A sailing miracle
Story by Roger Childs, photos by Pam Childs
Some years ago, on holiday in Noosa, I walked into the unit lounge on the first morning and saw a young lady going past on the river. I couldn’t see her feet and she seemed to be walking on the water!
It’s been done before I know, but I needed to check this out.
All was revealed from the deck: the lass was standing upright on a paddle board and making good speed.
A love affair with the sea and rivers
Children in coastal Queensland move effortlessly from the womb to the water.
Primary school kids at the surf clubs are called ‘nippers’ and quickly learn to swim, surf and paddle. Their eager faces often feature in the local paper.
People of all ages love the water.
There is a small beach below our deck and all day long there is action on the sand and in the water: paddling, swimming, paddle boarding, canoeing, fishing, and plenty of sun bathing.
One morning I was swimming up and down close to the shore, and passed a couple with their eight month old son.
He was doing a vigorous dog paddle. He wanted to do what you were doing. said Mum.
On the water
Around the rivers and canals there are hundreds of homes on the shoreline, and they all have their own jetties.
In contrast, there are also a number of less well-off folk who live on house boats, especially on the north side of the Noosa River near Tewantin.
At the higher end of the social scale, there are some beautiful vessels moored in an inlet close to Noosa Heads.
Meanwhile for the tourist, it is possible to hire anything from a paddle board to a flash fishing launch.
Water craft of every description
From first light Noosa folk and some visitors are on the river and the canals.
It’s 5.30 and three dragon boats come charging past our unit. Then there follows a quiet flotilla of kayaks, canoes, rowing boats and paddle boards.
Later on, the noisier speed boats, jet skis and motor launches arrive and churn up the river. Sometimes in the early morning, there is also group training and tuition for rowers, surfers and kayakers.
Then there are ferries: one plies its way regularly from Noosa Heads to upstream Tewantin, and another provides sunset cruises.
For the romantically inclined, there is a goñdola for hire, appropriately named ‘Venezia’, which lays on a leisurely cruise for young lovers and others around the many waterways.
However it is the humble paddle board which is probably the most common water craft.
And occasionally nestling between the feet of the upright paddler, is a dog or a small child.