Favorite Travel Quotes

"Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness, and many of our people need it sorely on these accounts."
-- Mark Twain
Innocents Abroad

"Stop worrying about the potholes in the road and celebrate the journey." -- Fitzhugh Mullan

"A good traveler has no fixed plans and is not intent on arriving." -- Lao Tzu

Patting Your Head; Rubbing Your Stomach. In a Kayak. Upside Down. IT’S ALL ABOUT ROLLING!

SEARCHING FOR PROSE & PHOTOS
With Kayaks, Mountain bikes, Backpacks, Daypacks, Walking Sticks, Fishing Poles—and an Airstream Travel Trailer

©Bert Gildart: It’s not normal to hang upside down in a kayak—trying to gain a perch for placement of your paddle on the water’s surface so that you can then right yourself with a flick of the hip into an upright position, but it’s what I found myself doing last night.

Kayaking has become a part of the outdoor world we write about as we travel in our Airstream in search of stories. I’m no spring chicken, so it’s my thought that if I can do it, anyone who puts their mind to it can do it. But I’m not there yet, and liken my lack of complete success in the first lesson to that of a child learning to pat his head and rub his stomach for the first time. I suspect if I hadn’t learned that maneuver as a child, learning it now might be a bit more difficult. Rolling a kayak, however, seems much more difficult.

Essentially what you’re trying to do is bring your paddle to the water’s surface and then sweep it as you simultaneously flick your hip, all while upside down. “It’s not a power thing,” repeated Sue Conrad of Silver Moon Kayak Company.

“It’s a coordination thing. You’ve got to put together the independent actions of hip flick with paddle sweep.” Between gulps of breath and the clearing of my Eustachian tubes, I also recall Sue saying that it’s a confidence thing, too, for you’ve got to get used to hanging upside down and then believing—as you hold your breath—that you’ll be righted before you run out of breadth.

That thought was so compelling I even missed the gorgeous rainbow Janie captured in one of her photos.

Sue said I did well, but I know some have grasped the procedure with but one lesson, though others struggle throughout an entire season. Baring the unforeseen, I’m scheduled for another lesson later this week. I hope I get it, but if not, I’ll have time for yet another lesson. Please cheer for this time- and water-wrinkled rooster, ‘cause I now know I ain’t no spring chicken, try as I might.



Leave a Reply