Friday, June 27, 2008

Canoeing 101

We have finally done it! Ryan and I are now proud owners of a computer.  We have tried so hard for the past 4 years to not become dependant on a computer in our home, but we finally gave in to the calling of being a Mac owner.  Those of you that know my "financially knowledgeable/responsible" husband know that this was a very hard move for him.  I just kept encouraging him that we were "stimulating the economy" as we checked out.  So, we have now moved into the 21st century.   

I hope that this blog will help us to document our memories together.   We don't have kids, but we do have many fun memories together and things worth sharing. We just hope you enjoy reading them. 

I got the bright idea last week that it would be fun to do something outdoors.  We had some pretty cool weather and  we finally had a weekend without any plans.  We decided that it would be great weekend to do something outside. We have been wanting for a while to go down the Cahaba with Jennifer and Mitchell but things just kept getting in our way.  They couldn't go on Saturday but Ryan and I decided we would be able to do this alone.  

As many of you know, I spent many weekends on the water with Dad. He loved canoeing and kayaking.  I have many fond memories of camping and going down the Ocoee, Hiawassee, and Natahala with my family.   I knew that the Cahaba would be a breeze.  We called Craig and he was gracious enough to let us borrow his canoe for the day, so we went to his house and loaded it up on Ryan's truck. 

 The big debate was whether or not to bring Maggie.  Maggie, our dog, absolutely loves the water so we just couldn't pass up taking her with us.  I packed a picnic lunch in a cooler, loaded Maggie up in the truck, and headed to Buck Creek near Old Town Helena to put in.    It started off very frustrating.  Maggie had never been in a canoe before and was puzzled why we did not want to be in the water with her.  All she wanted to do was swim beside the canoe, so we let her swim beside us for the a while.  After we almost ran her over as we were going down "rapids", she came to the realization that she didn't like being knocked under by the canoe, so we tried to convince her to jump in with us.  That was pretty funny watching her try to jump into a canoe.

We had such a peaceful time on the Cahaba & Buck Creek.  We stopped to eat lunch and enjoy the nature.  We played around in the water.  It was hard to believe that we were still in B'ham.  It seemed like we were so far from our home.  We did not check the water level before we left, so there were some shallow spots.  We had to get out a few times in Buck Creek and carry the canoe. 

 Maggie quickly learned the procedure for getting out and carrying the canoe.  
Once we hit the Cahaba we didn't have to get out, it was pretty deep with a lot of paddling as the current was not near as swift as Buck Creek.   At one point we ran into a group of teenage boys and Dads enjoying the Saturday on the 4 wheelers.  Ryan said he was at first concerned we were about to experience real life "Deliverance". I never knew that 4 wheeler's could drive through such deep water.  The Dads were sitting on the back of a "Gator" enjoying some adult beverages.   The irony of this occurred when one of them yelled out to Ryan.  It turns out it was a construction superintendent for another contractor on the project Ryan is working on.  It was funny to see the men shirtless in cut off blue jeans with coolers on the water.  They were definitely celebrating the "Red Neck Yacht Club" on the Cahaba.  We got a kick out of it.  

As we continued  on, we had a wonderful time just relaxing and enjoying the sounds of nature. Maggie finally grew accustomed to the canoe and didn't try to jump out.  We hope to go again soon, particularly since we live so close.