June 13, 2004

There may yet be hope.

Yesterday was spent decompressing with family. I went down to the "'rents" houseboat, and spent the day going for a ride with them. Two hours downstream to a place called Prater Flats. The water there was the clearest I've ever seen on Fort Loudon Lake. the temperature was absolutely perfect as well.

I went through a "five pack" throughout the day, and didn't even touch the first one until after 1 pm. I was doing good. (BTW the sixth beer went to my brother-in-law. He even asked me for it, but hell he's offered me a few over the time that I've known him, so I figured that he would know that if he wanted one, just grab it. I kind of feel like an ass for not offering him one anyways.) Then we looked up and saw the storm was heading our way. Alas, time to go.

We were towing my BIL's "Fish 'n' Ski" behind the houseboat so that if my sister's chow-dog had to go potty, they could run him over to shore, and he could take care of bidness. This became problematic when Dad decided it would be best to try and stop and wait things out for awhile.

At this time, it's raining like "a cow pissing on a flat rock", but there's nothing to do but go out and make sure that the "little boat" doesn't bash into the "big boat" when dad is trying to get her under anchor. Wind is whipping, lightning is flashing, and the thunder rolls. Johnny is out in the small boat (still tethered to the big one) trying to bring it alongside to tie her fast. Nothin' doin'. Every time I get lined up on the side of the houseboat, Dad has to move it in reaction to the vagaries of wind, water, tide, shore, and the anchor. At last, I throw up my hands and bestow upon them to "untie me" which they promptly did.

I figured that I would just stay close to the "home on water" until dad got the anchors to catch and then I'd tie off. The problem was, that the anchors never got dug in. After a few minutes of the other boat jockeying around, and me moving to avoid it, I decided that shelter for me was in order, so I headed upwind. In this case, "upwind" was straight across the channel, and I was lucky to find an abandoned dock to tie off to. It even had a tree for me to stand under, so I coould pretend that I wasn't getting even more drenched than I already was. Sweet.

No sooner than I got settled beneath my tree, I see Dad's "floating trailer" heading further upstream. "Unloosen" the ski-boat, and head on out again. Several narrow-misses later, (Some dipshit in a small cabin cruiser decided that it was a good idea to cut straight in front of the houseboat. This is decidedly "bad form", as the bigger boat always has the right of way.) Words and gestures were exchanged between floating apperati. I'm certain it would have come to blows if there hadn't been the little matter of a lake between the vessels.

I had them toss me my extra (aka. dry) pack of smokes, and it was decided that I would go ahead into the Marina, and catch them when they came in with the big boat. Off I go. Have I mentioned that raindrops that hit your unprotected skin at 45 mph hurt? The long an the short of it, is that I had a wonderful time getting rained on with my family. (even though they were safely under cover for the most part.)

What about the title of this post? You may ask. Well, when I came out of the store for my lunch break, I found a note on my van. It was written on a sheet torn from a stylized pad in the shape of a Panda bear. The script wa aparrently from a female of the species. (Who else would have a "Panda Pad" in the car?) It read as follows: " Your right rear tire is flat. Thought you should know."

that sucks, but I'm so pleased that someone took the time out of their day to ensure that I was aware of the potential safety hazard I could have been. Panda woman, (I don't care if it's just wishful thinking) I think I Love you. Can you keep a secret?

Posted by Johnny - Oh at June 13, 2004 11:59 PM
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