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I promised myself no hiking this weekend, so I headed out to do more tubing. I didn’t want a long ride so I headed to Charles Town, WV.
I spent the night on a quiet street and then headed to Harpers Ferry the next morning. It was really overcast and after mulling it over I decided to take my chances with an early tube run. I locked my bike and pack at the C&O towpath and AT intersection at Weverton and then drove ¼ mile north of Harpers Ferry for a put-in. One word about this area, PFDs are required. I was the only one on the river and was able to get up close and personal with some turkey vultures that were hanging out on the rocks below HP.
The best rapids on the river are about 1/3 of a mile northwest of the Sandy Hook Bridge. The river moves pretty well but not too fast in these parts. Good for tubing.
While near the end of my run some people came by in kayaks, they were taking a beginning white water kayak class. The instructor was a bit of an pest and tried to start a conversation with me, I wasn’t having any because he was annoying. The instructor told his pupils about all the safety equipment that was absolutely positively necessary when on the river like helmets and paddles and other useless crap. One student asked the instructor about me, who had none of the above equipment, and the instructor boldly informed him, “The woman in the tube was most likely a tube guide.” My already large ego was just expanded, now I am a tube guide! Who knew?
Feeling pretty good after I returned to my car I drove back to Charles Town, jumped on somebody’s Internet connection to see if there was any live music playing. Charles Town is a bit of a dud when it comes to night life and the only band I could find that wasn’t at a country club was at Charles Town Raceway and Slots. I figured, “Why not?”
So off to the casino I went. Mind you, I don’t drink, smoke or gamble and I had already eaten but I didn’t have anything better to do. I ended up walking in the wrong door and couldn’t find the casino. A security guard saw my confusion and asked what I was doing there. I tried to look like I belonged there and said I was confused about how to get upstairs. He said to me, “What are you, a horse trainer?”
I got demoted from tube guide to horse trainer in a span of three hours. I realized that maybe I did look like a horse trainer, I was still wearing my Wal-Mart river clothes and a bird had defecated on my shoulder during my tube run, I hadn’t done such a good job of cleaning the mess off I guess.
The slots casino was a happening place, think Las Vegas but with maybe 1/100th of the budget. The bones of the structure were definitely a large warehouse gussied up with plenty of flashing lights and thousands of slots machines. It was filled with people from the Mid Atlantic area. Mind you, nobody at this place would ever be accused of styling and profiling. This was a shorts and tee-shirt type of crowd. I saw a couple of the horsie races. The jockeys looked like they all came from the same Latino country, they were cute, and I am wondering if somebody could clue me in to where they are from. The featured band, Quiet Fire Soul Show, was set up in the middle of rows of slot machines and people gathered around to here its soul and disco music. Pretty soon we were all dancing happily in the rows of slot machines. A word of advice, don’t order the Brownie Sunday at the casino food court. The brownie tastes like regurgitated cigarette butts.
I spent Saturday night in another quiet neighborhood in Charles Town. I woke up and it was raining so I decided to drive home, not willing to find something to do in the rain.