Pic of the Day
Off To Baja!


Got an offer for a job yesterday afternoon. This one really just fell on my lap. I heard about it last week from a colleague, scheduled an interview for the next day, and a little more than a week later got an offer. Why would I leave the job I’ve been at now for the last 8 years? The other place is nearly an identical practice but better pay and less call. People I work with who are familiar with the place tell me that it’s not as fun to work over there though. Where I work now the staff is like family. That relaxed, friendly atmosphere one of the reasons I chose this job in the first place. So here I am ready to make the jump but for dramatic effect let’s say that I’m not completely sure. Should I stay or go? Tough choice.


On one of my first kayak trips (back when I was having a lot of fun pushing my limits but not always exercising very good judgment) I was out camping alone on a little island after 4 days traveling around the San Juans. I planned to cross Rosario Strait at slack in the morning for the final leg of my trip. When I got up the next morning I discovered that the dry bag with all my food was missing, probably stolen by a raccoon. It was a stupid mistake, I know, not hanging that bag up overnight, but didn’t think that any  little critters on that small island could get into that tough heavy vinyl bag or even carry it away. So all I had for breakfast was the last CLIF bar I kept in my PFD and some hot water.The other thing I didn’t anticipate was the fog which had settled in overnight. I couldn’t see anything across the water, but I broke camp and loaded up my kayak anyway, hoping that the fog would burn off in time for the crossing.  I waited for quite a while on the beach, and spent some time looking for that dry bag in the bushes too but didn’t find it. Then I got in my kayak and waited on the water, looking east for any sign of Anacortes.  With those big oil tankers out there there was no way I was I going to cross in fog. Maybe if I spent the morning paddling north I could get lunch and groceries at the Doe Bay Resort Café?  No, I really wanted to head home. Just reminding myself that I didn’t have any more food made me hungry. I made some calculations and decided on a time when I absolutely could not cross because of the flood current. I think about 9 minutes after that time had passed the fog cleared and I set off. The water was totally calm and there wasn’t any traffic except an occasional ferry. It was going to be another beautiful day! About a mile from my destination at Washington Park, I started to paddle harder. The GPS showed that I was going 3.5 knots, but it didn’t seem like I was getting any closer. I figured it must be the current picking up so I paddled even harder. Then when I started to tire I suddenly stopped and looked at my GPS. I was going 6 knots sideways! The big red buoy off Washington Park floated past me. The current is not supposed to be this fast! Panic set in. I’m being washed out to sea! Then I calmed down and paddled with the current. Although it was carrying me away from the park, I had made it far enough through the confluence of Rosario and Bellingham straits that it carried me east toward Anacortes, and not back into Rosario Strait.  So I eventually made it close to shore, doubled back and got home OK. I don't know if that has anything to do with my job offer but I think it's a cool story.




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