My daughter, Haley Rose, came with me to St. Louis yesterday to pick up my Shasta kayak that I bought from Australian Bob Wellington in September. Bob paddled from Three Forks, Montana, to St. Louis last summer in 89 days. Following the principle of “reuse,” I bought his boat and gear as he had no desire to ship it all back to Australia. It was a win-win deal (right, Bob? :)).
Michael Clark of Big Muddy Adventures was nice enough to store the boat for me over the fall semester while I finished my degree. After some great conversation about interactive teaching from the river, which is what Michael does with Skype, writing curriculum, and redirecting at-risk youth towards the River, among other cool things, we threw all the gear in the back of the van and tied the Barbara May on to the top. Haley snapped a photo of me and Michael and the Barbara May.
We stopped and visited with my niece, Rene Freels, and her funny husband, Kyle, and son, Sam, and had a wonderful lunch and good time laughing and talking about the expedition. We talked about the Kickstarter program (Rene was the first to suggest Kickstarter to me), making T-shirts, social media, sponsorship, donation gift ideas like stickers, signed photos, bumper stickers, boat rides, etc. etc. Promoting myself does not come naturally. I welcome any suggestions. Oh, and we talked about bears.
Although I like the name Barbara May, and I am confident that Bob’s wife is a very sweet woman, I HAVE to rechristen the boat with a new name. Yes, some people say a boat’s name should bear some special significance to the owner. Frankly, I have not found warm and fuzzy in a name yet. “Easy Rider” is my race name in the Race to the Dome paddling race. I like that name, but mostly for the theme song that goes with it. You remember the Ballad of Easy Rider by the Byrds, right? Give a listen:
Haley and I tossed around some names on the ride home from STL but came up virtually empty-handed. Here are the names we have thus far: Easy Rider, Rio Oso (river bear, my dog’s name), and Blue Moon. I’d like to have Pepper in the name somewhere, but can’t get anything to flow.
Pepper was my cat, also my very best friend, who went missing on the 4th of July, 2011, one week after moving into my new home. Still not over it.
So, I am looking for suggestions as to what to name my boat. Please comment on my blog, or go to my Facebook Page: LoveYourBigMuddy Expedition, “like” the page, if you have not already, and throw out some suggestions for me. You never know what might strike the harmonious chord.
Live fast ~ Paddle slow