Friday, December 22, 2006

Dead Man's Chest-cold, or, Dangerous When Wet

So this was Coos Bay last Thursday as our first big storm of the winter swept through. Leaden skies, driving rain and a nasty chop on the bay as we tried to drill our first in-water boring. Let's say that the crew were mutinous and the captain not a little overbearing in his efforts to get the work done...


Yarely with that Standard Penetration Test, ye swabs! I'll flog the first scurvy dog what pukes into me sample bag!

So there's barge drilling and then there's barge drilling when the wind works up to gale force and the shallow waters of Coos Bay develop a short, steep little chop. The odd thing is that the barge, for all that it looks like it was pretty lively, actually didn't pitch and roll very much. Instead it had an odd gyrating motion that wasn't particularly nasty (though you weren't going to forget it, either).

Didn't help the poor gang in our support boat who were taking these pictures. They pitched about like a bar of Ivory Soap in a water sports scene from a Marilyn Chambers film. Lots of uneasy sailors there, until they finally had enough of getting the guts wrung out of them and called it a day around 1pm. By that time it looked like this:

Nasty weather, eh? But the storm blew over that night and by the weekend the weather was lovely, if cold.

Here's the salty Chief himself basking in December sunshine three days later, full of self-conceit and a pancake breakfast from the Kozy Kitchen.

Coos Bay isn't exactly hopping, but I had some good books, and spent one pleasant evening enjoying the lights at Shore Acres State Park. Very pretty, if you like that sort of thing. I do, and only wished that Peep had been there - he LOVES Christmas lights, and tends to race around chuckling like a little nut when he sees what he refers to as "Tha muthalode!" of lights - we have several "motherlodes" around our neighborhood...

I should put in a good word for the Coach House Bar and Grill in Eastside. If you're ever in scenic Coos Bay and looking for a good dinner, don't overlook this hidden treasure. Their steaks are perfectly grilled and bursting with rich steakiness, their twice-baked spuds are a cholesterol-laden treat and their mixed veggies are tender, buttery and spiked with a peppery fire. Yum!

But that's all in the past. Daddy's home, much to Mojo and the Peeper's delight. My bride got a foot rub, lots of sympathy for her cold and a full night's sleep (yay!) And the Pea and I cuddled and read stories this morning, and when I dropped him off at his "school" (i.e. daycare) he hugged and hugged me as if he didn't want Daddy to ever go away again. Those little arms reached right down through my shoulders and gave my heart such a squeeze it made my eyes spark with tears.

It's good to be home.

Next: really, truly, more Tiger Island stories, no shit, really.

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