During World War II, some 1700 Dutch men & women escaped Nazi-occupied Holland by crossing the North Sea from the Netherlands to the UK in every sort of craft. They were called the Engelandvaaders. In August of this year three British paddlers, Alec Greenwell, Ed Cooper & Henry Franks, will attempt this hazardous crossing in their memory. The paddlers will be following a route that brothers, Henri and William Peteri . . .
So I got into this conversation the other day. The topic was "Names". Do paddlers you read about in Sea Kayaker magazine inspire you to sign up for events or symposiums? Would you go any way? Maybe when you read that a certain paddler is going to coach it's a great idea to attend to get instruction from the 'masters' so to speak. But what if the 'Name' is only there to present and preside? Should symposiums sort out the green M&Ms for the latest person to paddle across Boyizitbig Bay, or should they save the bowl for a couple great coaches instead?
Every so often someone will tell me it’s a totally boring paddle. Yeah, whatever! I paddle every few days here at Devil’s Lake State Park. It’s bloody boring. To me. Sometimes. Still over a million people come each summer to explore this “boring” lake. It’s what we call being jaded. Besides the sea or loch, or lake is only one part of the story.
It’s that time again. The time where I can’t let another day go by without making one decision or another about my upcoming paddling adventure. This time of course, it's Scotland. Some of it is easy enough. Buy this, buy that, read this, read that.. take notes! What is different is that with a little experience I’m trying to travel as lightly as I possibly can.
This brings to mind my short art college days when one day I was laboring away at reproducing an image of a tree from a photograph. It sucked. I mean, I could see I was drawing what was in the image, but my version seemed dead and lifeless. My instructor knew I was frustrated and one day he suggested I start over. He told me this time to turn my photograph upside down.