Welcome to the blog space of Jay and Veronica!
Enjoy your stay, as you enter the brain waves of our lives. Its a wild ride so hang on tight!! :) Come back often and keep in touch!

Muchos Love!

Saturday, March 15

oh boy oh boy oh boy oh boy oh........ :) :) :) :)

YAAAAAAA!  It's like Christmas for Jay today!  I bought my kayak today!!

I found this kayak from an older lady who had been paddling it only a few times on a lake in Waterloo. The condition is virtually mint.   I got it for an exceptionally great price (less than half of list) and most kayaks are still worth about 3/4 their new price after even a few years of use.  The material it's made out of is very unique too.  It has the glossy shine, strength and lightness (weight) of a fiberglass kayak (and two tone color) but the durability and very low price-point of a plastic kayak!

I was worried I might not fit in it because the kayak is geared to small paddlers and women but I found out by small they didn't mean legroom, they meant build, and scrawny ol' me fits the kayak perfectly!   It couldn't be better! Out of all the hull designs, types of boats in every which way I couldn't have found a better deal and a better kayak to suit me.

It's perfect for day-tripping, waves up to several feet (so I'm told) and also great for excercising purposes which is what my main purpose will be!

YIPEEEEEEEEE!!!!!!!!!!!!! :)

Wishing I was leaning into a tight turn on water, not my living room floor! (this is how you spin on a dime in a kayak!)

My car is a little dirty but that's winter for ya!

Look at those lines on the stern deck. Very one of a kind and unique!!

Tuesday, March 4

Jay's Paddling Passion - a new kind of paddle!

Put a paddle in my hands and I'm at peace.  Just me, the water, my vessel and the paddle slicing through the water.

Well, theirs been a new paddle in my hands recently.  A paddle that I've been wanting to try for many many years (so I've been told.)

The Kayak Paddle.  I've always been excited by kayaks and anything kayak related.  So this past summer I tried it  out a few times, and I absolutely loved it!  So much so that I'm going to buy one this spring and use it several times per week, for morning excersice and a few nights or Saturdays for pleasure!
The kayak has been described by others as being the most romantic paddling method, and as being a boat that makes you feel one with the water.  As corny as it sounds... it's true.  When sitting in a canoe, you sit on top of the water like sitting on a chair.  When sitting in a kayak, your legs are acually below the waterline.  Very cool!  Waves roll over the deck, water drips off your paddle onto the spray skirt keeping you dry, your hands dip into the water on the odd stroke into a wave... ah.... :)  Is it spring yet?
So here's a few pics.
This is the Kayak I'm looking at buying.  It's a Necky Manitou 14' made out of recycled plastic:

With doing piles of research into boats, equipment etc, I've come to realize that a tonne of research goes into paddles and paddle design, almost more so that boat and hull design!
Here's some examples:

This drawing shows how an asymmetrical designed paddle is smoother and more efficient in the water.  The orange half of the blade is the same surface area below the water level as the blue half of the blade.  A paddle that is not designed assymetrical would tend to twist in the water as the bottom half of the blade would be taking on more water area than the top half... crazy!

This drawing shows how the cross section of the blade is important for water flow around the blade to prevent turbulance and vibrations but yet maintaining a powerful stroke.

So that's an intro to the Kayaking world. It's a cool sport, lots of cool people out on the water and Ontario is one of the best places to live in Canada for varied water bodies. Anything from large waves in the Great Lakes to ponds to rivers and whitewater. Fun fun! :)

To give you an idea of my dream kayaking trip, see this beautiful online slideshow:

Saturday, March 1

Wicked weather

I thought this might be a suitable post while we may be enjoying or grumbling about our Ontario winter storms.

For those who have been over to my place you will likely remember this photo hanging up in large print.

This photograph was taken by photographer Jean Guichard! The photo was taken on Thursday 21 December 1989 and is of the Lighthouse la Jument found on the Atlantic coastline of France!

For Veronica and I, having this photo in print at 2 by 3 foot large, it's often a conversation piece with visitors. I've never known the true story so finally thanks to our latest visit from Mom and Dad Hart we looked it up. I thought the story interesting enough to share with you all:

The photograph and the lighthouse:

French photographer Jean Guichard is best known for his explosive ‘Wave’ photograph of a lighthouse, off the coast of Brittany, France, showing a keeper at the door about to be engulfed by a titanic wave. The photograph is truly one of the most recognizable lighthouse photographs in the world.

When first seeing the famous photograph, most people assume that the lighthouse keeper must have been killed. In fact, the keepers had been living in fear of death during the 1989 storm and at one point had taken refuge in the lantern room of the tower. Waves the night before had smashed through the lower windows of the tower, causing the structure to flood, washing away everything in its path including the television, table, chairs, coffee maker and even the refrigerator.

The keepers in fact were waiting to be rescued by helicopter. As Jean Guichard’s helicopter approached the tower he was unaware that the keepers were waiting for a rescue helicopter. Guichard was simply there to take photographs of the waves pounding the structure. The keepers heard the sound of the helicopter and naturally assumed it was the rescue helicopter. One of the keepers opened the lower door of the structure and as he looked up at the helicopter and realized that it was not the rescue chopper, he also realized that a giant wave was about to engulf the tower. He immediately turned about and pulled the door closed behind him. Had he not done so at that second, he surely would have been killed. While all this was happening, Jean Guichard was busy taking photographs as fast as he could click the camera, thus capturing on film the most dramatic action shots ever taken at a lighthouse.

As written by Timothy Harrison in Lighthouse Depot (May 18, 2001), Wells, Maine

For your interest, here is a set of pics also taken by Jean Guichard: