Monday, August 22, 2011

Vacation 2011 (Long post)

Vacations come and go so quickly...that must be because they are so relaxing and enjoyable. Last week we took our annual week long vacation at the cabin we've been going to for four years now. The weather, once again, was absolutely stunning. Sunny and warm all week long with one night of rain but I have to say the fishing was WAY better! Oh and the friends were exceptional as well.

We met some people there three years ago from Chicago. They are the funnest, kindest, and most caring and giving people we have met in a long time. They have kids the same age as our kids, the adults are our age and we all enjoy the same things including golf, fishing, and cribbage. How does that happen? Next year we may actually try to find a new resort but they won't go unless we go and vice versa. They even want to find a way to get together around Christmas to spend some time together......that may just happen!

Our youngest daughter is really good friends with their daughter and a couple of the sons there. She cried when we left--that was difficult. Each year it seems to get harder and harder to say good bye to them for all of us. Our boy is good friends with a boy who lives in Ireland most of the year but they're able to email and chat on Facebook as well. P and I get along really well with all the adults and we all just have a great time together.

Anyway, the fishing....holy cow!!! The bass were insanely was very rare to catch one under three pounds and when they were biting it was like a feeding frenzy! One morning I caught five huge fish...all in the 4-5 lb. range..Pat caught a few smaller ones. That morning was phenomenal and one we won't soon forget. After that, the rest of the week was pretty much full of bass! Both P's arm and my arm are a bit sore from all the fights--it was seriously a trip to remember. The pic of P is one he said, "ok, its time for this" and he asked if I was ready to snap the pic...this is what he did. That was the day of big fish for us obviou

Our friends even learned how to bass fish--that upset our son quite a bit since they were his northern companions. The first year they came up they brought home over 40 northerns. This year, they caught a good amount of bass and northern for some meals and seemed very happy with their week as well. Our boy caught his usual 5 lb. northern and then a 7 lb. northern and a few smaller ones. He refuses to bass fish with us but it seems that when he is he catches some of thee largest fish. The photo below is a five lb bass I caught; I saw the mouth on this thing and wondered if my fist could fit inside of it...from the looks of it it did. Soon after I pulled my hand out the fish flopped a bit and spit out a sunny that was in the process of being digested---it was disgusting to say the least.

Of course when we got home the next day the child had to go to his secret spot down by the river to fish some more. We got a couple texts from him a couple hours a picture the other one said, "I just caught a 15lb. 40-inch musky!" I looked at the photo and sure enough, the kid is holding this fish that is nearly as long as him and the best part is it was a musky!!! His dream fish and the one that he has only watched videos of others catching. I nearly cried with joy for that child!

Before our trip we were reeling from all the things that kept happening to us or our things---broken water pipes, broken this, broken that---two nights before we were going to leave for our trip we had another thing break on us....not a good one either. P and I said if things continued to happen we were going to cancel our vacation because for some reason it seemed we were not supposed to go this year--our boat motors both broke and well...the other thing:

My truck that hauls the boat.

Umm, yeah, Thursday night we decided to get some air in the front tire because P was going to take that to work while I ran all over with the car--gas is cheaper that way. So, after P got the air, he hit a bump in the road on the way home and all the sudden there was this awful clunking noise. P asked if that was us and I said I thought it was so we pulled over. We couldn't see anything--it was dark not to mention finding anything like that is not easy since it wasn't completely broken.

So, yeah, we decided that on Friday I would follow P to the garage, we'd drop off the truck, I'd take P to work, then I would run all over the cities and get the errands done and hopefully be done by 1 so I could pick him up. Great....that all went great until we got the call that our truck was basically undriveable for this vacation and needed to be repaired. The leaf spring busted...

Ok, well, we then decided that we would call the guy who has been so good to us about trading this car for that car, etc to see if he had something. He did..another Durango...and it was in much better shape than our other one although, we soon learned that was not to be the case. Happy with our decision to trade in the black beast for something nearly as comparable I drove it home and it seemed solid..except for some reason I swore it was pulling to the right a bit.

Well, I got home safe and sound and we had to run to the fishing store to get some last minute baits and line before we started packing up for our trip the next morning. We had to run up the hill to do another errand and on our way back down we hit the stop light--P stopped and all the sudden the drivers side front wheel started smoking. People were pointing at the 'new' truck while we sat in traffic praying that the motor wasn't on fire or something.

Good grief will it ever end????? So P was finally able to turn off the main road and drove it up closer to home before he got out to see.....there was no fire but a ton of smoke was pouring out. P immediately called the guy and told him what was going on and was informed that the caliper may have frozen shut rubbing against the tire...we needed to get it in the following morning to have it looked at. Honestly, P and I were so close to saying just forget the vacation by this time....

Our night was ruined, we ran our errand, came home and neither of us even felt like packing because we had NO idea what this would mean.

Morning comes, we bring the truck back and wait. And wait, and wait, and wait for nearly three hours. During this time the garage door on the garage broke--it was stuck shut so we couldnt' get the truck in there until P and the guy figured out a way to get it to open. The other guy shows up to tear the truck apart and discovered that the front brakes were fubar! We needed to replace the brakes or drive a truck twice the size and twice the gas hog....after some phone calls and some considering the owner of the shop decided he would pick up the tab for the brakes since we had only driven this vehicle for under 30 minutes before this I said before, he has been great to us.

So yeah, we ran two hours over the time we wanted to leave to head to the cabin but in all honesty that is a small price to pay for what could have been. Our trip was great although there was one other horrible thing that occurred the second to the last day that nearly made me break down in tears....I got my hook caught in a tree after a fish dragged me in there..P being the wonderful guy drove the boat back into this tree and I told him he could just cut the line and I would big deal. But he could see my worm and was determined to get it. Well, that determination cost him his most cherished fishing pole--the boat was being pulled deeper and deeper into this tree and P forgot about his pole because he was so determined to salvage my bait....all the sudden this was this sound like a twig snapping and P miserably said, "Oh no! Oh God no!" was heartbreaking! He was devastated and sat quiet for nearly a half hour before he picked up his pole to look at it.....but thankfully he is able to replace it for cheaper than what we purchased it for....

I think our luck is going to continue to challenge us for a bit. P and I decided to do one last golfing trip before we trudge back to our routine tomorrow...during our game, my phone rings. It was our son. I picked it up and he was upset...his bike had gotten stolen from his fishing spot by two kids. I never heard such anger in that very patient boys voice--his friend tried to chase them down but they were long gone. B wanted to know if he should call the cops...oh yes, hang up with me now and call them immediately.

Long story short, my golf game improved because of the punks out there that steal things and how I wanted to kick their asses. About an hour later P's phone rang--it was the cops--he found B's bike...hallelujah!

So despite all this crap that continues to occur, the great golf game I had, all the fish we caught, the beautiful weather we had, the visits from our older kids over our vacation, our great friends and all the fun we had, we both work now,.....all of these positives far outweigh the negative. The best I can say it bring it on cuz no matter how horrible things might get or might be....our family is safe and healthy..we are able to laugh and love and enjoy those around us and we have each other to hug and comfort when things get hard! Spooner 2011 will long be remembered as a challenging yet great year to be us!

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