About a decade ago Jen and I were driving around town and I noticed a "garage sale."
Normally I could care less. In fact, I would work to avoid buying someone else's junk . . . but this sale caught my eye.
Laying out on the front lawn with a sign was a sharp red kayak. I swung the car around and abruptly parked.
The sign said $600.
I knew nothing about Kayaks . . . just that I wanted one. This one looked like quality engineering. I thumped it with my fist to test out the hull material and it clearly was solid and light (later I figured out it was kevlar).
At the time we had just moved to Winona Minnesota and had started our family.
Six-hundred dollars was more than we could afford and I didn't have cash.
The owner could see me ogling this thing up and down and walked over to us.
He was an extremely pleasant older gentlemen . . . a kayaker who owned a whole collection of kayaks and canoes.
He could tell that I was in love but torn by the price.
The hull had a slight repair but otherwise in very nice condition. The kayak was not getting much use by the owner who had upgraded over the years and simply had no use for this one anymore.
I normally would not haggle, but I had no choice.
"Would you take $300?"
I was serious. This is the amount I could afford and would not get me in the dog house with Jen.
"Well . . .OK."
I was shocked and ecstatic on the inside trying to contain myself.
This gentlemen could tell that I was in love. The money was less important to him than his beloved kayak going to someone who appreciated it.
I was grateful, but did not have the cash on hand. He accepted layaway for a few minutes until I could drive to the bank and get some cash out of it.
Jen and I returned with cash in hand and he helped me get the "used but new" Current Designs Kestrel 140 in race car red onto the top of our Toyota Corolla.
Only later did I realize what a deal we had found. Even a used Kayak like this one would likely go for a grand.
That kayak has been the source of lake joy for myself and our family for a decade now. We still use it every time we're up at the lake. It's indestructible. I am now teaching my kids how to kayak in this boat.
Here's a picture I took on the lake one summer. It hangs in our study as a reminder of the peace and serenity of the lake and our joy using this red kayak over the years.
I have always loved the colors. The dark red kayak, the dark blues of the lake and the sky in it's light blue and white clouds.
Those colors certainly belong on a tee!
I thought recently that a Minnesota home t-shirt using these colors would make for a great design.
Introducing the Minnesota Kestrel T-Shirt!
The design is distressed and printed on a soft 100% ring spun cotton t-shirt. It's available in tri-blend t-shirt as well for both men and women.
I hope you enjoy the design as much as I do.