Written by Chris Griffin, North Houston Area Regional Leasing Manager 

Recently the Regional Leasing Managers attended a workshop in San Antonio.  Not only are workshops much-needed as they provide dedicated time to meet and collaborate on ideas, best practices, the vision of training, and the Regional Leasing Manager role going forward, but they also present a great opportunity for team-building.

You can imagine our delighted surprise and simultaneous trepidation when we learned that this year that the event was, in the interest of Better Living, Paddle Boarding!

RLMPBCollage

We met our guide, Ruben, by the river.  We had to sign waivers, and while this increased the nervousness, it really added to the excitement, because any activity that is truly fun usually comes with some sort of waiver!  We signed on the line and walked down to the river bank where we got life jackets and a brief lesson in paddle boarding (including what to do if you fall in the river.)  I’m sure you can imagine the wide eyes and side glances!

Getting on the paddle boards was by far the most difficult part. Stepping from the solid ground to a floating plank is all about balance.  Once on, it took a few minutes to get our “sea legs.”  It was quickly discovered that the trick was to try not to stand too rigidly – stay loose and flexible. After about half an hour including several laughing fits, our crew was on the boards, some sitting and some standing.  We were dubbed the “Sitting Ducks.”  Ruben gave a quick once over to make sure everyone was good and we set off.

The boards moved quietly through the water and gave way for proper revel at the peace and beauty of our new aquatic surroundings.  There was a zen-like quality of the still water reflecting the lush flora thriving in the humid atmosphere along the river banks.  Quiet was only broken occasionally by a “hello” from someone passing by on the sidewalk above, a panicked “whoa” of one of us losing and regaining our balance, and sporadic laughter.  The steady motion of paddling oneself through the water is a great workout and the repetitive motion leads to a somewhat moving meditative state – your body goes through the motions and your mind is free to roam boundlessly.  The trip took about 2 hours total, an hour there and then an hour back; it was among the fastest two hours I’ve ever spent.

While I’ve tried, words cannot aptly describe the experience.  We all agreed that this activity added to our collective Better Living.  Thanks to our Senior Training Manager, Mary Green and our Portfolio Trainer, Diana for organizing this excellent excursion.  It was a great time and phenomenal experience – for both body and mind.  And no one fell in!