Saturday, May 27, 2017

"I Didn't Even See it, and I Know it was Steve's Fault!"

Papa and I arrived at Steve's house this morning in time to meet Mr. Woodchuck, a fellow we have heard a lot about.

This critter had been captured in the night and was about to meet his demise.  Unfortunately for Steve, the woodchuck escaped before the deed could be completed.

Aware of what was supposed to be happening, but unaware of the actual facts, I meandered off to inspect Janet's garden.

Janet has worked hard in her garden for several years.

The results are stunning.

She works hard in other areas, too.

I ended up tending for a little while this morning.  I'm good.

The big plan for today was to canoe down the Mohawk River with Janet's extended family.  Lewis wanted no part of it, but that's ok, this was just a little test run.

I was assigned to be in Camille's canoe.

Fortunately for me, so was Steve.  This is my first attempt at a selfie in a canoe.  It was much scarier than you might imagine.  Every movement made me think I was on my way into the water.  Actually, I was not the one who needed to worry about this.

After several attempts, I safely managed to take this picture. Steve and Camille are behind me.

About 30 of us were at the river this morning.  Not every person got into canoes.  Grandpa Maughan, kneeling on the rickety dock, has planned this annual Memorial Day weekend event for decades.

Papa Ben and Cousin Seth were assigned to canoe with Kyle, who has been doing this his whole life.

Papa and I have actually been included in this event before.  The previous time was about 10 years ago.

Grandpa Maughan's most recent birthday was his 90th.  He was determined to paddle to the lock.

I like the lock.

I want to point out that Adele and Cousin Brooke were traveling with Uncle Peter and Grandpa Andy.

Grandpa Maughan and his canoe were helped out of the river here.

Some of us took this opportunity to enjoy a little snack.

I have to tell you that we were all having the best time.

I felt it important to document how much fun we were having.  Unfortunately, I only captured my cap, not my grin.

I kept trying.  You'd think in the smooth water of the lock I'd feel a little more secure.  Ha.  No.

The lock lowered us about 14 feet.

I like keeping an eye on Papa Ben.  Just a heads up, notice how dry he is.

Lewis liked watching us from the lock much more than from a canoe.

Steve informed me that at this point, it would be nice if I could paddle.  He wanted to race to Jumpin' Jacks where we were all meeting for lunch.

Many factors led to water which was, um, not smooth, which meant that the canoe was tippy.  Steve encouraged my paddling efforts.

Paddling got easier.

The man to beat was Cousin Phillip.  Steve warned me that anyone in a kayak could beat any canoe.  Camille and I didn't want to believe him.

We had a good lead.

I was having fun, but that didn't keep me from paddling as hard as I could.

Phillip beat us by 60 seconds.  The rest of our group was still at the bend in the river.

I zoomed in with my camera to check on everyone.

Something happened just one minute after I took this picture.  Seth and Kyle climbed out of the canoe and Steve came to assist his dad.  I was right there but was unable to help when the canoe tipped, depositing Papa into the water.  Even though it was pretty funny, I did not laugh.  At least not at that moment.

Fortunately, this father-son bond is strong.

Part of Grandpa Maughan's tradition is buying everyone lunch.  Ben shared his onion rings with me. In fact, several people shared their onion rings with me.

I had a fish sandwich.  It was delicious.  So were the onion rings.  Maybe I should eat more deep-fat-fried food.

Then we had ice cream.

Everyone loves ice cream.

Even Lewis decided this was one part of the tradition he could embrace.

After all this fun, Papa departed to find some dry clothing.  The rest of us went to a cemetery.

Believe it or not, this cemetery has a playground.

We played for just a few minutes.

We couldn't miss this opportunity to take this picture of a merry-go-round for Papa.

I handed my phone to Kyle who took pictures of headstones.  This was a ward service project.

One stone was so worn that Kyle and I couldn't see the letters.  However, we could feel them.  We created a rubbing and figured out what the letters were.

Pretty soon, it was time to go home.

Lewis couldn't decide which parent he wanted to carry him.

We met a dry Papa back at the house, where Janet made us a fabulous salad for dinner.

What is the perfect ending for a perfect day?  Another Star Trek episode!