Saturday, April 9, 2011

Maiden Voyage

Randy and I bought a pontoon boat towards the end of February.  It has taken us almost six weeks to get some water under it.  It just took time to make the time to get all the toys attached to it.  It took time to find the time to go to the lake.  Then when the time was right, the weather didn't cooperate.

The main thing that held us back was the wind.  Launching or de-launching a boat in the wind is not fun.  I remember years ago, camping at the Potholes with Randy's folks.  Of course, the wind always blows in Eastern Washington, but the day we left it was really windy.  So windy, that in order to get our boat on the trailer, Randy and I had to wade chest high in the water.  Since we were already wet, we helped a few other people who were in the same predicament.

Anyway ~

Friday turned out to be our day to test out our new toy.  A beautiful spring day.  Nary a breeze.  Nobody at the boat launch.  Seventy eight degrees at 10:30am.

I made sandwiches, gathered snacks for both human and canine, loaded the cooler and grabbed my camera and my book.

I slathered myself with factor 36 sunscreen.

What a spectacular day.

Randy and I were a bit nervous about how Roxy would take to boating.  In preparation for this, we have taken Roxy on a few 'get to know the area' trips to Cranfield Marina, where we have a slip for the boat.

While being as stubborn as she is lovable, Roxy is, according to Dr Jim, her puppy vet, a very emotional dog.  Roxy doesn't like disruptions to our schedule,  wears her feelings on her fur and has to slowly adjust to simple things like rearranging the furniture.

Rather than to spend my boxed wine and video game allowance on anxiety medicine for Roxy,  Randy and I have decided on the hands on approach to get her through tough times.  She gets lots of pets and understanding and we know that on big things, like being out on the boat for the first time, we have to get her to gradually warm up to it.

Yes, one of the countless ways that we have spoiled this dog.

Anyway ~

On Friday, though, the lab in her superseded the beagle in her and Roxy took to the boat and the lake like a duck to water.

The three of us spent most of the day on the boat.  Long enough of a day, that even with putting the top up a couple of hours into our adventure, my factor 36 sunscreen wore off.

We explored the lake and Randy scouting fishing spots.  The sign on the shoreline indicates a brush pile put out by the Army Corps of Engineers for a gathering spot for crappy and bass.  Lake Norfolk has  bass of all kinds ... striped, large mouth, small mouth, white and hybrid as well as catfish and sun fish.  Randy has plans on filling the freezer with fish.  Me, I am a multi-tasking fisherperson.  That means that I will fish while reading, snacking, getting ice cubes for Roxy and picture taking.

I have even made my own fishing rod, and Randy bought me an orange reel for it.  How cool is that?

Bull Shoals and Norfolk are still pretty low.  This is what happens when you don't take care of your dock.  The Corp takes the lake shorelines very seriously, and no doubt someone is going to get a visit from them.  They may get their dock privileges taken away.

What a spectacular day.  

We got home tired, hot and sunburned.  The skipper tells me that our next boating adventure is on Tuesday.

I have a feeling that I will have many opportunities to perfect getting tan on just my front side, affectionately called the 'half-tan' at our house.

Have the BEST day ever!
~ Dorothy

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