Vacation Story #2 - Now What?

Day #2 - After our adventure of the previous night, Craig and I woke up the next morning with a dilemma. We still hadn't been able to get in touch with Gene, and the day was wasting away while we tried to think of a way to get back to the mainland. Craig found an inflatable boat he had left on the island when he was a kid. We inflated that with the exhaust from the generator. Next, we took two pine planks and fashioned oars from them using a chainsaw. We patched a small leak in the boat with some tape and put it in the water.

Craig and I rowed about halfway to the mainland when we realized the boat was taking on water. We had ripped a hole along the seam where the bottom of the boat attaches to the inflatable pontoons, and we were both getting wet. On top of that, the boat had started to leak air and we were in trouble.

There's nothing like that kind of motivation to get your butt in gear. Craig and I rowed as fast as we could for the next 20 minutes, paddling as furiously as we could. We did make it to the mainland, albeit with a boat half-filled with water. As we pulled in to the boat landing, we saw a powerboat coming up on us. Turns out it was Gene and his friend Dick, who had come over to the island to check on us. We had just missed him.

So I sat there, grumbling under my breath with my arms nearly dead from having rowed across the lake. I was soaked, as were my car keys and wallet in my pocket. And if we had waited on the island for another 20 minutes or so, we could have been picked up instead of having to row across the entirety of the lake. Ugh.

Later, Craig and I would visit the boat we had abandoned along with Dick and Gene and drive a metal patch into the bow, securing it with sheet metal screws and some marine caulk. Dick lent us a battery so we could get our engine started again. The only consolation was catching a big pickerel as we slowly cruised toward home.