Kayaking adventure almost slips away for reporter and friend

GREEN LAKER REPORTER Ariana Hones, left, and Adele Parks capture a moment of their kayak skills being fruitful as they make it to shore. Their docking skills? That was a different story. Adele Parks photo

by Ariana Hones

“What have we done?” I exclaimed as the double kayak slowly, yet much more quickly than I would have thought, slipped away from the dock and started moving towards open water.

This wouldn’t be a problem, except there was no one in it.

The afternoon on the lake, the first of what I hope to be many this summer, had started off so delightfully.

Green Lake Conference Center and Pierless Boat Rentals were the gracious hosts to Adele Parks and me.

We had hit Big Green Lake with enthusiasm.

Rowing strong.

Whenever I happen to be paddling in a boat, I am brought back to fond childhood memories of pretend Viking ships that were really dining room chairs pushed together.

My brothers and I, conquerors of the living room.

And although those memories are at least a decade old, I feel rejuvenated by this youthful muscle memory.

There is just something about the physicality of moving through water that makes one feel alive.

And this day was especially glorious as the sun was shining on a cloudless, 80-degree day. There also were such few boats out, which made for a relatively smooth excursion.

I say “relatively smooth” because there were some waves. The kind of waves that you don’t think are intimidating when you are safe and dry on shore, but once you are in a low riding sea craft and you have your phone with you suddenly become much more concerning.

Thankfully, Adele and I have had our fair share of time on the water and we looped back and forth around the waters of the conference center with joy, dodging the watery gusts.

We made our way to Sugarloaf Point and tried to orientate ourselves on the lake.

“Now where is the Heidel House?”

“Now where is downtown Green Lake?”

“Now, truthfully, where are we?”

I always forget how expansive Green Lake is.

The water will do that to you.

Humble you down.

Finally, after an hour of discussing what we would do if we saw a shark in the water —and yes, we know that there are no sharks in the water, but still when the water is as clear as it was and you can see all the under-water happenings it makes your imagination go a little wild — we decided to return to shore.

Dragging our hands through the water and dipping our toes in, hoping to attract some fish passing by, we made our way to the dock.

With not much grace, we departed from our trusty vessel and attempted to bring it to shore by ourselves.

A very kind man offered to help, but as I was feeling particularly independent and strong, I declined.

“We can do this all by ourselves!” I declared to Adele.

And no sooner did those words leave my mouth than the kayak started to float away.

Both Adele and I had let go of it thinking the other person was still holding on.

Thus, we provided a brief moment of comedic entertainment as I ran to the other end of the dock to nab our kayak before it floated out to sea.

The grandmother and grandson who were fishing on the side of the dock, as well as the very nice man, thought we were ridiculous.

Eventually we brought the boat up on shore and yes, an employee of Pierless Boat Rentals did come and help us.

Like I said, the water will humble you down.