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Around the Island in 80 ks
Tuesday 08 October 2013
Around the Island in 80 ks

In Jules Vern’s novel “Around the World in 80 Days” the hero Phileas Fogg was described as “repose in action”.  No better description suits our very own Viking warrior, Russell, who, in his inimitable laid back style, guided us landlubbers through 3 days on the water in kayaks, over 80 kilometres and 17 hours of paddling around Bribie Island from Bellara in the south west to Bongaree, Woorim then north to Caloundra and south through the Skids and Narrows before landfall back at our launching spot.

While we got smashed at every beach landing and launch, Russell turned up without a hair out of place and the only times he raised his voice were to gently encourage us over the difficult bits with things like ”Go, go, go, paddle Mappo, paddle, point up, paddle Mappo, paddle” and to regale us all with a rousing rendition of “Drunken Sailor”, very appropriate on the open sea, see?


Russell shows the locals how she rises.

Logistics, planning, tide changes, GPS mapping, suggested supplies, camping permits and gadgets were all handled by Parso, not unlike Phileas Fogg’s faithful valet, Passepartout.  Of course, on his return home her indoors reminded him that in fact she knew exactly where all the old charts and maps for our entire passage were, and she also had a copy of Browny’s too.  Passepartout passed out.

There is an old tradition amongst sailors that new crew should always be christened into the sea faring family and introduced to the wily ways of mother ocean early on, so they learn to respect and admire the pristine waters that girt, yes girt, our wide brown land.  Since Mappo was the last member to sign on it was only fitting that he should be the first to undergo this curious tradition and after a tantalising tease in the washing machine off the southern end of the island he was unceremoniously dumped on Woorim beach.  True to form he gritted his teeth, he had to he had a mouthful of sand, and vowed to continue despite a very sore shoulder, mild concussion and lost spectacles.

Dave and Haze formed their own ocean peloton with Dave leading out and Steve frantically paddling in his wake trying to stay on.  We leaned very quickly the difference between a proper kayak and the ones some others of us had with a lead keel and permanent sea anchor.  These guys continued their duel on shore too by engaging in drinking games involving red wine and whisky chasers, just like real sailors, while Russell showed off his texta tattoos which nicely contrasted his painted toe nails, not like real sailors.

The next big excellent adventure could be anything, anywhere.  Not only does CRR help you run and keep fit but introduces you to some really nice people….and forever widens your horizons. 


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