Monday, February 15, 2010

Urban paddling

I was moved to go for an early paddle on Sunday morning, so I lurched out of bed at about 7.30 and took the wave ski down to Marieville Esplanade. There is a small beach and a large yacht club. I tried the beach first and the water seemed a bit industrial. I hopped in the car to drive further down the river when I saw Ned and his mum Sharon walking the dog. Ned is in Marcus' grade at school. They just moved into an old house in the street on Saturday. Sharon told me a good place to launch, so I turned around and went back to the yacht club. There is a nice bit of shelving gravel where they launch their rowboats, so I put in there. The water was like glass. I spent about 40 minutes paddling out beyond the moored yachts, over towards Battery Point, then back towards Wrest Point. The surface had freshened up by then with occasional wakes from larger craft out in the river, but it was still very pleasant. Looking back to shore I could see that I was only about 200 meters from Coles Sandy Bay, our supermarket. One of the yachts had been recently and badly painted orange, and its name (apparently written with a fat felt pen) was Orange Drama.

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Once I was back on land I dried off a bit and popped in to see Sharon and Ned's new place. Ned's dad Barney is a professional demolition man. He has a decent sized business, taking down buildings and structures. And he loves it - he told Elf once that although his family hoped he would go into law, "I just love blowing things up". He was very matter-of-fact about pulling the back half of the house off and starting again. I'm impressed that they can see so clearly what they want to do. When I look at a property I can't even look beyond ugly curtains.

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