Posted by: First Mate | April 6, 2014

Trust

It has been a Long time since I have posted. I miss it – work and life have kept me busy.  But I am giving myself a 30 day challenge to write every day and be present.

Today I am going to write about trust or actually control.  I try to control a lot of things in my life: my weight and thus my health, my attitude/outlook and thus my family’s mental health (sarcasm) and lastly many other things that have NO relevance in life but help me to feel as if I am predicting “outcomes.”  I work in medical education/public health and write grants so “outcomes” are a HUGE buzzword.  Clinical and patient outcomes etc, etc.  Honestly, – I think if we are present in our right mind and doing our best we are naturally intending and working towards the best outcomes.  In this crazy life how do you measure: fault, guilt, accountability, cost, etc when sub-optimal outcomes are achieved?  Intellectually, we want to understand who messed up and why. Sometimes intellect blocks educational opportunity.

The news today is filled with stories of the Rebel Heart, a family with two  young daughters (3 and 1) who left San Diego in 2012 to circumnavigate.  The one year old became very ill as the family lost their rudder and all communications and they signaled for help probably on an EPIRB. Losing their ability to steer seems symbolic – most parents feel as if they have lost direction when their young child is sick. I don’t know this family or their story, what I know is from news reports like this one on CNN.com.

Our local news in Hawaii reported that the family is being called reckless and irresponsible on social media.  And this is where trust comes in, this couple Eric and Charlotte and their two children: Cora and Lyra were prepared, he is an experienced licensed US Coast Guard captain and she has been sailing since 2004 and grew up in Alaska (extra points for that).  Their children are small but in America, I think we often have the impression of safety while living in places like San Diego, Los Angeles, San Francisco – you get the drill.  We raise our kids debating the quality of preschool teachers, the newest squeezable toddler food, the sustainability of the station wagon vs the Prius; while much of the world including many islands in the Pacific struggle for food, medicine and infrastructure.  Do I think they made the wrong decision or are irresponsible parents: NO. We can’t predict outcomes in many situations.

This couple made a decision that worked for them at the time.  They trusted that their intelligence and experience would carry them and they got a mulligan.  Thankfully, the US Navy answered their distress call and rescued them.  And I hope their baby is okay.  Their outcome will be what it is, their defense is sort of inane but makes great news.  The cost that tax payers cover will be expensive – a friend who works for the USCG, has mentioned the outlandish costs for rescuing boaters to us before and a sick baby with a high fever and rash….  I have spent 5 years studying, developing curriculums and learning about staph, strep, food borne illness and other horrific things but this is life.  Many doctors could have potentially chosen an incorrect medication for a 1 year old in this situation….but the baby could have been driven back to the office in most cases or taken to an ER.  This little girl wasn’t in that position.

Frankly, I get more pissed off at parents who live in Marin County and choose not to vaccinate their children, than the ones who sail around the world with their children.  The parents who sail are at least attempting to open their minds first hand vs. the parents who are following the cult of the former playboy bunny/celebratty who argues against vaccination.

I’m clearly no expert on parenting, tonight while I was washing dishes, the captain was playing SNL from the DVR and Weekend Update was on….  our 10 year old was doing homework.  When the show opened Ruby said “oh no, what happened to Seth Meyers?”  As if she watched the show every week?!  Um, oops.  I trust she will be ok also.

Be up to date on your marine or wilderness medicine.  Trust that life has lessons and that not all them will be pleasant and follow your dreams.  To be stagnant or living the past or the future is a recipe for disaster. We can’t predict all outcomes.

 

 

 

Posted by: First Mate | December 7, 2011

What makes your BEST day?

From the Captain himself –
Sunday December 4, 2011 was my best day sailing.

We spent Saturday night aboard Air Bender and (as typical) my girls were up at the crack of dawn. We agreed to get an earlier than normal start and were out of the harbor before 8:00 am.  But that didn’t make it the best.

