Saturday, June 11, 2011

A Transcript

I recorded my blog today, in the canoe while I was busy paddling into a light headwind.

"whoa! that was a seal, really close.
I set out today, off of Magnolia, in Elliot Bay. I was thinking about how I had done this trip when I had rediscovered canoeing. That was some three years ago. I hadn't canoed for almost 30 years, and I kind of wished that I had, and I'm kind of glad that didn't, in the same way that reading 'Moby Dick' in high school because it is required, is a waste of time, while saving it and reading it as an adult, when you're more mature, seems to make more sense.
That seal has just come up behind me to my left, not more than 15 feet away. I'd spotted him earlier and I thought it was a bit of drift log, bobbing in the waves, before it decided to submerge. Then I spotted a second one farther out, maybe a 150 yards. This one is watching me quite carefully...I don't know where he is...oh, there's the mate right now. I think I need to get my camera out.

When I rediscovered canoeing, this is one the first trips I did here in the salt water. I remember how my wrists hurt. My shoulders and arms were fine, but the constant pull on the wrists....There he (the seal) is...oooh he is camera shy. It took nine months for the pain in the wrist to go away by steady paddling, 3 or 4 days a week.

Western red cedar stump. 7 feet in diameter at the right end. The rectangular notch is for the lumberjack's springboard - They stood on a board stuck into that notch while cutting the tree.

This is a great place to come and paddle. Today there is a rising tide. And, the wave action on the rocks is just enough to really damp out any city noise. Even the houses here don't bother me much, they slip into the trees and hillside, into the woods. There's been some landslides out here this winter, like there always is. A pretty good sized one is back in Elliot Bay and there's another under a fine piece of sculpture at the last house on Perkins Lane. Their two neighbors...they're gone now, the remains of their houses are on the beach. I stopped and picked up a pump rotor from an appliance, something I'll put into some artwork. It's always amazed me that the city didn't make those people come and clean up their mess. They built their house on view property that has long been known to be landslide prone, expensive as hell, dumb as hell to build on, dangerous as hell to build on. The city gave them approval...they probably sued the city for giving the approval after they sued the city to give them approval and now their whole shitpile of house is on the beach and they just leave it and walk away. For a couple of years I'd be walking the beach north of here and I'd find window frames, pieces of clothing...and I'd wonder where it came from, until I started canoeing and found exactly where it came from."

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