Sometimes it's the little things that make you happy. I taught a Whitewater 101 class over the weekend and it was a big and fun group. The water was high, making it challenging, but the weather hads finally warmed up so no one was too worried about getting wet. Drifting down the river on the second day I found a woman's shoe floating in the water and picked it up. Setting a good example of trash removal for the students.
Well, right around the corner, at the next big rapid, all hell broke loose. Multiple swimmers, lost paddles, the group spread all over. After towing a couple different people to shore, rounding up boats, attaining to check on folks and reunite everyone, I looked down to see the shoe was still sitting on my deck. Completely unscathed. (the people were all fine as well). When someone noticed the shoe and asked what I was going to do with it, I said I would award it to whoever had the best line in the next big rapid. A little encouragement is all it took to keep the carnage to a minimum and everyone had clean lines. But some people went left, some went right, so each side had a 'best' line. I solved that one with my river knife and two ladies left with half a shoe and full smiles. A good weekend on the river.