Just outside of Kewalo, winds were light and there were no noticeable white-caps in the distance, so we put up all of our sail and headed out with a heading just south of Diamond Head buoy. Along the way we saw a couple whales including some great spouts, tails and backs. But that didn’t make it the best,

As we exited the shadow of Diamond Head it started to really blow (not atypical), and Anne, in her conservative fashion, started asking if we needed to be reefed. We were doing 8+ and sticking the bow in a few waves, taking splashes that would have gone over the house had the wind not been at 60+ degrees to port. We went out a couple miles, then tacked and headed in towards Waikiki.

This day was the running of the Waikiki Double Roughwater swim. Two good friends were competing (Jane and Kelly), being escorted by other good friends (Tony, Mary, Gail) on kayaks. We planned to anchor near the Outrigger Canoe Club where the competitors could swim/kayak out to join us for lunch. So by 10:30 we set anchor West of the Aquarium as near shore as possible to hang out. Anne was quick to hit the water, to get some exercise and check the anchor. It had actually been a bit chilly that morning (apologies to those in Washington State to redefine chilly to include 68 deg F), and Anne was a bit reluctant to dive in and complained of the temperature when she hit the water. Clarity was so-so and neither Ruby nor I were interested in joining her this day.

Ru and I started snacking and just hanging out. After 5 (big) laps of the boat, Anne was out of the water and we watched as the swimmers were finishing the race. Where we were anchored, the wind was coming from the north side of Diamond Head, but the waves and swells were at 90 degrees. The boat was rocking quite a bit more than usual and by 11:15 (or so) I declared that we weren’t having much fun at anchor and it was time to go whale hunting again. We called Kelly (who had called us earlier) to say that we’d be leaving soon, but she had already departed by car and was driving away. No idea if our other friends had a phone or were still planning to come out. Before we departed Tony showed up on a kayak. The other girls were waiting to hear the race results and awards. Tony chatted for a while and we were off.

Simple plan. Head South away from shore and look for whales. The waves and wind had actually died down a lot. For the first 1/2 mile, we had almost no wind at all and I considered restarting motors as we crawled along at ~3 kts. Then it started picking up, approaching 20 kts, but no white caps now and much calmer than it had been at 8:00 am. Eyes peeled for whales, they were all hiding well. nothing YET to make it a best day,

As we approached ~4 nm offshore Ruby joined me at the helm and said, this is boring what can we do? You see, unlike most days on Air Bender, we had no guests today. No kids nor any other adults to entertain Ruby. I asked her what did she want to do. Her reply:

“What can we do with the boat? You just have it on autopilot.”

So, for the first time in the nearly 2 years that we’ve had Air Bender, she decided today was the day to learn how to sail. “Can I do it?” …. “Just tell me and show me.”

So together we repositioned the traveler, reefed the genoa and Ruby made a hard turn to starboard. As she tacked, I let out the genoa and she tightened up the port sheet. We tweaked the traveler, as the wind, coming off our starboard bow was blowing 13-20. It didn’t take her long to get the feel of our big boat. Making slight adjustments to the helm and giving it time to respond. 5 kts….accelerating to 6 and then 7 and with the 2-3 swells to our starboard aft, Ruby was getting the boat up over 8 kts, peaking at 9+ a few times. She brought up how Tony had said he and Paul were having trouble getting 7 kts and she smiled.

It is amazing to both Anne and me that our daughter is so competitive.

Ruby steered the boat all the way to the Kewalo outer buoys. She turned the boat into the wind and we dropped the sails. She wanted to turn around and do it again, but I remembered the adage “keep them wanting more”. Since returning to dock, Ruby is now excited at the idea of sailing to Palmyra or ?? As long as she can be at the helm.

Ruby made it the Best Day.

Posted by: First Mate | September 14, 2011

Maui Channel Swim disaster, how does this happen?

Yesterday I received and email from a friend and fellow swimmer who swam the Maui Channel Swim solo this year, she also acted as crew, spotter and coach for our team in the same swim last year under lousy conditions of 35-38 knot winds and large chop.  The email was a letter from the race director to all the 2011 participants reviewing the race and what happened to a 41 year old California swimmer, John Caughlin.  John lost his right arm above the elbow and suffered extensive injuries to his left hand including the loss of a portion of his hand, his thumb and index finger.  The text of the email is posted here on the daily news of Open Water Swimming. 

