St. Helens in the rain





March 7, 2003

St. Helens, Oregon

Greetings to friends and family -- We had hoped by now to be underway, but the weather is not cooperating.  It's a good thing, too, because we have still so much to be done.  Hopefully the good weather and our preparedness will converge sometime early next week. 

Craig is still madly working away at power tool projects.  Tomorrow or Saturday we'll pile the last of the boxes on top of the power tools, and shove the timpani in next to them, and the storage space/shop will be totally and completely full.  Theoretically everything that won't fit in the shop will be on the boat.  Sequoia has plenty of nooks and crannies, but it's obvious we're going to have to start removing treasured but bulky items in order to fit in some of the essentials.

The weather for the past two weeks has been cloudy and rainy, except for one glorious day -- last Saturday -- when we had the "open boat".  We figure we had about 50 guests through the course of the day -- you can see pictures on Ian's website at  (That's one of his pictures to the right)
Left:  Craig enjoying the sunny weather at the "open boat."  Photo by Dean Lemire.

That lovely, clear, sunny day gave way to a cold frosty night, and the next morning there was frost on the docks.  We had pulled the boat quite close to the dock, for the benefit of all the Saturday guests, so I guess I was pretty casual stepping off onto the dock for my 7:30 a.m. trip down the dock to the showers.  My feet went out from under me, and I was in the water, battering my way past exhaust vents and boat protrusions as I slipped into the narrow gap between boat and dock.  I screamed for help, and for an eternity (perhaps 20 seconds) no one came.  Then Ian came bursting out of the cabin -- no clothes(!!!) -- into the frosty morning.  He couldn't pull me out -- soggy polartec and all.  Doug from a neighboring boat came running down the dock and together they managed to pull me out.  That river is COLD!   

I am now sporting a colorful collection of bruises and bashes, and I'm VERY CAREFUL when I step on and off the boat.  But we've seen no frost since then.  The story of my rescue circulated through the marina, made particularly interesting by the participation of our naked son in below-freezing weather.  This is the same son, by the way, who has helped me so much with setting up this mailing list, and hosting our website,  Thank you, Ian, in more ways than I can count! 

Thanks to everyone for your interest and support.  We'll keep you posted as events unfold, and I'll try very hard not to fall in the river again!

Best wishes to all -- Barbara & Craig
On to the next report