Everything in life is little bit stressful at the moment. At work I am wrestling with a big GIS and database, with an imminent deadline looming. At home I am worrying about money and various other things and in paddling land I’m trying desperately to improve ready for 4* assessment. I’ve not been in a very good mood for some time!
I try not to speak to anyone at work at the moment and have my headphones jammed in playing pumping trance to try and drown out the background noise of a shared office. I do, however, respond to emails. Amongst the ones to and from the other end of the corridor (“can you shut the database so I can append something?”, “Are you sure that record is in the right place?”, “Try this bit of python code I found on the internet…”), one popped in my inbox from the other side of Kirkwall. It said “Are you coming to yoga tonight?”.
The sender and I have been going to yoga in the winter for some years now (in Orkney you only do inside evening things in winter) and find it rather enjoyable. It’s harder work than it seems on the surface and there are still loads of postures I can’t do. Still, it’s an enjoyable way to spend an hour and a half, particularly as at the end you get to lie on the floor for 10 minutes! I have found other benefits in relation to kayaking. When I have been doing yoga, I am far more supple than when I have not. If I am slumping in my boat, I can think of how to sit up properly as if I was about to do a forward bend. In fact, there are many yoga postures that, if you were to stick a kayak on your legs, would become part of a rolling sequence…
Later, I dragged my (marginally less) grumpy self to canoe polo. Hairyaker started us off on thinking about how to move the ball across the boat using the paddle, in order to retain possession. My polo paddle (Brian) came into his own as he has rough strips on his blades to grip the ball. It was a really useful trick and shall have to try and employ it more in future. Next we moved onto pushing people in with the ball and how to prevent someone pushing you in. This is allowed in the rules! With only 9 players, I was left without a partner and felt a bit lonely! After a few minutes though, Orange van man and the keeper of voles realised this and we played 2 against one, trying to maintain possession and push each other in. The keeper of voles shoved me in, right onto another boat. This is NOT allowed!!! So I rolled up with cries of “DANGEROUS PLAY! YOU CAN’T DO THAT!!!”. Being a rather mild mannered individual, he was rather embarrassed at his own actions!
We spent the rest of the evening playing a game with no one holding back at all! I think because we’d started off pushing each other in, we thought we’d continue. I kept getting dunked and must have done about 4 or 5 handrolls! I kept thinking, “Damn it! I haven’t learnt to handroll and maintain possession of the ball…..” I scored a sneaky goal but I think it might have been disallowed because the opposition keeper didn’t know the proper rules…. I had another couple of shots that were saved by the keeper. The Vole Coach was keen to give me tips about my shooting at half time!
While I have been writing this post, the postman has been. He brought an array of interesting items…
There was a surprise gift from a friend of a mini t-shirt to stick to my van window:
A copy of Ocean Paddler magazine:
Inside which is an article of interest by Kate Duffus (you’ll have to read it!):
Those should keep me busy for a while.
Today I had great intentions of going out for a surf. But when I got up the wind was howling and the rain was falling. My pyjamas seemed far more appealing so I stayed in, had a snooze and drank some tea. Everyone needs a lazy day sometimes!