Another Kayaking Journey!

Today was the last day that my  brother, Randy, had off work.  Since tomorrow is my birthday, my parents wanted to come visit to celebrate and they would pick Randy up as well.  We got up this morning and got ready to go kayaking since we have been having so much fun going out.

We went down to Woodville…we saw that the wind was a little brisk (and it was downright *chilly*!) but we decided to go on out, wind or not! We paddled our way across the lake and then began our way down East River. You can see the wind generators from the mouth of the river……

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Making our way down the river, we could see how the foliage is beginning  to show a bit of color…

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The views surrounding us are so fantastic. Every direction is beautiful. We did see  a couple of Great Blue Herons, but I could not get the camera out fast enough.  The herons seemed a lot more timid today than when we saw them last time.

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Randy and Ben are much stronger paddlers than Michelle and I. They wanted to keep on going down the river, but Michelle and I decided to take another branch of the river back towards the lake.

BIG mistake!!! Michelle and I began our adventure to the west. Then we made a turn and headed north. This is when *it* began….*it* being wall-to-wall lily pads. If I never see one of these again,  it might be all too soon!

Michelle, being the forever optimist, began humming the theme song for Indiana Jones as we w-e-d-g-e-d our way through these tangled messes of frustration! We came across a very interesting structure….perhaps a duck blind…which Michelle went forth to explore.

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As we worked (emphasis on the word WORKED) our way through the pads, the muscles in my arms began to burn like irons. “Michelle,” I managed to get out between gasps for air, “we need to turn back!”

Ahead of us lie hundreds, thousands, perhaps even hundreds of thousands of thick lily pads!

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At this point, I was fortunate that my Michelle tends to be of good cheer….otherwise, I think I might have been smacked right in the head with a paddle!

We worked our way back and it was much easier, as the wind was working with us.  As we headed to the eastward turn, we entered water smooth as glass! We were able to make some good headway, and as we were getting closer to the northward leg, we heard Randy and Ben.  The four of us worked our way back toward the lake.  Since the river zigzags, we found ourselves tormented by wind and rough water when heading north, but calm, smooth water when heading east or west. 

Michelle had a bit of trouble with sore arms, so we told Randy and Ben to go ahead and we would catch up. I was getting very tired and was glad to slow the pace a little!

I was so disappointed that I hadn’t been able to capture a heron. I had taken my little Panasonic camera along with me and just felt so crushed…..

It was as we entered the mouth of the river at the lakes edge that Michelle yelled for me to look up.

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That, dear reader, happens to be  an eagle! Yes, we had an eagle swooping and soaring so majestically above our heads.  Frustration began to mount again as I stopped my kayak and tried so hard to photograph this fabulous bird. (Michelle told me later that she felt so bad as I was nearly reduced to tears because the bird moved so swiftly and the waves in the water were bouncing me about like a fisherman’s bobber)

The eagle dove low and landed in a tree right at the river’s mouth. I zoomed in all the way and when I stopped my kayak, the waves began spinning me around.  I twisted around and aimed as best I could…..the white spot near the center of the photo is the bird’s head.

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The water was choppy and the current was taking us southwest. We had to fight against this to actually go west.  Here is a perspective I have never done before…looking northward from the south end of the lake, ON the lake!

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And here is the little community that is called Woodville. From the lake….

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We got back, after  spending about two hours paddling. We loaded up our boats and equipment and headed home. At home, I had a message that a customer wanted to pick up an order, so Michelle prepared it while I took a quick bath to warm up and then we got it ready to go.

My parents arrived with a pizza and wings a short time later.  My customer came and grabbed his order, then we all went up on the porch and ate and had a great time visiting! It was a chilly 60 degrees, but we had so much fun just talking and laughing.

After eating, my mother brought out a bundle of gifts. Today is Mark and my eighteenth wedding anniversary, so we opened a gift of beautiful bath towels and dish towels. Then I opened  a blouse (one of my favorite colors!) and the most terrific antique butter dish….

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I also received some money from my parents and Randy. Yes, color me spoiled! We visited until about 5:30, when my parents, Randy, and little Fritz (who turned one year old yesterday!) left for home.

What a most excellent day! The weather was my very own made-to-order variety. I have spent many of my birthdays feeling so overwhelmed by heat, but this day…..ah, what a grand one!!!!