Friday, April 25, 2008

Messing about in boats

"Believe me, my young friend, there is nothing -- absolutely nothing -- half so much worth doing as simply messing about in boats."

The water rat had obviously never ridden a bicycle. Still, messing about in boats is absolutely worth doing.

While down in Alabama, Jill and I (mostly Jill) got a bug in our heads about doing an epic canoe trip on the Tennessee River. By epic, we mean to 'town' and back. Smartly, we drove to Guntersville first to get an estimate for our mileage, about 9 miles each way. It's probably clear to most readers that neither of us is hugely powerful in the upper body, so we made the wise decision to scale back our epic trip. Instead we aimed for a restaurant about 2 miles up river. This is smart, see, because the return trip is easier than the way out.

Here we go! Note the big waves. There were even some very small white caps. It was a dark and stormy day...

I think the stronger person should be in front, but Jill doesn't like the pressure of steering . A perk of being in the back is that one can lie down on the job without the front person knowing -- not in this case.

Our landmark that told us to exit the main channel.

Land ho! We parked the canoe at what seemed to be an abandoned dock that was right across the street from the restaurant.

This is the best restaurant between Guntersville and Scottsboro (of the 2).
Fortified by cheeseburgers, fries, and cokes, we paddled right by this barge to get home in record time!
I think it took 1 1/2 hours to get there and about 1 hour to get back, but who's counting while on vacation?

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Livin' the dream on the river

We've been too busy livin' the dream in recent weeks to write about it. My particular dream is to live commune-style, so vacationing with family makes me particularly happy. A few weeks ago we met up with my mom and dad at Matt, Lupita, Ricky and Enoch's house in Nashville. Then all of us went down to the Walkers' cabin for a few days of looking at and playing on the Tennessee River. This, thanks to the Walkers, was the vacation spot of our youth. Mom and Dad still go every year, and we love it when we can join them. Here's the view from the balcony:

Ricky rocks the boat.
Chad catches a whopper.

Celebratory "fish dance."

Ricky is introduced to his turtle, named "Gunter" because I made him in Guntersville. Ricky seems to like Gunter.

Friday, April 11, 2008

Ready for Paris-Roubaix

Not many of our fellow Americans realize that we're smack in between the 2 best single day road bike races in the world: Tour of Flanders and Paris-Roubaix. I'm doing my best to ameliorate the situation with the blog and my appearance. Here's my new look:
Nothing says Euro Pro racing like a mullet! Go Tom Boonen, go!
It's really a shame that the weather is supposed to be very nice here this weekend. I'll have to imagine myself riding through wind and rain on cobblestones while it's sunny, 65 degrees on the somewhat smooth roads of ABQ.