The kids have arrived. Dan drove to the Grand Rapids airport on Saturday to pick them up. Fortunately, all the kids and their other halves arrived within 30 minutes even though they live in the east, west, and south areas of the country.
So, our second week here in Pentwater will be spent with our family. We were already in Paradise; now we are in heaven. It’s great to be able to spend time time with our kids. We don’t get to do that very often.
Tuesday was another beautiful day weather-wise which worked out great as it was “Kayak Day”! All seven of us rented kayaks from Pentwater Outfitters. We rented from them two years ago when we paddled the south portion of the Pentwater River. This year, ever the explorers, we paddled the north portion of the Pentwater River. The entire outing took about 3 hours, and I thought it was simply wonderful.
I highly recommend Pentwater Outfitters. Before our adventure, we had supplied the outfitter with each of our heights and weights. I fudged only a little bit – still within the margin of safety. This information ensured we were set up with the right size kayak for each person. While two-person kayaks were available, the three couples in our group all chose to paddle as individuals. We were also given right-sized life jackets for each person. Did you know there are special life jackets for kayaks? These life jackets are shorter in the back and were very comfortable.
As we prepared to embark, our outfitter reminded us of the finer points of paddling. Even though I had kayaked a number of times before, I listened, glad to be reminded. I took to heart his advice to keep the tip of the kayak pointed in the right direction. This allows “technique”, rather than muscle and unnecessary effort, to guide the path and makes the journey more relaxing.
As I paddled or floated along, if I was aimed in the wrong direction, I simply put my paddle in the water and corrected the situation before I got too far off course. I kinda started thinking about all the ways kayaking could be a metaphor for life. I also kept in mind Gregg’s advice to pull back and push forward. This way, different muscles are used, making it more balanced and, again more relaxing.
The current upstream is minimal, requiring some but not major effort. On the way back, after turning around at the foot bridge, sometimes I paddled, but more often, I just sat back and floated, taking it all in, enjoying the beauty around, the blue sky above, the sparkling water ahead.
What a wonderful, peaceful and fun morning! Have you ever been kayaking?