Second Annual white water rafting challenge, This event was full of surprises from the moment we arrive at the pickup location to the moment i dropped off the last people at 5:00 am.
my day started really good on Saturday June 16, 2012. I got up at about 5 am, did a few chin ups, and curls, and ran in the shower to get ready. I had to started cleaning the truck so we could fit Charlie, Dave, TJ L, Julie, TJ M, Edwin and myself. The plan was as followed:
- Charlie would come with Dave and the cameras at 7 am, to film the day for the NY Thrill seekers reality web/TV show episode 1.
- than we would rush to Vasil in Brooklyn pick up his van,
- than rush to down town Manhattan across from Staten island ferry and wait for everyone at the pickup point.
- but in between we had to go to 27 st. Manhattan and pick up the other van, because we had about 25 to 30 people going o this trip.
Charlie and his crew arrive arrived a little early, very professional and they were on target with everything they did, we filmed some footage such as introduction, lading the truck and the plan for the day, we arrive early to vasil house in Brooklyn, we loaded the van got all the cameras ready and headed out to the city by this time we were running a few minutes late from our plan, we had people waiting for us including Veronica Lee Anne (ex marine), Katherine Mesa, Eliano Sanchez, Kimberly Cheri Gresham, Dave Dumas we also had Julie, Edwin, TJ L, TJ M, as sub organizers. We also had a 3 more guys another girl I can’t even recall her name.
I rushed to pick up the pother van with vasil and left Julie and Edwin to make sure everyone was ok, while getting the van I picked up our good friend Courtney Brown, Johnny and Johnny’s brother Daniel, on canal st. we got to the pickup point and then we waited a few minutes, I wasn’t sure why we were waiting but if it was ok with Vasil it was ok with me. So we took off at 10:30 am, and remember we need to be at Poconos White Water in PA at 12:00 in the afternoon. So my van gets ready and Julie and TJ L, followed me over the Holland tunnel so we could drop off my truck over there and pick it up later on that day, according to plan!!! lol or I thought…
We dropped off my truck a few blocks from the Holland Tunnel, then we got on ot 280 west, I called vasil and he told me he was waiting and he will be right in back of us and lets meet somewhere, so I stop right after the tool on 280 and waited about 20 minutes nothing, then I told him I would keep driving and meet me at exit 6a off 280 we got there and waited for about 20 minutes or more there, I didn’t know what was the problem or why he was taken so long. He told me he took the turnpike and he had to back track and he was having issue in his truck with someone there, and usually we never have problems with anyone in our trips and if so we just drop them off and give them a refund so they don’t spoil it for everyone else.
So now it is pass 12:30 and we are still on the way to Poconos white water in PA, and about an hour away from the place, I called Vasil and he told me he called Poconos white water and they will be waiting for us for a special event since we had so many people with us, and remember again we have the camera crew filming everything been headed by Charlie Balducci.
It turns out the girl that was on vasil van made him wait for her boyfriend so we could take off, and then they couldn’t get along the van. We got to Poconos white water at 230 or 245, and since we were so late there were no more guide to take us to the trip. But we still had to wait for the other van. The other van arrived at about 330 or 345 pm. We spoke to the manager his name was Andy, really great guy and all the staff there where outstanding specially one of the owners Jerry. Jerry explain to us that the only other option we had was moon light raft and he could fit us n the tour but it didn’t start until 730 !!!. so now I have 30 people, this girl and her boy friend who everyone wanted to kill! lol, and 3 guys that all they wanted to do was smoke up pot every 5 minutes. Man! It was some crowd…
So… to try to make this event work I told Charlie and Vasil to head out to camel beach park and let’s make the best out of the day, I had everyone vote on it, and we got a go. Now it is 4:20 pm, I called camel beach water rapids and they told me that they close at 6:00 pm!!! Man this day was getting better and better by the mibute! So now we need some there to go, After talking to some people At Poconos White Water they gave us the address for H2O an indoor water park and resort hotel, I called them and they told me that they would be open till 10 pm,. So once again to make this a better day and not go home so late we headed out to H20, we got to the hotel there was a wine festival there, Me and Charlie walked into the hotel to check out the water rides, and man, it was for little kids, also remember we are been recorded for he reality web show. Edwin, Julie, Daniel, TJ L, TJ M, by now didn’t care where we when at longest we when somewhere, and I had 30 people on me. while sitting in the lobby of the hotel trying to get my next step on my head we got this guys from the H2O hotel he was the security for the hotel, telling me that there is no recording on premises. I was too tired to argue and i just told him no problem. By now Vasil is really tired from his injuries from the Chicago bike ride and his medication is kicking in, I knew he had to get rest and some people just wanted to go home…
So we decided to split the vans and let some people including Eliano, Vasil, the girl and her Boy friend, Courtney , Johnny and Daniel to go back. The ironic part is that the girl was complaining about the whole trip, while the whole trip was a mess cause her and her boy friend… We took everything from Vasil’s van out and placed it on our van. Eliano would drive back, he is a good guy. They took off and we decided to do the white water rafting at night.
