Sunday, July 22, 2007

More Battles with the Briny Deep

Welcome to "The Gods Are Bored," where we've lived through another vacation on the Chesapeake Bay! Whew! And I'd like to thank everyone for the nice comments about my battle with the horrible monster ... uhhhh ... truthfully, just a jellyfish. They sting, you know.

My Appalachian grandpa invented a drill that could nose out five holes side by side in a human hair (top, not side). No matter. He grew up a farm boy in Appalachia, and that means he was obsessed with the weather.

He passed that obsession along to me, thank goodness.

My daughter The Spare and I went for a kayak trip on the mighty Chesapeake. About a mile from where we stay there's a little strip of sand where, at low tide, the water's only about a foot deep. In other words, it's easy to spot jellyfish there. Which I was keen to do.

Spare and I were lounging in our foot-deep bath, maintaining a 360 degree view of our surroundings in case a jellyfish floated into our midst. (I was facing inland, where there's a radio tower popular to the local buzzards.)

I looked to the west, and there was no mistaking it. A frontal boundary appeared on the horizon, moving fast. It looked something like this.

The Heir just could not understand why I hustled her into the kayak so quickly she couldn't even get her shorts back on. I mean, I was nearly frantic, and above us was only blue skies.

We got started, paddling westward into the approaching storm. At first Spare thought I was nuts. Then a gust of serious wind and a little rain got her attention. Then we heard thunder.

"Dig in and paddle," I said.

Damn if she didn't ply that paddle with the strength of a sea monster. And The Spare is a slight lil' girl. She's well shy of 100 pounds.

To make a long story short, we beached back at our home port just as the wind gusts hit 40 and the thunder and lightning got serious.

I thank my hillbilly grandpa for watching the skies, because that frontal boundary was moving so fast, only a dedicated sky-watcher would have seen it coming. Hat tip too to the Spare for tucking in and rowing with all her might.

Tomorrow: More hillbilly resourcefulness in the land of tides.


Laura Stamps said...

Ha! Okay, now I know where I get my obsession with the weather and reading the sky and making sure the Weather Channel is the only one I watch. Did your grandpa also tell you that you can tell when rain is coming because the leaves start to curl and roll into tubes like they have their own umbrellas? It's true. Look at the trees next you "feel" rain coming. They will show you for sure. Nothing like growing up in Appalachia! :)

Tennessee Jed said...

Good for you Anne! I am glad you didn't get plowed over by that one. On big open water storms can get up on you fast. So fast that sometimes by the time you spot them it is too late.

Rosie said...

I love being on the coast during the storms....well,'cept for evacing hurricanes. But after a nice storm so many neat things wash up on the beach.

Sorry about the jellyfish stings. Meat tenderizer works good on them. Sometimes, they don't even have to be in the area. They detach little stingy threads into the water and make the water all stingy.