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Mark Twain, Fabius and Troublesome Creek

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If you travel at all around Mark Twain’s boyhood stomping grounds, you’ll likely cross the Fabius River. There are three branches, paralleling Troublesome Creek as they all wind their way to the Mississippi. The Fabius rivers are named not for the general, but for the faba bean. But hey, since there are three Fabius Rivers, why not name one for …

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Kingdom Come

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It was 10 p.m. when I reached Kingdom City. Fresh water filled a labyrinth of potholes in the parking lot of the Iron Skillet Truck Stop. The depositor, a monstrous thunderstorm, fled the scene, churning east down the highway, framing its bulbous cloudage in flashes of lightning. I got out of my car and stood between puddles, and stretched muscles …

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Jacks Fork, Cork and Bird

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Cork is the floater. I don’t know the bird’s name.

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Erifnus Likes My Bike

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Hopped on my ’67 Schwinn Continental–taxicab yellow from the factory–and rode to the grocery store. We’ve made this trip for years now, almost daily, bringing back cargo in cloth bags hanging from the handlebars. Erifnus sits at the curb with a brand new radiator cap, and she smiles at us, glad she doesn’t have to make these short hops. She …

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Jacks Fork Rescue

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The Jacks Fork was high and so was I–paddler’s high–when we heard the screams for help. Three young innertubers were stranded on the bank. They’d lost everything: tubes, cooler, flipflops and cell phones. Yes, cell phones. On a break from this bank-full stream, we had watched these teenagers depart from the opposite shore. Turned out they made it about a …

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