July 6, 2011
“Twenty yeras from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you did not do than by the ones you did…” – Mark Twain
This quote was in the magazine at ACE Adventure Resort that highlighted the white water rafting trip. I fell in love with the quote instantly and it quickly became my mantra for the white water rafting adventure.
The Morning of the Trip
Justin often says that I’m like a child…I forget to pee before we leave and end up having to stop 15 minutes into the trip. I pout when I don’t get my way- sometimes even do a foot stomp. I beg for things I want. I tell him I refuse to eat stuff that he makes. I cry when I am frustrated. Really, Justin is prepared for parenthood simply by being married to me.
We woke up a little late, which is understandable considering how we had to be at the registration tent by 7:30 a.m. Who gets up that early on vacation? Well, The Adventure Siebs, of course! 🙂
You are supposed to wear non-cotton clothing / swim suit when you go white water rafting because cotton material will keep your body cold.
Of course, I put on my non-cotton workout clothes…yet, forgot to put on my swim suit. I just put on my cotton undies and bra. Justin reminded me 100 million times to put my swim suit on, but it was early…and I don’t function until at least 9 a.m. most days. By the time we walked out of the door, it was 7:30 a.m. (so we were a little late).
We were half way there when I realized I didn’t have my swimsuit on.
“Babe – I forgot my swim suit- is that big deal?” I asked. I already knew the answer. Yes, it was.
“Really?” Justin said with his “daddy” voice. “Yes, it’s a big deal. Go back and change.”
“OK- well give me the key and you go down to check us in,” I said. “I’ll run!”
I took off running in my wet shoes. I felt like I was running in Vibrams and I must say, I really liked it! So that made me smile.
Justin locked the door, but for some reason it pushed right open without me even sticking in the key. Great, the lock is jammed on the door. And someone is going to break in and steal all of our stuff.
I changed quickly into my swim suit, but I was still worried about someone breaking into our cabin. So I did what any logical person would do. I jammed up the benches / kitchen chairs against the door. I was certain this wasn’t going to stop someone from busting through..but I at least wasn’t going to make their burglary that easy.
I went out the back door of the cabin and ran my heart out to the tent. Along the way, a group of four older man watched me as I flew past them. They were drinking beer (yes, at 7:36 a.m.) and one of them yelled, “RUN A MILE FOR ME TOO!”
I smiled and yelled back, “Sure will!”
If only he knew I stopped 50 feet up the road. Oh well, at least I looked like a fast runner for 20 seconds in my life to 4 old men. I’ll take it!!!!
I finally found Justin and told him about the door. He politely informed me that he knew it was like that the whole time, but didn’t want me to stress or freak out. So I informed him that I had, in fact, stressed out and blocked the front doorway with every chair I could find and thought about lifting the couch up sideways to block the door.
“Oh…My…Gosh,” Justin said. “You are crazy. I’ll let the office know about the door. And I’ll make sure I’ll tell them to use the back door since my wife barricaded the front door…”
Praying in the john
Just like scuba diving, your instructor / guide always makes you fear your life before going out on your adventure. They tell you every way you can possibly die and everything that will and can go wrong. Of course, they do this for your safety. The more educated you are, the more prepared you are in the event of a crisis. But somethings you just can’t save yourself from…like getting thrown out of the boat near an undercut rock and drowning. Not fun.
Even though she assured us that the most common injury on the trip was sunburn, I was absolutely terrified. I figured up at least 23.5 ways I could die that day on the river….and that was just in the time it took to get ready, load up the bus and drive to our location.
When we got there, the first thing I did was run into the Port-a-Potty and pray. I was so frantic I forgot to lock the door…so there is a good chance someone saw me praying for my life and the safety of Justin while hiding in the John.
I was in there praying for a good 10 minutes. By the end of it, I decided if I was supposed to die while white water rafting..I suppose that is better than dying a long and painful death of cancer. So I repeated my mantra and reminded myself I don’t want to regret not going on this trip in 20 years.
We ended up getting grouped with another guide and two young college girls, who were really awesome. Our guide was a hilarious Southern boy, who made the trip a lot of fun.
I got my fear out early…as I was the first (and only) person to fall off the boat during a rapid. We were straight towards a rock and when you catch the video (I promise I will post soon), you can see that I look at Justin with confidence that I am falling out of the boat. And I did. And I didn’t die. I laughed and got pulled back in the boat with a huge smile on my face.
Diving Into Rapids
“Alright- this next rapid you can actually swim through if you want,” the guide said.
Swim? Through a rapid? Before I could think of the consequences my legs were half way out the boat, “Who is coming with me?!” And I was in the water! 🙂
My next big milestone was jumping off a 25 foot rock. It was (by no surprise) called Jump Rock. The height depends on the water level. Climbing up the rock, it didn’t seem that high. But holy cow…once I got up there, it felt like 50 feet.
The camera man was in my life, “Sooo are you ready to jump? Any final words?”
How does he know that I think I will die during every event? Do I always have a look on my face that says “I am scared of life!”?
“OH wow- this is a lot higher than it looks…why did I come up here?” I said.
The camera was still rolling. Someone yelled “JUST DO IT!!!”
“Ohhhhhh SHHOOOOTTTT!” I said and then threw myself off the edge of the rock, screaming the entire way down.
Peeing While Surfing
For some reason I couldn’t pee in the river, which is really your only bathroom from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Maybe it was the pressure of the water / currents- but I just couldn’t pee all day. So after lunch, I felt like my bladder was going to burst.
When you “surf” a rapid, you go through the rapid and then turn around…go back into the rapid from the opposite direction and let the rapid turn you sideways and “surf” the wave of the rapid.
The first boat attempted to surf and didn’t have the power to fight through the rapid. Next, we went and made it. Only we made it a little too far. We got stuck. In a hydraulic. So there we were, getting pounded with water and stuck sideways. I couldn’t stop laughing, I thought it was so funny. Everyone was trying to escape and I just sat in the middle of the boat and laughed….and then finally, I could pee. It was a miracle.
“OMG!” I yelled. “I HAVE TO PEE!”
“JUST DOOOO ITTTTT!!!” The guide yelled up at me.
It was like a true scene from Dumb and Dumber…and I wasted no time. I peed while surfing the rapid. It was magical.
Finally, 13 minutes later, we were towed out of the rapid by another raft and were able to finish our journey down the New River.
Overall, I had an amazing time on our white water rafting trip. And I would DEFINITELY go again. In fact, I’m trying to gather up a big group of friends to come…I would probably pee and laugh a lot more in the boat with them….