New Member Welcome Evening – March 2020

69

To take our mind off the radical changes that are happening at the club and elsewhere, I thought I’d go back in time to an idyllic Friday night paddle with our new (and old) paddlers. We had not only seven new paddlers out on the water but three people for their wet induction beforehand. It was really lovely to see Ralph Burton, Wendy Meggison, Sally Wilson, Emma Casim, Natalie Ghosh, Lou Hains, Mary Sullivan out on the water patiently supported by more experienced Swannies. In total we had 15 on the water and since a number of our ’new’ paddlers were already looking very competent, I felt comfortable to lead from the back.

The ‘old’ new paddlers, with all of about three weeks experience, Sally, Lou and Wendy are absolute stars and it really is hard to believe that some of them had never paddled before they attended an Introduction to Kayaking in February. They’re really keen cyclists too and they love to have a laugh.

There was no wind. It was a lovely summer’s evening and a real joy to be out on the river watching the pairs and groups of three, chatting and getting to know each other. It’s easy to forget what a thrill it is for new paddlers to make it to Chidley and back and learn that they’ve paddled three kilometres!

Quite a few people weren’t able to paddle but they came along later.

Here’s Grace Paton’s description of the evening:

“We enjoyed a lovely evening on the verandah last Friday night, meeting some of the new members of our club. We all had a great chat, getting to know a bit about each other & answering a few questions about the river, where to paddle to & where to find a good coffee shop to paddle too. The weather was perfect, the wine was good & the meat cooking on the barbie smelt delicious.

Thanks to the organisers. What a good idea for us to welcome & encourage the new paddlers to join us on the water & enjoy the great facilities of our club.”

Finally, thanks to Andy Hewlitt for providing the birthday cake for the lovely Lisa and also thanks to Emma Kasim for some great photos.