I'm back. Damn it took some work but I'm nothing if not stubborn as an ass. Or just an ass, depending on who you ask.
I worked on the generator for hours, trying to get that thing to fire up. Cleaned out the cylinders (that were, predictably, full of water), dried everything out, took apart the carb (which was, predictably, full of water), dried that out. Ran the starter until the battery was dead then pulled on the manual starter rope until I couldn't pull any more. I checked the gas can again. It was full of water. Checked the spare can, all water. The can in the boat was (can you guess?) water.
So I ripped the sattelite receiver off of the roof, ripped all of the wiring out of the house, and put all that, the sattelite controller and the laptop in a couple layers of Hefty bags. There was no fucking way I was walking through the woods again but I figured I could row the boat to Benny and Gail's cabin. They have land line power.
As soon as I pushed off of the dock it started getting windy. The lake was all chops and white caps within minutes. This is not at all fun in a 14 foot open aluminum boat. It's hard enough to row one of these things in any case. They just aren't built for it. With the wind and the water it was freaking impossible. I stayed right in to the shore to use the woods as a wind break but I couldn't get too close because I kept running aground on roots and rocks. And no, in all of my fishing trips up and down this bank I've never had a problem with underwater obstructions.
The wind kept trying to blow me out into the lake. It was a constant and inexorable force. The lake was a field of blackness, broken only by white specs from the waves. And an occasional large splash. Big wave? Big fish? Mishipashoo? I was losing headway and in serious danger of freaking out. I grabbed for straws - I'm not a smoker so I didn't have any tobacco to offer but I had half a bottle of Pinch. I dumped that over the side and screamed out an entreaty to Mishipashoo. Please let me pass! I'm trying to do what's right!
I didn't hear any splashes after that and the lake settled down a bit. I think that scared me more than the waves and splashing had before. The wind was still fierce, blowing through the sinister woods right into my teeth. But with the lake a bit quieter I started making headway again.
I rowed for almost 3 hours. A trip that would have been a half hour tops on a calm lake. I stopped once and tossed the anchor out because I was just too exhausted to keep going. The water got choppy almost immediately. I pulled in the anchor and struggled along. My arms and back were on fire. I was already in rough shape from getting knocked around so much the night before and it was hours of pure agony in that boat. But I made it.
When I pulled up to Benny's dock the wind died off. Like a balloon that just ran out of air. It was deadly quiet and I could feel the menace all around me. I was covered in sweat and spray from the lake and shaking so much from muscle fatigue that I couldn't even tie off the boat. All I could do was lay there, arms hugging a pylon as the boat slapped against the dock. I managed to haul the bag of electronics onto the dock and crawled up after it. I reached back into the boat for the bow line but I was too late. It floated away from the dock and straight out of the cove, faster than i could have swum after it even if I could have swum at that point.
I picked up the bag and stumble crawled up to the porch. Benny had left a key in one of those stupid hidey rocks but it wasn't there. I used one of the rocking chairs on the porch to bust through the front window and crawled through. I gashed my leg pretty badly but didn't even notice it at the time, I was so utterly exhausted. I unlocked the door, retrieved my precious bag and stumbled back inside. I must have bandaged up my leg before I passed out because there was a pressure bandage on it when I woke up but I don't remember doing that.
I woke up this morning with my familiar splitting headache, shaking from cold, wet, bloody. What a mess. I took a shower and borrowed some of Benny's clothes. The leg is a mess. I'm sure there's some glass in there and it won't stop bleeding but I wrapped it up tight so I don't think it will kill me.
For the last two hours I've been trying to get this fucking sattelite to work. In case you are wondering, setting one of these things up is not easy. Well, setting it up is easy but pointing it correctly is a bitch. Especially when you don't know where to point it and you don't have a compass anyway. It was a whole lot of trial and error. At least the elevation was already done or I never would have made it work.
And here I am. Online again and ready to put up the end of the story. Which I will do right after I get something to eat. Sorry to tease all of you, this is just a petty and spiteful slap at Burger Queen. Rot in hell, bitch.Posted by Charles at October 31, 2003 07:45 AM