I’ve always done my sports in groups – from the martial arts to ballroom dancing to senior fitness. This is the only such activity that I’m digging on my own. I’m not a big nature freak, but listen to all these fauna I passed in my perimeter glide today: swans, several kinds of ducks, herons who were camouflaged and suddenly rose up from the rushes to play tag as they skimmed the lake (my friend said they’re skittish), and three turtles that were just hanging out on some dead branches thrusting out from the water. One guy fishing from a canoe pulled out a splashing ginormous open-mouthed bass (or so he said), probably about 18 inches long, just as I passed him. I was startled when I saw the big thing and he apologized for scaring me. He extracted the hook and dangled it by its head while he took dozens of photos of it. “Gonna eat that?” I asked? No, he would throw it back. The woman running the kayak rental later told me that several people have caught and thrown back that bass. What a crappy life.
Next week is the last for the rental service. The kayaks are mostly lent by the high school, which wants them back for the school year. Others are donated or lent privately. Maybe I’ll spend the rest of the year until next summer studying teaching videos and actually learning how to kayak really, rather than just splashing about. There must be a correct way to hold the paddle that doesn’t blister up the inside of my thumbs, for example. And should the paddle be vertical or horizontal in the water? Only today did I learn that there are adjustable feet pads on the sides – makes a huge difference. All tips are welcome.