God bless her…she’s tryin’

I swear that in late nineteen eighty-seven I prayed this simple and earnest prayer “Dear God….if it’s at all possible and within your will would you bless me with a good woman to marry me?  To love me for who I am and, if you could…make her like asexy Betty Crocker” or someone along those lines?  As always Lord, your will be done. Amen.”  Simple.  Heartfelt. To the point.  A few short months later…SHAZAAM!!  Connie Sue was in my life and thirteen days after our first date, engaged to me.  Prayer answered.

Twenty-three years, eleven months later she’s still trying to keep me busy with stuff.  She knows better than to have me re-wire the house or paint the roof or vacuum the gutters but she will expect me to accompany her on some summer endeavour like horse back riding, canoeing or camping.  I’ve gotten really good at avoiding camping and I only have to ride a horse once every twelve years.  My last horsey ride was in Colorado on a horse named “OHSO”.  I found out later why they named him that, since my butt was OH SO SORE after being on him for two hours, but back to my obligations of keeping Sexy Betty happy….so I’ve gone canoeing with her three of the past four years.  Sounds simple and enjoyable, and parts of it usually are.

I did a quick read on how Lewis and Clark ate while they traversed around the Louisiana Purchase in canoes and found that I didn’t care for starvation as nearly as much as they did….so I carbo-loaded on a raspberry jelly filled bismark and chocolate frosted donut washed down with a piping hot Starbucks Pike’s blend coffee.  I can’t help but imagine how much more quickly the west would have been discovered if there had only been a Starbucks “round the bend”. 

We’re suffering through one of the worst hot spells in modern Iowa history, coupled with bone dry conditions so the mighty Maquoketa River is now down to a wide, eight inch deep river.  It didn’t help matters when a couplea summers ago an upstream dam gave way and sent a Biblical type wave of water, silt, rock, top soil and hundreds of grown trees down it’s path.  So imagine low water and lot’s of dead trees.  Still a good time with my lovely bride as we zig-zagged our way from one side of the river to the other as we’d try to avoid sand bars covered by a couplea inches of water and tree snags (I don’t recall any of this being in our wedding vows, but honestly…what guy pays attention to those?)

It’s not easy getting a canoe to skim across the top of a shallow river, but I managed to do just that by carbo-loading with Donutland Brand donuts.

Stuck on another freakin’ sand/silt/gravel bar!! We got the “hang” of reading the river better half way through our three hour paddle.

This bald eagle and her eaglet graced us with their antics for about ten minutes. The circling vultures over our canoe trip were less than encouraging, they look surprising similar to the ones that circle me whenever I mow the lawn or take a walk. Go figure!

Here I am pointing out some local (and dare I say “rare’) wildlife. An elk, blue-throated snipe and Snolliegoster.” Connie failed to get them all into focus before they disappeared into the brush…which is a bad deal since those are the only three animals that I had left on my Cub Scout Conservation Loop Webelo Scout requirement. Thirty-fives years…and I still don’t have that damn badge.

Well….I’ve shaken the sand and gravel from my feet and under-parts (the silt removal requires a brush)….but I’ve fullfilled one more year of my “husband tag-a-long” requirement.  We have a couplea days reserved at a resort later this month and I hear that they have horses available for guests to ride.

I may have to pray again.  I hope He listens to middle-aged men who’s rear-ends chafe easily.  “Dear Lord…

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