The Bachelor Disaster: The Gods demand a sacrifice

As promised, the second part of Bachelor day! Much less scary than the first, but still entertaining.

However, I did have another creepy thing happen today. When coming back inside from taking Bailey out I heard the toilet cistern refilling from the guest bathroom. No one else is in the house. I am assuming and hoping it is a slow leak that caused a flush.

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I was married in September of 2012. Earlier in the summer, my best man Graham  and other best friend Mike surprised me with an awesome idea for a bachelor party. The three of us have been outdoorsmen for a while. We grew up together in Cub Scouts and Boy Scouts, regularly go camping at Graham’s farm, and recently did a backpacking trip into a wilderness reserve in Indiana.

We have fun making our bodies hate us.

For my bachelor party they wanted to plan something special. They wouldn’t tell me what it was in advance, only that I needed to bring formal wear, camping equipment, video gaming stuff, among other things. The only things they told me not to worry about was any paintball clothing or target shooting gear. I spent the night at Graham’s apartment and they finally told me: put the formal wear in the car, and grab your camping gear. We’re hitting the river at 11am tomorrow.

Anyways, the idea was for us to go canoe camping along the Wisconsin River. Now, if you’ve never gone canoe camping, the gist is you get dropped off at a departure point by a rafting company, load up the canoes with as much beer as they can carry, and then make a little room for camping gear. You then canoe downriver and drink until you find a suitable sand bar in the river for camping. Finally, play drinking games, camp, and the next day canoe to the pick up point.

A group of about 11 guys went with, with myself, Graham, and Mike having the most experience on the water. We divided up 2 to a canoe, and divided up gear among the boats. For instance, Mike and Graham had the keg, so their equipment was distributed among other boats. The last guy took the kayak and carried what he could in the small craft.

My good friend Adam, who was going to be the photographer for my wedding, brought his dog Arwen. Arwen is a total sweetheart but we didn’t know how she would take to a canoe, so I volunteered to go with. After all, if someone should be dumped into the water it should be the bachelor in question right? I gave my gear to some of the others just in case.

So, we somehow jammed way too much beer and camping equipment into 10 canoes and a kayak, and set off. The water level on the Wisconsin River that year was super low. A foot at best from where we set off, and about 4 feet at its deepest. So all the other boats disappear around the bend in the river, and we get ready to set off with Arwen and… she jumps out. Again! Onwards to victory! Wait… where the hell did the dog go? Repeat this a few times and we found our answer to whether Arwen liked the boat. Out on the water she would shift her weight, slowing us down as Adam had to calm her, so I was sure we were going to be the only boat to tip.

Arwen, happy to be on dry land. Copyright Adam Arcus, 2014. http://arcusphotography.com/
Arwen, happy to be on dry land.
Copyright Adam Arcus, 2014. http://arcusphotography.com/

10 minutes. We had been in the boats 10 minutes and Adam and I are paddling like hell to catch the main group. Coming around the bend the first sign something is wrong is the beer cooler floating down the river next to us and lodging itself on a downed tree.

10 minutes.

I see my friends Matt and Lengkimly wading in chest high water trying to drag their upturned boat onto the shore. The other canoes pulled in to help, and one just sat there in the water and took pictures.

Remember I gave my gear away because I was worried about it tipping? I gave them my equipment.

My unprotected sleeping bag, tent, and clothes.

10 minutes.

While I quietly stewed, arms crossed and yelling at the others to help like a cranky Poseidon, Matt did the impossible and fought against the current and saved the cans of Stella, which made me a bit happier.

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