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The Unsolicited Kayak Instructor of Town Lake (For NRS Duct Tape Diaries)

Town Lake was renamed Lady Bird Lake in 2007 in honor of the former first lady, regionally renowned for conservation and philanthropic efforts. No disrespect to one of Texas’s favorite first ladies, but I still call it Town Lake. As a lifelong Austinite, I’ve stomached enough change that I’ve decided I can afford to leave myself a shred of good ol’ Texan stubbornness. The other reason is that it’s not the former first lady’s real name. Her husband, former President Lyndon B. Johnson, gave her the nickname Lady Bird. If they had selected Claudia Alta Lake as the new name, I might feel differently.

Paddling in an urban environment can feel a little incongruous to most people’s main motivation for paddling—to get away from civilization physically or mentally. Instead of dwelling on either the sparse, undeveloped sections of natural environment still to be found or the monuments of change represented by erections of glass and steel inundating downtown, I’ve found my favorite way to enjoy this dammed section of river is by bothering other paddlers.

(to continue reading, head on over to Duct Tape Diaries)

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