Toronto Harbour, ON - John Becker
My Watermark is Lake Ontario, the Toronto Harbour, and in particular, the lagoons in the Toronto Islands.
I kayak in these waters and I've been doing that for 10 or 15 years now. I paddle on Sundays (during the season) on a solo sea kayak. It's important to me to be able get out. Sometimes I go by myself and sometimes I go with a friend. But I usually go by myself for a few hours every week. And it's kind of a ritual that really sustains me.
A lot of people talk about being by the ocean. But to me, our lakes, these freshwater seas have been the waterbodies of my life. I can smell them like people smell the ocean. It's a subtle and pristine kind of smell, but it's very meaningful to me.
And being on these waters – it's really become a part of my life – over decades. Sailing first, and now sea kayaking.
I drink the water. I don't take a water bottle with me. I have a Nalgene bottle in the kayak. And I need to be able to drink the water. I feel that's just part of my living here – is being able to drink the water. So when I'm on the lake I just dip my bottle into the water. I find that to be a very important right that I have and a ritual that I make.
I was very impressed when I found out about the Watermark Project and Waterkeeper and I'm going to get involved because I take for granted that the water will always be there for me to recreate and to drink and to paddle on.
I just want other people to be able to enjoy it. I want my grandchildren to be able to enjoy it like I've enjoyed it in my life. That's very important to me.