My friend’s been upside down in her boat, flailing with her paddle for over ten seconds now. I’m jumping, shouting, fumbling for my whistle while my friends in the eddy are paddling towards her franticly. After a few failed roll attempts, which looked much like a know-it-all paddling student I had this summer who looked up rolling online and then tried to execute it failing miserably, Will finally gets her hands on his boat and helps roll her back upright. How she’s still in her boat is beyond me. What’s most interesting is how much help he had to give to get her upright. That’s the first clue there may be something not so right about this situation. Tara knows how to roll, especially in an eddy.
I stay in my eddy, and watch her crumple forward in her boat. It looks like she’s crying. I’m not sure what’s going on, so I wait for someone to come over to me. That party doesn’t need any more additions.
Soon enough Rowan paddles over.
“Something’s wrong with her rib, she thinks she may have broken it.” Explains the sloppy roll attempts.
We spend some time sorting out a plan. Her rib doesn’t appear to be broken, maybe bruised? But she is wheezing, and can’t stand up. We need to get her out as soon as possible. We stash her and Andrew’s boats and paddle out while they begin a grueling hike out of the gorge.
The story ends well: We got them just as they were coming out of the hike and she was fine. Just a bruised rib. Will and Andrew got the boats the next day.
But that whole day had been weird. We were super late getting on the river because of a bike race that caused us to detour and get lost. I twisted my ankle on the hike in, (that’s fairly normal) and my poor little Remix 69 finally cracked (saw it coming for over a year now) early on in the run, so I had to paddle a boat mostly full of water most of the day (six inch long crack!).
On the way home (me driving a slightly intoxicated Will, this is a normal Green day ending), we talked about this whole crazy life we live. How the moments make up days that make up life. And how we’re all here for each other, for this crazy life. Mallie’s foot is out of commission (there’s a toothpick stuck in it) so we all helped her carry her boat, my boat is cracked so Bryan gave me some duct tape, a stranger we didn’t even know swam and we helped wrangle his boat. And its these little moments in life that are so addicting. It’s the way we are all here for each other, we all show up for each other.
I wouldn’t trade this life, or circle of friends, for anything. It doesn’t matter if my car is getting old rapidly, or if someone’s boat is broken, or if our life plans cause our parent’s heart rates to skyrocket. What matters is the way we depend on each other,
the way we’re all helping each other get through life together.
With all the boating and biking I’ve been doing lately, I’ve been experimenting with making my own energy bars and protein bars so I can save a little money. Here is a hand drawn recipe for some Apple Pie Bites made with dates and protein. Enjoy!