Saturday, 17 October 2015

It'll Be Fun They Said.....You'll Love It They Said.....


Before winter sets in, I have to tell you about the beautiful Saturday we spent a week ago at Parc des Rapids in Montréal.  The Park is about a 15 minute drive from our apartment, but it reeks of "country" so it hasn't been on my 'must go' list having no shops or art galleries.  But......being a gorgeous autumn day, and wanting to do something relatively healthy, we decided to go for it.

Birds and water
The park is known as a refuge for migrating birds, sheltering over 225 species, including the largest heron colony in Québec. These might or might not be them.  But they're birds, that's for sure.

But, here comes the scary part.......

Peace, tranquility, and then........ DANGER...... you're coming to the Lachine Rapids.  RAPIDS.  No more picnic tables and little signs explaining the vegetation and wildlife, but water.  Very very cold, fast water.

Dream sequence (wavy).  All of a sudden, my mind goes back many many years....not to a previous life but to this life......OMG...the Lachine Rapids White Water Rafting Episode.  I try hard not to remember......but it's stuck in my head......I got in the raft......I was told it was safe and fun.......

Warning for those who understand French.
 .....all was going so well for about the first 15 seconds and then the raft just folded and everyone, even the guide, was tossed into the water.  Everyone except Joe that is. He was in the very front of the raft thinking we were all having such a good time until he looked back and saw he was alone.

I can't swim.  I was wearing a heavy wool sweater, jeans and boots. I sank.  I sank right to the bottom and had no idea which way was up.  The water was moving too fast and I was spinning. The guide had told us that in the unlikely event we ended up in the water, to keep our mouths closed and eventually the force of the rapids would bring us downstream.  Well that was true.  I was tossed and turned and eventually met up with the raft. Someone hauled water logged me out of the water.

All this to say, I learned some very important lessons about life and water.
  • While under the rapids I thought I was going to drown.  Overall, it wasn't that scary.  I just thought "huh, I'm going to die".  Well I didn't so it just wasn't my time.  I'm happy about that because I've had lots of fun since then.
  • Always have the guide demonstrate the life jacket on you especially if you can't swim.
  • Rafts are not boats.  They're rubber.  They should only be used in emergency situations and you shouldn't put yourself in that kind of situation for fun.
  • Outdoor sports are not for everyone.  For the same price, I would rather be sipping Champagne in Galeries Lafayette . Dry, safe, and not much chance of dying. Snubbed maybe, but not dead.
  • Never let anyone tell you "it'll be fun" when you KNOW it won't be fun and you'll be in a bad mood for weeks.
  • Enjoy scenery from the shore.  Yes, much better. Or on Pinterest....yes. 

Beginning of the rapids seen from the shore.  On land.  Good.

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