I was also able to celebrate my birthday at home, a tradition that I love and one of the best things about having a summer birthday. I am now 21. Be impressed. It was a pretty crazy day for everybody as my grandma has recently been installed in our downstairs as she recovers from a total knee replacement and we were trying to care for her, I was running my own errands in Idaho Falls, my mom was in her store, my dad was working and doing bishop things, and Caitlyn and Michaela were keeping their own agendas. But we did find time in the evening to relax and enjoy cake. Plus, I picked myself up some Tevas and a new camera in preparation for my travels. Woot!
The night before, Caitlyn, Michaela, and I slept out on our tramp, watched stars, giggled, and tried to keep from sliding too much into Michaela in the middle. I was turning 21 and so had to do something child-like and silly.
On Friday my family headed up to Island Park and our cabin there. It was nice to put away my lists of Things To Do for a few days and just play. That afternoon Caitlyn and I took the canoe and went exploring around the lake. We cut across the middle when there were no motorboats coming and found a serene little inlet perfect for moose. Unfortunately all we saw were cows and ducks. But the scenery was gorgeous.
Saturday the family hunted up some antique fairs and spent several curious hours rumaging through one-man-junk-another-man's-treasure piles. I'm not sure what it is about antique fairs, but they draw the oddest collection of bikers, cowboys, RV-ing families, and way too many little dogs carried around by members of all three groups. The wares mirror the customers with dragon statues and black leather spike wristbands (my ten-year-old cousin insisted on buying one) mixed in with wagonwheel benches and china hutches from the 1800s.
For lunch we headed over to Mack's Inn and ate delicious, heaping, messy pizza. After exhaustive research and analysis, we concluded that yes, it is impossible to take a flattering picture while eating said pizza. The evidence is below.
After that we headed to Big Springs to feed the fish - something we always do when we're up here. Those fish have to be the best-fed water life this side of Sea World.
Our last adventure of the day was to float down Box Canyon on Henry's Fork. Caitlyn, Michaela, my cousin Kirstin, and I were the first boat load and so the first to discover that the river was running very high still and the usually small rapids were a bit more excited this year....Michaela and Kirstin did an excellent job bailing using Caitlyn's shoes - she was more than willing to give them up when the water in the canoe reached mid-calf.
Our faces in this picture really illustrate our thoughts on the ride. Hats off to my aunt Rachel for taking it as we were coming around the last bend. I had had a wonderful time crying for Caitlyn, who I had taken to calling Ishmael for the trip, to keep a weather eye open and for us to increase to "ramming speed". She didn't take to calling me Ahab with quite the same gusto...
Coming in to port.
My dad, Caitlyn, and I headed home that night with the rest of the Corps of Discovery to follow in the morning.
I leave for Utah on Wednesday and India on Thursday. I'm freaking out just a little from nerves and from excitement.