Another ‘Flower Ceremony’ with a ‘Thank You’ presentation.
Flower Ceremony and Thanks to Paul
Borrans Park Ambleside Sunday 25 October 2020
From Penrith, over the elegant newly opened bridge at Pooley Bridge, along Ullswater, up Kirkstone Pass in horizontal rain. First view of Windermere, a magical and mystical silver sheen shimmering on the lake. Over the summit and down the pass through the golden colours of Fall. Greeted by a pumpkin on the wall of the Low Wood Watersports Centre car park and a warm welcome from the staff. Sandra and Barbara leaving flowers on the jetty, in the lake and on our lovely, lonely boats. Collecting boas and bling (how could we manage without it?).
At beautiful Borrans Park we meet. Eunice and Sandra decorate the shelter, Donna brings flowers, Roz arrives with an ingenious and unique creation, a long pole with a stuffed yellow glove on the end to ‘hand’ over Paul’s gifts, socially distanced. The unsuspecting guest of honour (Paul) arrives.
Flower ceremony on the beach, all of us privileged to represent our team. Thinking of all our paddling buddies.
Remembering loved ones, family and friends, who we have lost through breast cancer, made more poignant due to the losses and challenges of COVID 19. Na Numa sung, a moment of silence. No hugs, but shared powerful feelings of love and camaraderie.
After the tears, a cheery lift to our spirits, surprising Paul with gifts, a celebration of all he has done for us and with us. Roz expressing eloquently our huge thanks after ‘handing’ over vouchers for outdoor gear, a bottle of Jack Daniels and one of Nick’s extraordinary cards packed full of special Paddlers for Life memories. And, in true Paddlers’ style, for Paul, a roaring Hip, Hip, Hooray, Hip Hip Hooray, Hip Hip Hooray! And then sharing chocolate, cake and drinks, good conversation and laughter.
We brought a smile to the faces of the many people passing by. A dog was particularly pleased to pinch Sandra’s biscuit.
With white caps on the lake, in the rain, hail, wind, sun and rainbows, we commemorated what would have been our usual end of season Paddle in Pink and Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Perhaps it was a little more subdued than usual, but we left with the sun shining over Fairfield, looking forward to 2021 when we hope to hear the heartbeat of our drums, we hope to give each other a hug and we hope to feel the sheer joy and exhilaration of paddling for life, together again in our boats at our stunning Windermere.
Stay safe. Keep well. Take good care. Paddles Up!