Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Re: Dogs and Ice

I hate writing these kind of replies because they seem more like, “Oh yeah, well here’s an even better story.” My story cannot begin to rival Steph’s but just have to tell. Again, I can’t say how relieved I am that no dogs or humans were harmed in the making of Steph’s story.

I guess I was about 14 or 15 and I was on a patrol campout with my Flaming (no Barney Frank jokes, please) Arrow patrol, a subdivision of my Boy Scout Troop. It was probably February or March in north Texas. We were camping near Frisco in what was then rolling prairie country and what I understand today is about as urban as one can get.

(For LJ: I grew up around Northwest Highway and Marsh Lane or Webbs Chapel just north of Love Field and my friends and I used to ride our bikes past farm after farm, past North Lake, all the way to Grapevine Lake and back for a fun Saturday.)

My longsuffering father had drawn the short straw (as he often did) and was spending the weekend “camping” in our yellow with faux wood side-paneling Ford Country Squire. At 6’5”, he could just fit diagonally in the back of the wagon. There were about 6 or 7 of us boys and my collie Grace was along for the trip. It had been a subfreezing week prior to the weekend’s activities although it had warmed to the upper 30s/low 40s by the time the weekend had come around.

While hiking on Saturday afternoon we foolishly played on the frozen creek. What did we know? This was Texas. At one point Grace and I were walking along and crack went the ice and both of us found ourselves in the water. Unlike Steph’s canine and human friends, I found myself in only waist deep water and Grace was quickly able to extricate herself without much, if any, assistance from me. Yes, it was cold and I was momentarily miserable but as I climbed out, I realized I was walking on unusually shaped and fairly large rocks. I reached down and pulled out an unusually spherical rock maybe ¾ of the size of a bowling ball.

Being a typically curious and destructive male teen, I had to smash it against something. We had stumbled upon a streambed full of GEODES. I wish I could say I now had a huge collection of them carefully harvested from the streambed but I can’t. We broke several and moved on.


Stephanie said...

No worries about adding on to dogs-on-ice stories. The more the merrier.

Did you tell your dad about falling through the ice? or was he with you? And did you go far before getting to warm dry clothes? Hypothermia is such a danger too, even though you were safely out.

Apparently, there are a lot of dogs/ice stories out there. I just heard from two woman in book club about an incident they had with their dogs. Two dogs in the river, floating downstream and nearly went under an ice shelf. Strangers helped, but got soaked in the process and had a long way to walk and hypothermia set in, so they were rushed to the hospital.

Scooter said...

No,Dad was off reading somewhere but of course I told hime. I'm sure he thought he had an idiot son. Maybe he did because I just kept on with the hike and didn't even think about drying off. Remember though, by this time it was well above freezing and, if I recall correctly, quite sunny. Plus, if anything bad had started to happen, I had several boy sprouts around to administer first aid.