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Monday, November 7, 2016

Rafting the Puyallup

On Saturday, November 5th, it was a bit rainy but it was also the last chance for Chu Sum to do the Puyallup... river. So, soon as I got off work, we grabbed the raft, rain gear and some snacks, and headed to the drop point. As we drifted down the first stretch we spent some time figuring out how to coordinate our paddling. Unfortunately, unlike in the movies, it's not always so easy as beating a drum and maintaining a simple rhythm. In fact, seeing as Chu Sum can't read minds, he often would paddle the opposite way that I wanted him to... regularly resulting in a seemingly endless turn. Nevertheless, we saw many interesting things: homes built at the edges of cliffs, cars at the bottom of the cliffs... a whirlpool (which didn't help with our coordination issue), as well as a pointy fallen tree on the edge of the whirlpool, and several fishermen.

As we continued down the river we found ourselves on the wrong side of a gravel bar at which point Chu Sum ended up having to get out and drag us because he was in the front. Overall, even with the rain (maybe even because of the rain), we were pleasantly surprised at the beauty of this incredibly local attraction. In fact, the majority of the river, while still technically in the city, felt like it could easily have been in the middle of a vast wilderness. At the end of the four plus hour voyage we pulled the boat onto a random river bank in order to meet my mom for pickup. We may have startled a lady whose yard we had to pass through (she was actually a bit irate) but it was an otherwise ideal landing only a minute walk from a reasonable pickup spot. The next day we met with the neighbors and had some donuts. Then, as the eve of Chu Sum's final day came near, I used the remaining daylight to teach Chu Sum how to ride the dirtbike.

Finally, the following day, we both took the bike, along with all of Chu Sum's stuff, to the airport just in time for his flight. The ride through morning traffic on 167 no doubt left a strong impression on Chu Sum causing him to further appreciate the convenience of the MTR - the subway that connects every major point of interest in his home town of Hong Kong in the PRC (People's Republic of China).


  1. LOL, The Puyallup river was incredibly awesome!! I really like to paddle the raft in rainy and foggy day!! By the way, have you do a post to describe more about the dirt bike lesson?? ;)

    1. Yeah, the rain was really a nice touch. Regarding the dirtbike lesson, I suppose I could have mentioned the whole "pretend like you're not actually going to go" thing seeing as that has helped a number of friends to get over the fear of using too much throttle. Otherwise, I reckon the video just about says it all, no?