After I had collected all of my things, which were floating away from me in several directions in the ocean, I placed everything in the sand. I was careful not to do it too close to the water. mindful of the tide. I tipped my Oru kayak on its edge, and drained the water out of it. It's twelve feet long, so it was a stretch. At least there is a space which allowed the water to flow out. Trying to salvage everything was stressful, and I felt self conscious. I should have thanked the people in the sailboat, I think they were drifting my way to check on me. They probably saw the whole thing. It happened so fast. I was probably in shock. I had packed a couple of rags to wipe the kayak down; they were wet and covered in sand. I needed something clean and dry, so I used a small towel.
I was very fortunate that all I lost was my shoe. That short experience really shook me up. I felt kind of overwhelmed with the cleanup. I got it done, though. I had to vacuum out the car the next day, which is par for the course. I drove home barefoot. I had been planning to stop at my mechanic's on the way home, but instead needed to pick up a change of clothing and shoes before going over there. I didn't want to show up barefoot, or wearing one shoe.
A strange thought floated through my head as I was getting ready to leave the beach. "At least my kayak is still alive," I heard myself think. "How materialistic," a different side of me chided. I felt like my intuition had clearly warned me to go home, a couple of times. I thought I was being lazy. The adventurous side of me fought my gut, and won. Next time I will listen to my inner voice. It made me understand why there are so many accidents with hikers and outdoors people. Nobody thinks it's going to happen to them.
Back to being relieved that my kayak wasn't damaged. It is my favorite toy, I must admit. "At least I am alive," I corrected myself. I had no idea that my kayak would feel like a paper plane in the ocean when a small wave hit it. The manufacturer makes it clear that these kayaks are for still waters and lakes, yet I thought that I could handle it. How foolish. Paddling around the marina had given me a false sense of security.
Had I not packed my pouch in the dry bag, I could have lost my keys, debit cards, identification, etc. I need to make more spare keys and keep them in a safe place. I am also glad that I didn't bring Lula. She had wanted to go. I knew it wasn't a good idea.
I did have a life vest on, and I tightened it before boarding. I stayed calm and remembered what I had seen in the safety video. They stressed hanging on to your paddle. Mine hit me in the mouth and I had a slight fat lip, with a little bit of blood.
I talked with a senior kayaker in the parking lot as I left. He was very wise and understanding. He told me that the canoes they rent out capsize in the wind, too.
More about him in the next post...
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