Dipping My Paddle into Research

The title of this post is not a metaphor.

I went kayaking last week as research for my novel. Through the generosity of two friends, one who loaned me her kayak and paraphernalia, and the other who took some time out of his schedule to take me out, I was able to follow a portion of a kayak route that a couple of my characters take during the the course of the story line.

We put the kayaks into the water at Coles Bay on the north end of the Saanich Inlet. It was a beautiful morning, the sun was shining and the water was like glass which you can see in the photo above. We followed the coastline towards Brentwood Bay.  Once we got there, we paddled around a small island and headed back.

As we rounded the island, the clouds began to gather and the wind picked up. I was starting to get tired but the wind was at our backs which helped get me back.  I have a certain proficiency with a paddle and comfort on the water (as result of white-water canoeing in my younger days), but my arms and shoulders were starting to get tired and my butt and legs were feeling the confinement.

It was wonderful to have the perspective of the shoreline from the water. In total we were out for about two and a half hours.  Despite the discomfort, I loved being on the water.

If you have read my earlier posts about being on boats, here and here, you might be wondering if I suffered the effects of my sensitivity to motion. The answer, surprisingly, is no.  For which I am very grateful, as I would like to kayak more.

With that said, the excursion was not without mishap. As we were carrying the kayaks down to the water’s edge, I tripped on a rock and managed to smash my shin, resulting in a goose egg sized bump and a big blue bruise.

Apparently, the physical hazards of research are continuing to plague me.

Yet, I remain undaunted.



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