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Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Once Upon a Time...

Sometimes we all need a little help.
Once upon a time there was a seaside village living in harmony with nature...

When I started out to create a business I could be proud of while remaining true to my values I felt Fluid was a great opportunity to "make a living", have a great quality of life and share magical areas to people that don't get to spend a lot of time in nature. It's been a great pleasure sharing, educating, guiding, instructing and enjoying the warm Pacific waters around Santa Catalina and Coiba while exposing people to an environment teeming with wildlife and connecting to nature's healing ways.

The longer I spend in this capacity the more I realize this opportunity is so much more. Being on the front line of nature and observing the changes happening on our planet and in our oceans I see I have a greater responsibility than first realized. I've always known as human beings we have the opportunity to accomplish incredible things, experience love, compassion, reason and ration. I also see our actions are having a very negative affect on our planet at the expense of Earth's health and all creatures therein. I now see that I need to voice my observations and teach about the brutal realities of our chosen cultures and the destructive nature of our activities.

For over 20 years I've had the pleasure (and challenges) of witnessing the natural world from a front seat perspective..whether by hiking, by sea kayak, by canoe, by dog sled, in rivers, lakes, on oceans, mountains and over land. What a beautiful and incredible planet we have!

But all this granduer is in trouble. Simply, our greater societies have chosen a non sustainable path hurling us in a direction of wastefulness, pain and destruction. Fish farms, Fukishima and radio acive waste, an unnecessary dependence on fossil fuels, GMO's and altering our natural genetic make up, long-line fishing, shark finning, hydrolic fracturing (fracking), over production of plastic and ruining our fresh water sources. All of this is moving us in a direction that needs to be changed in a hurry if we want to continue experiencing the joys of our planet and minimize the suffering to all creatures.

Coiba Agouti
I remember a significant time I found conflict in our relationship with nature and the changes we were having. Guiding in Belize in the Barrier Reef we enjoyed watching hermit crabs comb the beach in search of food, to socialize and compete for homes. One client brought a crab over that was using a bottle cap as a home instead of a shell. The clients laughed and carried on with enjoying nature. I had a sinking feeling but couldn't quite put a finger on it. Now I know the plastic problem, all the waste, whales dying as a result of consuming plastic bags and areas of our oceans void of life due to our waste!!

As caretakers we need to make responsible decisions to ensure a healthy world for all to thrive and survive. In our little choices we make huge differences such as refusing bags, seeking alternative energy sources, investing in efficiency, buying wisely and locally, using our bikes and leaving the car parked when we can and using the 4 R's etc.

 On a greater level we need to start holding our governments and policy makers more accountable. We need to stand, listen, debate and voice that which is not acceptable. We need to get involved and be aware of the consequences of bills being lobbied and passed in favour of big business and money. We need to embrace the realities and make the adjustments to our systems and whole-heartedly strive for renewable energy. We need to ask difficult questions before we are given very difficult answers that we don't want to live with. The answers are already known. It's time we to listen to our scientists, engineers, indigenous people, environmentalists and visionaries.

We've heard theories that humans are an eliminator species and this is our natural order, like a plague or a virus. I don't accept this. I just don't. I see and believe in more. I believe in harmonious living, caretaking, gratitude and hope. And I want to believe in us as a species.

Just imagine how this story could end..."Once upon a time there was a seaside village living in harmony with nature"...

Sunday, September 30, 2012

It's been a while since I've posted my last blog..many thoughts and many valuable experiences, but I've held back on posting..who's even reading this anyway?!
Regardless, I feel we often say a lot without saying very much of substance. In fact I feel the world is moving away from understanding substance. Distracted in the convenience of technology we are ever more disconnected from the Real, from one another and from the Earth.
Looking forward to our 5th season in Santa Catalina, I really feel blessed to be surrounded, immersed in, the Real. Recognizing the opportunity to share the beautiful, natural areas of Coiba and Santa Catalina while surfing, snorkeling, kayaking, hiking, birding, observing and singing with nature, I understand the significance of this opportunity. And to share it, so that others understand, and to return to a place a little closer to the Real is a task I take with enthusiasm.
As the winds and the rains sweep this area, I plan in anticipation, more opportunities to bring people closer to Life and Substance.
May we all recognize the importance of Caretaking and Stewardship.

Saturday, October 29, 2011

New to Fluid!

