Saturday, August 13, 2005

First voyage of [Insert Name Here]: Part 1

Tuesday evening saw large, localized storms pass through the area dumping lots of rain. Wednesday morning I recieved an e-mail from Clark stating Spring Creek was running at over 300 cfs and asking if I wanted to take [Insert Name Here] out for her maiden voyage after work. Hell yeah!!!! We e-mailed back and forth different launch/recovery plans and when we had it all figured out I called Misseswether to let her know what I was planning.

Five minutes later I was contacting Clark with Misseswether's new, better plan. She'd drop us off, she'd pick us up, she'd photograph the launch and recovery. This seemed to be a much better plan than the ones Clark and I had thought up (especially my plan involving two cars and the partial destruction of a bicycle).

The launch site was where Spring Creek flows under I-45 and recovery was to take place at the bridge on Riley-Fuzzel road. Supposedly it takes one hour to make this trip. Misseswether was still concerned about the sea-worthiness of [Insert Name Here], but I tried to relieve her by explaining [Insert Name Here] doesn't need to be sea-worthy, just somewhat-flooded-river-worthy. She didn't find that nearly as funny as I did. Sometimes being an adventurer means laughing in the face of Danger (or at least Danger's second-cousin, Wet Clothing).

Clark was already at my doorstep when I got home and he, Misseswether, and Miniwether carried the canoe over to her SUV. Miniwether loves helping with any job at hand, so Misseswether assigned her the task of "making sure the path behind them was clear". I love Misseswether. While we were tying the canoe down it was Miniwether's job to make sure the yellow rope had two ends.
Rope

It seemed appropriate at the time (her plan, her SUV, she'd be driving later) to let Misseswether drive the four of us (Missewether, Me, Miniwether, and Clark) to the launch site. For some reason it never occurred to me that this would be the first time she's driven a vehicle a) with a canoe tied on top, b) through Houston rush-hour traffic, and then c) 4-wheeling across a sand-dune and pothole filled dirt track.

Our marriage survived the trip, but it was a bit touch and go a few times. Sometimes being an adventurer means biting down really hard on your tongue. Sometimes being a loving wife means putting up with an adventurer who doesn't always bite his tongue.

Arrival
Once at the launch site we took the obligatory family photo, though at the time Miniwether was more interested in all the beautiful sand. She couldn't wait to get down and start eating it. Just kidding, she doesn't eat sand (mulch on the other hand? Don't ask...)

Although Miniwether has never been on a boat in the water she understands the concept and was very excited about heading down the river with her daddy and Mr. Clark! To help out she made sure no canoe-avore dinosaurs were around while we carried [Insert Name Here] down to the river.
Spring Creek at I-45
Pre-Launch

At the river Miniwether carefully counted the rivets to make sure our repairs had remained intact during transit.
Launching
1,2,3,4,7,9,8,3,7,10,5. Yep, everything looked good!

Everything was ready, Clark and I boarded the [How Hard Can It Be To Come Up With A Name?!], smiled bravely for the camera, and prepared to push off into the borderlands in a craft patched together with Walmart rivets and flatten Diet Cherry Vanilla Dr. Pepper cans.
InPosition

It was also at this moment that Miniwether realized daddy and Mr. Clark were taking off WITHOUT HER!!! Tears! Cries of anguish! Thrashing! Screaming! Begging! Pleading!! But to no avail, the swiftly moving current was quickly pulling [Insert Some Damn Name Here Already!!] away. Within moments we were around the bend and out of earshot.
SoFarSoGood

Behind us remained one very, very sad Miniwether.
sad

To be continued...

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