Below are Alan C’s thoughts concerning nature, peace … and reversing. Many thanks for the account.
“With Richard Andrews coxing, we reversed out of the slipway into Paddy’s Lane using the Dunster reversing technique. Apparently, this was discovered by accident one day, when Rob pulled one stroke as the boat left the slipway rather than one row backwards, thus setting the boat up to continue backwards into open water.
Richard then guided us towards Dilham up the River Ant. He shared his knowledge about where he often sees otters –though we were not so lucky today. Later shouts of kingfisher and barn owl were accompanied by shouts of unicorn and laughter.
With Alan Collett in the Cox seat we lined up for a straight run under the bridge at Wayford under the A149, ten powerful strokes, quickly pulling in the oars and shooting through against the wind. Stephen Perkins coxed the start of the return leg, rotating positions with Rob Dunster whilst Tony Bolderston maintained the bow position.
We shared our picnic fayre, including banana cake and dried apricots. At times we also shared banter. At other times, there was silence whilst we listened to nature or listened to the sound of the boat gliding over the water to the rhythm of one clunk at the end of each stroke – a lovely sound!”