Suze Orman and her partner, KT, diving for treasure in the Exumas.
Updated: July 22, 2012 6:02AM
I’m not sure what attracted me to the water, but it must have started during my childhood and the frequent drives along Lake Michigan to and from my dad’s take-out chicken shack. For those of you who don’t know, I grew up on the South Side of Chicago, 81st and Oglesby. And I loved every minute of it.
As a young girl my favorite thing to do in life was to ride my blue bike down to La Rabida Children’s Hospital, where I would sit for hours and just watch the boats that were docked nearby, always dreaming about what it would be like to be on one but knowing that it was way out of my league.
After my college days at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, I packed up and headed west to Berkeley, Calif., where I lived out of my van for months until I got a job as a waitress. It was in California that I met my true love: the Pacific Ocean. I had a friend who introduced me to boogie boarding, and I took to the sea like a little seal, clad in a wetsuit, fins and all. Oh, how I loved playing in the water!
Many years later, my partner KT and I moved to Florida where we live right on the beach. We came here in part so I could see the water every day, from the second I wake up. We explore the reefs, take long beach walks and talk about the day we can really go on an adventure at sea. KT calls me a “salty dog” — I love when my hair is wild and sun-bleached, when I can wear the same clothes day after day. But most of all my greatest love in life is being on the water.
So many people would assume that all I ever think about is money, but they would be wrong. My thoughts, my soul and my love live in the unknown that we call the deep blue ocean of life. And it all started in Chicago.
Suze Orman has donated her $1,000 fee for writing this column to Blue Planet Network, which aims to bring sustainable safe drinking water to people in rural communities around the world; blueplanetnetwork.org.