Wednesday, April 11, 2007

3 Word Wednesday, Updates & a Photo

Bone’s 3-Word Wednesday writing exercise this week has the following words: “Lost, Wave, Lined.” Here is my assignment—it’s fiction even though I’ve traveled by canoe into the northern Canada. This photo was taken in August 1992 on a 200 mile/10 day canoe trip to the James Bay via the Missinabi River.

We lined the boats through the rapids. There was no safe way to run the rapids in an open boat and this far north we couldn’t risk capsizing, nor was there an easy trail to portage. Since we needed to make good time to meet the train on Wednesday, lining was the best option. Ropes were tied to the bow and stern painters on each canoe, extending their length. Gear was securely tied inside the boats. We agreed to take one boat through the rapids at a time, with the other crew members waiting downstream in case there was a need for a rescue. The person in front held the bow line, and helped set the canoe’s direction. The water was allowed to move the canoe, while the stern paddler held the back line, controlling speed while assisting with the canoe’s direction. Like puppets, the first two boats navigated the turns and the ledges through the rapids without taking on much water. As the last boat started down stream, Chuck slipped and fell into the river. As the water swept him downstream, he dropped the stern line and the canoe tracked sideways as a wave filled the boat with water. As Chuck crawled out of the river, the canoe was caught for a moment on a submerged rock. It flipped the boat momentarily, but the craft righted itself and drawing much more water, banged through the rapids. It came to a stop in the shallow waters of a on a rock garden at the base of the falls. The boat was damaged, but nothing so severe that couldn’t be patched with duct tape. Luckily, no gear was lost, but everything was wet. We immediately set up camp and built a fire, setting out to dry out the gear. There was no reason try to rush; we could catch the Friday train.

Today's Update: It's been depressing. It’s snowing like crazy, which I really don’t mind, but this inch an hour snowfall (that started at 8 AM and is to continue till evening), is more than we bargained for this time of the year. The roads have been slippery. Maybe, however, it's a good thing I haven't put away my skis. What's really making the day depressing is that I got word late last night of the death of a man who'd become a good friend. E had been part of the interview team that hired me. He apparently had a heart attack and died yesterday afternoon. Although he'd had some heart issues, this was a shock.

On the good news front, I had my yearly physical this morning (my first in three years). All seems to be good. I could lose 10 or 15 pounds, other than that my cholesterol and blood pressure and hemoglobin and platelet counts and PSA are all in the good range.


  1. really DO need to move south!!

    Congrats on the doc's exam!

    I like your little story and you could enlarge it, couldn't you? Add more? Let us read it? Since it is snowing and you can't go out...LOL

  2. Sorry about your friend Sage...I'm glad your physical went well. Most of us could lose that 10 pounds or so but at least your numbers were good....that is the main thing.

    Since I am used to proofing and editing Martin's work all the time (before it goes to the real editors) I can tell you that you started out with a writing boo boo off the bat. Rapids followed by rapids. You can't use words alike that close together. I know the editors are sticklers on that one. Otherwise....very good!

  3. Sage - great photo - and both the fiction and non-fiction versions of the trip make for great storytelling - have you ever put all your travel stories and photos into a book?

    I've been putting off going to get some blood work done to check my cholesterol, blood sugar, etc., but I am planning to go in Friday morning . . .

  4. A yearly exam done once every three years doesn't include a colon check? ;-)

  5. I thought we were going to miss out on all your snow but we got a dusting last night. It should be gone by noon and warmer temps are on the way. I can't wait. I'm ready for spring!

  6. Hmm. About that weight loss, you can start right now. No use procastinating. I did that and now I am jogging more than ever in this horrendous heat! As I had dislocated my right elbow way back, doing Yoga is out of question for sometime to come.

    Just my two penny worth.

    PS: I love your travelogues.

  7. Kenju, one day I will write a travelogue about that canoe trip--I recently scanned in some of the slides that I took on it.

    Deana, you're right about the double use of that word (occassionally repetitive use is good for emphasis, but not in this case). I'm not a good proof reader, especially not of something I just read.

    Diane, Thanks, I have visions of books in my head, but they haven't gotten out onto paper. Good luck with your examine

    Murf, yes, that's to be scheduled

    Ed, the snow changed to rain last night, then back to snow then rain this morning and it's to snow again this afternoon... but it's to be in the 50s tomorrow

    Gautami, I should write a post on my exercise routine--I work out three times a week, doing both cardio (jogging, x-country skiing, or elipitical) plus strength building (weights). And I try to swim at least once a week, some weeks twice, swimming 2/3 of a mile or so. So, unfortunately, any weight loss will have to involve diet! I'm impressed by your running in heat!

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  9. Impressive exercise routine. You forgot to add that what you do and the speed you do it depends on if there is a bouncy pony tailed girl near by

  10. Sorry about your friend. Know how hard sudden death is

    Got your blood results on the same day as the every year three year physical?

    Didn't mind the use of rapids twice. It didn't read like fiction but a Sage travel story which I have been told is the best way to write fiction

  11. Yes Murf, I'm like a grayhound chasing the rabbit, just can't get that treadmill to move fast enough to catch the ponytail.

    Pia, they did the blood draw last week--it's not do in the doctor's office but at a hospital outpatient and then sent to the doc and done ahead so he could go over the results with you

    The story was fiction even though I have travelled in such country

  12. Enjoyed the 3 word Wednesday adventure. Sorry about your friend. Great news on the blood work!!

  13. Nice story. Drew me in immediately.

    Thanks for promoting the button.

    I'm sorry about your friend.

  14. Those rapids look adventurous - probably too adventurous for me. :)

    Sorry on the loss of your friend.

  15. whatever that cold thing has blown into the sonoran desert and it is raining now.

    Sorry to hear of your sad news.