Saturday, December 31, 2011

Pirating in the New Year

The Girly Pirate had to make a treaty with the family to be landlocked this week…went to the beach a couple of times, but weather was too bad for Yakkin around…we didn’t like those waves anyway

The Christmas holiday was good…Santa gave me new paddles, a kindle fire, new sheets, YakPad and Chris’s wife smuggled me in some Thornton’s Chocolates all the way from England…I was a good Girly Pirate this year:)

I have used my time on land to catch up with office work…I have put out more requests for sponsorship…still looking for that camper to be donated…caught up all sites and have written several articles for…starting to make plans for our first workout on the east coast in Feb…I need to find someone to make the Girly Pirate a large flag- I have to be able to see it from the water, so that I can know where to land…

I bought a book (Sea Kayaking Illustrated by John Robinson)…do not judge this book by its cover…I thought it would be full of pretty pics…when it got here, I was disappointed to see the cartoons- until I started reading…for this sport this has quite a bit of very useful knowledge…real pics could not give such a full view so it turns out I am really happy for the cartoon figures now:)

I have been making appearances around Florida…the Blue Horizon loves the children to touch her…I think she sparkles for them…an elementary teacher spoke of how Native Americans used such craft and how The Lady Blue Horizon would help keep mommy’s and kids safe…

Did I tell you how lucky I am to be her Captain?

I am doing all of this through Donations…every penny helps…you can donate at PayPal or mail it in (information listed below)…as you put up your new stuff from the holiday, please remember to send us any camping or boating equipment you may be replacing and no longer need…we are trying to be as green as possible (reduce, reuse, recycle)…as I said earlier, we are still looking for some type of camper…

 Well it is New Years Eve and the Blue Horizon wants to go to the water…I will need to find portage to the water…have fun tonight, wear your best long clothes and don’t end up in the gibbet cages…

Captain D

To reach me with Information or Donations-

Dorraine Cooper-Rooney, LMT
30131 Clearview Dr
Wesley Chapel, FL 33545


Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Ahoy Matey

Welcome Aboard,

            It has been a busy few days for the Girlie Pirate…Friday seemed to take forever…I had a hard time sleeping, I was so excited…It was Saturday and time to head for Sarasota…YEA!!!!!!

            A happy Girly Pirate I was to find George had taken her to the beach for me when I got to Economy Tackle…I paid young Lee and off to Siesta Key we went…poor Walter had to put up with the VERY excited Girly Pirate

            As we drove down the street I could see her on the rack…I swear she was calling to me…she wanted to show me all her new goodies…she wanted to be in the gulf and not the bay…quickly I untied her and Walter helped me carry her over the dune…I could feel her excitement at the waves…the big blue girl likes big blue water…

After a few minor adjustments, we were off…the improvements had shifted her center of gravity- in a good way…it did take some time getting used to and I think we were both nervous…I was happy to have the Lady Blue Horizon home and she was happy to be here…I faced moderate chop and I was okay…she was making me a better sailor and a better person...the school of dolphins were happy to swim beside us:)

            On my way off Siesta Key we stopped at the Orange Octopus…Kim makes ice cream as good as mine with the same fresh ingredients…I had the espresso chip in a cup and Walter had the mint chip in a waffle cone…YUM

I found a great place to shop in Sarasota...I even got a girlie pirate Tshirt...prices were great and the staff was helpful...had way to many cute swim is called 'Splish Splash'...I can hardly wait to go back

            On the ride home, Walter was telling me about the Metal Detector Book he was reading…I was so tired and happy; the miles seemed to race by…it did my heart good to see my big girl back in her rack (I think even Yum Yum had missed her) and I think she was happy to be home

            Sunday and Monday brought patients for me to work on, but I could feel the pull of the ocean to my soul…I made some changes and plans started to form for Tuesday…I would go over to AncloteRiver Park…Cooper (my 80yr old father) was going with me…he had never been to the area and never been when I went kayaking…I was in for an interesting day

            Tuesday came to find not such great weather on the water…I will not find everyday good weather on my trip, so I was going…We got there at high tide…the weather was about 58f air and 65f water, cloudy and windy, coming up on high tide…I paddled for the protection of the mangrove islands…even they were little comfort…they day turned sunny and warmed to 70f air, but the wind grew stronger…the cross current in the channel seemed to be hard for even the dolphins to maneuver…when my arms started to hurt I came in…just as I went to get out, a wave popped the aft end of the boat and I got flipped into the water…my dad would not let put on dry clothes until we had the Blue Horizon tied down…lol…what was even funnier is he had this psyko squirrel following him the whole time we were there and if I did not know better I would say he was trying communicate with him….hmmm