How does a swimmer get ‘sucked into’ the prop wash or run over by a boat in ‘safe zone’?  Or to be more specific, as a surgeon who blogs at Skeptical Scapel  wrote me on Twitter “how does a power boat get to where swimmers are racing?” Good question!  And why aren’t propeller guards required?  The safety of this race needs to be reviewed comprehensively, policies like the ones listed below from postings on Open Water Swimming  need to be implemented:

  1. Better coordination and knowledge of the boat captains and crew for swimmers and race directors – should be mandatory to have a least 2 crew for the escort boat  1) Always have a spotter on the swimmers and  2)Always have someone capable at the helm/radio.
  2. Mandatory meeting for boat captains. (This exists but isn’t enforced.)
  3. Boat safety checks – several boats did NOT have anchors and ropes, as evidenced by the boat stuck on the reef at the start. I am not sure why the boat at the finish did not anchor safely away. Make sure all radios are operational. 
  4. Staggered start with relays and individuals in two groups instead of one overwhelmingly large group. Establish limited entries.
  5. More safety boats. The three jetskis were great, but not enough for the scale of this race. There should also be a race boat out there to help pick up swimmers in an emergency, such as the sinking of boats that happened this year.
  6. Enforcing the safety area at the finish with an actual presence on the water, not just relying on the radio. More buoys could also be placed ahead of the ‘no go area’ to make it more obvious. (Need more volunteers.)
  7. An annual summary of incidents should be posted so that all can learn from the mistakes of the past.
  8. Consider mandatory propeller guards

The Maui Channel Swim runs from Club Lanai to Black Rock at the Kaanapali Beach Hotel on Maui across the Au Au channel.  It has been held the Saturday of Labor Day weekend since 1972.  Swimmers can chose the solo event 9.6 to 10 miles depending on currents, or the relay where six swimmers each swim a 30 minute leg followed by 10 minute sprints in the same order until the race is finished.  All swimmers have escort boats (hence power boats in a swimmers area). Boat captains act as navigators for the swimmers guiding them on the most appropriate path.  Last year there were four experienced life guards on jet skis, this year there were 3.

Each team has a swim captain who is responsible for attending the captain’s meeting and the boat captain is required to attend a boat captain’s meeting the evening prior to the race.  The logistics and safety details (radio, bouys, water safety personnel, start, etc) of the race are covered at these meetings.  In last years race, an escort boat from the team who finished second evidently escorted their swimmers all the way up to the beach, thus new safety procedures where instituted during last years race – teams and swimmers would be disqualified if a boat came to shore.  A safety zone with buoys was implemented for this years race.

What I have to emphasize is that this race, like many open water races, starts with total chaos.  Imagine 75 – 85 boats floating above a shallow reef off Lanai, while 55 teams of 6 swimmers and 20 solo swimmers warm up in the water.  No one is anchored due to the coral reef so boats are adrift and then running engines to find a decent location to spot their swimmer as the race starts.  As a boat owner and a swimmer, it is somewhat terrifying.  We handled the situation by having ‘spotters’ on all sides of the boat and going through our usual safety calls of ‘swimmer at the step’ or ‘swimmer 10 yards off your port bow’ while keeping the radio on channel 68 to communicate with other captains and the life guards. This year a boat went aground at the reef before the start and another boat sank in the first few miles of the race after also going aground at the start.  How does that happen?   Where are those reports?

Once swimmers find their escorts, the boats generally separate to a safe distance, although Kelly, our solo swimmer said she was almost run over at one point and at another, her boat captain attempted to leave her to pick up debris from the sunken boat.  If you have ever swum in 1000 feet of water 4 miles from land in rough seas with a few curious tiger sharks, the last thing you want is to see is your escort boat gunning it off for just a few minutes to pick up a floating cooler. What are the chances of them actually finding you again?  The end of this race has both a strong current pulling swimmers around Black Rock and an area where boats are turning and crossing each other to head back to Mala wharf in LaHaina.

