Saturday, July 23, 2005

We claim this island and name it Freedonia

FREEDONIA, American River, California - After a couple of cold saloon beers today, it seemed like just the right thing - go kayaking in 100-degree heat. A trip on a jet ski might have been more fun, but, well, I have a kayak and so it was off to an island that I can see from the deck of my condo right in the middle of the river.

The island, like all islands, can only be reached by boat, or swimming, I suppose. (Is this one of those NO DUH moments?) The current is way too swift for most swimmers so the island gets very little traffic even on busy weekends like today where the launch ramp was covered with people swimming and chattering in Spanish, and on the rocks the rednecks were throwing their girlfriends into the water fully clothed.

So I took a little detour out and away from the chattering, swimming, girlfriend-throwing groups to the far east end of the island from which I can actually see the deck of my condo, just to the right of kayak paddle in the photo.

There's a tiny, sandy/gravel beach and because few people head out, no trash or human debris at all. No even the dog droppings that seem to mark the beaches where foot access is easy and stepping in dog crap even easier.

I haven't kayaked much in the past two weeks - too damned hot on the water and too damned much writing - thought there might be one more expedition Sunday before I head back to New York Monday night on the Jet Blue red eye to JFK.

But for now, I can report that the island of Freedonia is secure, free of enemy activity, virtually litter free (I picked up my beer bottles) and ready for the next kayak trip across the vast expanse of the rapidly flowing American River.

Unless, of course, I can grab a ride on a nice wet ride on a jet ski or a small sailboat out at Folsom Lake.

In case the name Freedonia rings a bell, I took it from the famous Marx Brothers movie, Duck Soup. There's also a Freedonia headquartered in Houston, Texas. Ugh...

Here's a link to the Marx Brothers movie:
  • Duck Soup

  • And here's a link to the non-California, non Marx Brothers' Freedonia:
  • Another Freedonia?

  • All Hail Freedonia! (The one in the photo...)

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