I read a quippy quote once that we need to go on adventures to know where we truly belong. Well I haven't decided yet, but I think I might just belong in a trailer.
My first taste of the East Coast Paddlesports and Outdoor Festival was a bit different than most participants....mostly because I was wearing a fake mustache and dressed like Ron Burgundy. Though different, it was quite pleasant all the same. The Thursday before the festival kicked off, Traveling Ink had been invited by Charleston County Parks and Recreation to particpate in the Ron Burgundy Media Challenge, and I was more than happy to assemble a team. Professionals from various news and media outlets came together to get a sneak peak of the festival, participate in a paddling relay race, and channel the energy and couture of the movie Anchor Man (costumes were encouraged).
I've encountered a number of guests over the years who have toured aboard the Carolina Belle with Charleston Harbor Tours. I frequently ask them how they liked it, and don't think I've ever gotten anything but a positive response, but I'd never gone on the tour myself. I decided to remedy that situation a week or so ago, and got out in the harbor for the first time since early this past fall.
Dylan had recently moved to Charleston from Wisconsin. We were clearing out of the harbor on a saltwater fishing boat, when he spotted dolphins in the distance, pointing at their dorsal fins gracing the surface. I didn't turn my head, didn't think twice about glancing in their direction. But Dylan, he was jazzed. He watched until they swam out of view. I hadn't realized how numb I had become to the presence of dolphins, but working as a kayak guide equated to frequent visitation from the friendly bottlenoses.
I shifted the safety to the "off" position and slowly pulled the antique shotgun, which had belonged to my friend's grandfather, up into my line of sight. "Pull," I said softly and squeezed the trigger, hurling the shotgun shell toward that helpless little orange disk. As it shattered, I got the nod of approval from the guys sitting behind me on the dock. I smiled inside, handed the gun back to my friend, and said, "I'm done." The gun was heavy for someone my size. I wasn't interested in having bruises from the recoil. And there were plenty of other things to entertain that day...fireworks to watch, hotdogs to roast, and bonfires to light. Ah, birthdays in the south.
Generally speaking, it's lousy to get a text message from a friend saying they are headed to the hospital in the middle of the night. A little while back I got such a message, but it was marvelous news, not bad news.