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Canoe Trip

By Richard Zane Smith ~

There was a man and his wife who had two lovely daughters.

He and his wife loved them both very much.

He had just built a wooden canoe and he took his daughters out onto the lake to teach them fishing and paddling and simply to enjoy the beautiful day together.

While they were fishing he told them of a story he'd never shared. When the daughter were both young he had risked his life entering into their burning house to save them. The older daughter was awed and said "Wow…dad you must really love us!" to which he smiled and replied "Yes I sure do!"

The younger daughter became thoughtful. "When did you save us dad and why has mom never talked about it?"

The father was a little hurt. "You don't believe me? Don't you love me?"

The older daughter said "I believe you Daddy and I love you most of all."

The younger daughter said "Of course I love you dad… I just love mom more."

After that, things became a little quieter and they fished together in silence listening to the water moving against the canoe…. But not long after the father spoke up with real concern in his voice,

"Girls we have a problem here". He stood up pointing to water that seemed to be growing deeper in the bottom of the canoe. They worked hard bailing with cups and plates they had brought for a picnic, but the water only got deeper and was rapidly flooding the boat. They were deep in the center of the lake and there wasn't a soul for miles.

The Father picked up two life jackets and held them up. "This is all we have girls, this boat is going down." He began strapping one to his chest as the two daughter stared at their father, eyes wide with fear.

He then handed the remaining vest to the elder daughter. "Because you love me and believe me, you will be spared. He turned to his younger daughter and shook his head "I'm sorry, but you loved your mother more than me and you did not believe in me, so I can't save you, this is just the way it has to be."

The younger daughter exploded in tears and pleaded her heart out, but the two already had the life jackets on and were drifting away, leaving the younger daughter weeping and sobbing as she clung to the sinking boat. They both turned and began swimming to the shore and the older sister talked about the fun they could have together when they reached home. Her father smiled, "Yes, I'll see to it that you'll have more fun than you have ever had in your life." When the elder daughter glanced back over her shoulder, there was nothing but lake water for miles…she was swimming next to her Father whom she worshiped and, she had never been happier…

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