Yeah, I know, it’s been 10 days since I last posted. And the funny thing is that I have been on the computer more this week than the previous few.
I have been busy, though. Friday I got back from a four day trip to go white-water rafting in Maupin, OR. Actually, we only went rafting Wednesday and Thursday, and went to a park after we got down there on Tuesday. Friday morning was travel, with a late morning return. When I got back, it finally sunk in that I had less than a week until school starts.
The trip was fun, I went with the Boy Scout troop I Used to actively participate in. I kind of missed several meetings, and then just stopped coming last year, as I got into the swing of things as a Senior in High School. I can’t say right yet that I regret it, but I’m sure I will sooner or later. If I had stayed, I probably could have gotten my Eagle, but you can’t get Eagle without coming to the meetings, and working on the last merit badges and doing a project, and generally expending a large amount of time. Time was one thing that there was a shortage of during the school year.
But anyway, last year, we went on the same trip, and we all had a blast. The first day last year, the guide, who is a friend of the Scoutmaster, had all of us float down about two miles of the river, including a few SMALL rapids, in just our life jackets. The idea is that if you are used to being in the river without a boat, you won’t panic when you fall out. Seems to work.
As I mentioned, we go through a fellow who is affiliated with the Scoutmaster, and not a company. He brings a few boats, and he is the lead boat. We actually get to take the other boats all by ourselves, just scouts and other adults. So my rafting experience is likely different than most anyone else’s, as we have gone down a few rapids completely without a guide. (Merle, the guide, will stop in the middle of the river, or go a bit too far ahead, but you never know which he’s going to do. If you pass him, or get too far behind him, you’re on your own, mostly. Of course, you’ll catch up with each other eventually, but the rapids don’t wait for that!)
Last year, several people fell out in various rapids. These are the bigger rapids, class 3s and 4s. Cory fell out in Oak Springs one day, as did Charlie (now the Scoutmaster), Anthony (no longer in scouts) and I. Jesse was catapulted out in Train Wreck, he was in the back, and apparently, he went several feet in the air when the boat hit the rapid VERY well. He was in the boat with Merle, and Merle usually hits the best part of every rapid. This year, Jesse came, but really didn’t want to go on Train Wreck. He wanted to stay in camp all day Thursday, the day we planned to continue through, but wasn’t allowed.
So off we went. We didn’t do a life jacket float, but just put in a few miles upstream of camp on Wednesday, and went. I was the only one who fell out in a major rapid that day, Oak Springs. I’m still not sure how it happened. I actually fell out before the rapids, but I just remember thinking “Wow, the water’s shallow here”, and then I thought “Uh OH”, and then I was in. I was still hanging onto the boat, but I managed to scrape up my left knee and my right hip (which still hurts!). The pulled me in, and we fought the rapid to get back where we should have been. We survived, but didn’t hit the rapid properly. We kept having problems getting lined up anywhere, because we couldn’t get any power from a few of our rowers. We’d be pointed at where we wanted to take out, for example, and then be trying to row towards it but would start to turn sideways, which would cause the side that was more powerful to backstroke the straighten the boat, and then begin the process again. Finally, halfway through, we switched one of the littler guys, (Jesse again) to another boat for Bruce. Bruce is my age, and height, but a little bit scrawnier. However, he can sure pull his weight, 🙂 unlike the little ones.
I guess ‘little ones’ isn’t quite the right term for seventh and eighth graders, but they were the littlest, and the weakest.
We stopped off a few times along the river, once at the White River, where there are natural waterslides a quarter mile upstream, and once at Surf City, where most everyone goes back upstream a ways and rides down the rapids in their life vests. This rapid is larger than the other ones we do.
The next day, not much was different, but I stayed in the boat through all the rapids, and Robert fell out twice, at Devil’s Hole and at Boxcar, both within about 2 miles from where we put in. Later in the day, we stopped by some cliffs to jump in the water. They were only about 18 feet, but I’m still not used to it. Last year, I only went in because Charlie had me agree to go in if he did, and he did. I made him feel bad about that, though. I was looking down when I hit the water, and the force on impact caused my upper lip to be pulled up, and I tore the little flap of skin between the lip and the gums. When I came up, I had no idea, but I had blood all over my mouth, and he thought I was hurt worse than what I was. All is better now, the flap grew back.
This year, I took a while before I was ready to jump, but I did a lot better than last year, and didn’t injure myself at all. 🙂 All but a few of the ‘little ones’ went off the cliff. As I said, they were only about 18 feet, but I’ve only been cliff jumping twice now, so it’s a new experience. If I was back there this week, I’d probably go off with little problem.
And I should mention, our guide Merle was doing all these things, too. Merle is about 70.
So that covers a few of the days I’ve been gone. I was working a few of the days, but I quit as of Monday the 16. After two years of saying I work at A&J, it feels wired knowing that I don’t have a job. I’m not planning to work on campus, at least not for a semester, so I can get settled in, and truly adapt to college life. I’m sure if I wanted to, I could still go back, and maybe I will next summer–who knows what will happen?
Other than that, the main thing I’ve been doing is getting ready for college, which entails a lot more than one would think, until you try and do it. I STILL need to buy a computer, which I plan to get kicking tonight, and pack, and buy stuff, and so on. My mom just came down during a commercial break in the Olympics, and asked me if I was “still on your website”, and when I had tried to explain the difference, and then said yes, she said “you’re not going to be ready for college” in that threatening tone that could as easily have said “you’re not going to throw that ball all the way around the world”. You know the tone?
And I know exactly how Brionna feels, and felt. Here I am, having typed a post that is I have no idea words long, and I still have more to say. I may squeeze in one more post tomorrow or Wednesday, but if I don’t, the next post will be sometime late next week from a University computer, or the week after from mine–who knows how things will go??
Until next time
(PS, This post, to THIS word, is 1400 words!)