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The Shawnee News-Star
  • Riding the wind

  • I was feeling pretty good yesterday and thought to myself: I ought to celebrate something.
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  • I was feeling pretty good yesterday and thought to myself: I ought to celebrate something.
    It was Aug. 23, which surely was some kind of holiday somewhere.
    If not, it was Ride The Wind Day, according to our friend, Google. And what better way to celebrate Ride The Wind Day than getting a grape slush and chasing the breeze around the countryside in my pickup for a couple of hours?
    So, slush in hand, I headed east. Crossing the river bridge on Garrett’s Lake Road, I looked down and thought, dang. The river really looks good.
    It had cleared from the rains but still had a good flow and it reminded me that one of my childhood dreams was to take a long float trip down a river. Kind of a Huckleberry Finnish adventure except with a milder cast of characters and not quite so threatening a river.
    I could imagine myself floating by day, catching some fish here and there, spending the night on a sandbar and letting the stars twinkle me to sleep.
    Because I grew up near Ada and hadn’t seen many rivers, I always had the South Canadian in mind, but now I realize that the South Canadian would be a lousy choice because of its shallow channels and wide, wide banks.
    I’m thinking the North Canadian might work, though. It has a steady flow and I’ll bet there are plenty of interesting things to see along its banks.
    Earlier this year, I bought a sit-on-top kayak for fishing in Prague Lake. It’s about 12 feet long and stable, with quite a bit of storage area. I think it might work just fine, if there aren’t too many snags.
    Maybe I’ll just add a North Canadian float trip to my bucket list. I nod my head with satisfaction at the thought and tell myself I’m glad I celebrated Ride The Wind Day.
    And I’m even gladder that I decided to celebrate something yesterday, because today is Vesuvius Day and I just can’t see any way that would have worked out as well for me.
    ———
    Brian Blansett is publisher of The Shawnee News-Star.

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