The Talic version of Customer Service

An email from a customer showed up to say: 

Hi Jeannie, I purchased your Talic Kayak Condo (Single) storage rack. I have not opened the package I received. What is your return policy?  I don’t think I want to get into kayaking after all.  Thanks, Tom

Oh, I couldn’t leave that alone.  Not try kayaking or canoeing?  I love kayaking and canoeing!!

Jeannie:  You can certainly return the Kayak Condo. 

Just curious, why aren’t you going to give kayaking a try?  It can be  whatever you want it to be!  Some love the thrill of the white water (not me!), some like to explore down twisting, gentle rivers (fun!!) and many just relax on the water.  That’s me most of the time. I live too far from the Adirondacks to kayak like I would like, but we do have a Finger Lake right here. Sometimes after a long day at work, my husband and I make that extra effort to get the boats on the car, drive to the lake, and get out onto the water. Being on the water, paddling slowly, relaxes me. And the ice cream after always tastes so good.

But it’s not for everyone.  Do what makes you happy!!

Tom:  Thanks for the quick and inquiring response. Why don’t I give kayaking a try? Jeannie, my response is that I’m not quite sure I want to spend a lot of money on a new sport that I might not be capable of handling, enjoyably, as I age. I’ll be turning to age 69 this year and I want to be in a sport that my body can handle as I age. Correct me if I’m wrong, but kayaking seems to be a sport for younger, more able-bodied people. I’m in great physical and mental shape at the moment. Just don’t know how long that would last. I notice how tennis players a bit older than me have slowed down on the courts. Plus, I have enough else to to do keep me satisfied. I have tennis, biking, a gym membership, am trying to learn Spanish, and will be going on a London vacation in September. 

Jeannie:  Wow!  You’re running circles around me Tom, and I’m 59! Tennis, biking, working out?  That’s all really high-energy activity! You better take up kayaking just to rest 🙂

You are wrong though, kayaking is not just for the young and able-bodied. That’s why I really like it.  Anyone can do it, at just about any age, even at 69, and beyond. 😉

I tried to get our local school to add it to the Physical Ed program. The high school is right on the Owasco Outlet, just a few paddle strokes from the Owasco Lake. Kayaking is great because it doesn’t have to cost a lot, you can do it alone or with friends, and you can continue to paddle as you age. Not so with football! But, you know high schools and their football. How many 50 and 60 and 70 year olds are out there playing football?  

I would suggest you try out some boats. Be wary of the big flat kayaks they sell at Dicks, BJ’s, and the like. They may look fun to start out with it – stable too. But they are so wide, it takes too much work just to keep the dumb things going straight! You can get a really stable boat that still paddles and tacks nicely through the water. Another thing to consider is how heavy the boat is. If you had to lift the boat yourself onto the top of your car, how much can you lift, now and in the future? They make some really light kayaks, the one that comes to mind is SlipStream. One model is only 10 pounds!

I didn’t learn to paddle until I was 50, and I still consider myself a novice.  I really don’t get out there that often. I do enjoy it when I do, and therefore encourage everyone to give it a try. My motto is choose something, anything, that makes you happy inside. Just live!! 🙂 Sounds like you do!!

It was nice talking with you – keep active, enjoy life! 🙂 If you have a free moment, try kayaking. 🙂

Tom:  Hello Jeannie,

I’m pleased to report that you, the organizer for Twin Cities’ Paddlers, and my first on-the-water experience in a kayak today persuaded me to take the plunge and purchase a kayak. I bought a Perception Carolina 12 after getting back from the lake. So, I won’t be returning your company’s kayak storage rack after all, and you can tell your boss that you are partly responsible for encouraging me to rethink whether I should try kayaking. I hope you get a promotion.

I am excited. When making my decision, I kept thinking about what you told me, my experience on the water, and that Wes, the organizer for Twin Cities Paddlers, told me that you only live once. Thank you for your encouragement and for sharing your thoughts on kayaking with me.  

Jeannie:  I don’t know Wes, but I couldn’t agree with him more!! Life is for living – so very happy for you 🙂

by Jeanne Tucker