FTPD – Issue#85

From the President’s Deck

I read with interest the three accounts of the September kayak incident where Andrew Eddy was rescued by a yacht.  The three accounts offered completely different views of what happened, what each person knew and how they reacted and felt as the incident unfolded.  The story highlights plenty of issues for us to think about and I thank the authors for their honesty and helping us to learn from their incident.

Since the last magazine, I’ve been on a two day Guiding assessment weekend, explored the sea caves off Swansea, trained for and paddled the Hawkesbury Canoe Classic, dabbled in some canoe polo, enjoyed some Greenland-style rolling practice and helped with the making of the Club’s e-learning website.  Each experience was a joy and thanks to all who kept me company on these adventures.   Without repeating my soapbox from the last magazine, I can only encourage members to embrace the range of kayaking activities available to them.

I’m pleased to report that the Rock ‘n’ Roll plans are coming together.  Keep 23-26 March 2012 clear in your diaries for another not-to-be-missed event.  Rock ‘n’ Rolls at Currarong are steeped in club folklore and we haven’t been back there since 2003.  This upcoming event is capturing some of the elements of those Rock ‘n’ Rolls from years gone by and, of course we hope this event is fondly remembered as well. 

Headlining the event are three of the finest sea kayak expeditioners.  We will be proudly showcasing the home grown adventurers Stuart Trueman, Paul Caffyn and Sandy Robson. 

To the future.  The club has a rich history, culture and tradition that has been built up by those who’ve gone before us (and some are still around).  Is it possible to make the club better?  What is good about the club and what can we improve?  I figured we could discover the answers to these questions by asking for responses from the broad membership base and draw ideas and issues for the club to ponder.  With this in mind, the committee created an online club survey.  A lot of responses were submitted and thank you to all that replied. Your forthright answers will help the club become better.

My own vision for the club is to see it continue its tradition of running plenty of sea kayaking trips throughout the year and training members up to go on those trips and, of course, to continue to put on the ever-successful Rock ‘n’ Roll.  I figure people enjoy the Rock ‘n’ Roll because of the opportunity to see old friends and make new ones.  My vision as President is to capture some of the Rock ‘n’ Roll magic we all love so much and to try to put it into events throughout the annual calendar.  I want to make events like the annual dinner and the AGM into great days out with trips and training for all grades, a dinner or an AGM at the end and a presentation on a recent sea kayaking adventure.  In doing so, we’ll be able to share some of the special Rock ‘n’ Roll spirit all year round.

In closing, I want to publicly thank some members that I think deserve the recognition.  Thank you to:

  • all leaders and instructors for the trips and training you’ve put on.  This needs to be a standing ovation as the effort never ceases and the rewards to the members are fantastic
  • Campbell Tiley who has become the RnR 2012 co-ordinator
  • Cathy Miller, who has and continues to put in an extraordinary effort to get the basic skills online e-learning website off the ground.  The project is in a very active phase in developing the content of video, images, text and the web look and feel
  • Stephan Meyn, who is generating online ideas and enthusiasm at the committee
  • Dee Ratcliffe, who continues to put in a big effort into the club well beyond the magazine and is a great personal inspiration to me
  • the rest of the club committee, who continue to perform their roles and beyond without nary a reward.

 Keep paddling

David Fisher

Published Edition 85, December 2011

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