THE OLD MAN AND THE OTHER RIVER II

7/12/2022     

Whenever an object is borrowed from an individual who has an unselfish attitude towards others, defective components are dumped upon the borrower. Having the duck skiff dropped off weeks before the launch of the “airhead carrier,” William began to modify this rented boat for his own trip. First to go was the carp platform that used elevation above the gun whales to allow fishermen/archers to shoot arrows into bottom feeding, rough fish to be used as backfill. “Sporting” has a broad definition. Next was to fix the wiring and relocate the engine for a backup electric trolling motor on the transom. With extra marine batteries as backup, the troller was ready but then, the gas outboard failed to start. Patience and intelligence leave an old man’s body like rats on a sinking ship, so rather than try and get the motor repaired, Mr. Turst went and rented a portable electric generator to run the trolling motor. That skiff was going to sail come hell or low water. As the launch date neared in mid-June, everything was set. A couple of friends named Guy and Kim who lived in the Madison area were given keys to Bill’s truck and trailer that was going to be left at the starting boat launch. Meanwhile, First Mate Chad was at his residence near Prairie du Chien (end of the run), and Bill had his truck and boat at a small town on the Wisconsin River called Boscobel. It was more than halfway downstream. At 7:00AM, Chad met Bill and left his ride at the Boscobel boat launch. Together, they drove to the launch location upstream and put their flat ass skiff into the murky, brown river and locked up the truck and trailer in the parking lot. It was show time. When returning to the launch to climb aboard, Bill was amazed to hear the gas engine outboard idling. It seems mechanically inclined Chad had found a secret kill switch on the engine and closed the contact. The boat’s owner, Ben, never divulged that information. Borrowers beware, shit awaits! 

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