Tuesday, November 29, 2011
Thoroughly Escapist Part 2 - Back to the Bay.
Daymark off Canarsie Pol, Sunday, 11/26/20111.
I don't know if I can quite count Saturday as part of Escape from Black Friday, Extended Version, but it was nice. We hung out at TQ's parents' place for the morning, eating ridiculous amounts of bacon (his mom had TQ cook the entire packet, with the theory that there would be leftovers for BLT's, ha ha ha), then finally hit the road a bit before noon. We got back to his place around 1:30 or so I decided that before I settled in, it was time for me to go do the ONE bit of necessary shopping that I'd already put off too long. I don't like shopping much under the best of circumstances, and I seriously can't imagine what level of bribery it would take to get me to go to a mall on Friday the 25th - but I was a little more OK with the idea of Small Business Saturday, and...
Yeesh. Every now and then, a person DOES need to break down and buy a new pair of sneakers!
I'd looked in SoHo recently but everything is too expensive and trendy; there's a little sneaker shop near TQ's place and I'd been thinking I'd go see what they had, so I went, and they had, and I bought a pair and a spare 'cause that was their best deal, and yay, now I don't have to go sneaker shopping again for a nice long time. Woohoo!
Shopping done and heading back to TQ's, I finally unwound enough to notice that it was another absolutely spectacular day, too nice for a cube farm denizen to spend curled up on the sofa, even with her honey and a trashy detective novel. TQ works outside these days, and I've done just enough outdoor work to appreciate that when you're doing that for a living, sometimes you DO want to spend your free afternoon curled up on the couch, so when I got back I informed him that it was too nice for me to be inside & that I was going to steal the dogs for a good long walk in Prospect Park and he could come with me or not as he saw fit. He chose "not" but the dogs were totally up for the walk proposition & the three of us had a great afternoon wandering around the park. Indian take-out for dinner, and then TQ let me commandeer the computer to FINALLY watch those 2 last Star Wars movies I hadn't seen yet (jeeze, Jar Jar Binks is every bit as annoying as everybody said he was!) and that was it for Saturday - nothing fancy but a very pleasant semi-lazy, semi-active day. Nice balance, I wish I could achieve that more often. I sleep better when I haven't spent the entire day with my okole parked on a chair. Funny how that works.
Sunday, though...ah! As you may've noticed, after the wrap-up of the 5 Years Around Long Island trip, which was in itself the wrap-up of a very kayak-intensive summer, I'd sort of ditched the Romany and gone over to the dark side to play sailor-gal for a couple of weeks. That was fun, and after that nice little break I was really feeling ready to go do some paddling again. I wasn't organized enough to see if anybody else wanted to go, so my plan was to suit up properly (it was SO tempting to ditch the drysuit, but even if the the air was warm, the water was still cold, and solo paddling just doesn't give you much margin for stupid mistakes like "Oh, gee, I think I'll willfully underdress today, what could go wrong with that?") stay rightside up, and do a shoreline paddle out to Dead Horse Bay. Low water was around 3, there's a great beachcombing beach out there where you can find all these neat old art deco bottles, and I was going to go see if I could find anything new to add to the kitchen window collection, returning to the club a little after dark.
But in the end, Steve H (the "Paddling Chef") turned up with the same sort of loose plan for a good paddle, roughly the same amount of time as I'd been planning to spend on the water, just leaving out the beachcombing to get back to the club by 4, and that all sounded fine to me. We ended up just going out around Ruffle Bar, headwind out, a short break off the island for tea & a snack & then home with a nice tailwind helping us along. The winter birds are in - the brants, who've been arriving for a couple of weeks, have been joined by the buffleheads, and we saw a pair of loons, too. It was a pretty low low water and the raccoons were out taking advantage of that (somebody once told me that if you saw a raccoon out in daylight, it was probably sick, but if you live on an island, and you like digging for clams, I think you are going to know when low water is and be out there when it happens). No seals yet, but we're definitely starting to keep an eye out for them. We did a little rolling before we crossed the channel from Canarsie Pol back to the Paerdegat, we got back to the club with enough light left for me to do a good washout of my boat (which was still full of sand from my minor launching misadventure at Georgica Beach, and just as we finished putting the boats away & getting ready to leave, the sunset turned all spectacular.
Wildly exciting? Maybe not - but I don't think I could've have asked for a much nicer end to the Thanksgiving weekend.