Hello everyone,

I just wanted to give a few details on our first ever Kaizen Round Table House boating trip. Leighann and I flew out to Toronto on July 22nd and were picked up by our great friends Paul and Tara Ferrusi.  We than drove up to Bobcaygeon and the Kawartha Lakes.  After getting to Bobcaygeon we headed to the grocery store and loaded up on food.  We than got dropped off at Happy Days Houseboats on Piggott Lake and began to unload our stuff into the kitchen and bedroom of our luxury house boat.  Captains were chosen for each one of the house boats, Wayne MacNamara was to captain his boat and Terry Franks for ours.  We then met Frank (Owner of Happy Days) and he gave us the run down of everything we needed to know about our boat.  Then came the practicing of docking the boats and getting use to the controls, Wayne and Terry were naturals from the get go.  We stayed at the dock the first night as the rest of our party came throughout the night. IMG_1720

The next morning we set sail for Wolf Island, which is a 3 hour steam from the dock.  We got to go through the Locks systems in the Trent waterways. Trent Waterways was founded in 1833 and today have 44 Locks and 39 Swing Bridges.  It was really cool going through the Locks as we watched the water lower and rise depending on the lake we were entering.Image 2

As we entered Lower Buckhorn Lake we decided to head for Deer Bay and try out the Blob. This is where things became interesting. As we blew it up, all we really could go by was the video from my last post on how to use it.  So Claude jumped in the water and tied it to the boat.  All we could do next was use trial and error method to launch people off the blob.  The first day we set it up it was in the middle of the boat and we tried to jump from the top of the boat and catch our balance on the blob, then crawl out the end. Vary few made this happen, but the one that did make it out got launched at 14 – 16 feet high. That was just enough to entice us to try again in Day 2.IMG_1723

We then docked on Wolf Island for the night were a had an amazing supper.  After we got everything cleaned up after supper we all went out by the fire and got to share in the vision of our Life businesses. It was an amazing night that we got to share with the top Leaders in Kaizen.IMG_1737

Each boat had a designated couple that would cook breakfast and supper for the boat.  These were also a highlight of our trip, the food was incredible and we definitely were never left hungry.  Scott Staley went fishing and even landed a great size pike for supper, even thou there wasn’t any takers.

We talked all night and PDCA our lack of progress with the blob and day 2 was better. On this day we tied the blob to the side but now it was at the back of the boat and we could hop on from the lower level and crawl out to the end.  Their was a few small injuries on day 1 that limited the number of people willing to give it an attempt.  The best for me from the day was this video of Denis Leger doing a complete flip in the air. Enjoy.

Day three’s plan was for us to steam over to Big Island to camp for the night.  This would take a big chunk of our day, so we got up at the crack of 8am started breakfast and wanted to be on the water by 9 at the latest.  As we pushed our boat off the island and started to set sail, we noticed our second boat was floating towards the shallow rocks.  At that very moment we heard the sound of metal grinding against rocks.  Come to find out they had hit the rock pretty hard while backing up.  Claude got them to shut their engine off, we then used our boat to pull them to the middle of the lake to assess the damages.  As you can see by the picture they broke the propeller pretty good.  Happy Days come to our rescue with a new propeller that arrived by speed boat a few hours later. ImageWe had a few hours to kill waiting for the propeller so we decided to throw the anchors down and play a few games.  The ladies on one boat and the men on the other.    Once we installed the new propeller we decided to get our last day of blobing in.  This was by far the best day.  It was like we were dialed in.  A little less air in the blob,  and we were hitting new heights.  A couple of high lights from the blob was watching Terry Franks jump on the blob and fight his way out to the end (which was the toughest part) then get launched.  Another impressive moment was watching my wife Leighann attempt 2 times to make it out to the end without success and getting catch in the rope both times, then attempting a third time with success.  This is a picture of Leighann above the tree line, one of the highest launches of the weekend.

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As we finally got under way to Big Island we were told that the Locks close at 4:30pm.  This meant that we wouldn’t make it thru Lock 31 in time to get to Big Island for the night.  We then found a marina while looking for a few supplies and fireworks.  They didn’t have a lot to choose from and didn’t have any fireworks.  They told us about this amazing location where we could dock close by for the night and even had two guys come out on a zodiac to make sure we found the right spot.  It was the best location by far, our own private island on a quiet lagoon. IMG_1746They then took Joce into town by zodiac and picked up some fireworks and came back.  We started a fire and ate supper.  As it got dark we began setting up for the fireworks.  Claude cleared the ground for the set up of the fire works and he got me to light them off.   We had the ladies stay on the top of the boat while us men set up a truly awesome firework display.  Here is a short video of the fireworks.

The end of the night concluded with all of us gathered around the camp fire talking about the next 12 – 24 months and the strategy we are going to use.

The last day we got up bright and early at 9am and steam back to the Happy Days dock.   As an added bonus Claude decided to meet all of us at The Keg for a closing out supper which is one of my favorite places to eat.  Thanks for an awesome meal pal.

I want to say a special thanks to Claude and Lana Hamilton for helping set this week up and for supper at The Keg, also to Wayne and Raylene MacNamara for finding the house boats and organizing the costs.  Also thanks to Terry and Anne Franks and Jean and Tammie Belenger for being amazing  boat mates. Also like to say congratulations to Joce and Cynthia Dionne, Denis and Lisa Leger, Scott Staley, and Stuart & Carrianne Hall for all being part of the first official Kaizen house boating trip.  What ever you do run hard and be at next years trip, this was an unforgettable 5 days.  If you were part of this round table trip or someone who would like to comment feel free at the bottom of the page.

All the Best in LIFE,

Alex Nickerson
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