Saturday, December 13, 2003

White Water Rafting (1 of lots)

I was s'posed to go white water rafting the next day, but when I checked my confirming email that night, the company said I was the only person who had signed up for that river, and they couldn't run the trip without more people.  I should ring back later that night and find out.

I rang at 9:30 (while munching on some nice fish & chips -- wrapped up in newspaper and everything!) and found that, yes, there were sufficient numbers, so I'd be rafting.  I set a wake-up call.  (I did a test one, first.)

I was with a company called River Rats, and a guide called Kelvin, on a river called Rangitaiki.  It was rated a 3-4, which meant, in this case, a perfectly good 3 river with two "solid 4" rapids.  At the beginning.  OK.  Never been rafting before.  There were four others in our raft, and only one of them had been rafting before too. 

When we're getting changed into our wetsuits (and life jackets, and spray jackets, and helmets, and boots), I notice that everyone but me is wearing Tevas.  My Tevas were back in Auckland.  I'd considered bringing my Teva reef walking shoes, but River Rats' website said they supplied wetsuit boots, so I decided against and was wearing my sneakers.  Felt a little out of place.

Now, I'd lost/misplaced my sports strap for my eyeglasses.  (It had served me well on the Canyon Swing, but I really hadn't seen it since Christchurch.  It might be in Auckland, or I might have lost it in Fiji.)  I didn't have one for Black Water Rafting.  I'd been trying to buy one in Rotorua since I got here, and nobody had one, although a nice man offered to engineer something for me out of picture hanging wire.  (Around my head?  Er, no thanks.)  I asked Kelvin if he had one I could borrow.  He did not.  He asked if I had shoelaces.  Aha!  I ended up using a shoelace (and loaning my other one to another woman for her glasses -- yay for not wearing Tevas) -- I double knotted it on each stem of my glasses, tying it so tight the glasses couldn't move down my nose -- then doubled knotted the ends to each other behind my head.

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