Evidently, the boat that hit John Caughlin, was drifting into the safe zone and the captain had been radioed repeatedly warning him to avoid the area. When he returned to the helm he gunned the boat without observing the swimmer.  Open water swimming is an extreme sport, but this swimmer was 400 – 500 yards from shore.  The incident is being investigated, so what happens now – will things change?  More important – what kind of stuff leads up to this? What could have been improved in the process to have helped the follow up care for this swimmer? An ambulance on the scene as a precaution?

Let’s start with the misconception that swimmers have a beer between race legs and easily make the crossing without incident. Here is a testimony of a 2006 relay team.  Or that boat captains are all just like life guards concerned for the swimmers safety.  It costs between $500 and $700 to charter a boat, and that doesn’t guarantee that your captain, who is in charge won’t be smoking a joint and drinking a beer while driving the vessel 25 feet from you in the water.  The majority of boat captains are amazing, responsible and know the waters and currents better than anyone and provide excellent leadership and safety.  Swimmers just need to know who NOT to use.

Many swimmers suffer from jelly fish stings and in 2010 three teams dropped out due to 12-17  foot Tiger sharks checking out their swimmers.  In 2010, solo swimmer, John Gomersall was stung by box jellies in the first hour of his swim causing him to vomit throughout the race attracting a 10 – 12 foot Tiger shark who followed him for so long that his boat captain and 3 life guards on jet skis demanded that get in the boat and drop out.  He declined due the logic that if the shark wanted to feed, he would have done so already.  John Gomersall finished the race and walked up the beach after 7 hours 40 minutes and 54 seconds of serious determination.

As swimmers, we chose to put ourselves through this because it is beautiful, challenging and yes, fun.  You can’t complete something like this and not make changes in other parts of your life.  It drives my husband crazy that I continue to participate in these types of events and he swears he will no longer escort channel crossings by me or friends.  In an earlier post, What are the odds?, I mentioned the sad drowning of an excellent 47 year old open water swimmer, Dave Mackenzie, in a Father’s day race off Kailua.  Dave Mackenzie was in perfect health, perhaps he suffered a laryngospasm, an involuntary reflex where the larynx closes the throat. Which may have been triggered by a splash of water from a wave that hit his throat or vocal chords as he was trying to take a breath.

I don’t have the answers and hope that new safety procedures are considered and implemented for open water swimmers.  Swimmers generally watch out for each other and this was a horrible and preventable incident.  We all wish John a healthy recovery as he goes through multiple surgeries and rehabilitation.  Per the email from Ian and Coco (race directors): Cards and letters of encouragement can be sent in care of his sister, Jennifer Dorsey at: 1210 Green Orchard Place, Encinitas, CA 92024, U.S.A. For those who would like to offer other assistance, all support is welcome.


Posted by: First Mate | July 23, 2011

Today, I Woke up in Pain

And that makes me happy.  I don’t love the hip pain which at times can drive me nuts, but I am so happy that I woke up and get to watch the sunrise over Kaneohe Bay.  For me, the sheer beauty of nature and life is how I believe in the future and am thankful for the past and the pain.

I love that I can be nagged by my seven year old to go and read with her.  (Now) Thankful, that I have her mess of bendaroos to clean up. That means that I have an amazing child that wants to spend time with me. And that she has toys to play with.

When I lay on the ground  to stretch my hip,  I am thankful, because I can feel it.  I am alive.

I turn 43 today and have so much to be thankful for: being able to LIVE is more important than just being alive.

I am thankful for my husband, who takes the role of father, husband, businessman and Captain so seriously at times I feel smothered and yet that is exactly what I need. I am thankful he gets joy out of making me laugh.

I am thankful for my family and all the crazy things they have watched me do and yet they still love me.

I am thankful for my friends, who laugh with me, make me laugh, roll their eyes and are so patient when I screw up. I am thankful they trust me enough to confide their happiness and human sorrows.

I am thankful for the people I work with because it means I have the ability to use my brain.

