A river runs through it

Sometimes you just have to kneel down and kiss the ground and thank Mother Nature for sparing you.
All that rain last week made my home, north of Devlin, marketable as riverfront property. There went my lawn—nearly three acres in size—morphed into a fish pond.
But when I was ready to pay my respects to the cosmos for halting the crest of water to within 20 feet of my house, I tripped over an old shoe left outside by the dogs and tumbled into the lake that had oozed into my backyard.
It made me so mad, I chucked the shoe into the drink, cursed Mother Nature, and vowed to make her pay if she ever tried something like that again.
But as I stood there on the back step sparring with the elements, who should go by paddling a canoe? “Pete the Voyageur”—lifejacket on, along with a headband and sunglasses—headed for the southwest corner of the lawn and the La Vallee river.
He was a sight for sore eyes. It cracked me up as I watched him sail into the bushes at the edge of the yard.
Let’s face it, folks, everybody knows the history behind the house we live in. Flood plain central in 2002. Boaters could motor up to the back door and idle.
We were still living in British Columbia at the time and only had heard stories of how much water Rainy River District had to deal with that year.
I’m sure some thought we were nuts to buy this place, but as Clark Gable so eloquently remarked, “Frankly my dear, I don’t give a damn.”
In my book and in Pete’s (if I can speak for him—oh, what the heck, I do it all the time), we have the best of many worlds living where we do and life is never boring, especially when it pours.
Cranes come to visit—albeit short-lived when “Dot” pinpoints the intruder. Magpies invade like something from the 1950s movie, “The Birds” (and what’s with that tail?)
Fetching sticks—and there are many—are easily spotted when they float. Muddy, loping, playful, messy, soaking wet dogs who rocket around the yard as the river runs through it are more entertaining than anything you can imagine.
They remind me that life is a game (but I really must invest in doggie towels).
Watching #3 daughter step “outside the box” and do something radical for her nature by swimming in the backyard and taking a stab at canoeing, only to land herself stranded, floating in the bush—priceless.
Life’s too short to worry about what might happen when rain brings the river home. I can’t be bothered to even conceive of why I should waste my brain power on that.
Besides, there are far more important things to think about.
For example, the next time I think there’s something wrong with the sump pump in the crawl space, honey, would you mind checking it out? It beats making a trip to the hardware store for 8 a.m. on the day the river is halfway into the yard.
And when you’ve run out of underwear, having stripped down to your skivvies for the umpteenth time to crawl under the house to re-adjust the sump pump during a flood, I’ll lend you a pair of mine.

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