Last year was a huge success in that we had lots of folks see wildlife they never thought they would see and had lots of folks try out surfing for the first time..and stood up! There's really something about catching your first wave..it really is unexplainable.
Coming this season, we have paired with Rancho Estero to create SURF CAMPS! Rancho has tiki hut-cabanas over-looking the beach break. This is an ideal location to get away from it all, relax, learn to surf, practice Spanish and meet new folks.
Combine your surfing with a Coiba experience, some sea kayaking around Santa Catalina, fishing, maybe some horseback riding, socializing in the village and you have an unforgetable break from the norm.
Join us for the 2011/12 season!! Hope to see you down there..

Friday, September 17, 2010

Preparing for the Next Season

After another successful season guiding sea kayak trips on Coiba and around Santa Catalina and leading surf adventures and lessons, I find myself already preparing for the coming season.

As the leaves start to change, the air is getting cooler, fresher in the North, I am aware of how quickly the seasons change. Soon winter will be upon the North, blanketed by snow and beauty. This change of weather also gets us excited for a getaway to the South. Of course, I am recommending Panama, Coiba and Santa Catalina!

Our base-camp style expeditions on Coiba provide a wonderful opportunity to immerse into the intricate, diverse and beautiful jungle environment. Combining camping, kayaking, snorkelling, hiking, wildlife observation, beach-combing, campfires and near-gourmet dining, you really get the chance to explore the many wonders of this unique, remote location. If the camping thing isn't really your style but you have interest in experiencing Coiba no problem. We can also stay at the ranger station in dorm style cabins complete with air conditioning.

The Village life of Santa Catalina is also not to be missed. We can arrange and array of activity from point break surfing, beach break surfing lessons, kayak trips (day trips and overnights), horse back riding, and fishing. The restaurants and hotels are as unique and interesting as the village, each having their own flare..I will add the food is diverse and you certainly will get your fill of fresh seafood!

New to this season is a coastal trip departing from Santa Catalina and following the pristine coastline of the Pacific, stopping at empty beaches to explore. Eventually we reach our accommodations...a new lodge on Playa Gorgona called CocoMango. This facility is incredibly peaceful with new beds, great food, a natural soaker pool and a honeymoon suite!

Let us guide you on one of our adventures in this area of infinite possibility!! Hope to hear from you soon. Please contact me at michael@fluidadventurespanama.com, or explore our website for more information at www.fluidadventurespanama.com.
Happy paddling!
Michael

Sunday, August 15, 2010

End of Another Great Season

Upon another successful season of expeditions, awesome wildlife viewing, new skill acquisition and fun times, we are ever reminded of how blessed an area Coiba and the area surrounding Santa Catalina is.
With all of the environmental stress happening globally, it is even more special to see monkeys, dolphins, sea turtles, and so many species of birds and fish. Coiba is truely an ecological gem and as UNESCO continues to work with Coiba to help establish responsible management, so too do we at Fluid Adventures Panama.
We hope you can join us next year for a sea kayak trip out to Coiba, a coastal trip along the Pacific coast or a surf lesson. Regardless, we believe you feel renewed, refreshed and reconnected!!

Monday, May 24, 2010

Out of control oil spill

We at Fluid are very concerned about the unchecked amount of oil that continues to ooze from the Earth. We cannot understand, or allow, such activity to carry on. We do not understand why every person on this planet does not see this as the most pressing issue of our time. Forget our regionalized issues, local fueds, long standing burdens..none of these will remain relevant should this oil continue to gush. We are demanding responsibility and cannot fathom how we have let this continue for nearly 6 weeks now.
Once the animals of the sea are dead, then we will understand the severity of this situation?..or not until we realize we have destroyed our ecosystems and our food source. The sea is not meant to be a desert!
We at Fluid are trying to get involved in this matter and recommend mounting pressure on anyone who will listen.
This is a major tragedy.
Michael

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Sample of Creatures We've Seen..

Sea: Humpback whale, pilot whales, dolphins, sea turtles (including olive ridleys, greens, loggerheads and hawksbills), white tip reef sharks, whale sharks, nurse sharks, crocodiles, caimens, spotted eagle rays, manta rays, shrimps, sea horses, moray eels, zebra eels and more types of fish I can fit in this space!!

Land: Howler monkeys, white faced capuchins, agouti, jaquarundi, white tail deer, vipers, green vine snakes, iguana, geckos, tree frogs, tarantulas and giant toads.

Air: Scarlet macaws, toucans, parrots, parakeets, herons (green, great blue, tiger), oropendulas, pileated woodpeckers, kingfishers (green, belted), manakins, hawks, osprey, magnificant frigates, plovers, ibis, american oystercatchers, pelicans, bananaquits, boobies and royal terns to start the list!