I am thankful for the people who help me at the bank, the post office, the gas station, the grocery store, West Marine, the coffee shop, my daughters school, etc because they too are on this journey.  Even though our opinions, lifestyles and attitudes may differ – at the core they are facing the same struggles and insecurities that I do.

I am thankful that I can swim and see a completely different world.

Today, I am just happy to be here. NOW.

Life is short, sometimes the simplicity makes it easier to enjoy.

Posted by: First Mate | July 16, 2011

How do we prepare our children for whatever could happen?

I often say I would like to take my daughter out of school and sail around the world or the South Pacific for a year or two.  As a former English teacher married to a brilliant engineer, if we could afford this, I think she would have an amazing year and learn a lot of things you don’t learn in a classroom.   There are pros and cons to both sides of the argument.  As the only child of two quirky, older parents, does she need more socialization? She may not be ready for all the “prepping”  and the basics of applying those skills on a long adventure.

I also want my child to remain a ‘child’ until both she and I are ready for her to become an adult.  Sadly, I live in the real world where her friends and community also have an influence on her and she has to learn that my views on the world are just that – mine.  So my job is to give her wings and hope that she uses them to fly well and high above things that will drag her down as often happens in life.

So as my husband and I are learning all the details involved with the cruising life, food prepping, first aid, boat maintenance, sailing in all kinds of seas and weather (Hawaii is sort of an acid test for many places) – how do I encourage her to see the excitement and beauty in all the dangers and disasters out there and still protect her innocence?

As an avid news hound who works in medical education, I want her perception of the world to be formed by the beauty of nature and human kindness with knowledge not fear of pandemics, economic crisis, food shortages and revolutions across the world.  I don’t think an apocalyptic view of a world I barely understand as an adult is healthy.  She needs to be aware, strong and still innocent.  Is it possible to preserve a childhood? Although, children live in the now and observe the world as their own, whatever the circumstance.  Ruby’s perspective is still limited and sheltered.

I want to expose her to the real fact that other children her age struggle with these things now and have for years.  Using my own experience and love of reading, I am looking into age appropriate stories that address growing up in different societies.  I was recommended Don\’t Let\’s Go to the Dogs Tonight by a friend and avid reader – and while I think it maybe too adult for my 7 year old – it may be a great read for older children aka ME.

You can't hide from life. Fort San Lorenzo, Panama 2011

Posted by: First Mate | July 16, 2011

A Child’s Comment on the Moment

Recently, we had a fabulous trip sailing through the Panama canal and up the Pacific Coast of Panama on a friend’s new Sun Reef 63, Spartan Queen.  Will post details and photos soon.

Spartan Queen, Sunrise at Shelter Bay Marina

Today I will post the context of what my seven year old, Ruby, wrote her cousins on the trip.  The letter was either written on the boat or after we reached the city of David via a panga ride across a 10 mile open ocean channel and two miles up a large river outlet from Isla Parida to Pedregal.  I thought the adventure was fabulous and exciting, she however may have been exhausted and just a little bit overwhelmed.

Dear Jack, Sarah, Lizzie and Mary,

How are you doing? Did you know I am in Panama? Did you know to me Panama is like the “Hottest” place on earth? (to me)? I just went through the Panama canal. WARNING:  If you ever go to Panama, be sure to bring light clothes, mosquito spray and sunscreen. Bye.

Love,
Ruby S.

Watching dolphins on the sail from Flamenco Bay Marina to Isla Coiba

Her aunt wanted to send it back to me to put in a scrap book.  Should I push her to become a travel writer?  I know she had fun this just may not have been one of those time times?  It makes me smile – she is such a trooper.

Posted by: First Mate | July 11, 2011

Firearms and Open Water Sailing

Let me start this post with a clear statement – I am not a gun advocate.  That being said my husband, the Captain, brought up the idea of having a sidearm or a rifle on board when open water sailing.  Because we are married and I do love, respect and admire him – my response was not “are you crazy?”  The response was more along the lines of, let’s do some research to determine: what the laws are where we live and where we will be traveling, what it would take for all of us to be properly and effectively trained and knowledgeable on how to use and maintain a weapon and most importantly, consider exactly what situation would call for us to use a firearm, and would another weapon like a slingshot or a bow and arrow be more effective.

