SURVIVOR GEORGICA POND
By Heather Buchanan
Before there was the iPhone, there was the moon. Pagans looked to the evening sky to determine when to plant or harvest or procreate. Now we look down to the tiny blinking screen which tells us it’s time for the meeting, the nearest Starbucks is two blocks away, or romance is in our future, “RUHRNY?.” A table for two is really a table for four with each person paying more attention to their text messages from other people than the person they’re with.
There comes a point in time when we need to turn off the i-Brain and go back to our i-instincts, and there’s no better way to do that than a full moon kayak trip. This is one of the most memorable events of a Hamptons summer to set off in a group paddle across Georgica Pond to enjoy nature not to mention ogle some of the most expensive real estate on the East End.
The Type A personalities all rush to the forefront in a Water World/Ben-Hur race to get to the other side. Most of the rest of us take a leisurely paddle to explore the small inlets, wave at Ron Perlman’s security guards or photograph the swans. There used to be a very nasty swan named Fred who used to attack people. The worst thing you could do was to scream when he started to dive bomb you, and I saw two women do just that — not pretty. When I asked a guide whatever happened to Fred he said he had been “relocated.”
Once you have your mini not too strenuous work out to reach the other side of the pond, the crew has arrived before hand to set up tiki torches and refreshments. There are also paddle boards there to try out which are cool because they make you look like Jesus walking on water, but of course a Jesus who has balance or else it is soggy Jesus.
I was amazed when our fearless female leader was not only able to do downward dog on the paddle board but even kick up briefly into a head stand. Intimidated, the rest of us sat on the beach and downed wine and chips and wondered where we were going to sneak off to in order to pee.
As the sun started to set the light show which has inspired artists for generations began, the multicolored kayaks glowing on the beach with the pond on one side and the ocean on the other. A properly permitted bonfire was lit, and a s’more fest began. The moon, like a true PR promised celebrity was a no show, but we could still feel its presence.
My favorite touch was in the midst of the cacophony of seaside socializing, our leader brought us back to our i-instinctual selves with a few yoga stretches and a five minute meditation. Which feels like an eternity. As my fellow kayakers sat quietly with eyes closed and peaceful expressions I looked at the fire as my mind wandered. “Wow, she looks so pretty. Only a fit yoga instructor can wear horizontal stripes and still look skinny. And that’s after two kids. Her husband is lucky. All men should marry yoga instructors. Maybe I should marry a yoga instructor. I have to pee…..again.” After a while, however the personal connection began. When the only technology you have to pay attention to is your own breathing you are liberated.
For the paddle back in the dark we were given glow sticks. Mine of course was a perfect bright pink. I put it in my pony tail to light the way for my guy who was doing all the hard paddle work in our double kayak. He said I looked like a tricked out Pocahontas. Georgica Pond seems much bigger at night and while peaceful, more mysterious. Just as I was about to complain about the blister starting on my hand, my soggy Jesus butt, and a sneaking suspicion we were lost, a light started to illuminate the way. Ah, la luna. Owwwooooooooooooo.
And as the night drew on and we realized despite the moon that we were seriously lost, we ended up sans personal technology on the shores of Georgica Pond at a very fancy home. I walked up the long rolling lawn and knocked on the door and asked, “Can I borrow your phone?”