Natural Beauty and SOS Calls

What a weekend. My cousins were up this past week and wanted to go kayaking. Cool. Sounds like fun. We wake up early, make a tasty breakfast (thanks to the amazing fritter bread and wild rice sausage patties from the Clearwater truck stop / a must stop when traveling on I-94), load the kayaks and head out. The section of river we chose was about a 2 hour float and has a couple rough spots of rocks and aggressive current.


The first hour and a half of the trip was great…. calm waters, good conversation, some brotherly bickering from my cousins, pretty lily pads, some geese, birds and serene beauty.

Then came the rocks and current. Kayak 1 got hung up on rock, kayak went perpendicular to the water (very bad thing) and started to take on water. Kayak 2 made it past him and through and all is good. Kayak 3 (me) bumped into a marsh in the middle of the water, also went perpendicular, I couldn’t go forward or back and once I started to take on water it was game over. Which isn’t the end of the world… just get the kayak unstuck and get to shallow area and dump it out.

EXCEPT…. I made the bad decision to bring my phone with me (in a handy quart size zip lock baggie / fits perfect, trust me) and my portable Ultimate Ears speaker (gotta listen to some tunes while floating). Well amongst the chaos of taking on water, my phone, speaker, everything in my kayak gets pushed down in the nose (good thing…. I’d rather it down there than in the river sinking to the bottom). Once I do finally get the kayak pulled away from the mess and in an area where I can evaluate the damage, I look at my Apple watch and see that the screen is solid red…. not like a oh, that’s a nice watch face red, but a Oh, Crap, something is going haywire between my phone and watch red. My first thought is crap, water got in my ziplock and my phone is dead and that’s sending a bat signal to my watch, but alas, that is the least of my worries – remember I still have a kayak full of water and I need to get it out… deal with the watch and phone later.

I pull over to the side and dump out what I can, mind you – still probably 5″ in the bottom…. so I take off my t-shirt and start trying to absorb what I can from the boat to get it out the rest like a sponge – side note, do you know how much water a t-shirt can absorb at one time – NOT MUCH!!! This was a very slow process…. but it worked, just took some time. (side note: remember to buy a sponge for my kayak)


By now, I got a text on my watch from my dad “Whos Walter” < more on that later > oh good, my phone isn’t dead… then from my Mom “Who or What is Walter? Do I need to call the cops?” 
Well, turns out in the chaos of my kayak flipping…. not sure if it was the water pressure on my phone being under water for that long, or my increased pulse going to my watch, or what triggered the SOS function on my Apple devices to send out notifications to my emergency contacts.

But, I learned that my dad was first to not only text, he drove to where the map was sending him, standing in someones yard that was near the river, but not on the river trying to explain what he was doing, even though, he fully didn’t understand what he was doing, because he still doesn’t know why Walter needed help, or even know who Walter is. My mom was worried that cops needed to be involved, and Tom was last to react… he called…. I didn’t answer (because at this point, I was still trying to get my stuff organized) and he didn’t leave a message.

What about my speaker, you ask??? Works perfectly!!! This thing is amazing…. supposed to be ‘water resistant’ and to me, that means it can sit by a hot tub or something with some moisture in the air and will survive… nope – this thing was SUBMERGED… IN WATER…. for almost a half hour and still WORKS!!!! Totally work the $50 clearance price at a Target end cap….

Thanks for reading ~ more on Walter later…. 


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