After December turned into a near-complete write-off for paddling, what with biting cold wind storms, record snow storms and too much holiday schmoozing, we had hopes for a return to the water this weekend. But nature wasn't done with us yet, as this week we've had record rain falls which combined with the fast-melting snow pack in the hills to play havoc by flooding out roads and houses.
They've also had an unexpected consequence as noted by this story (and photo below) from the Victoria Times-Colonist.
It seems that Victoria's old sewage and storm water system is designed to overflow onto beaches when it reaches capacity. Fortunately, this doesn't happen often. But one has to wonder who thought that this was a good design concept to begin with. Anyway, the Vancouver Island Health Authority has declared that the beaches in the Victoria area currently pose a health risk to swimmers and bathers, and presumably also kayakers.
The state of Victoria's sewage system has long been a thorny issue for the region. Currently, Victoria has no sewage treatment facilities; our sewage is delivered untreated into the ocean from two sewer outfalls each about 1 km long. Some argue that the ocean currents naturally diffuse the sewage so as to be of no consequence, while others (such as Mr. Floatie) argue that it's shameful that a modern city should be dumping 120,000 cubic metres of raw human waste into the local environment every day. Currently, the province and the city have finally decided that the status quo is not acceptable and are in the planning process to construct the long-debated sewage treatment plant. Maybe in my lifetime they'll actually build the damn thing. But I digress.
So with Richard away, Paula organizing an important family celebration for this weekend, and this morning's weather looking cloudy and rainy, there's no paddle today. Nevermind that all our launch points are literally crappy.
Besides, Louise and I stayed up last night watching the great Simon Pegg series Spaced. We stayed up way too late and this morning we are in much the same condition as our beaches: pooped.