I tell him what to do...that's how I steer!
Today we enjoyed our first seawater adventure....kayaking! We drove to Beaufort Paddle (about 40 min away), where Tom & I and Gord & Annie rented tandem kayaks for a half day. Brian & Jill put their kayak in the water along with ours, and we were off to explore the Rachel Carson Reserve, an area that's used as a living laboratory between the town of Beaufort and the island of Shackleford Banks.
Tom and I were definitely the novices at kayaking compared to the other two Beta 4 couples. That, along with Tom's arm injury from last summer, meant that we were often trailing behind and/or zig zagging along the shore. We had a great time anyway, and were thankful for patient and loyal friends who didn't seem to mind our inexperience, and were very helpful in giving suggestions to make it easier for us.
After awhile, we decided I should move to the back, as the rear person is responsible for the steering, which was hard for Tom with his arm. At one point, we were about to hit Gord and Annie's kayak, so I told Tom to paddle differently. One of the experienced kayakers laughed and said that I, not Tom, was supposed to be doing the steering. My response was, "Hey, I tell him what to do...that's how I steer!" Anyway, regardless of who's steering, I think we make a pretty good team, and have kept our boat afloat for 30 years!
Brian and Jill informed us that if we went out while the tide was going out and came in while it was coming in, we would have a much easier time maneuvering the waterways. Therefore, we took off around 8:30 in the morning, and came back about four hours later. Needless to say, we did not kayak for four hours, but spent much of the time out of our boats, exploring the waters and beaches of the area.
The birds and little flying fish were entertaining, and the baby shark (about three feet long) that swam right past our kayaks made for a little excitement as well! We spent a lot of time looking for shells and sand dollars in the quiet, clear waters, finding tons of live sand dollars (which are to be left in their natural habitat), and a couple nice dry (or dead) ones to take home. (Unfortunately, Tom forgot I had told him to hold mine in his back pocket, and he sort of smashed it to pieces when he sat back down in the kayak...oops!)
We arrived back at the beach house by around 2:15, and relaxed in the pool, on the deck, and around the house until evening. For dinner, we drove into Swansboro on the mainland for seafood at the Icehouse Waterfront Restaurant. We enjoyed a delicious meal followed by a walk on the waterfront.
Back at the beach house, we poured a drink and had a toast to Gord and Annie for 35 years of marriage...happy anniversary you two!!