Boating with Birds: Senior Kayaking Trip

Written by Heidi Blythe (Class of 2022)
Photos by Naomi Seng and Thuy Nguyen (Class of 2022)
Video by Thuy Nguyen (Class of 2022)

“Live in the sunshine, swim the sea, drink the wild air.”

Ralph Waldo Emerson

The chirps came in bursts, bringing wonder to the students’ faces. The birds were calling to one another in that beautiful way they do, the songs coming from different trees around the lake. Equipped with life vests and paddle blades, the seniors and some teachers glided gracefully through the water with kayaks in search of their feathered friends. Looping around the entirety of the lake, a slow journey that took around two hours, they breathed in the wild air and relaxed under the sky amongst nature.

Aurora began to usher in the morning of October 2nd when the seniors boarded the cars to bring them to Sonoma County’s Spring Lake Park. So pleased and overjoyed to find themselves on the first class excursion of the year, the seniors infused the surroundings with their delight, and rushed towards the kayaks lined up neatly along the water’s edge, eager to begin paddling. Many of the students were beginners in kayaking but with the help of two kayaking instructors, Heidi and Stephanie, the girls successfully entered the lake with no incident.

Paddling around the lake, the students and teachers encountered white herons, swans, mallard ducks and even a turtle sunbathing by the shore. The willow trees rustled in the breeze, dragonflies kissed the water surface, and flowers bloomed, all of them pieces of heaven on earth. Gazing outwards towards the sky and lake, the students’ senses were awashed with the ​​excitement, wonder, and awe that nature often evokes. Later, the students and teachers of DVGS filed back into their cars and ended their trip with a nice lunch before heading back home.

Special thanks to our teachers, Jin Jr Shi, Ms. Preston, Ms. Phi, Ms. Ashley, and Ms. Yee, for driving us, and Heidi and Stephanie from Sonoma County’s Spring Lake Park!

*Masks were off only on the water due to safety concerns (i.e. suffocation in the case of drowning). COVID-19 precautions were fully maintained otherwise.