracy and Tom, but we will cross paths again and I’ll get a better picture then. So……
ALL IS WELL!!!!
I’m pooped, so I’ll get this posted and hit the sack. Who knows what tomorrow will bring, I just know it won’t involve water! lol Good night everybody and……