Steve West SUPs with Blue Chip
|A glorious day for a Thames paddle with our SUPer hero Steve
The sun shone on us as Steve imparted some of his paddling wisdom
such as that elusive skill of how to balance a paddle on your finger.
And that old chestnut , what is the best way to clean your board.
Steve rounded off his presentation with a demonstration on what to do in drought conditions
Now it was time to put in to practice all these newly acquired skills. So we headed
to the water
And one by one set off to see the difference
Alex had to fight off autograph hunters convinced that he was Johnny Depp
Stuart was still using that old one handed paddle technique he loves so much. Lets
hope Steve doesn’t see him..!
Tommy was trying to work it out methodically in his mind before committing
And then Steve spotted me paddling in the old routine, I was busted and couldn’t hide
so I decided to take it on the chin and promised to try harder
Meanwhile, Nigel and his wife had paid attention and were slowly but surely making
their way up stream in an orderly manner.
The whole group paddled on up the Thames past Benn's Island and on past
Platts Eyot and the Hampton School Boat Club
where Jay and Julian were accosted
by a small group of girl rowers from the Boat Club who insisted that they should have a go.
so after much sole searching (about 2 seconds flat) they said OK
Jay and Julian eventually said farewell to the girls and caught the rest of the group
Jay was trying to pull his paddle out of the water while looking cool
and Ellie keeping pace with Jay on his K15
and then Steve caught me out again and I could see that he meant business this time
so I decided to really try harder and not just while he was looking.
By now we had also past Grand Junction Island, Sunbury Court Island and Rivermead
Island and I could hear the murmurings from the group “Where’s the pub he promised us”
then Sunbury Lock came into view where we had a short portage around the Lock and
then we could see the Weir, no not the weir as in water, the Weir Pub..!
We made it and arrived at the Pub some 5km up stream from Hampton Court
What a buzz. So many people at the pub, they had to open a second bar for us.
We mused our craft while we waited for the food orders
we all had a great time explaining to all and sundry at the pub all about Stand Up
and then it was time to head back
down the line to the Sunbury Lock Portage
While the Pleasure cruisers queued up at the lock we slipped down to the lower
side of the lock and headed off.
And before we knew it we were only a short distance from our starting point.
A few of us continued down to have a look at David Gilmour's Astoria boat house
and recording studio.
What a great day we all had. Great company, Great weather and Great to for everyone
to meet Steve and Mandy West, without doubt we learnt so much in just one day.