Kathy Bassett's column, "The View from Maybell," appears in the Saturday Morning Press.
Back when I had another half, my friend Bruce was talking to us one day and decided we should go night fishin' in his big pontoon.
Sounded fun to me, and even though the other half hated using other people's stuff, he finally agreed to use Bruce's pontoon. Another friend, John, was going to meet us out at the lake along with Bruce and Sharon and some other folks, camp out and have a big hotdog/marshmallow roast at midnight.
Now, poor Bruce had a heart as big as all outdoors, but I think every material thing he owned was either glued, taped or wired together. You had to give him big kudos for trying.
As soon as we got the ol' pontoon launched, Bruce yelled out to us that the motor had blown up a couple of weeks before. So, with raised eyebrows, the other half asked what we were supposed to use, and Bruce yelled out to us as we floated away that "there was a little trolling motor somewhere there ... we'd find it!"
We were doing just great when, yeppers, another big, old, ugly storm came popping up over the horizon.
If I thought that last storm was a doozy, this one had it all beat to heck! The little ol' trolling motor didn't stand a chance. The wind was knocking us all over the lake, and the lightening was atrocious. Then came the rain.
Did I say rain?
I don't know what it was, but it was wet and it pelted down upon us. It hurt. (There wasn't a top on the pontoon). I finally just got down on the floor of the boat and rolled up in a ball.
The other half was trying desperately to get the pontoon headed into shore, and just when he'd about get it near, the wind would blow us backwards again. Finally, in a lull, he yelled at me to jump. We were close enough to wade into shore and to heck with the pontoon.
I stood up, and what a sight. There were all of our friends standing on the shore, laughing so hard they could barely stand up. They didn't care if they were getting wet - they were having a blast watching us.
Bruce and another of his friends had a flashlight and were trying to be a beacon in a lighthouse, but they could hardly stand up from laughing so hard. Of course, it didn't help that they were three sheets in the wind by now (no pun intended).
Our friend John didn't drink, but he was acting worse than the two drunks with the flashlight.
Bruce and his friend waded out into the water and kept yelling to throw them the rope. They were going to pull us in. Well, the other half did manage to get the rope thrown out and wonder of wonders, they actually caught it. In the process, they dropped their flashlight, and it was shining up from the bottom of the lake. It was just way too funny.
I jumped off the boat into the water, which was somewhere around waist deep. The other half was right behind me.
I'm sort of glad that we did get off the boat because about that time, a huge gust of wind came along and playfully lunged at the two drunks, who still were laughing, and tore the rope right out of their hands.
There went the pontoon, back into the middle of the lake.
They threw up their hands and decided they'd wait and get the boat in the morning. I don't think I have ever been so wet in my life.
And the hotdog/marshmallow roast? They didn't even have the firewood gathered up yet. So off we go to find some wood that might accidentally burn. We lucked out and did just that and got a big fire going.
All I wanted was to dry out. Oh, brrrrrrr. It was cold. Everyone got the tents set up, and we did actually dry out. When the morning sun came peeping in through the tent door, I didn't even want to move.
I was so warm and cozy.
I just know that all the other boaters and campers around the lake were enjoying the entertainment we provided them that night.