I grew up in a house with guns, in Arizona, and attended my first gun safety course at the age of 7 or 8; after 40 my brain has gotten a little less precise on the exact dates but I do remember a Tarantula spider walking across our path in the dawn of the desert as we strolled out to shoot our rifles at one of the courses.  During my adolescence, I fired many guns and even took a few ribbons at camp shooting contests.  (Yes, shooting contests for children existed in Arizona at Summer Camp.)  My husband who grew up in California and Alaska is extremely adept at all types of weaponry including a bow and arrow.  He also has a keen interest in all kinds of weapons as he was a former defense contractor. That being said, he is also a man that feels paintball should be outlawed because weapons, especially firearms of ANY kind, should NEVER be aimed at another human being.  Frankly, we both feel extremely strongly, that firearms should never be pointed at ANYTHING that the bearer is not willing to KILL or DESTROY.

We live in Hawaii and the gun laws here are extremely strict. A permit is needed to acquire a firearm, and all legal firearms are registered with the police department, one can apply for a carry permit and it will not be granted, silencers and automatic weapons are outlawed.  Find more info on Hawaii Gun Legislation here.  I like these policies.  My husband who has always be a responsible citizen and gun owner finds them restrictive for law-abiding citizens.

We are still participating in this debate and I know that countries, like Mexico, will seize your vessel and throw you in jail if a firearm is found on your boat.  There is also the question of what a gun (or multiple) would do if we were attacked or needed to use the weapons.  There are plenty of shady characters at our harbor, but I am really never in fear.  In open ocean, the attacker would likely have a firearm, thus resulting in a fire fight and the potential for innocent casualties.  Does owning a firearm, increase the statistical probability that one would use it in a stressful situation? I do want to protect my family and feel that knowledge based skills like sailing, applying stitches to a wound, baking bread and yes, maintaining and shooting a firearm are all things one should know how to do, but I am not sure that a gun is a better choice than a gaff hook and a sling shot.

See this interesting post Why HB 155 undermines the trust doctors have with patients,  providing a physician’s opinion about this legislation.  I am also astonished now when I meet people and they ask us, do you have guns?  As if they are asking if we eat out regularly or drink coffee?  Are guns that common? Is it our large military population or loads of hunters and recreational shooters?  There is a special office at the Honolulu police department that is dedicated to firearms registration.

My struggle with this concept of having a firearm is not with the weapons themselves – it is with the capacity to take, literally, or mame another human life – as a woman and a mother – I am not sure that is something I want to do.  The best weapon we will ever have is our intelligence and our ability to rationalize.  My preference would be to avoid any situation that could result in injury or death.  I hope that is possible.  What are your thoughts on this?  Please note when considering your answer, we always sail with our child.  Should that change our decision?

Posted by: First Mate | June 24, 2011

Busy working here!

I know I am supposed to post about my latest firearms in Hawaii lesson today but I am not getting to it. PERIOD. I did make a loaf of olive bread today also.  Will let you know how that turns out. Maybe a photo?

I digress, as I am sitting at my desk busy at work when my husband, aka Captain, says “you are going to give yourself enough time to get the SCUBA tanks filled aren’t you?”

Me:  “I am baking bread and need to be here to take it out.”

Captain:  “I have been asking to get these filled for so long?”

Argh.  I don’t actually know how long it has been that he has been asking for this?  Before we left for Panama?  After we returned? What I do know is that I am not really interested in making time for this errand when I MADE OLIVE BREAD TODAY!  And will be doing a 2 mile swim.  And taking Ruby to the beach.  So do I forget? Or turn my world upside down to get the SCUBA tanks filled?

Please note, getting them filled means I will have to clean the bottom of the boat this weekend during the box jellyfish influx.  June Box Jellyfish Arrival Calendar for Hawaii 2011.

Really?

Posted by: First Mate | June 23, 2011

What happened to the Sandbar I remember?

