It all started with that usual thought that crosses our mind from time to time: "What am I doing with my life? Where am I going?"
Those lines played over and over again in my head, more and more each day. And then, finally, something clicked.
"You should come work with us in Baja. I know you'd enjoy it," said a friend of mine who works as a kayak guide at Sea Kayak Adventures. "The people are awesome, and you'll know what it's like to love what you do" he said.
By the time I lived in a big city, Guadalajara, I had recently received my biology degree, and I wasn't sure what was next in life. But that's when it all came together; I needed something in my life that would make me feel alive. And that's when I decided I was going to Baja.
A couple months later, there I was, at the guide house in Loreto, having a BBQ with all of the staff members the night before leaving for the training trip. Everything was so new to me: the weather, the people, the place. But it felt good; there was something familiar there. Every member of the staff was so warm and welcoming, and I knew I was in the right place.
The next morning, training was on. We had everything packed and set to go. We got in the vans and travelled for about an hour to El Quemado beach. There, we unloaded the kayaks, and received our kayak safety and precautions talk.
After that we started paddling about 2 hours to El Danzante. We had lunch at the beach and started the introduction to the course. After lunch, we got back into our kayaks, and went to the campsite. After we up set up camp, we spent the rest of the night doing activities and playing games to get to know each other better.
As I lay in bed that night after my first full day of training, I felt excitement running through my body. There was so much to learn, and time seemed to fly by.
Early the next morning, we packed up and headed towards the next camp. Once there, we learned about risk management, ROW guides policies, and various safety and emergency situations. Then, we did some training activities that addressed how to handle any type of situation that arose while running a kayaking tour. The rest of the day was spent playing games so everyone in the group could get to know each other better.
On the third morning, we went out on the water and practiced capsizing situations, and talked about other risk prevention tactics. By the end of the third day, the group felt cohesive; everyone knew each other much better, and the training was so enriching while fun at the same time. I found out the value of every single one of the members of the group. Everyone has particular skills that make every trip unique and professional. Teamwork is the key for everything that happens, helping each other every single moment and making all of us feel like a family. Just like we do with our guests.
On our last morning, we packed up, and got ready to jump into our kayaks again. After another couple hours of paddling back to El Quemado beach, we loaded out the kayaks, and went back to the lead guide's house.
Everything I learned, everything I saw (birds, whales, dolphins, rays, fish...), and everything I experienced on the trip made me realize I was walking down the right path. There is no doubt in mind: I love what I do, and I want to share it with everyone I meet!
Thanks to all of my fellow staff members, and ROW Sea Kayak Adventures for making this possible!