Summer Activities List (Updated):

Blackberry picking
Listening to live music
Something involving a fire on a beach and hot dogs
Going on a boat
Wine tasting
Art galleries
Daytrips (Gualala/Mammoth Lake)

A couple of weeks ago, when Marcia made this decision, we played hooky from work and went canoeing. We can do this because we are fancy free and held down by no one.

As you may know, I am not sporty. I dislike sports and sporty people. I do, however, like the occasional sporty activity, as long as the emphasis is on fun and no one is going to tell me to push myself or make me eat a power bar. Marcia is a good person to do sporty things with because she likes fun and she understands that if you are going to do sports, you ought to have a picnic. So we assembled a picnic and rented a canoe on the Russian River.

Of course, neither of us is very strong, so for the most part, our canoe lurched along the water like a drunken man. We kept running into the bank, which seemed harmless for the most part.We made a goal: as long as we didn’t turn over or hit another person, we would call the day a success.

So we floated along. We saw ducks cuddling on logs, a fat gold trout jump out of the water, and many Great Blue Herons standing on the banks. The water was a glittering blue.

photo by Joy Lanzendorfer

At one point, there were two other canoes ahead of us. We grew quiet, concentrating all our efforts on not hitting them. We did pretty well and managed to get past the first boat without incident.

But as we tried to pass the second canoe, we were suddenly caught up in a current. The boat careened away from the canoe—good—and toward the bank—bad. We paddled frantically, but it was useless as we swept toward a large tree. Before I knew it, a tree branch as thick as a leg was coming directly at my face.

I did the only thing I could do: I laid down in the canoe. My head went back and the branch sailed over me. The boat went underneath, and turned magically so that it directed out into the water again. Marcia, it turned out, had crouched forward so that the branch went over her head too. The idea of the two of us hiding in the boat while the water carried us under the tree struck us as hilarious.

photo by Joy Lanzendorfer

The second time this happened, however, it wasn’t so funny. This time the current was stronger, we were moving faster, and the branch was lower and thicker. I laid down again, and the canoe slammed into the bank. I was staring at tree branches. Cautiously, I sat up. My thumb had been smashed, but other than that, I was all right. So was Marcia. The boat, however, was wedged under the tree and we were stuck as the water rushed by us.

I looked around and saw a man standing on the bank opposite us. If he had been a cartoon character, his jaw would have been on the ground.

“We’re okay,” I called weakly. He waded over and freed our canoe.

The rest of the trip went swimmingly. Despite being almost decapitated by a tree branch, we both had an good time. After all, we didn’t turn over or crash into anyone. I call the day a success.

4 thoughts on “Marcia Almost Decapitated Me

  1. marcia

    Since you did not get decapitated, it was a success! That is how I do a lot of things, just kind of float around and somehow end up having fun and getting to where I need to be. I am glad that did not make you not have fun/die.

    There are blackberries in my parking lot, but that would not be a fun outing.

  2. Jen

    That sounds scary but fun. Makes me want to go canoeing.

  3. Krista

    You blogging often = pleasure and entertainment for me.

  4. brthomas

    We must avoid the shrubberies while boating!! Glad to hear that you made a success of it.
    Guide for the Russian River canoeing, kayaking, rafting, & tubing.

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