Today my friend Linda told me about a woman mauled at the Kaneohe Bay Sandbar by 130 pound Bull Mastiff.  I looked up the article which I am posting here.  Mastiff Mauls Woman at Kaneohe Bay Sandbar

This incident happened while our news is covered with stories on how the Department of Land and Natural Resources  (DLNR) and state legislators are proposing bans on alcohol at the sandbar due to a recent death and numerous fights (okay brawls) at the Sandbar.  Bans to Sandbar activities   See the other post on support of proposed bans.

My question is:  What is going on with people?  We have boat and have a fairly strict policy related to alcohol.  We are responsible for anyone we take out on our boat.  Alcohol is only permitted at anchor or at the dock for those performing any duties on the boat.  We do not have a liquor license so no alcohol is provided for charters – ever.  Yes, people bring their own but they are generally smart enough to realize it is hot and alcohol affects you more in the sun and on the water. And as posted previously, the ocean can be very unforgiving.  [Dave Mackenzie (see post What are the Odds?) was an award winning open water swimmer who died of accidental drowning – maybe a shallow water blackout.]

All that being said – we also love animals and were partners in a ranch/farm that had many animals including two bull mastiff mixes.  (Chickens, horses, mules, donkeys, birds, dogs- it was sort of our Green Acres period – thank goodness we all survived it. LITERALLY! But I digress.) Animals are still animals – as humans, we should have the ability to perform rational thought.  (Drugs and alcohol can impair this ability.)  The dogs at the ranch needed more attention and activity.  Big dogs are like that. When we had a baby donkey named Daisy, the Bull Mastiff/Giant Schnauzer mix got out and literally mauled the baby donkey.  The mother donkey, Harriett, eventually kicked the dog, but by then Daisy’s diaphragm had been crushed and she died a slow and painful death with our neighbor, the vet and for a short time, I, standing over her.

We learned – we have enough on our plate with an Ecclectus Parrot, a seven year old, each other, a boat and several businesses.  Animals need attention, don’t take them on unless you can take care of them.  Accidents happen and so does stupidity.  That being said – whose dog was it?  It is a small island and I never want to go or take my child to the house with the released Bull Mastiff. And why weren’t they aware when the dog went tearing across the sandbar?  And why is our legislation so lame that because it was out of the jurisdiction of land – the sandbar is 1 mile off shore in Kaneohe Bay- that the dog was returned to the owner!!$$%^@???  The woman will be in the hospital for at least 3 days recovering and HOPEFULLY will NOT get a deadly infection that could kill or seriously maim her. (This will lead me to my next post on firearms in Hawaii and on boats.)

Life is short which is why you won’t see us at the Sandbar anytime soon.  I don’t need a drunk picking a fight, or a wonderful ‘pitt bull’ eating Ruby or Dee Bird.  (Dah-Bird in Hawaiian pigeon).  These people that have turned the Sandbar into a nightclub know who they are and this is what they want and you know what – you won!

See this post from Midweek 2005.  Best line ever – “Big sand bar parties only happens about twice a year,” says Inouye, whose VJ Crew organizes Rockstar Fridays. “I think for us, we’re done. It got too big too fast! For the safety of everyone it would be best to just keep with our little barbecues on the sand bar with our kids and a few close friends. No stress that way. God created the sand bar to relieve stress, not create more. It was fun, and many memories were made that will never be forgotten.”  You can have the Sandbar.  And the parties are every weekend – we can see from our house.

View to the Sandbar

And next time you are out there, please say a quick one – Namaste or whatever, for the Marine that died there this past March 28, 2011 in a helicopter crash while performing maneauvers.   Not really sure what to say for the recently deceased father of two, who was drunk and on cocaine when he picked a fight that ended in his untimely death a few days ago.

And if you have any interest in the statistics of morbidity and mortality involving boating and alcohol – you can find them here at Recreational Boating Accident Statistics and Trends.

And for those of you interested in visiting, Hawaii is beautiful.  And it is full or choke as we say, of dreamers and idiots.

Family, Friends Of Fatally Injured Man Support Kaneohe Sandbar Restrictions – Honolulu News Story – KITV Honolulu.

« Newer Posts - Older Posts »

Categories