And Then I Fell into a Rowboat

The plan was to meet for Happy Hour at Bistro Romano, head down to the Harbor Park and spend an hour or so canoodling in a hammock and then meet up with a few friends for an outdoor screening of The Princess Bride beneath the Walnut St. Bridge.


Mistake #1 was thinking that I could wash my hair, shave my legs and get dressed in exactly 15 minutes. Have you seen my hair? No? Well then you’ll just have to take my word that is very long, very thick and very curly. Washing it is an epic process. I should probably get in the habit of setting aside a month or two.

Mistake #2 was blogging about The European’s tardiness on our first date back in June. He’s gotten a bit hyper vigilant about it now so instead of having a my-date-is-going-to-be-late buffer zone, I have a man who arrived at the restaurant ten minutes early to my ten minutes late. Whoops.

Mistake #3 was wearing a bra. I am seriously not into bras these days but I was wearing a white tank top and it was a nice restaurant so I figured I should make a bit of an effort… three hours later, however, I felt compelled to perform a covert removal operation, which left The European rather aghast. I didn’t have the heart to tell him that actually, I do that sort of thing all the time.

Mistake #4 was wearing my clodhoppers. Technically, they’re platform espadrilles but they’re very loud and very clunky and even though I love them, they are only comfortable enough to walk to the Harbor Park and back, not to the Harbor Park and to the liquor store in Old City in search of wine to sneak into said park.

Mistake #5 was failing to remember that Walnut Street is a rather long street and the Philadelphia is a rather big city. After a good ten minutes of wandering around Penn’s Landing trying to find my friends, I finally called one of them and said, “We’re looking at the screen. And there’s a dog on a beach. Are you seeing a dog on a beach? I don’t remember there being a dog on the beach in The Princess Bride.” All the while, The European is hissing, “It’s Jaws. The dog on the beach is Jaws!” and eventually I remember that there are in fact two Walnut Street bridges in Philadelphia: Jaws was playing on the Delaware but The Princess Bride was playing across town on the Schuylkill.

Mistake #6 is the most embarrassing of all. I don’t know why but whenever I’m around the European, I have the urge to climb on things: mini golf fixtures, bridge trusses, railings, ledges, rocks, fallen logs, etc. Sometimes there is alcohol involved but plenty of times there isn’t so I’m not really sure what my problem is. Last night’s brilliant idea (which did in fact follow a bottle of wine) was to circumnavigate the outside edge of a rowboat at the Harbor Park. Have you ever tried to circumnavigate the outside edge of a rowboat? No? Well, don’t. They’re not balance beams. They are very serious, very dangerous pieces of nautical equipment.

Fortunately I fell into the boat and not out of it. But I now have cuts on my toe and my ankle, a black and the blue the approximate size, shape and sexiness of a Cheezits box on my thigh and a bruised sternum. Perhaps next time I get the urge to climb on something, I’ll leave my bra on for extra padding.

11 Responses to “And Then I Fell into a Rowboat”

  1. Zak

    This made me smile the entire time I spent reading it.

    “I have the urge to climb on things…”

    I once had a girlfriend in college that, no joke, each date exactly one of us got blind drunk and did stupid things. First date I took her to a good friend’s birthday party. She puked in his sink (the birthday boy asked if I was dating the long, black hair girl, and upon saying yes said she puked and it looks like she had “spaghetti for dinner”). The second date she felt so bad she didn’t drink. I did, but not sure I remember much other than being drunk and silly.

    This continued for a while, until after a few months we just stopped dating (not sure why, she was awesome).

    A few years later, I invited her to DC to spend the weekend hanging out (yeah, I was hoping to hook up). Second night she was there, I got drunk and puked all over Adam’s Morgan on the way back to the metro. When we got off at the end, where we parked, I was too drunk to drive the five miles home, and we slept in my car (actually, I slept alongside the car tire for a while, until she got me into the car).

    So… sometimes people just bring out the weirdest things in us. I think that’s my point. Either way, thanks for the memories.

    • Kat Richter

      Wow. OMG now I’m the one cracking up. Adams Morgan is too lovely a place to puke all over! But it’s nice to know I’m not the only one who gets these strange urges 🙂

      • Zak

        Well, since you know it, I’ll add a bit more detail. It was July 2nd, and for about 4-5 years following this event, I swore I kissed a giant inflatable snowman on the way back to the metro (near Woodley Park, which you may know is quite a walk away from Adam’s Morgan, as compared to places like DuPont Circle which require virtually no walk once you exit the metro). Anyhow, it wasn’t until 4-5 years later that Charlene informed me it was a giant inflatable Uncle Sam that I had kissed (which made WAY more sense since it was almost July 4th). She promised to send a pic, but never did – I would post that to the web immediately!.

        I’m pretty sure at least one or two residents, quite possibly more, were pissed to find my front doorstep contribution the next morning. (What can I say, their doorsteps were quite easy to take breaks at.)

        • Kat Richter

          Haha! Goodness… The things we do. I’m going out for drinks and dancing tomorrow night for my birthday and am really hoping to not re-join the club. (In the Richter household we call drinking to the point of leaving “contributions” “joining the club,” as in “You know your father and tequila… He joined the club again last night.”)

          • Zak

            Oh, well, then I left several contributions in Adams Morgan July 2nd, 2004.

  2. styletterie

    Oops! At least you can learn from your mistakes! Did you make it to the screening on time? Incidentally, I went and watched an outdoor showing of The Princess Bride here in London recently, it was a lot of fun and infinitely preferable to Jaws! 🙂

    • Kat Richter

      Haha! I don’t actually care all that much for either movie, was just looking forward to hanging out and sitting on a picnic blanket and drinking wine. In the end, we bailed on both movies and turned to rowboat gymnastics for entertainment instead. Seemed like a good idea at the time, lol!

  3. Landlord

    “Are you seeing a dog on the beach?” Too funny! What I love about this city in the summer, are the many FREE opportunities to enjoy it, but it can be confusing to sift through it all. There is a boat tour, “from Walnut to Walnut” as well, which when I first heard it, I thought, “what?” as we rarely go on “that side of the city” because we have our OWN river on our side. Such Delaware River snobs, and the Schuylkill is soooo nice, just not within walking distance, unfortunately.

    • Kat Richter

      Yeah, once I realized we were at the wrong river, I was like “Oh. No. The OTHER river is WAY to far. We’re gonna go find ourselves a hammock.” Lol


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