Monday, October 29, 2012

Responsibility is Not a Dirty Word


I have been a busy Girly Pirate…opportunities have presented themselves to have me in the water- and you know I am not complaining:)
A friend called me at 5 am and asked if I would tandem with them off Dunedin Causeway…it was a foggy, damp morning…we were on the water by 630…as we paddled through the Smith Islands, I found Fred…I was so happy to see him…I did not have my camera, but she had her cell…the picture is not great- he is much cuter in person…

I got home late that morning to a death threat because I feel that Anclote River Park should be a no wake zone… children and animals are omnipresent in this area- I helped save a dolphin and watch one be saved from the swim area...if you are a good boater or want to ride the jet ski go out to the channel where you will do no damage...these are not my children or my just means I look out for drive slow for less than a quarter mile should be no big deal...if it is you are a sad person
My husband was so kind as to take me to Hudson Beach for his birthday and let me paddle…it was the first time in a while that I had been on water in the afternoon…birds, jumping mullet and dolphins seemed to be everywhere…it was fun to see 2 Notch…I seem to paddle much father when she swims with me…she was headed to Crystal River…when I came in, he and I went to Sam’s on the beach…Good food, but the menu itself was limited…good service…kind of pricey- though anyplace on the water is, this place has an amazing view

I gathered and dropped off donations for the Helping Hands food pantry and for the Sunrise Shelter…with money being beyond tight, every little bit helps…if you do not have time to drop your donation off leave it with me and I will see they get it…Helping Hands can use donations of food or Store gift cards…people are hurting and a little goes a long way right now…Sunrise Shelter could use diapers…young women from every race color and creed use this place…so if you have extra, please donate- clothes, hair product, etc…things you would need if you had to leave everything behind…also any old cell phones as they are refurbished for emergency purposes for these women…
As Hurricane Sandy battered the east coast, I ran up to Crystal River…It was my thought that 2 Notch should be there by now and I wanted to make sure she got there okay…I was blessed when the owner of Crystal River Kayaks loaned me a kayak to paddle out to check on my friend…I did not find her at the 3 Sister’s Springs, but I did paddle out some and then saw the snorkel people…I quietly paddled around the dive boats…Suddenly, the familiar tap on the bottom of the boat made me giggle…It was then I understood she wanted out of there, so I headed for open area where she could avoid the scene…In open water she swam beside me for a while until it was time for me to go…I told her that I would be back soon and asked her to wait there for me…
Whenever I travel through Homosassa, I like to stop in at Emily’s Family Restaurant…My waitress was even dressed as a girly pirate…The food was great as always- love this place…For the second year in a row Deb (the owner) is standing behind the paddle…I am always impressed by how many women in her own area she has helped- directly and personally…

Chris has just finished the artwork for The Sun Ray Paddle in Pasco and is helping put together the forms we will use for the paddle…I have finally got the website caught up…I am more amazed everyday with the number of women (young and old) that send me their ‘girly pirate pictures’…it is truly humbling...

Someone asked ‘why would you take on so much work?’… I turned and asked ‘When did responsibility become a dirty word?’…to make time to help the community in some way is the ‘civic responsibility’ of each member of that community…it is sad when some people think they are above that- the sad truth is, that just means someone else will need to carry their own weight plus yours if you choose not to help…I am at a point, I can still carry my own weight and refuse to shame myself or my family by not doing so…one should do what is right whenever given the option or opportunity…

May the current push you along the river to the ocean…


Captain D



Monday, October 15, 2012

Sun Ray Paddle in Pasco

Sun Ray Paddle in Pasco County on April 13, 2013

Launch at approximately 6 a. m.

It goes from Hudson Beach to Anclote Gulf Park.
The paddle is almost 14 miles in length.

There will be several places to stop along the way-

-         Brasher Park *restrooms

-         Durney Key *get out and walk around

-         Miller Bayou *get on or off water

-         Eagle Point Park * restrooms/ get on or off water

Entrance forms can be obtained shortly online
(this does have a sliding fee scale)

This is an all day event in Florida please remember sunscreen, sunglasses and hat. I would also recommend a camera as these areas are quite beautiful and contain some fun animals.

(pic from Easy Kayaking)

I am currently setting up family friendly/ affordable hotels and restaurants lists. I have found a young man who will handle kayak rentals for this event (in case you are coming from out of town)- his name is Luis and his phone number is (727) 422- 2736.

Cars will be parked at Anclote Gulf Beach for safety and security.  Those launching from Hudson Beach will be shuttled in the morning. For those joining at Miller Bayou, please need to set up your own transportation.


I love to listen to suggestions or things that may improve the paddle…you can call, e-mail or stop me in person at one of my many appearances.


