EX­PLORER

Captiva Ad­ven­tures owner, started with a dream

Times of the Islands - - Departments - Meet Capt. John Hous­ton

Ad­ven­ture Sea Kayak & SUP be­gan in 1988 on Captiva with Brian Hous­ton. Capt. John Hous­ton, his son, took over in 2003, the busi­ness model evolv­ing into Captiva Ad­ven­tures. John Hous­ton also teaches yoga and trav­els widely, re­cently vis­it­ing Ha­vana. Times of the Is­lands asked John Hous­ton to share his story.

CAPTIVA AD­VEN­TURES BE­GAN … as a child­hood dream. My grand­mother asked me what I was go­ing to do with my life when I was about 9. She said I had to pick a ca­reer, I told her va­ca­tion. She said that was not pos­si­ble. I just fig­ured out a way to be on va­ca­tion ev­ery day, even if it’s some­body else’s va­ca­tion. I live the only life I know and share it with oth­ers.

MY DAD … did guided sea kayak­ing na­ture tours, ed­u­cat­ing peo­ple on en­vi­ron­men­tal ecol­ogy and the his­tory of our is­lands. I ex­panded the busi­ness with rentals, lessons, night tours―new moon, full moon―pad­dle board­ing, yoga, kayak­ing, ca­noe­ing, paddling surf skis, outrig­ger ca­noes, fish­ing, sight­see­ing, shelling, all the cool things you see and learn as a child on the is­land.

I HAVE NO … fa­vorite trip. I love it all, love the days I start by teach­ing yoga in the morn­ings at Ambu [Yoga], fish­ing af­ter yoga and then wind­ing the day down with a full moon or new moon pad­dle.

THE BEST THING ABOUT MY JOB … is in­spir­ing peo­ple to live their dreams, if it’s catch­ing a tar­pon for a bucket list or paddling with the mana­tee or dol­phins, a bi­o­lu­mi­nes­cence tour of a new moon or full moon. Just see­ing the happy faces of my clients as they re­turn year af­ter year is my fa­vorite part. I love it!

I HAVE FOUND … that yoga calms me, re­laxes me. Be­fore as a child and a young man, I was al­ways sped up, su­per hy­per. My yoga prac­tice cen­ters me, helps me fo­cus; it has be­come the most im­por­tant part of my daily rou­tine.

I MOST RE­CENTLY DIS­COV­ERED … that Cuba is sur­pris­ing! I loved it―def­i­nitely go­ing back soon as pos­si­ble. I learned that the peo­ple there are some of the nicest I have ever met. Their love for life, fam­ily, dance and mu­sic is in­cred­i­ble. It was more than a trip out of the coun­try. I have trav­eled all over Cen­tral Amer­ica, have been to Europe, Asia, South Amer­ica and is­lands in the Caribbean. But Cuba was dif­fer­ent. It was like time travel, but only a 45-minute flight from Fort Laud­erdale. I felt like I was far­ther away from home than any other trip I have been on. I mostly took pho­tos, walked the streets of Ha­vana, ab­sorbed the cul­ture dur­ing the day and went salsa danc­ing at night, ate good food and drank good cof­fee. I even got to spend an evening at the Buena Vista So­cial Club. Amaz­ing!

John Hous­ton says his job is about in­spir­ing oth­ers to live their dreams.

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