It was going to be a fun three day kayak trip in NSW Australia. And you would think that by taking two Naval Academy grads (one of which went on a NOLS course) you wouldn't do anything dumb like forget to bring matches, or extra water with you. It probably didn't help that one member of our crew decided she would just not eat for the three days. Yes, we were a bunch of brilliant minds who apparently had all gone on vacation. After a few hours of kayaking in the beautiful Kangaroo Valley, we noticed something, it all looked the same. Did we really want to spend another two days of our vacation looking at the same thing? Especially when we knew there was surfing to be done in Bondi Beach? It was decided that night, while listening to the wild goats yell, that we would head back to the put in spot and try to get a ride back to town.
The next morning we kayaked back to the put in. It was right at the dam, and there was construction going on at the time. We had the phone number to the kayak rental shop written on one person's hand, although it was smearing off. We went up to the construction site and they let us use their phone. After an hour of trying and getting only the answering machine, we decided to find a ride into town. I stayed with the boats and my other two friends got a ride in a cement truck. They said it was really funny because they were the first Americans this guy had ever met. He asked them questions ranging from "Are Americans like they show on Jerry Springer?" to "How do you feel about healthcare in America?"
They finally made it into town and were quickly recognized as those American girls who came in with a taxi. We were famous :) While they were trying to find the kayak outfitter I was back with the boats. Off in the distance I saw a group of canoes coming to shore. This gave me a weird hope that our outfitter would be coming to pick them up. Well, I was almost right. Our outfitter did arrive, but he was dropping a group off. He looked at me and said, "I think I passed your two friends on my drive out here." And yes he did. We put the three kayaks on the trailer and he gave me a ride back into town. We passed my friends and picked them up.
Finally we got back to the outfitters. We got our stuff together and the guy offered to give us a ride back to the train station. On the way we had to stop by his house and pick up his two little daughters. It was a fun morning of trying to change our plans. Of course, we then ended up talking to this guy from the Australian Army on the way back to Sydney...but that's a story for another post.