Jolly boating with her


To celebrate a 21st birthday we hired simple boats and went canoeing on a quiet stretch of the Norfolk Broads.

The birthday girl and her teenage brother and sister each paddled their own kayaks. Mrs R and I shared a substantial Canadian canoe, like two grizzled trappers looking for muskrats and beaver in the northern forests.

Mrs R wanted to take some photos, so I allowed her to take the front seat with the best viewing position. I sat at the back.

In a narrow canoe it is quite hard for the person at the front to see what the person at the back is doing. It is the job of the person at the back to steer the vessel. I am stronger and heavier than Mrs R, so one of my strokes with the paddle was equal to three of her strokes. This meant that I only had to do 30% of the work, plus the occasional dab in the water to correct the course.

It was quite windy and paddling upstream was hard work for her as I reclined at the stern making the most of the spring sunshine. She also had to jump into the mud to secure the boat when we stopped for a picnic.

I enjoy canoeing.

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