I also spoke to Pastor Scott of Atonement Church. I will be speaking and taking suggestions, at his church in Wesley Chapel on Nov 28, 2012, after Sunday Services about the paddle.
Come Paddle With Us:)


Saturday, October 13, 2012

Paddle Excitement

Gather the Crew,

I have started training again- back to boot camp…a busy few weeks has pumped the blood back into me:)…so much news to share with you…first- I would like to thank the many Girly Pirates and their Moms’ for the very awesome pics…please keep sending them…I do treasure each one
I am starting to work my float plan for the Sunshine Paddle in April of 2014 that will go from Gamble Rodgers State Park on the east coast of Florida, up the Atlantic, until I reach Wiscasset, Maine…I will post an approximate plan next month…I am very excited about this…if you have any ideas, equipment or thoughts- as long as they are constructive, I am willing to listen, try or talk about it…I will need hotels along this paddle- can anyone find or maybe know of cheap digs along the coast…I am thankful for any and all help

As you know I have been ill, I am feeling better…I am still under doctors care, but have been released to be back on the water…can I get a ‘HELL YA’…as a Captain it is my obligation to my boat and my responsibility to my crew that come before my own personal wants or needs- much like being a parent…I hated being off the water for so long, but being a Captain means doing the right thing even when you don’t want to:(…thank you all for the encouragement and healing energy
Many of you have heard me speak about school…I have been working hard and it has paid off…I now have a Bachelor of Science Degree in Alternative Medicine…the actual degree came in the mail- it did not seem real until I saw the paper with my name on it…I always dreamed one day- that day is here and now…have faith and believe in your dreams! I am currently working on my Masters…

Okay…the Pasco County Sun Pay Paddle is being set up for April 13, 2013…this will be set up for all skill levels to enjoy…newbies’ will  have fun safe areas to learn…for the medium  and advanced, it will go south down the Gulf of Mexico coast for about 15 miles with rest areas set up every 5 miles…At the suggestion of County Commissioner Pat Mulieri, I got an appointment with the head of Parks on October 15, I will be meeting with Fred Buckman the head of Parks and Recreation of Pasco County to discuss where would be the best start and stop- this way we get the best paddle and least damage to the animals…this is a great paddle and a great place to see amazing amounts of wildlife…I will also be speaking to Pastor Scott of Atonement Church as they have a kayaking group that has been full of good ideas…Chris Bilton is putting together the artwork, I am lucky…I am open to suggestions and thoughts, feel free to call or e-mail me your ideas…the entrance fee will help Sunrise of Pasco…because this is a family event- if you cannot afford the entrance fee please let us know and we will take care of you…I am putting together a hotel list- close by paddle areas and affordable…I am doing the same for restaurants…for those coming from out of the state or out of the country- currently I am putting together rental yaks and a truck or two with kayak racks…lots of great stuff happening there…if you are a vendor and wish to be part of the paddle please let me know
My first paddle back, I was so happy…as the boat cuts the water the world around you changes…it is a view that very few can see…I do not believe it is something you can take for granted…as I paddled my way around, many of the animals came up to say hi…after a little more than an hour, 2 notch the manatee showed up, paddling beside her is like most people who go running with their friends…she communicates very well even though she never uses words…she is on the way to Crystal River…I told her I would be up to see her soon…

Taylor my Videographer and Computer Guru and I were looking at my pics talking about my workouts and the amount of wildlife that I get to see in its natural habitat…we thought it would be fantastic if we could share this…we thought it would be great to do a show on the paddle and everything leading up to it…I have my fingers crossed as we will be pitching the idea in the next 2 weeks to Animal Planet…we already have the camera equipment because of the paddle…I am a little nervous…please send all positive energy our way


May the wind fill your sails and head you to warmer waters…

You Captain and Girly Pirate,


Saturday, October 6, 2012

Good Bye Yum Yum



When I chose to set on the path of the Sunshine Paddle, my friend volunteered the loan of her Kayak…she felt because it was small and had no tracking, I would either give up or really build the muscles I needed to do what I was planning…

I named her Yum Yum after Yum Yum Yellow- the color she was…maybe all the adventures turned me onto are what got my kayaking addiction rolling…as a boat she may not be huge, but she and I have gone 10 miles into the gulf of Mexico, not on purpose- no I do not recommend it, and she brought me back safe

I woke to a raining morning and drug my husband out of bed…the truck was loaded and off we went…just before we got to the beach, the rain cleared and sun came out…I got her in the water as dawn broke and I was facing low tide…I did not care…I would have faced rain or even the Cracken to be able to take her one last time…she jumped along the top of the water…her low draft would let me paddle through a puddle…my husband watched from shore as we became a spec in the distance…as we went out into the gulf, she parted the water…2 notch the manatee found me…I remember the first time she tapped the boat…I think she is headed up to Crystal River…she looked happy to see me and swam beside me until I headed for shore…Yum Yum seemed sad to be headed in and so was I…

Tomorrow, I will return her…I am ever so thankful for the time she was allowed to be in my care…I feel very special to have been entrusted with her

She will be missed

Captain D