I Paddleboard! I’m A Paddleboarder!

If you’ve never seen the movie What About Bob? you are seriously missing out. It was my favorite movie growing up. While my peers were sitting around watching Disney movies, I was watching Richard Dreyfuss beat up Bill Murray at Lake Winnipesaukee. It doesn’t get much better than that. In fact, I just watched it a few weeks ago, around the time I crossed paddleboarding off my list. Here is a short clip of when Bob goes sailing for the first time.


So, as you can imagine, my paddleboarding experience was pretty much identical.


There I am!


Oops. I mean,…this.

I'm on the left.

I’m on the left. I know you’re jealous of my awesome shorts tan lines.

I’ll be really, really honest. It was just ok. I wanted to love it, but there were a few things I would change. I will call these my Rules for Paddleboarding.

First of all, it was too easy! I was hoping paddleboarding would be something I couldn’t talk and do at the same time, let alone smile for a camera! The boards we had were, as you can see from the photo, basically kayaks. There were grooves for our feet. I guess this is great for beginners and all, but…is it weird that I sort of wanted to fall in?

Rule #1: Just say “No” to wimpy, kayak-y paddleboards and be a big girl. Use one that’s like a surfboard.

Second, we paddleboarded in a marina, which, you know, has a lot of boats. The water was dark. Did I mention there were lots of old fishing boats? There was visible oil in the water, which was a little depressing. There were a few birds, but little wildlife to look at. There were a few pretty houses, but I was left wanting a lot more. It was in Tarpon Springs, so walking around afterward was super cool and well…Greek food. I mean, you don’t need much more explanation beyond that. But still. I wanted pretty fish, birds, waves, and clear-down-to-the-bottom water you expect in Florida.

Rule #2: Paddleboard in the actual ocean. Stay away from boats and oil.

Last, I really wanted to get in the water. On a hot day, nothing feels quite so nice as splashing around in some water. This goes along with Rule #2; paddleboarding in water you actually want to jump into is key. I wanted to take my time and sit down for a bit to rest my feet. I wanted to kick a little in the water and splash my friends. I wanted to bring a snorkel and dive down when I saw something cool.

Rule #3: Jump in.


Rule #4: If someone is checking out your butt, make the most of it.


Duck, Duck,…Foie Gras!

By the beard of Zeus! It has been a while since I’ve posted. Well, when in Rome…or Ireland…

Actually, this summer has been so entirely wonderful and stressful that blogging has taken the backseat while my awesome life called shotgun.  Here’s a quick summary: I traveled to Milwaukee, Chicago, and Ireland; this cool guy Tony spent the past eight weeks here with me (which included adventures every weekend); I’m applying to grad school so I studied for the GRE every waking moment; and well,…hey. I can see you shaking your head. I realize that condensed version doesn’t seem like much. Ok, fine. I’m behind. Here goes. Let’s review THE LIST. My exciting life list! Yay!

  • white water rafting
  • zip lining
  • paddle boarding
  • be a model for a day
  • take a bubble bath in a clawfoot tub
  • eat caviar
  • eat foie gras
  • write a book
  • write my initials in wet cement
  • ride a gondola in Italy
  • ride in a hot air balloon
  • stand underneath a waterfall
  • slow dance with someone I love

As you see, the “eat foie gras” line item has been crossed through. Sort of like my movie conquest earlier this year, each thing on MY LIST isn’t something I expect to enjoy. It’s just on there for the experience. It’s just there to know I’ve done it. But nine times out of 10 I end up loving it. So, I will describe what eating foie gras was like. By the way, it’s pronounced like this: fwah grah. It makes me feel fancy to just say it.

Imagine butter for a second. If I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter popped into your head, please, just stop. No. Country Crock doesn’t count either. C’mon, get real. BUTTER. Real-preferably pastured-butter is pretty much the most amazing food aside from bacon. If you say you don’t like butter, just stop trying to fake it because everyone knows you’re lying. It is impossible to not like butter.

Butter, softened, has the texture of pure magic. It is smooth, but not loose, and glides onto your tongue like the best kiss of your life. It can be romantic if you let it.

Ok, now that you’re considering going to the fridge and taking a little lick of your butter (butter-haters, I know you have some in there), let’s get back to foie gras. So, there you go; foie gras is just soft, spreadable chicken-flavored butter magic.

If it weren’t for the lucky bastards like Anthony Bourdain, Andrew Zimmern, and whoever else travels around the world like a total badass, eating all sorts of magical, buttery things, I probably wouldn’t have even thought about foie gras. I’m pretty sure there was an episode once where Anthony ate a hot dog topped with foie gras and his eyes rolled back like he was going to die right there-and die happy.

In all truth, I have a serious crush on Anthony Bourdain, so not to outdo him or anything, but my first time eating foie gras was in a castle in Ireland. That’s right, I stayed in a castle and ate fancy foods like a total traveling badass. Here’s a picture.


There it is, on the top left of the plate. Remember what I said about butter? Now, see the bread? Yep. That happened.

Foie gras. Check.

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