Adventures in Camping & Kayaking

Ever since I can remember I have wanted to build a boat. When I was younger, I wanted to build my own boat, but I was realistic, I knew I couldn't just go out and build a boat. I knew I should get some wood and first carve a little toy boat to see if it would float, but being just a little girl, the idea of having a boat was fleeting. I remember as a teenager when I could afford to indulge in my own crafty hobbies, I went to the hobby shop and bought a piece of balsa wood and carved a little boat from it, although I don't remember if it ever floated, hmm.
But, I still always wanted to build, not just buy, but build my own boat. Just a small one, only big enough for myself to float in and maybe a friend.
Growing up it started with visiting the Step-Grandparents cabin in Grand Rapids, Minnesota. They had a canoe that I thought was so cool and a boat dock in the middle of the lake that we would swim to and hang out. Here in Arizona when we went camping, sometimes my uncle would rent a speed boat and we would go flying around the lake with the water spraying us in the face and the wind in our hair. Sometimes he would let me drive.
Well, I never did build my own boat, but I still think it would be fun!

My obsession with kayaking started in 2008 when my boyfriend Adrian and I went to Hawaii for his best friends wedding. A group of us rented a house on the beach that included use of the kayaks. We did many things while in Hawaii, including hiking and snorkeling, but it was the most fun in the kayak on the ocean. It was quite exhilarating!  I was tired, but there was a sense of fulfillment in the physical exercise, making it across the bay and back, and of course the ocean was beautiful.
On our last day there, I didn't feel like I had been able to get enough kayaking in and really wanted to get back out there one more time. In the bay we were in, there was supposed to be a pod of dolphins that would frequent the area to rest during the day, but we hadn't seen them yet. While standing on the balcony using someones binoculars, I could see a boat with people looking at something and then I saw a dolphin jump out of the water. I was not about to waste my last day in Hawaii without getting the chance to kayak with wild dolphins.
I rushed to get changed, unfortunately did not put enough sunscreen on (I paid for that later), and whisked out the kayak. I couple naysayers thought I was nuts to want to go out in the kayak by myself with the tide crashing down on the rocks the way they were, but that wasn't going to stop me.
I jumped into the kayak and had my boyfriend push it in the water a little more and waited. At just the right moment when there was a break in the crashing waves, I took off, paddling my little heart out so that I didn't just get thrown back across the rocks. I made it!
It was so exciting, the adrenaline was pumping, I was going to get to see the dolphins!
I made it three quarters of the way across the bay in anticipation when I saw the first dolphin fins in the water, so I rushed over to where I saw it. The next thing I saw was a baby dolphin jumping in the air so high and flipping around like it was playing.
After about an hour or two of rushing around to follow the dolphins, getting into the water with them (should have grabbed a snorkel mask), and trying to take pictures with a crappy disposable water proof camera, the dolphins seemed to settle down. I figured I had better get back to the house and get packed up to leave.
This made the whole trip worth it!
I was able to go on a great vacation, share in the beauty of a friends tropical wedding, get some good exercise, and partake in the beauty of nature at its best.
Was it worth the nearly third degree sunburn I had for weeks? I would say, YES.
But, let that be a lesson, take the time to put sunscreen or you will regret it later.
After that trip, all I could think about was how we had to get a kayak and what kind would we get?

Stay tuned for more!