Last Week's Paddle

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Last week I ventured out on my own, but with a mission.

You see, the week before last, I had ventured out on a beautiful, sunny afternoon. It was quiet on the river and I puttered around a few of the more immediate islands, just checking things out. I was treated to seeing a North American River Otter pop up out of the water with his dinner - a wee flapping fish - which he proceeded to eat.

As I was heading back to shore, I met up with a group of kayakers just heading out on their paddle. I was invited along and quickly introduced to their group - a casual bunch of people with a standing date for an afternoon leisure paddle. Perhaps I could join them next week?

So, last week's mission was to meet up with these people to enjoy a paddle with them.

I parked in my usual spot - not the group's meeting spot - and put in on my own. Since I nearly grew a hernia last week, trying to look all capable and kayak-ish while carrying my kayak and gear 50m ot the dock, I thought this might be the week to try out my wheels. They work really well.

I caught up with the tail end of the kayak group and had a chat with 'Ron'. Being from a small town, conversation concentrated on placing ourselves. Soon we found our six degrees of separation: Ron's wife had been going to my dad's now-closed shop for car maintenance for years. I had married my husband, who, with his brother, had belonged to Ron's scout troupe for a number of years. We small town people are so much more comfortable once we understand our respective places in the community. <insert eyeroll here>

I was looking for a bit of exercise on this particular paddle, so I spent the next half hour catching up with the leaders of the group. I spent a quarter of an hour with them before turning back. It was a vigorous paddle back. Thank goodness for my little kayak wheels because there was no way my rubbery arms were going to carry anything back to the car.

I'm so impressed that I can load and unload onto the car on my own. I'm still a little nervous about tying down properly so I'm a bit of a cautious driver with the kayak on the car top. I have Mr. B check my tie-downs before leaving home. It's quite easy to tip the nose of the kayak onto the top of the car, grab the stern handle and slide it up onto the foam blocks on the roof rack.

This week I'm getting ready for a more leisurely paddle. It's drizzling and overcast, but I won't melt. I hope to have my dad join me. He and 'Ron' will get on very well, me thinks.

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