We drove back to PWW we got some food and arrived there at about 6:30pm, everyone just started to walk around, Katherine was just pissed from the morning till the afternoon. We had Dave Dumas telling us he has done rafting in the past, so he was set, usually when someone says that they can’t even hold the paddle. Lol…
They called us to get ready at 7:30pm we got our waivers, wet suites and life jackets, we got on the bus, we also broke down our raft into groups the teens Julie, Edwin TJ, TJ, also Dave d., and his 2 friends on one raft. The teens thrill seekers have done rafting in the pass category 3 and 4 with no issues and they are experience on these events, so incase anything happened Edwin and Julie and both TJ where there to help Dave and his friends. And our raft we had Dave, Charlie, Veronica, Kim, Katherine and myself. I had back and Dave, Kim and veronica mid and Charlie and Katherine top, but I didn’t know that in night raft they only did category 1 raft!!!! This was more like a romantic stroll than white water rafting, but I understood why, safety is first. all we needed was wine and slow music… ha!
We got in the bus, drove about 20 minutes to the starting point, once we got there we found out we had a guide on each raft that would guide us all the way through. man! I was so disappointed, what a day I had and a short coming night, we’ll we just have to keep rolling, you know. We got on the rafts our guide was Dan he was great Guide, and on the Teens raft we had Thor, well he look like Thor… As you know most of us are from Staten island, NY, Great Kills, including Charlie, Dave myself, Julie, Edwin, tj, tj, based on that you knew this trip was not going to be boring.
Ok here come the fun part… from the moment we got on that raft it was great, we had water fight/wars and trying to take over each other rafts by force!!! if necesary! lol Man it was fun. At times we could hear the teens raft doing the 300 theme scream… everytime we got close to each others raft we had buckets full of water on top of each other. It was a funny part too Chrlie got his bucket and kept filling up and trying to throw it at the other raft but he kept hitting Veronica, and she was on our raft… The moon raft is mainly for romatic get away and families it because world war 3! ha! the splashing got so bad that that Katharine got in the middle of the raft stood up and crossed her arms while stomping her foot, screaming “I want to go home”, man… that was amazing!!! You guys had to see it. Words cannot describe that little episode, while we had everyone else telling her shut up and, go home. some people were screaming ”give her a flash light and put her in the woods” so she could walk home. my god it was outstanding…lol
The outdoors are not for everyone, some people can hack it and some can’t, but if you go with a bad attitude you know everyone else will pick it up and play on that. And man they did, Katherine look like a wet cat after the event, and as I said before the people who brag about how much they know, usually can even paddle, but he try, and he kept with it. Lol
Charlie B and his crew where an incredible addition to this trip he is a blast, funny guy full of energy too. we even had a pose down while waiting for the moon light trip. We got off the raft at about 11:30 to 11:45 got back to the bus and back to the PWW place, we had cheese and cracker and some people had wine. Everyone was freezing and running around trying to get warm. We got in the van about 1:30 am.
I drove through Staten island, dropped off the Edwin, Julie, tj L, and Dave and Charlie. TJ M came with me to pick up his van and then I drove to Brooklyn and to down town, drop off Dave d, and friends, Katherine. Then I drove to 34 st to drope off Kim and Veronica, they are such good company. I drove back home I got in at 6 am!!! Then I woke up at 11 am got a father day card from Julie. Julie Edwin and myself when to get lunch for father’s day in NJ exit 135 a Brazilian restaurant man the food is amazing, got our truck return the van and when back home.