Thursday, July 19, 2018

MY PERFECT TRAVEL PROJECT

As you can imagine, as your family grows & leaves the nest, you end up holding onto a wide range of crap you'll never use again. In this particular instance, it was a 10-seater picnic table we'd acquired when the kids were small.

It always came in handy for family gatherings at the cottage, but for the last 5 or 6 years it simply became an over-sized eyesore. So much so, that last summer my husband asked me if he should just cut it up and burn it. Not one to ever throw baby out with the bath water, I asked him to cut it in half because it I thought it would be neat to have it by the fire whenever we had friends over.

Well, a year later, we'd always used lawn chairs to bask in the glow of a great fire and sat on the stupid thing a grand total of once. With the 2018 cottage season starting late, he once again asked if he should just take the chainsaw to it and get rid of it. I agreed but like most handy-person chores in my life, it never got done. (Yes, that was a direct jab at my husband and his inability to manage his time.)

Anyway, a week or so later, out of the blue I had a light bulb moment and I headed straight over to YouTube. About a half an hour later, I knew what I wanted to do with this neat gem that had so many family memories attached to it...I was going to build a floating picnic table!

As I started to make a shopping list of items that would be needed, I discovered my task could be accomplished with 100% recycled material we had at the cottage, meaning zero dollars spent. The one thing that was alluding the project moving forward, was time: I had none.

Then, last week when I'd finally accomplished what I needed to from such a late cottage season start, I asked my husband if he would help me with my project. I know most of you are wondering why I'd have to formally ask for his help, and there are a number of reasons. First and foremost when it comes to any type of honey-do construction, he tends not to measure twice and cut once, more like cuss loud and cut twice... But with both of us on the same page, and all the supplies gathered and a plan ready to hatch, we began in the rain.

Working together, we started framing for the billets and finished by cutting off the legs to the table which would ultimately reduce resistance as I moved around the lake.

Total time we invested: an hour and a half.

Once in the lake, I realized I had a major design flaw. One flat-coated retriever and an over zealous yellow lab (that wouldn't feel a hunger pain if she went a week without food) weighed far more than I combined, which established early that any movement of this new to me contraption, had to include them.

My new means of travel around the lake is PERFECT!
TAKEN: July 15th, 2018
Once I detached from the dock, our first tip into the lake was epic, and Annie was out. Puddin' on the other hand, was more obsessed with my new play thing than ever.

She and I finally determine it wouldn't tip if I hung onto the the top of the picnic table as I let her climb aboard.

By mid afternoon, I had my scuba flippers on my feet and she was ultimately content relaxing on the table top as I continued tooling around the water. 

After a really great day of exercise, curious onlookers, visitors, and laughs, I have decided that I am going to take this amazing effort to the next level.

My upgraded design sees two more billet sections on the sides for stability, and I 'm going to buy an electric trolling motor. I will also make a provision for a small anchor, then stain it my favourite colour red for high visibility. Not because I didn't like being tethered to my dinky floating dock via a 40' polypropylene rope.... but because you all know how much I truly LOVE to travel.

I wonder if Air Miles offers floating picnic table travel points?

Like I've always said.... There's no such thing as a bad question.