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Old 07-29-2007, 10:30 AM   #21
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I was in the military stationed in Virginia. I had a wonderful girlfriend who lived two hours away with her family, and me being totally broke, it was difficult to go out to dinner/movies regularly on weekends I could go see her, much less 'vacation'.

But there was a river somewhere near her area, where lots of folks tubed, rafted and kayaked, so a plan was made that we would try it out. Neither of us had any experience at this, but it seemed pretty easy to me.

Since I had no equipment or experience, I went to the base MWR (Morale Welfare and Recreation) and I rented the only thing they had -- a huge aluminum canoe -- and bungeed it to my old beat up primered hot rod, and drove out to see her. We got a picnic basket, cooler, the two of us, the floatation devices, oars, and other gear, and treked to the put-in point, and off we went.

In the deep pool area, we kind of got our bearings, and things (as I recall) were not too bad at first, except for the oppressive mid-summer still heat, bugs, humidity, screeching youngsters in plastic boats making fun of us, etc. I was not smart enough to realize that we were the only ones out there in what is really a heavy, low, canoe fitted for a small lake, rather than a ride down shallow rapids.

As we paddled down through the still deep part, the current picked up, the river narrowed and got shallower, and the bottom started dragging. We tried to shift our weight and gear to make it better, but it quickly became frustrating, and what fun we might have hoped to experience quickly evaporated. I was self-conscious of my noob status, but determined to forge on. Eventually, it became clear we had completely the wrong gear to be where we were, and kids zipped by us on plastic floats, making comments and clearly seeing us as a goofy obstruction, and experienced kayakers would come by to "help" by telling us we should pull out as it was going to get worse not better. One young studly dude stayed around to help, even as I had to jump out of the boat and wade/push/grind it over the rocks with my embarrassed GF sitting there, obviously having me diminish in her eyes as a outdoorsman. In the impertinence of youth, and male pride, I snapped at the guy trying to help, and of course, that made it even worse still. So now I'm soggy, ego-bruised, stuck in the middle of a rocky ford with a too-heavy load and peeved GF, mosquitoes eating me up, no clear plan on what to do (try to go back upstream against current? No way that can work! Continue? Ha - never reach intended end, already stuck and getting worse. Get the boat out? Steep banks, no paths or roads that I would know about...)

I'm pissed that she had wanted to do this thing, at myself for not knowing enough to have seen the disaster coming, at the people trying to help because they just made me look more foolish and incapable in front of my GF... mad at myself for being such a baby about accepting and needing help...

We eventually did get to a place to pull the boat, and I (hazy on this) walked back, got the car and portaged all the crap to the road...

This was not the end of our relationship, but again, given the fragility of young male pride, it has stayed with me since as an embarrassing episode every time I happen to think about it.

Many years later, I really enjoyed sea kayaking in both the ocean and in the everglades, but only after hooking up with someone to show me the ropes first.

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Old 07-29-2007, 11:44 AM   #22
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Worst vacation was Rose Hall, Montego Bay, Jamaica. Beautiful facility but the beach was dirty with seaweed and unsuitable for swimming. When we were going into town, the natives were intent on ripping us off in a number of creative ways. Never went back.

Have had many nice Carrbbean vacations at other destinations.

For the fun of it...Keith
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Old 07-29-2007, 11:50 AM   #23
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Ah yes Jamaica ,home of the we'll let you take our picture and then we'll shake you down for some money .It's one of the few places where you can get drugs delivered right to your beach blanket .
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Old 07-29-2007, 01:55 PM   #24
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I don't believe I've ever had an awful vacation, but most of them had a splattering of not so wonderful moments. These moments did seem to make the trips more memorable, and quite funny over time.
There's no need to complicate, our time is short..
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Old 07-29-2007, 02:12 PM   #25
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Originally Posted by Outtahere View Post
Dh (BF at the time) was acting funny, didn't think too much about it. He'd bought a ratty ole RV, we threw the bike in the trailer and we were off to Sturgis, SD for the bike rally. RV is chugging along, we make it there and have a strange (dh still acting weird) but good time. Time to leave, we get about 200 miles east of Sturgis, stop for gas and something to eat, RV won't start. Dh checks the oil, it's almost empty so he fills it up, we have lunch and pray it starts. An hour later it's cooled enough and starts reluctantly, we never shut it off again until we reached Massachusetts. Took turns driving, stopped every couple of hundred miles to pour in 4 or 5 qts of oil and a can of Mystery Oil. The thing was leaking oil so bad it was leaking into the cab of the RV, the white trailer we were towing was now black. We get almost home but have to climb that one last mountain before we hit the MA Turnpike, the poor RV was at about 5mph when we hit the top, dh was thinking about taking out the bike and towing the freaking thing up the hill.

All through this dh is still acting strange but I figure he's just irritated and worried about getting home. So we make it to the top of the mountain and now we're home free, the RV gives a big sigh of relief and we head down the other side, we're about an hour from home.

Pull into the yard, RV and trailer are covered with oil, we're both exhausted from the stress of the ride. Two days later dh tells me he's leaving (he was bf at the time) and that he took me to Sturgis cuz he had promised me he would. Gee thanks for the F#$*ing good time A-hole. We stayed split up for about 3 months, he figured I'd hang around until he figured out what he wanted to do....WRONG... he saw me with another guy and that pretty much made up his mind for him We still don't talk about that vacation and that was 18 years ago.

Oh the RV motor had 2 missing cylinders on one side and a half missing on the other, I don't know how we made it home.
Great story. Jealousy is the strongest non-pharmaceutical aphrodisiac known to man. Not sure if it works on women or not.

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Old 07-29-2007, 06:49 PM   #26
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When I was a kid my parents loved motoring holidays. Didn't believe in full service hotels; they were LBYM! This was in 1960s Ireland and it seemed that about half these vacations were rained out. Not a lot to do on a wet night in a B&B in County Galway when you're 10 years old and too young to go to the ceili or the singalong in the local pub! I used to bring along a lot of library books......

Now I think I will start a thread on best vacations ever!
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Old 07-30-2007, 10:08 AM   #27
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family vacation to mexico when we didn't have the disney crew to keep my brother's kids occupied. it would be five or six years before i would take another vacation with family.

Originally Posted by FinanceDude View Post
At about midnight, her OLD BOYFRIEND showed up...
About 4am, she comes stumbling in the hotel room where we were staying, telling me we're breaking up
i posted the video on this a few months back.

"off with their heads"~~dr. joseph-ignace guillotin

"life should begin with age and its privileges and accumulations, and end with youth and its capacity to splendidly enjoy such advantages."~~mark twain - letter to edward kimmitt 1901
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