We Are All Phenomenal Women

This poem came serendipitously my way today. I love it because it’s so full of love! The most important love, the love that precedes all other love – self love. I think it should be the anthem of every woman and that if we could all feel this way about ourselves, we wouldn’t let, as she puts it, others violate that space inside us that needs to remain inviolate, the space where we meet God. Amen to that!

Phenomenal Woman

By Maya Angelou

Pretty women wonder where my secret lies.
I’m not cute or built to suit a fashion model’s size
But when I start to tell them,
They think I’m telling lies.
I say,
It’s in the reach of my arms,
The span of my hips,
The stride of my step,
The curl of my lips.
I’m a woman
Phenomenally.
Phenomenal woman,
That’s me.

I walk into a room
Just as cool as you please,
And to a man,
The fellows stand or
Fall down on their knees.
Then they swarm around me,
A hive of honey bees.
I say,
It’s the fire in my eyes,
And the flash of my teeth,
The swing in my waist,
And the joy in my feet.
I’m a woman
Phenomenally.

Phenomenal woman,
That’s me.

Men themselves have wondered
What they see in me.
They try so much
But they can’t touch
My inner mystery.
When I try to show them,
They say they still can’t see.
I say,
It’s in the arch of my back,
The sun of my smile,
The ride of my breasts,
The grace of my style.
I’m a woman
Phenomenally.
Phenomenal woman,
That’s me.

Now you understand
Just why my head’s not bowed.
I don’t shout or jump about
Or have to talk real loud.
When you see me passing,
It ought to make you proud.
I say,
It’s in the click of my heels,
The bend of my hair,
the palm of my hand,
The need for my care.
’Cause I’m a woman
Phenomenally.
Phenomenal woman,
That’s me.

From And Still I Rise. Copyright © 1978 by Maya Angelou.

Meet One of My Heroines: Annie Doyle

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Photo by Mike Doyle

This is a quicky post to share a blog I wrote for Baja.com about a local female athlete whom I admire tremendously.

Annie Doyle may be married to Mike the legendary surfer, but she’s a pretty amazing athlete in her own right. Furthermore, she is so passionate about life and surfing her enthusiasm is infectious. I love surfing and kiting with her and her hubbie – we laugh our butts off and I learn so much from Mike. Sometimes at the end of the day we break down our kiting gear and, instead of heading home, the tequila and ukuleles appear and a party breaks out right there on the beach. Annie and Mike really know how to enjoy life to the fullest!

Kiting with friends - Annie far right, me on the left.

Kiting with friends – Annie far right, me on the left. Photo by Mike Doyle

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Selfie of the Doyles and me after a day of kiting. Photo by Mike Doyle

Annie also charges waves of all sizes on a regular surf board and a SUP. She’s fearless. The only big wave gun I own, I bought from her – it came infused with her stoke and her bravery. It’s a magic board.

Annie Doyle Big Wave

Indonesia photo by Harry the Boat Captain

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Annie charging in Indonesia and that’s the 8’6″ T-Boy gun she sold me. Photo by Harry.

Annie is also an award-winning Stand Up Paddle Board Race champion – she’s been a medal winner in all three Mike Doyle Los Cabos Classic Stand Up Paddle Races – taking 1st in 2010, 2nd in 2011, and 3rd in 2012. The only women who’ve beat her are full-time professional SUP racers! The training she does to race 12 miles on a SUP involves putting in a lot of miles. It was while getting in those miles that she started noticing a lot of big fish passing beneath her board. So she and Mike came up with a system so she could troll for fish using a hand line attached to her paddle. She’s so excited to get out there and catch breakfast that she’s been known email me at 4:30AM to tell me she can’t sleep from the anticipation! I wish I had half her energy!

So, without further ado, I hope you enjoy the article I wrote about my hero Annie and her incredible SUP fishing setup, Get Hooked on Stand Up Paddle Board Fishing.