Marshalls & Aqua Caves
Feb. 18-21, 1996
by Alex Leaman & Ed Render
For 4.5 cavers, the weekend of the eighteenth was jam-packed full of laughs, more fun than a hectare field full of chimps with electric razors and cream pies. Which is pretty darned fun, I can tell you. I say 4.5 five cavers- Becca, Liselle, Ed, and Alex were joined by sometime caver and self-styled “heistmeister” Jeremiah. Jeremiah, who hails from UVa, was introduced to the wonders of Bennett’s Spontaneous Nudity Jenga Drinking Game, and can now join the ever-increasing ranks of UVa students who have circled my apartment building wearing only a Union Jack and a Darth Vader helmet. Sometime later, his righteousness and eloquence bolstered by copious amounts of his favorite beverages, Jeremiah expounded upon the virtues of his University in comparison to the likes of JMU before a reluctant audience of my roommates. He was not well received; I suppose some people simply can’t be dissuaded from their comfortable ignorance…
It was decided to have a cave trip on Sunday, and it was made to be so…
Fiasco On the American Road System 2-19-96
Sunday’s caving began, as many of our adventures seem to, with utter confusion. If I believed in karma I would say that this is a good thing, that it is responsible for the relative lack of disorder evidenced in the actual caves. But I don’t, and it isn’t (sez me). We actually had all the equipment we needed for a change; this should have been the first tip off that all would not go well. The problem was one of simple longitude and latitude, a mere difficulty of spatial dimension (dementia?). To be blunt, I couldn’t remember where the stupid cave (Glade) was. After much adventure on the open road, we decided to chuck it and give 3-D a try. Although our small group breezed through the cave rather quickly, we dallied here and dillied there until we felt we had had a full trip. This was decided when the following conditions had been met: A) a few hours had passed; B) our asses hurt from the sharp walls of the Great Bastard Left Passage; and C) we got hungry and started thinking about Gibbons with ravenous gleams in our eyes. Gibbons Hall, that is, although I personally was hungry enough that, in a pinch, actual gibbons would have sufficed. Honey glazed gibbons. As long as they were cooked, of course. I may like to hang out in caves, but I’m no Australopithecine.
Composed by Alex Leaman
I’ll pick it up from here. Well, while at D-Hall on Sunday, the four of us, Alex, Ed, Becca, and Liselle, discussed the upcoming week. It so happened that there were no classes on Tuesday. Should we go caving? No- camping. So it was final. Monday night the four of us would venture out to Aqua campgrounds and pitch camp. After classes on Monday the four of us met at the Omni and we were off. The time passed rather quickly due to the intelligent “alphabet game” that we played. (well we were also in an Omni.) Upon arrival, we noticed that our favorite campsite was washed out. Mud everywhere. Oh the memories of fall ball were coming back. The rain, the gunshots…oh yes…good times. We walked a little further and decided the next site would suit our needs. Alex and I set the girls to work. They set up the tents while us men went to break fire wood with our bare hands. A real manly event. Actually we decided that if we had sent the girls for fire wood they would have returned much faster and with more wood. Us men see a log and we say, “That log will be burned, oh yes, it will be ours.” No matter if it’s as big as a house and as wide as a telephone pole, us men will find a way to make it ours. O well, enough of that. The mother-load (our wood pile) was still intact. It treated us fairly well. After the camp was set up we decided to enter Marshall’s cave. All of us, save Becca who had had a mishap with the rope-swing a little earlier, were in for some good ole caving fun. Becca stayed behind and the three of us caved Marshalls for all it had. The cave was great. The water level high, but still fun. After the cave we were ready to spend some quality time by the fire. Many hours passed when in the distance we heard a faint voice scream, “AAAAAA–LLLLLLLL—–EEEEEE—-XXXXX.” WOHWOH! who goes there? It was but of course our good friend Brian who had come to spend some quality time with us. He pitched a tent and joined in on the fun. Yes, it was good. After most of us were asleep, another stranger entered the scene. Chris and Linne’ (La-NA) showed up at three in the morning. We were ready for bed. We shivered ourselves through the night and had a difficult time awakening come morning. But awaken we had too. I had a ski class at 2 o’clock. So we dragged ourselves up and policed the area for any trash that we could have possibly created. The ride back was tiresome for most, but for the driver fairly enjoyable. Thus ends the great weekend.
Composed by Ed Render