Suzanne was in a hiking mood the other day, and picked a moderate trail in Mt. Rainier National Park. (It must have been a mistake, because she usually opts for the “Very Hard”, “Miserably Hard”, or “Sure to Kill Your Husband Hard” trails.) The trail was part of the Wonderland Trail that circles the mountain, and wound through lush forests to viewpoints looking at Mt. Rainier, at 14,411 feet the highest peak in Washington, and site of the largest glaciers south of Alaska.
Have you ever gotten squirted in the face opening a soda that someone had shaken up? On our hike, I had such an experience at the hands of My Lovely Bride. We had driven up from sea level for our Rainier hike, and she was opening a water bottle filled with Gatorade. As she turned the cap, the change in air pressure forced a stream of blue liquid right in my face. My face, not hers. This was hardly fair. A half hour later, it was time for payback. Through a well-documented scientific experiment, we found that you can get the same effect by pointing a full water bottle at your target and squeezing hard…
Log bridges are not Suzanne’s favorite structures, but this one was very solidly built, and she decided to show off her Rockettes style kick…
But waterfalls are a favorite of hers… Spray Falls was near our hiking route, and the guidebook said not to miss it, so we made a short detour to see if the book was accurate. It did not disappoint… this waterfall with a 354 foot drop is considered the most beautiful in Mt. Rainier National Park. You can see that it made Suzanne want to leap for joy!
It was hard to leave Rainier, but it had been almost a two hour drive to get to the trailhead, and our puppies were awaiting us back at Ft. Lewis. Before we left, we had to get the “tourist shot” to prove we had actually been there.
Back in Tacoma, we visited Novus Composites (AKA NC Kayaks), the shop that built the 15 foot fiberglass kayaks that we love so much. We met the owner, Doug Searles, who gave us a tour of his production facility. If you’ve never been in a fiberglass shop, it has a unique smell that most boaters (from kayaks to big motor yachts) know and love. Doug’s designs are very fast and seaworthy, and are my favorite kayaks ever (I have had seven over the years). If you are looking for a new kayak, we recommend NC Kayaks highly. See http://www.novuscomposites.com for more info.
Of course, we then had to go paddling on nearby American Lake in our NC kayaks! Here is Your Faithful Correspondent returning to The Coach after a delightful paddle. The stern of the kayak (the red one is Corvette Chick’s, wouldn’t you know!) is on a small two wheeled dolly that allows lazy… er, smart… paddlers to transport their kayaks without developing a hernia or having to ask a second person to help.
The day was drawing to a close, but what were we to do for dinner? I had told My Pretty Paddling Partner that I would take care of it… so the choices were: (1) Chick Fil-A; (2) Domino’s; or (3) Chez Tyler. I decided to surprise My Lovely Bride, and following a quick stop at Safeway for ingredients, I created a delicious Chicken Marsala dinner from scratch. (Husbands, take note: you get Major Brownie Points for doing this, and if I can do it, anyone can!)
Finally, we had a microwave event the other night prior to one of Suzanne’s readings. You can find out more about it on her Facebook page, but suffice it to say that the microwave was doing things on its own, as if there was another being inside the controls, making it beep and change settings apparently at random. The next day it was acting normally until the middle of Suzanne’s reading, when it started beeping again. The lady who had lost her son confirmed what Suzanne sensed from him in the reading: that he had been a practical joker who manipulated electronics and electrical appliances…. (If I hadn’t been there the night before and seen it acting up with my own eyes, I would have been very skeptical, but I was there!)