Saturday, January 31, 2009


I arrived at "the boathouse" on Thursday ready to paddle, with plenty of time for a trip around Sheep Island. Unfortunately, the driver of the snow plow, who does such a nice job otherwise, decided to leave a small mountain of snow and ice blocking the door. I thought that was one of those snow plowing guidlines: don't block the doorway. So I had to go home for a shovel and dig out enough to get my boat out and over the snowbank. I used up precious paddling energy digging and hurling ice blocks, while breaking my resolution to cut down on four-letter words.

But I got out onto the water and almost immediately forgot my frustration. I had to paddle quickly to get in the eight or so miles to get out and around Sheep and back, turning on my lights at sunset, and returning after dark.

Yesterday I had big plans, but somehow I felt guilty for neglecting inconsequential things on shore, and didn't get out until the wind was picking up. My intended route quickly shrunk. In the most open stretches, I found myself turning into the bigger waves, some of which broke over the cockpit, splashing me in the face. The water is in the mid 30's now, so let's just say it was a wet, invigorating ride. Actually, it felt good, but I reigned in my ambitions and turned east at Wreck Island, pausing at the beach for a cup of tea.

I probably should have gone out again today, but that darn work ethic (which seems to be fading fast) kicked in. I sat in the gallery and looked out at the water, occasionally sighing. What was I thinking?

Paddling obstacles:
having a work ethic (not to be confused with the need for money)
snowplow drivers
forgetting that good weather never lasts

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