Sunday, August 3, 2008

Kayaking in Mangrove Land

Boy, what a GREAT day in Paradise (August 1, 2008)!! Ken & Sharon (she's my neighbor who does the fabulous stain glass work pictured in a previous blog) took me kayaking in the mangrove system that starts behind my condo. They borrowed a kayak from another neighbor (Frank) so the 3 of us could all go on the trip. We put-in around 8:15 a.m. (roughly 2 hours before low tide) and had a pretty good current for the first hour. Once the waterway became wide, we slowed down & had to paddle in earnest. It was so peaceful & beautiful. Luckily there was a cloud cover, so we didn't get too hot. We turned around about 10:30 and made it back to Ken's truck at 12:30. I probably could have found my way back by myself, but it would have been iffy. It's very easy to choose a dead-end channel & end up miles from where you want to be. As we were paddling back along the mangroves, Ken decided to imitate a male howler monkey. Within seconds of his call, we were answered by some very agitated male howler monkeys that were saying "Leave our women alone!" They were right next to us, and we could see them once they gave their locaton away. They kept howeling until we had paddled around the corner & out of sight. While we were paddling, Ken said he noticed some used kayaks (that looked good to him) for sale on the Boquete Shopping website. I got home & immediately found the kayaks & called Jerry (who had them for sale). Yes, they were still available - an Old Towne Loon & a Perception Sundance (plus paddles & life vests). Jerry & his wife are downsizing so they can go travelling for the next few years. So, I'm the proud owner of 2 kayaks. Now I can take you kayaking when you visit me in Panama. I'm also the proud owner of a 2003 Nissan Frontier 4WD Diesel King Cab pick-up truck. I've been wanting a 4WD (so I can explore birding roads & drive on the beach at low tide). The best way to haul kayaks (especially short ones like mine) is in the back of a pick-up. Jim Kennedy (who sold me the Kia on Craig's List when I arrived here in April) purchased the Nissan thinking he wanted to build his own house & haul building materials. That was too difficult, so he bought a house & now wants an SUV. So I've gone from a Prius to a 4WD diesel truck in one year. Of course, I've also moved from AK to Panama in less than a year.

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