My irritation came out in the shortened form of, "WHAT ARE YOU. . ." Mid sentence I noticed my husband chuckling. For that matter, my son's smile was ear to ear. Then I really looked at them. They were both soaking wet and the canoe was draped with a variety of seaweed and mud. Obviously, the canoe had flipped and I couldn't wait to hear how.
They had decided to go on a quick trip back into the swamp for a look at nature. They carved their way through the tiny little channels created by the cattails and reeds. Once reaching the end of the paths, they needed to turn around to head home. Of course, it was impossible to turn around or actually move at all. Both stood up in the canoe to use their might on the paddles, trying to dislodge the canoe from the weeds. Brian started to get a little nervous and sat down on the seat. He watched as his dad put full force into his lean on the paddle. As the canoe gave way, so did my husband's balance. The canoe flipped and they found themselves standing up to their armpits in mucky, slimy water.
If I would have stopped to just smell, I would have noticed them coming long before they arrived. Once on shore, they headed up to the hose to try to wash off the slime. The previous night they had arrived late at night and avoided a skunk on the road at the last minute. It would have been a toss up to determine which smell was worse.
After washing as best as could be expected, clothes and canoe, they had to take baths. Thankfully, the wind was blowing in the correct direction and so no one on the lake had to put up with the smell of the drying laundry.
One of the recurrent topics at our home is a trip to the Boundary Waters. My husband and son have been trying to plan a trip for a couple of years, but it has never taken place due to scheduling conflicts. Now, I realize perhaps the two of them in a canoe away from most of the world may not be the best idea. I suggestyed that if they were planning on traveling to the Boundary Waters, they might want to take another adult to ensure a safe return. My husband's response was, "It won't be a problem, at least the water's clean!"
The van was packed and loaded for the trip home. I was driving back to the cities alone in the truck for a meeting. The rest of the family piled into the van. The paring words I could hear of my daughter's were, " DAD, the van smells like the SWAMP!" I was just happy to be in the truck. As I took one final deep breath of the great Koronis air, I was thankful to have an aroma free view from the lake.
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