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I finally made it over to Riverbend Park in Jupiter last weekend.  We set out on a full day of canoeing down the Loxahatchee that would drag our butts 8 miles or so (I think) and end us at Jonathan Dickinson State Park.  My shoulders started burning a little bit just typing that.  It was a full day.  (They quoted us that it’d be 6 to 7 hours of paddling, but we managed in about 4 to 4 1/2.)  But an awesome one, of course 🙂

It’s always great for me to get out, canoe/kayak/whatev, in South Florida because it reminds me that it’s not all strip malls, chain restaurants and highrise condo buildings.  Florida is also wildlife – we saw turtles, our friend Jodie almost hit a gator with her paddle, ospreys – and great scenery.

And, a river adventure is great for working on those relationship-building skills.  To kill or not to kill, that is the question!  Our mode of transportation (read: bad canoe that we shouldn’t have used, but did anyway) was challenging and we thought we were going to tip over every 60 seconds.  It didn’t help that the river was bending left and right like Chubby Checker, plus the fact that we had a cooler full of beverages in tow.  But we made it!

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So it is, 30 days of being 30 years old. So far, I’m still standing. My hair does look a little shabby, but that’s probably a result of me not brushing it this morning and not because of me aging. Who knows, though. Maybe I’m not brushing it because I’m aging. Oh, the conundrums!!

In any event, crazy hair or no hair, I’m still 30. I’m still OK with it. I admit, I don’t like to yell out my age to strangers. But, my patellas haven’t popped; I have all my teeth (thanks, Dr. Schlapkohl!); I can manage to get through an hour-long spin class and walk out; my driving isn’t horrible (well, any more horrible than usual); and I’m not totally out of the loop on pop culture. Yes, I know who Justin Bieber is and I kind of like Lady Gaga. 😦 To ensure balance, I also know that Josh Ritter, Matt PondPA and The New Pornographers are coming out with new albums. 🙂 (Last week I listened to the entire Josh Ritter album on NPR … and, uh, I. Can’t. Wait.)

And, to celebrate this decade of my life, I think I’m going to jump out of a plane tomorrow.

Hopefully, I’ll live to tell you about it 😉

Could you retire at 38? After I read this blog post, I grabbed my Magic 8 Ball.  And the answer is, Reply hazy, try again. 😦 But, Yes, in my imaginary world. Sadly, that world hasn’t become a reality. The Powerball isn’t rolling my way, my bank account hasn’t afforded me a private island yet and I sit in a cube five days a week. I’m knee/hip/chest?-deep in a mortgage, car payment, credit card bills and two felines. It’s sooooo American of me, right?

But, then I hear a story like Billy and Akaisha’s. Or Amy Vanderhoof’s. Or Shayne and Shannon McIntyre’s. I admit, Jealous Jackie comes out. But, Inspired Irene triumphs. I ‘m amazed, hopeful. I mean, for real, Shayne and Shannon travel the world with a bag of surfboards and two kids.

Although it doesn’t look like I’ll be retiring at 38, the dream is alive and kicking me in the ass. If it were just the thought that counted – and not the money – then it’d be possible. Because I think about it everyday. Am I the only 30-year-old (whoa, I just typed 30!) that does research on island life, sailing, raising my 2 cats and a kid (maybe on that kid part; haven’t really figured that life aspect out yet) sans Facebook, iPhone and a 24/7 media barrage? I can’t wait to get out of debt, but it’s not in hopes of buying a Range Rover or upgrading to a platinum wedding ring. (Don’t get me wrong, I would looooove a platinum upgrade!) Instead, I’m opting for a way to retire … get out of the rat race … stop climbing stuff … I mean, what’s not to love about wanting a life that includes making margaritas at 2pm (WARNING: This activity can be dangerous!) and playing eye-spy the clouds at the beach. It’s all I’m asking for … is that too much? Come on, who’s coming with me!!??

Maybe there are more people my age that can imagine life without social media and smart phones? Maybe there aren’t. Maybe I’m loco. Maybe I love rice and beans, the smell of coconuts and the sight of a solid tan line against clear blue waters too much. Now, if I could just learn to like seafood …

Until then, though, I’m content with my debt and semi-private, 30-year financed CBS island with a hammock and a hottie 🙂

It’s 2010.  The 21st Century.  We have movies in 3D.  We have machines that tell us how to find the nearest Target and get there, with or without using toll roads.  We make sure the family picture on the wall is level with our cell phones.  So, I wonder why the fact that today’s women are educated and successful and independent is making headlines.

Yes, some of us make more money than our male counterparts.  This report is semi-old news by now, but I still feel compelled to comment, well, because I can. 

You think Stedman is really bothered by the fact that Oprah, well, banks!?  As he shuffles between his Chicago penthouse and Santa Barbara home, I highly doubt he’s pissed that his woman makes more than  him.

And true that, some of us leave our cheating husbands.

You think Jenny Sanford is sticking around while her soon-to-be ex thinks of another crazy lie.  Sorry, I missed dinner every night this week, I was observing polar bears in Antartica.  And I’m so glad Elizabeth Edwards is separating from her political, cheating hubby.  I’m all for love, but not in the name of self-sacrifice. 

Why is this such news to people?  Women go to college, women have babies, women climb ladders, women are comfortable being single and eating dinner alone, women are comfortable being married and cooking dinner for two.  Is this news?  Apparently it is.  But why?  Ok, ok, sure there are cultural reasons, religious reasons, plain ol’ ignorance.  But really?  

In the end, though, it’s not really anybody’s business — but those involved.  My friend, Bones, told me, there are always three sides to every story: yours, theirs, and the truth.  Ain’t that the truth!?  I always keep this in mind.  Nevertheless, love is supposed to make you better; not rip a piece of your soul out and either hide it in a 1×1 box or smash it on the ground.

Soapbox removed, thank you 🙂

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