Bad trip

We got your basic politics, left and right.  War, of course.  That damn Ebola thing.  HK protesters.  Ravens, Orcas and all the other wild things.  We got Sal and me, of course. Fiddich.  Book club is usually good for a post….and it was…for Sal…and, indirectly, me. Very good, thanks to Eileen, actually (good feedback from a beta reader).  And we have the recalcitrant Honda engine that I fixed once but it coughed up another hairball and required a re-do today so that could be woven into a story….but……..

….something else today….

…something sad.  Bad trip.

A 50 year old guy drowned the other day somewhere in the near vicinity.  He was kayaking.  Alone.  We learned about it when the Coastguard flew it’s big Chinook over our heads the other night while it was doing a shore search.  That usually means what it did – someone was lost at sea. Happens.

Happens 2 out of three years and that is just counting around here.  Including the whole coast, I am guessing at maybe a dozen a year?  Hard to say.  Two more died a couple of days later just a few miles away when a barge sank so that is three within hours of each other.  The sea is unforgiving.

The guy I am referring to was NOT someone we knew.  As the Coastguard did their thing that night, his identity wasn’t even known to them and, when we inquired the next morning, everyone acted as if it was ‘confidential’ and none of anyone’s business.  The officials were not forthcoming even when we told them where we lived and that we would go out that day and look.  Their ‘official’ position seemed silly to me.  There are people out here. They should be contacted.  Maybe we could be of assistance………?

Anyway, we went out the next day and covered the same basic area that the Coastguard had during the previous night on the assumption that searching at night from a helicopter 300 feet off the ground was not as good as searching from a small vessel that could bump the shore while moving about in broad daylight.  But we found nothing.

As we were finishing our effort there was a woman on a dock walking towards us.  We were crawling along the last stretch of shoreline.  We stopped.  We spoke.  She was one of his friends.  She described him.  The guy WAS someone we knew, after all!  He was a nice guy and such an avid kayaker that we would often see him when we were out and we had passed a few salutations of greeting and a bit of minor chit chat now and then over the past few years.  We knew him.  He had been out kayaking again.

We knew him enough, anyway.

I am glad we both had the compulsion to go looking for him the next day.  It was obviously not meant to be but it was better that we added our efforts to the search.  We will probably have to do it again some day, I am afraid.  The nature of things makes claims now and again and this time it was a kayaker who loved the nature of things.


2 thoughts on “Bad trip

  1. Sad.
    But he was enjoying where he was and what he was doing.
    Which is more than most people can say.
    Heart attack, sudden wave, hypothermia, who knows.
    Very good of you folks to go out and search on your own initiative.
    I shake my head at the “official” doublespeak that I have recieved from police or anyone in “authority” when asking them simple, direct questions about something causing public concern.
    Deliberate obsfucation only seems to make the publics concern worse.
    A certain mindset seems to enhance one’s chance at becoming a police officer, customs officer, fisheries officer, military, etc…
    Not my choice of profession.

    I like to think for myself.


  2. A very compelling post. Mostly such sad reports arrive in the media with all the immediacy drained out of them. Fifty seems so young to pass away.


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