Yes, I truly do suck. Instead of posting to my blog and satiating my salivating fans, I spent my weekend doing fun, adventurous, cool things with Chris.
At first we were really disappointed that we didn't have all the girls because we wanted to take them to the cabin. Brandie has only been a couple of times and Grace, Emily and I had never been there. The cabin is situated on an isolated turn of the north branch of Muskegon River in an area that is lush, wild and teeming with river life. It has long been a refuge for Chris and his friends to hunt and fish all year around. You can only get to it by boat as there are no roads that go through within walking distance. All of which had me biting my knuckles with anticipation, I wanted to go so badly!
So, instead of hauling kids, cats, bags and wives up there, just Chris and I went. The cabin hadn't been opened, so when we got there we had a spot of work to do. I was dressed all in white (since it was a blistering hot day) but begged Chris to let me mow so I wasn't sitting there while he did all the work. So, we hauled out the two lawn mowers and began hacking through the jungle that had grown up around the cabin.
After a few hours of heavy work, we were both covered in sweat, grass and dirt. Chris suggested jumping in the river, cautioning me that it was quite cold, especially with the extra fast current brought on by the high water. I didn't care! He suggested going in my underwear, but not wanting to traipse about the rest of the day without it, I decided to just go nude. After all, Chris has done it for years and if anyone was coming we'd hear them long before we'd see them.
Chris left his underwear on as he had a change of clothes, but I stripped down to my bare skin and gingerly stepped into the swirling water. Ice cold water engulfed my feet and legs taking my breath away. I went waist deep and then began splashing water over my upper body to get off all the grass and dirt and sweat. I was actually beginning to enjoy it, Chris and I joking about him being Jeremiah Johnson and me being his Indian squaw "Poke-a-lottus" when all of a sudden he grabs me and pulls me over to him, hissing, "Honey, watch out! People are coming!" I shrieked and tried to grab the towel to wrap around my nakedness only to discover the towel had somehow shrunk to the size of a postage stamp as an innocent family of canoers came drifting down the river, paddles in mid-air and jaws hanging slack.
I ducked behind Chris and squatted down in the freezing cold river, completely overcome with giggles at the look of embarrassment and utter astonishment playing over the faces in the canoe. The wife stared stonily ahead, back rigid as her kids gawked, heads bobbing back and forth for a better look.
Chris shouted out to the canoe, "She's just taking a bath," to which the husband replied, "It's a good day for it," something which we laughed about later as it was sure to incite a tongue lashing from his stiff-backed wife. I laughed so hard I nearly fell down in the river.
By the way, you can get pretty clean with just a little Palmolive and cold current.
After our water adventures, we decided to go for a boat ride. He's an amazing river driver which was great because he's been driving the riverboat since he was in his teens; he knows all the shallow spots and logs that are hidden danger spots. He pulled the throttle wide open and I perched myself on the end of the boat in my new Audrey Hepburn Breakfast at Tiffany's hat threatening to fly off at every moment. Oh was it worth it! We jetted about the river for hours and then trolled while he fished and we chatted. We were in heaven! We then went back to the cabin and made a dinner of steak, salad, French bread and grilled asparagus. Yum!
I had picked up an antique copy of "The Rime of the Ancient Mariner," and I read it while listening to the gurgling syrupy sound of the river swirling about me as Chris prepared our dinner on the grill. Chris thought it was creepy, and later, when we were shooting at targets around the cabin, he said he'll think twice before shooting a bird thanks to the Ancient Mariner. I can't tell you how cool it was to sit on the deck of the cabin with the sounds of the river and the smell of dinner cooking on the grill as a light breeze played over me and the archaic words of ol' Samuel Taylor C. dancing about the air around my head. Lover-ly.
It was too hot to stay in the cabin, so we ended our day with another long boat ride back to the boat launch and then a satisfying ride home. Which doesn't completely explain why I haven't posted my pictures (although I did forget my camera up on the river, damn it all!), but it does tell the story of how we spent our long weekend: playing, laughing and throwing off our cares for a much needed respite of R&R.