            On the way back, Dad had me pull into a stables he had once been to in the 1950s…I pulled in and the very kind woman made time for dad, she had been there 9 years…her name is Joy Lambert…she trains horses and people in Jumping and Hunting…the Windward Farms stables are beautiful…the horses are well taken care of…we ran into beautiful wildlife as we walked the property...a lovley stop

            This morning I was a sore Girly Pirate…going through the mail I found a lucky charm sent from a facebook friend and cowboy in Ireland…it will be placed on my life vest the morning I leave for my trip…as you know this trip is run on donations and any and every thing is helpful

May the wind be at your back;)

Captain D

Friday, December 16, 2011

Yo, Ho, Ho and a Bottle of Life Water

Good Morning My Crew,

It is the holiday season…being a good Captain, I made sure voices would lift in song and children have presents under the tree…not because I am rich, but because it’s the right thing to do…

This Girlie Pirate was given a blessing for hard work this year early in the week…a special day in Crystal River with the Manatees…I was happy to get the invitation from Crystal RiverKayak…loved the new changing rooms…the water at the 3 Sister Spring was so warm, blue and clear…then out came the beautiful creatures to play with us…Janis and I felt like the most special women on earth…wicked awesome…we got off the water just as the rain started…what a great day!!!!
The SunshinePaddle YouTube has grown…our ‘favorite’ file on that site has music from most every venue and many great educational videos…we have also loaded at least one video for every area we have gone into since that part of The Sunshine Paddle YouTube sites inception…learning to add an invisible third person is not as easy as it sounds…we have really learned a lot about shooting video…anyplace on the website that contains a YouTube box is a clickable link to a video;)

The menu during the holiday has not been easy to maintain…many contraband goodies have been smuggled in…I have only tasted a few treats…my body is in a state of health that limit what I can eat, so when I do eat, it has to carry heavy nutrient…not easy…my system is so clean at the moment that any junk food tends to send me running for the bathroom- not in a good way…I can hardly wait to eat regular food again…I will be cooking the holiday meal this year…Yummers

I got a message from a person who watches the Photobucket…I only crop pics, NO retouching allowed…what you see in a pic is what was there when I was…Florida has a vast amount to offer other than the many Theme Parks and I wanted to be able to show it properly…I have been blessed with a great photo club on facebook…they have helped me immensely at improving my skills and answering my questions…I have also been reading several books on the issue…we have been using many different cameras, hence learning how each works and what among each is universal…this has been kind of fun

I went on a solo trip this week to Anclote River Park…this is a Pasco County Park…makes me proud to be from Pasco County…the people who work here work very hard to maintain this area…it is VERY clean and well kept…I was there at low tide this time…it was still an easy launch…the soil/sand looked quite healthy and active…it was cloudy and cold (65f) when I launched, so I pretty much had the water to myself…I paddled all over the area in Yum Yum and had fun…there were so many animals to see…as the weather cleared some other paddlers came up in some very neat boats…the belong to a racing club…one had a really sweet Epic Kayak…I got home, got Yum Yum washed off and put up…I was a tired Girly Pirate and feeling quite accomplished…

After speaking with George at Economy Tackle, I knew the Blue Horizon was in trouble…he had spoke about calling the manufacturer…I called Perception (they own the Dagger Brand) and a nice young woman listened to my problem…she was very helpful and hope was restored…George was right all along, this gave him permission from the manufacturer to alter the bulkhead and now she was to be fixed…late yesterday afternoon, George called to say she was ready for pick up…I have patients today so, I am going Saturday and I am so psyked for this…I can hear her calling me…The Lady Blue Horizon is ready to get in the water and I am so ready to take her…I think I will launch from the gulf side of Turtle Beach…maybe Gayle at SiestaKey Bungalows will have room for me and I can stay on the water all day…hmmm…I will keep you posted…
Donations of a YakPad from Florida and Binoculars from Ohio get a big thank you…it is really a green trip as everything is a donation…many people are putting in effort to bring this even together….I would like to thank them for the time and effort…thank you to those who donate by mail, paypal or the website…every contribution helps make this a reality…I am ever so appreciative…
I would like to close with a great thought- We are tied to the ocean. And when we go back to the sea, whether it is to sail or to watch - we are going back from whence we came. A quote from John F. Kennedy:)

