The tail wind grew stronger throughout the day. Waves wooshed me along at fantastic speeds. The sun made the world bright and hazy at the same time.
A fin emerged from the water ahead. What was it? Was it garbage? Was it a diver’s flipper? No diver would be out in this weather. Could it have been a sacred dolphin? I only saw the fin, if it was a dolphin I would have seen more. Maybe it was a shark. I looked around to see where the dolphin would next emerge.
A few moments later I saw it again in the same place. It wasn’t a dolphin.
Continuing forward at full speed I passed about 20 feet from it. The agitation in the water made it hard to see. It was probably garbage. It was about 100 yards behind me when I decided to go back and investigate. I turned into the wind and fought for every one of those yards.
For a moment, there were two parallel opposing fins angled away from each other emerging from the water a couple of meters apart. Hovering just below the surface, sometimes slightly emerging, was an enormous sting ray. A large eye opened for just a moment, only a few feet from me.
I held my position, difficult in the surf, and took care not to get any closer and risk collision.
The creature drifted slowly down and out of sight.
I surfed as many of the waives as I could and learned a new trick. When my bow began to pearl I found that by dropping my torso weight onto my back deck I could pull out of it without losing the wave. With my steering and forward strokes limited from the position, I sometimes lost the wave anyways. But sometimes I held onto it, and I was really proud to have a new skill.
I paddled to Aigio, 18.5 miles, in four hours which was probably something of a record. I’d been making great progress lately, and it was nice to have an easy day with a little bit of extra time to catch up on my writing.
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Current location: 38.261603,22.074267