Wednesday, December 20, 2006
THE CANOE: A TRIBUTE TO MOBILITY
Everyone must believe in something. I believe I'll go canoeing.
- Henry David Thoreau
Recently I wrote about my truck's newest accessory, my canoe. Now people who have known me for sometime had begun to grow tired of me speaking about getting a new canoe. I think that Missy did not give in to letting me get one but instead we bought it so that she could stop hearing about getting one.
I have long been attracted to the romance of a canoe. I love boats. There is just something to being on the water. The fishing is better, more parts of the world are opened up, and the feeling of becoming an aqautic creature can be fantastic! Boats are great, but they come in many shapes and sizes. I grew up fishing in an old jonboat that I am sure was bought at Sears the first year Sears was in business. This thing was old, but it taught me about being on the water. It ws great for throwing in the back of a pickup and getting into really great backwaters. Later in life I was able to go on friends Bass boats. Now these things are a monument to comfort. You can basically jump up and down on these things and they will not tip over. The only problem is that they are suited only to big water. Which is fine because these babies can FLY across the water. I have never understood why someone needed to go 100 MPH in a boat, but then you look at the size of some of these lakes and well it begins to make sense. The largest boat I have ever been on was on my honeymoon. Missy and I went on a cruise for our honeymoon. Now it is hard to think of these ships as boats. They feel more like floating cities. But let a choppy sea come up and you are quickly reminded that you are on a boat. Stablizers can only do so much!
Well anyway, why the fascination with canoes? Well I guess the main reason that jumps out is my almost religious devotion to all things simple. I just love how stripped down a canoe can be. There are no electronics , no motors, nothing fancy! Just a hull, two seats, and a couple of paddles are all that is needed. I also love the fact that a canoe can go ANYWHERE! I strap that baby to the top of my truck and I can throw off the side of a road into a creek if need be. The canoe floats in mere inches of water therefore being able to get to places that would leave other heavier crafts beached. The other thing about a canoe is the reminder that we all have a center of gravity. Forget that and you will have a very wet, sometimes cold reminder!
This year many fish have been caught from my canoe. Good times are already being had. Stories are already taking shape.
This coming year I hope to take a trip to the Boundary Waters Canoe Area in Minnesota. This is an area that has been designated a wilderness area and is only accessable by canoe. It is a land filled with hundreds of glacier made lakes. Only a few groups are allowed in at any one time, so one can really experience something of a wilderness. This is a land that has changed very little since the first French furtraders came. The great thing is that on one of these trips you can experience the area in much the same way that they did.....from a canoe!
So I know that a canoe is not the most glorious of all watercrafts but I do love them. I love the silence that can be heard from a canoe. This past year my friend Kevin and I were able to drift very close to a relaxing bobcat. The thing never really seemed to even mind that we were there. It was at that moment when my canoe purchase seemed all worth it!
Thank You my beautiful wife for understanding your husband's weird fanatical obsessions. I apologize for not getting you out on the canoe this year. Next year you and I will take a float trip!