The Girly Pirate,

Captian D

Monday, December 5, 2011

Power in the Paddle

Merry Meet My Crew,

As we draw closer to Yule, life has become hectic…none of the children will be home for the holiday… the start of the week found me staring at my guitar……9 months ago I quit smoking cigarettes…I had  purchased the guitar to keep my hands busy while I quit...I can not play a song, but can run scales really…I read a book about being a good sea captain…they always brought the spiritually back to shore…with this in mind I called the Lutheran Church (no I am not Lutheran, but they do the most for the community in my area- food bank, welfare sign up, etc….and I thought they could use the help)…I spoke to Preacher Scott and offered the guitar as donation as long as it was used at the church…he agreed and I offered to bring it by later in the week…he also spoke to me about the special tree covered in special angels and he was worried for the older children as no one was worried over them and they were boys…NONE of the young men I raised have ever hit a woman…if a young man in my community needs a hand to grow strong in mind and heart…I will be here
After checking for gator content, I found a few big retention ponds and Yum Yum and I snuck in a few workouts …I felt like a teen going cow tipping, sneaking around trying not to get caught- I am not sure if I am using an area I am allowed to be in…Massage has picked up, holiday shopping and I had Midterm Test in Naturopathy with a paper due…all of this left me pressed for workout time…(passed my exam, turned in my paper, shopped and handled all clients…still able to workout…YEA!!!)

I called Economy Tackle to get an ETA on the Blue Horizon…George said he had been swamped and I told him that I would be there on Saturday…I called Siesta Key Bike and Kayak….Lance was off, but Scotty was a big help…he booked my weekend rental and referred me to Gayle at Siesta Key Bungalows

        Time again had come to head back to the doctor…all is well…he has been amazed at my tenacity on improving my health…being my doctor (since I have battered women’s syndrome) is not an easy task…Dr. Robert Casanas has helped me a great deal and it is through his wisdom that I now have the ability to pull the Sunshine Paddle off…

The 8th Annual Peace Breakfast for the SunriseShelter was a rather nice fund raiser held at the Tampabay Golf and Country Club….it was a chilly morning and it was a beautiful spread…the food was tasted good…the speakers were very powerful…it strengthened my resolve for my journey

On Saturday Walt and I headed for Sarasota….did you know it was named for Sara De Soto…interesting story/ worth the Google…I got to EconomyTackle to find George swamped due to a current sale…he said he has to call perception- currently they own the Dagger Brand, and see what they recommend…I was disappointed that after 2 weeks she was not ready…safety comes first…even young Lee was swamped so I will not complain…I am happy they are busy
             After checking in with Lance and setting up for the rental yak to be delivered, we went to the hotel…I was expecting some shlumpy room as I had booked last minute and due to the paddle Gayle (she owns the place) was letting me have it for free…we got there and got given keys to the dolphin suite…OMG…it was so beautiful…an intimate courtyard led to the most lushly appointed room…the open living space layout gave it a homey feel…the bed was so amazing…felt like I was climbing back in the womb…all I can say is AWESOME…the landscaping around this property was fantastic...Gayle at Siesta Key Bungalows has set a new standard in guest room:)

We headed down to Turtle beach Launch…The Neville WildlifeReserve is an amazing place at sunset…we had a wilderness 12 foot Yak…since it was windy, tracking was a challenge…Walter is feeling better about the water…I think for most people, the more you Yak the better you get…we were out for hours and the sun seemed suspended in the sky…we got back and ran over to Turtle Beach (over a sand dune) to catch the finishing of the sunset…we parked our behinds in the sand to watch, when suddenly appeared many birds….this was quite funny as one little guy tried to go home with Walter

We got supper at Captain Curt’s Crab and Oyster Bar upon Lance's recommendation…the staff was sweet and gave good service…they offered a nice variety on the menu, it was very clean and the food was really good…it was here I really noticed how green people here were…if a room was empty lights were shut off, nothing on unless in use, recycling here was we wandered around we noted most of the island is this way…I have to admit, it made me feel better to spend my money in an area that is attempting to be eco friendly

Walt and I got up to take pics of the sunrise and found a crew of seniors cleaning the public beach- please note the public beach at Siesta Key is kept spotless…not suprising at all that this is the #1 beach

We worked our way back to Siesta Key Bike and Kayak and it was still early…we noticed the Orange Octopus had someone working at the early hour and she offered exquisite pastries…she was also sweet enough to watch the gear until Lance arrived so Walt and I could get on the road…how cool is that?

Though I am missing the Blue Horizon, I am glad she will give me a chance to go back to that area and visit with my new friends…in the meantime; Yum Yum will continue to build me up…All hands on deck…this trip is being done solely on donations…if you have any boating or camping equipment in the garage or attic that you might could donate please call (813)907-6279 …every penny helps, please feel free to donate through our website…we are always open to accepting positive thoughts too:)...we are thankful for all help
Captain D
  "May the Lord fill your sails with fair wind, support your hulls in inviting seas, guide your hands upon the tiller toward pleasant places and bring us home, O Lord, to a safe and loving harbor."