Saturday, September 29, 2007

AFV if I only had a camera

Sept. 28, 2007 -- Bemidji, MN.

It's cold already. Early risers have to scrape frost from their windshields before they can hit the road. Frost? No. Make that read ICE. Seriously.

Later in the morning, hoping the permafrost is forgiving, we make our way to Lake Itasca, where the famed headwaters of the mighty Mississippi have such a humble beginning that true believers can walk across the stream. Allegedly.

The Mystery Woman is determined to repeat her derring-do of 35 years ago and hop, skip and jump across the river. You'll recall this is the same woman who showed no fear in asking a group of motorcycle gang members if she could borrow a knife.

She has a mystical connection to the river and will not be denied.

We meander through the state forest where the fall leaves blaze with colors that are so beautiful they challenge description.

About 600 feet down the dirt path, there's a clearing. It's official, Lake Itasca empties into a small stream designated as the start of the Mississippi. For a few miles, the river actually flows north. True statement.

The Mystery Woman, still 35 years old in spirit but not in conditioning, makes it into the Mississippi with a hop, skip, jump -- and plop.
Look closely.

She nearly drowned. From laughing so hard. The scene from top to bottom would have made it to the finals at America's Funniest Videos. And me without a video camera.

But she was getting chilled so we cobbled together some mismatched clothing, put her in the car, turned on the heater and headed south toward the Twin Cities.

When we stopped for lunch, I asked the Mystery Woman if the waitress had anything to say about her attire.

Yes, she sniffed, they all commented on how dry I looked.

I hushed.


ArchGrafiX said...

The Mystery Woman is now more famous, maybe a smidgeon less mysterious, runs in a supernatural crowd and plopped into an other-worldly setting. You don't cast a ground shadow (EEK!), while the informational stump and rocks directly behind it cast a left shadow, and the rocks in the Mississippi Headwaters stream throw their shadows toward the camera. Amazing stuff, George.

George Phenix said...

Everyone knows that water refracts light in much the same way politicians bend the truth.

ArchGrafiX said...

CAUTION! Objectives in politicians' eyes may be larger or smaller than they may appear.

Anonymous said...

You can't cast a shadow if there is no substance to cause the sun versus solid object effect. Notice that the old man doesn't bother to help the poor little old lady out of her moist problem. Just standing there laughing like a liberal at Nixon's hanging.----Goose
P.S. When are you going to put a real picture of you on the blog page???????

Ken Martin said...

Humor's where you find it, of course, but I've got to wonder if you would have published this if the Mystery Woman had captured a photo of you going down? At any rate you did a fabulous job of Photoshoping all the details, especially the signage on the tree stump!

Anonymous said...

She is braver than I for wanting to skip across cold water. You are braver than I for making a snarky comment about the lady's attire!

The picture is brilliant. Once again you have made me laugh aloud.

s.l.d. cowen

Anonymous said...

This is just to say to friends that I was having the time of my klutzy life (our kids know already that the Ziggy of the family doesn't take herself too seriously). There's nothing that can make you feel you're a kid again yourself than getting your shoes wet like momma tells you not to do. I was the one sitting in the water yellling, "I'm not hurt! Get a picture!", and later I hung around for 1-Hour development to be the first to see if George still has the news photographer's touch. Photoshop back home just got funnier and funnier, even though I worked with 3 photos too hastily, Buddy, to notice those dang shadows and could hardly see through tears of laughter at my own storytelling of an old guy who doesn't notice his old gal's in the Mississippi. You had to have been there, my dears, as I wish you had been........
Mystery Woman, or "she who must be obeyed"

Bill said...

The Mystery Woman should find something for the Guinness....bottle not book.

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