Sunday, May 24, 2020

Almost Forgotten Memories

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"When I'm [on the water] it's like being weightless. I miss being weightless."
 - Andrew Wiggin, Ender's Game, by Orson Scott Card

If all has gone to plan, by the time you're reading this, I will have made my first foray out onto the water in my new kayak.

It was inspiration from last summer that led me to this point, led me to deciding to buy a kayak. While I was in Alaska, I took full advantage of opportunities to go out on the water. There, it was a tandem, but it stirred up memories of childhood summers spent in Colorado, where I attended a camp for which I was really too young to truly enjoy myself, but still managed to find moments of joy.

Something I've hardly told anyone... we, as a family, attended the camp for five years. And on the final night each year, I experienced something that I wouldn't have words to describe for most of a decade. I had my first lucid dreams. I scarcely remember what they were about--over two decades gone now--but those five dreams in those five years

It is not uncommon for dreams to run like a television series... episodes spanning several nights, which... may not be consecutive.

from Serial Dream and Repeating Themes
were five parts of the same story. Not only were they my first lucid dreams, they were also my first sequential dreams.

It's no small wonder I've found such benefit in my dreams since those days.

I was still driving Eddie when we got home, so it was no surprise to anyone when I decided it would be a Oru Kayak that I would buy. Only their conveniently-timed latest campaign kept me from dropping nearly two grand on a kayak (though if I persist in this joy, I think it's likely I will upgrade to a sturdier and costlier version).

I've had my eyes on Oru almost as long as I've been enjoying hammocks, as Oru and Kammock frequently show up in the same business incentives, along with some other companies I've made purchases from, like Peak Design. If they aren't sibling companies, then they must be cousins or friends, sharing goals on influencing the world for the better, but having different approaches.

So I bought their new Inlet and a four-piece paddle (it arrived late winter, a couple of months before it was expected). I passed on their other gear: I found a more colorful life-jacket for nearly half Oru's price, grey and yellow instead of just grey. I also found air sacs for less. I'm still looking for a bilge pump--there's only one available in my area for purchase, and it doesn't float!

"When I'm [on the water] it's like being weightless. I miss being weightless."

- Andrew Wiggin,
Ender's Game,
by Orson Scott Card
I've had the Inlet up a couple of times before now, just setting on the lawn, working in the folds. It worries me, whenever I look at the pictures, that the side-walls on the open-cockpit seem so low, but when I actually sit in it, they're reassuringly higher.

I hope nobody tries to stop me, in the midst of this quarantine, from using a public boat launch onto a public body of water. I've done thorough homework, there shouldn't be any permit necessary to do what I'm doing; word of mouth suggests there is, but all the state and county information pages I can find disagree. There used to be a state-wide permit required for all boats, regardless of length or propulsion, but that seems to have been discontinued for unpowered (or rather, human-powered) boats under a certain length (of which my kayak definitely applies).

So here's to the open water, the peace and quiet and weightlessness of it all. And maybe I'll see someone else out there with me in the familiar white-and-orange.

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Kit:
Boat: Oru Inlet (purchased through Kickstarter, available here)
Paddle: Oru Standard Paddle (purchased through Kickstarter, available here)
PFD: Onyx Outdoor MoveVent Dynamic Grey/Yellow (purchased from DSG)
Air: Harmony Vinyl Small Rec Bag (purchased from DSG)
Phone Case: pending
Bilge Pump: pending

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