It rained in middle Tennessee this week. A lot. So of course all of the creeks jumped up and the paddlers rejoiced. But daylight savings time ended this week, leaving Cookeville in darkness by 5:00 PM, with no hope of after work paddling trips. While driving Ian to school Tuesday morning, he looked out the jeep window at water sheeting across the road next to an overflowing ditch and exclaimed, “Mama, I sure do hope Spring Creek fills up!”
It warms my heart every time I hear Ian express an interest in the pursuits that Brinn and I follow, so I quickly answered him, “Me too, baby, me too.”
But he took it one further and arrived at a genius conclusion: “Hey mama, I know, do you want to go kayaking today?” I certainly wished we could go kayaking this week, but I work until 4:30 most days, and would lose the light before we could even put on the water! On top of that, deer season has hit, so Brinn pretty much works ’round the clock all of November.
I reluctantly explained our situation to Ian and reminded him that we had an obligation at the rescue mission for that evening and wouldn’t be home until after dark. He immediately replied, “well, we will just go tomorrow!” And again, I had to review the hours of daylight with him to help him understand the time constraints, but Ian would not be daunted. “I know, Mama! We can take my flashlights. I’ll take my turtle light, and you can take my blue flash light. And I’ll go in front of you and show you the way because I know where to go.”
I knew when Brinn and I decided to start a family, that at some point, I would no longer be teaching junior how to paddle, and he would eventually be babysitting his mama on the water. I just had the assumption that this situation would not occur until our child was… you know… out of kindergarten?
So there you have it, folks. If you’re looking for a guide down Upper Spring Creek, Ian knows the way and can show you day or night. And oh yeah, the turtle flashlight he’s carrying? That’s for my benefit so I can see where he goes. He clarified this for me as he insisted that he won’t need the light for himself because he has light-up eyes that see really good at night.
By the way… we did not go kayaking in the dark on Spring Creek this week.