Time to get the canoes out
17th July 2018
Where are we? Ljusdal, Sweden
We left Stockholm and set off on what we hoped would be our last bit of motorway driving for a while. We have had enough and want to get on to the country roads because although there will occasionally be some wonderful scenery you don’t really get to experience much of the country. A motorway in Sweden is much like a motorway in France, Germany or the UK so you could be anywhere. But once on the smaller roads you start driving through towns and seeing houses and shops and get to see the differences between places rather than the similarities. This has now delivered us to Ljusdal and a campsite on an amazing lake, although with the amount of lakes there are in the country I think maybe the locals are a bit blasé but to us they are all spectacular. One of the activities we wanted to get into on our travels is canoeing so with the lake glistening and beckoning to us it seemed like now was the time to give it a go. We have bought a couple of inflatable Sevylor Tahiti Plus canoes as these can take all of us as they are good for 2 adults and a child. We have life jackets and we have paddles, if I haven’t mentioned it already we literally have all the gear with no idea. Getting ready to go took forever, making sure we had all the gear and that we all were smeared in suncream and then locked up ready to go, then unlocked up because Olivia had no shoes, then locked up again. These are the joys of having 4 children. Halfway on our walk to the beach Ruby realised she had no hat, but I calmly let her know that this was bad luck, we weren’t going back now so she would have to survive without it. We got to the virtually empty beach and started pumping up the canoes when about halfway through the first one I wondered how we would paddle them……without the bloody paddles that we had left in the van. So off I went back to get them, and the hat of course. The pumping was finished, the life jackets were on, we were in the water and ready to go. This was going to be awesome. Then we set off and started going in circles, bumping into each other, fighting the (light) wind and the waves and generally just stopping and starting a lot. But we slowly got a little better and paddled around a bit with Lily and Ruby practising jumping out and getting back in. A bit more practice is probably needed, and we will probably get Ruby to give us a lesson as she is a bit of an expert from the lessons she has had at school. It will probably be helpful to have at least some idea of what we are trying to do. We canoed for about 45 minutes in total but the unpacking and inflating and drying, wiping off sand and re-packing took about 90 minutes so we will probably want to work on this ratio a bit. It was good though for a first run and the girls enjoyed the rest of the time going crazy in the sand and on the diving platforms and generally just having some beach fun. Despite the canoeing, I think that they would probably describe this as a lazy day, the first one probably.
What have we learned? Make sure to put an SD card in the drone if you want to use it for any filming!
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