I am a grandmother paddling alone over 2,500 miles from Maine to Guatemala. Along the way I will be:
- telling the story of the children who live in the Guatemala City garbage dump community
- honoring their entrepreneurial mothers
- talking about the success of the Safe Passage model school and
- raising funds for additional grades for the school.

Friday, November 14, 2014

Paddle Day 59: Pleasant paddle over land; Found the Va version of Troy, Me

Deb leaving Gwynn Island
First day of really enjoying the paddling in a long time.  And then arrived in a rural town so similar to my hometown in Maine!

When I looked at my charts and my GPS, it showed that most of the day's paddle was on land rather than water!  That's because the land is being eroded here, and the charts have not yet been updated. In some spots, whole islands have disappeared, and in others the barrier islands have shrunk to sand bars.   In paddling along beside a forest, I could look down into the shallow water and see lots of tree stumps rising up out of the bottom.  I was paddling through what was the edge of the  forest not too long ago.  Now the remains are barnacle covered stumps, with a feathery topping of green sea weed.

Remains of tree stumps
This is a coastline without much development in many places, and it almost seemed tropical in the bright sun.  Maybe some of that tropical feeling was because of the individual climate I had going on inside my wetsuit - hot and humid.

Boat on the water - Cheryl and Billy
In the afternoon, I saw a fishing boat.  When you look at a boat from a distance, you can tell if it is on a collision course with you by seeing looking at the bow and seeing it it looks symmetrical.  This one was coming right for me, so I slowed and changed my course to avoid it.  But then it changed course and was coming straight at me again.  I have heard about some of the "good old boys" fishermen that harass kayaks, but this was a first for me.  I started rapidly paddling backwards to avoid the boat, when it suddenly stopped and the drive said, "Dr. Deb?"  Oh!  It turned out to be Billy and his wife Cheryl, the folks who were providing the landing spot and a home for my kayak!

Marcy arranged the place for my kayak, and showed me a great shirt that should be my slogan for this expedition:  Life is Simple:  Eat.  Sleep.  Paddle.  She also gave me a copy of her father's book: Inaugua, which tells of his adventures when ship wrecked.  So much fun to read, knowing that I had just spent the two previous nights in the boat shop he had built!

I landed, still in Mathews County.  The entire county has no stop lights, no blinking lights, and is as rural as my hometown of Troy, Maine.  Folks leave their doors unlocked, and the keys in the cars (because someone might need to use them).  I stayed at  the lovely Inn at Tabbs Creek with Lori and Greg.  Check it out!
Paddle Day: 59                                                        Date: Nov 10, 2014
Start: Gwynn Island                                                 End: Davis Creek
Distance: 16.9 miles                                                Total distance: 800 miles
Max speed:  4.9 mph                                                Moving ave.: 3.2 mph
Kayak storage:  Cheryl and Billy Battle                      Hosts: Lori and Greg, Inn at Tabbs Creek

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