|Nanook's Campfire Tales|
|Down Burpee Stream
by Uncle Brian
as told to Nanook of the Nashwaak
"How long ago you ask, my dear nephew? You weren't even born then."
Uncle Brian told me the story of his trip down the Burpee Stream. We were celebrating the centenary of the matriarch, my aunt Marian.
"I remember they were building a new bridge over the Burpee Stream that spring. The contractors had set aside a pile of lumber by the stream, and were going to start construction any day now.
"My dad ... I guess that would be your grandfather ... was managing the Acadia Forest research station out there on Route 10, way out back of nowhere. My friend and I had nothing much to do but get into mischief.
Now the stream is only a few feet wide where it flows past the station on its way to Indian Lake, so it wouldn't occur to any mature person to boat down it. But we were determined.
We borrowed six or seven planks from the bridge worksite, nailed them together, and off we went. The stream was springtime deep, but no way was it wide enough for our make-shift raft. We did a lot of leaning back and ducking down, but we made it to the lake later that day in one piece.
Someone came the next day and asked us what happened, where did their lumber get off to? We didn't confess to anything, but I'm sure he figured out what happened. He finally went downstream to the lake and fetched his lost lumber back to his worksite."
I promised my uncle I'd try it myself come next heavy rain, and send him some pictures. But I'll take my canoe, not some rigged-up raft.
Some might call him downright daft
to ride the river on a teetery raft.
My uncle Brian, young and free
and easy on the stream Burpee.
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