Sunday, April 15, 2007

You're getting older daddy!

Je wordt ouder, papa, geef het maar toe
Je wil er alles aan doen maar je weet niet hoe
Je wordt ouder papa!
Je wordt ouder papa!

Je wordt ouder, papa, geef het maar toe
Want je bent nog snel maar ook eerder moe
Je wordt ouder papa, haha
Je wordt ouder papa, oe!

O, je wordt ouder, papa, geef het maar toe
Je wil er alles aan doen maar je weet niet hoe
Oh nee!
Oh nee, yeah!

Song and Lyrics - Peter Koelewijn, 1977

In one week I had 3 confronting kayak-related moments that made me realise learning doesn't go as fast as it used to...

1. The international radiotelephony spelling alphabet (also known as the NATO-alphabet: Alpha, Bravo, Charlie ...)
About a year ago I had to sit for the examination for a VHF-license. It's not very complicated, you only have to learn quit a lot of procedures and stupid enumerations by heart. E.g. the international spelling alphabet. I rehearsed the NATO-alphabet with my (then) 9 year old daughter Lieke, in the evening before sleeping time. We made a little game out of it, and learned it (both) surprisingly fast. Since the examination I didn't use the alphabet, until last week when I had to program my ATIS-code in a new VHF-radio. I looked after the examination-documents and tested my alphabet knowledge: it stopped at G (Golf). I asked Lieke: she recited the alphabet from A to Z faultless...

2. Balancing a racing kayak
Twenty-five years ago I trained (for one year) with a kayak-club orientated on flat water racing. Before that year I was used to stable touring- and ww-kayaks but in my memory I made the transition from these kayaks into the tipsy racing kayaks within an hour session. Long time ago. Now I am working three weeks on getting back used to balancing the K1. I am going to make it, but it takes somewhat longer!

3. White Water kayaking
Today was the last of 3 clinics on the white water track of Dutch Water Dreams. I will write more on that later this week and also give the organisers direct feedback. At this moment I just want to thank them for the great time! We want more! The clinics were part of a try out for the NKB: "how do you arrange a safe training-session on a competition track?" "What is the appropriate intake-level for the attendants?" and so on. It was also a kind of a try out for me personally: "How do I manage severe white water?" "What's my level?" and "Is it fun?". I discovered skills, techniques and physical fitness are basically sufficient. But adapting personal dynamics to the movement of the river costs a lot of effort. Speaking with my coach: "relax Hans, relax!" I am aware that making this transition takes me more than 3 sessions. The beginning is made!
In the 80's we didn't prepare. When we heard in winter about high water levels: we just rented a car, hired WW-kayaks and went out to kayak WW in Belgium and Germany. No problem with a transition? Did I really learn that much faster in younger years? Or is it all imagination?

Daddy is getting older indeed, but... ;-)


Anonymous said...

when your're quoting Peter Koelewijn (dutch singer/songwriter from ancient times) you really get older Hans.

See you, Gus

Douglas Wilcox said...

Hello does Peter Koelewijn predate the likes of Dutch master such as Trace, Exception, Earth and Fire and of course Focus that I enjoyed on pirate Radio North Sea International, a mere 35 or so years ago?


Hans said...

Hi Guus and Douglas!
Peter Koeleijn is indeed another icon of the Dutch Radio North Sea-period in 60's-70's. Peter K however, is one of the founding fathers of Dutch language Rock and Roll... Not quit my favourite kind of music in my younger years. And now I am beginning to appreciate it. And I even dare to admit... Yes Gus you are right ;-)

Silbs said...

As you get older you get wiser and better as well.