Why Does This Happen To Me?

So, my dad… I love my dad. He is a thinker, a strategist, a history buff and a lover of all things handmade… yet things happen to him that he nor I can explain.

Get this- we were camping last week at a small campground just outside of Yosemite National Park’s North Gate. The weather was wonderful, the fishing was great and the mosquitoes, well, they sucked- literally. The whole clan was there, mom & dad, aunt & uncle, cousins and spouses, kiddos and dogs plus every camping accessory and amenity known to man.

My son, Cavin, who is 4, was attempting to cast his mini-fishing pole in the river we were all camped next to while I bemusedly looked on from my periphery. My dad was a bit further on working a great little deep water well from a submerged log in the middle of the ridiculously swift-current. He pulled out a beautiful 10-inch rainbow trout and brought it over to add it to our collection before heading back over to work his spot. Just as Cavin said, “daddy, I need he-p. My line is tangered…” I saw my dad deftly fall from the log into the deep well he was fishing, just to be swept in the current under the log and bob to the surface with a rather perplexed look on his face on the far side of the fallen tree.

Now, remember, we are at nearly 9,000 feet elevation and this river is straight snow run-off. My dad lost his hat, and a pair of pliers he had in his pocket. His glasses had miraculously only received an undue bath and his wallet was more liquid than plastic and leather… I fished him out of the water and he slopped and sloshed his way through the trees back to the campsite to change his river clothes- no biggie, it was funny, no one was hurt, no harm no foul.

We were scheduled to leave the next day and make a run for home. I was up customarily early breaking down our gear to stow in our cars & trucks when my parents awoke and began to gather their stuff as well. Well, there was some commotion, some elevated-sounding vocal tones, my dad hanging his head and my mom with her usual “why-does-this-happen-to-me/us/you?” look on her face…

So, I did the obvious… I asked what was up. Mom said, “we think the keys to the truck were lost when your father fell in the river yesterday.”

“Oh,” I said. “That sucks,” I said inside my head.

So, we searched. We looked in pockets, fire-pits, garbage bags, on the ground, retraced steps, stood on the bank of the river and looked as best we could through the rapids, anything and everything we could do to find those dang keys…

Fortunately, my uncle volunteered to take my dad into town to search out an auto locksmith. I think it was mainly because he couldn’t get his truck and trailer rig out of his tight spot without my dad’s truck being moved out of the way. So, I packed up the rest of our doo-dads, a couple of kiddos and my wifee and headed out. Nothing more we could do…

Fast forward four hours and as we literally pull into our driveway at home the phone rings and my dad needs me to take a photo of his spare key at home, email it to the locksmith, who would analyze it with his super-fancy software, compare VIN numbers, registration info, photos of my dad standing next to the truck to establish ownership, etc… just to make a piece of grooved metal three separate times at a cost of $250 big ones. The key worked. They mounted up and drove into the sunset.


my mom found a spare key in her purse…

Why does this happen to me? 🙂


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