Unplanned Celebration


Sometimes it’s when things don’t work out the way you planned that it leaves an indelible mark on your memory.


I’ll never forget!  It happened last October after hurricane Irma hit Florida.  I was privileged to spend time in Marco Island with my girlfriends.

One of them planned a wonderful beach photo shoot at sunset featuring my fabulous girlfriends each wearing my mantra T-shirts “Don’t Compare, Don’t Compete, Celebrate! ” I was touched and felt so supported by these awesome women who are all so dear to me. I celebrate them!

We were excited, “I’m going to wear white pants with my shirt, is that okay?”


“Rach, I’m just going to keep on these jean shorts with mine.”

“Yes, whatever you want to wear. The point is it can work with anything! I’m wearing these black leggings. No worries.” I reassured them.

We selected our outfits and got ready together.  It was great fun. We curled our hair, applied our makeup and selected our jewelry.  Someone texted our sweet friend Autumn, who lives in Marco, she texted back…”you might want to hurry there is a storm coming tonight.”

(It will blow over it’s Marco!” Let’s go! So…)

We piled in our rental van lookin’ good and smellin’ fine.  I was excited for this opportunity.  “Thanks for doing this you guys, these photos should be great!” I said.

We pulled into the parking area and the parking attendant asked,”What are you ladies up to tonight?”

“Lisa, our driver said, “Oh just heading  to the beach to do a photo shoot for our friend Rachel Inouye who is a speaker and…blah, blah, blah.”

He said,”Okay, great have fun and you look like a speaker.” (I shook my head and thought such a weird comment. He was probably thinking, Ya realize it’s supposed to rain, right? Goofy girls!)

As we walked down the board walk we passed a couple holding hands as they left the beach. We stepped onto the sand noticed only one other small group of five gathering their beach chairs and towels as they held on to their hats and exited quickly too.

We just stood huddled and motionless under a thatched shade hut for a second. We’re the ONLY ones here. It’s so deserted! “Not gonna be a wonderful sunset tonight. It’s cloudy and grey.” (For Marco Island, Florida that’s very ATYPICAL!)

“Hey, Rachel get out there and smile.” I stepped out from under the hut and onto the sand alone to get the first photo. It was breezy so I only posed for a few. (The wind blown look it okay, i guess. BUT No girl likes to have the wind-blown look especially if the wind causes ALL your hair to be in your eyes and face or when most is stuck to your lip gloss. At least THIS girl didn’t welcome it. I tried to pose but just laughed instead.)

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We hurried to snap a few photos to document the event and promote the CELEBRATE T-shirts hoping to invite others into the ever growing “Celebrate movement” when all of a sudden the wind came up and howled, this drastically altered our plans it caused us to hurry, giggle and panic a bit too. It was shocking and took our breath away.

As the wind blew stronger, the more laughable the thought of even attemping this endevor became. Then WIND invited its friend WATER and she joined in and made her presence known to all. We got drenched instantly.

We tried to run back to our van but couldn’t. We had no footing but slid like we were skiiing in our flip flops along on the slippery and flooded boardwalk. One friend didn’t even try to go fast because she was about to wet her pants from laughing.

She grabbed herself with both hands, hoping to help her stop the inevitable accident. She cried out indistinguishable words mixed with screeching laughter but finally made it to the shelter of the van. It was dry but very loud as the rain continued to pelt the metal roof.

These photos crack me up! I can still feel the rain and hear the roar of the wind even now! Memory made! Celebration embraced! ( Photos from FB sorry for their quality- a bit blurry, I know.)





This is a Facebook post my friend Lisa wrote at the time. Enjoy the comments too.


So let’s embrace and celebrate being together no matter what form it comes in, planned or unplanned.

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