"Geezus Christ!, " he screamed as he poured over the whitewater photos online this morning.
"I'm going to kill him... I swear to god, I'm going to kill him."
I went back into my thoughts while wondering why Big Poppah was yelling. What made him so mad? I kept working as I could feel and hear something in the background of this morning's river drama. Sigh... back to work.
First day of August and the living ain't easy. Discounting and dealing with the public has worn us all out. The reservation staff is waning as many of us get ready to go back to school. Whitewater trips are happening everywhere in the west from California to Arizona and also, West Virginia and all the way over to Pennsylvania. Whitewater outfitters provide dreams. A solitary river dream that flows inside all of our heads. We dream of rafting and kayaking. It's in our blood. Our life source flows on this planet much like it does in our bodies... the river of life.
Ok. It's hokey, I know that... but what made Big Poppah so mad?
Middle Fork American river trip in front of me. Big Poppah was hunched over the computer and typing furiously. Tap tap tap clicky tap tap tap... like tiny soldiers marching on the hardened ground.
I saw Wolffe jumping from the cliff into the bottom of Tunnel Chute rapid. OMG! What was he doing? At least, no one else was in that gear raft in the ugly maw of Tunnel Chute.
Wolffe is a senior headguide for W.E.T. River Trips. He was manuevering the fully-loaded gear raft on the river that day with a large group on our 2-day wilderness trip. Why did he do that? What was he thinking?
Big Poppah was yelling and talking about company liability and why was Wolffe doing that and what was he thinking and how do we get it through his head that he can not do that? I listened to him ranting about Wolffe for quite a bit as I stood there nodding. My thoughts were drifting as Big Poppah's words were just a lacey decoration of a million times I had heard this similar rant about another guide, another river, another place in time.
This company is old. Really old. And what we do now is just survive the vagaries of life and all the bullshit that comes with it. WET has survived drought, economic downfall, guide revolts, back stabbing within our own industry, and sometimes even our friends!
August is coming up next... and then finally September. I am counting the days when the phone is quiet and the trips are only good memories on someone's facebook page...
The river. What more is there to say?
RESOURCES for Whitewater Photos:
Sierra Nevada Photos: 530.295.1873
Hotshot Imaging: http://hotshotimaging.com
This blog was written by staff member EL who has been writing here since forever.
California Whitewater Rafting W.E.T. River Trips blog is the oldest freakin' rafting blog in the world!