From Jory Squibb: Chickawaukie Ice Boat Club
As always Jory brings and interesting and engaging and enjoyable perspective on matters of ice and living. There is lots more of his writing and poetry on the Chickawaukie Ice Boat Club site.
Taking the Plunge Part I is when you actually go through the ice. It’s a particularly nasty prospect, just now as our days shorten, the puddles freeze, the house settles down to its winter temperatures, and that furry-animal pre-season whimpiness afflicts us. Let’s build up the fire, Miranda….no ice-capades for me!
But…..If you read Bob Dill’s wonderful website:
you’ll learn that people exploring ice, either on skates or iceboats, have a pretty predictable 1% chance of going through. Let’s see….I’ve been out about 12 seasons….about 33 days on the ice each year….that’s 400 days on the ice….1% chance of a “bath”…that’s 4 baths…which is the exact number that i’ve taken!…hooray!….i’m not a total numbskull….just a typical gambler….
Taking the Plunge Part II is the harder part for me: the plunge into spending money to be safer…. i’ve recently been turning a few quiet corners: A sort of “You can’t take it with you” calculation keeps coming up, which was never a concern before. There I am: Frozen stiff to the edge of the ice with a sufficient bank account…. doesn’t seem like a wise way to end life’s adventures….also, last year I read an interesting book, called “Die Broke” , which was another influence in this new direction….so today, I went in to our local sports store to try on a Kokatat “Meridian” model dry suit. This sports store is one we dearly love….to try stuff on before heading to the Internet…..
The suit wasn’t clammy, nor heavy, and only a moderate contortion to get into. Doing research back home, it appears that this brand is quite trusted and comes in either Gortex or their own clone, Hydrus which is cheaper and about 80% as breathable. My complaint with my present “wet suit bottom/float jacket top” arrangement is simply that, when put on at home for the whole day, it becomes so clammy and stinky.
Sooo….dear buddies….I’m taking Plunge Part II….you apparently wear these things with some sort of hi-tech first layer inside, and maybe you still wear a float jacket on top for extra flotation. And for “relief” you can get either a front zipper or a seat zipper depending on your affliction! … many many thanks to Bob Dill for his tireless evangelism on this important subject. The rest of his website, when you have the time, is fascinating. You’ll notice that his final reason for buying a dry suit is: “Strongly recommended for people with bad habits”….I don’t know anyone like that….do you?