Women on the Waves


The ocean's big enough for everyone -- so move over, men

April 21, 2002

When Sandra Dee made a splash as the teeny-bopping surfer girl in the 1959 film Gidget, the sport still belonged largely to the boys. But over the years, more female athletes have begun making waves, and clinics designed just for them are cropping up. In Hawaii, Maui Surfer Girls offers multiweek surfing camps or weekend lessons and single-day sessions -- in case you're vacationing in the area and want to check it out. Here are the details:

* Billabong Boarding School -- A two-week surf camp for girls ages 12 to 17 with or without surfing experience. Activities include morning yoga, arts and crafts, windsurfing, adventure trips and, of course, lots of wave riding. The camp costs $2,000 and includes accommodations, meals and all instruction. Two sessions are offered: June 30-July 12 and July 21-Aug. 2.

* Weekend Wahine Warrior Clinics -- If you're a wahine (Hawaiian for female) age 8 or older, you can sign up for two days of surf instruction and Maui touring. Gear, transportation and lunch are included. The workshops cost $250.

* Day Surf Lessons -- Personalized two-hour lessons for all ages and genders with an emphasis on understanding your style and limitations. A picnic lunch is included in the $100 fee.

For more information, call 808-250-2019 or go to www.mauisurfergirls.com, but keep in mind the time difference: Maui is five hours behind Baltimore.

-- Tricia Bishop

Taking a peek at other cultures

Traveling anytime soon? Depending on where you're heading, you might be surprised to encounter some of these cultural quirks, compiled by Travel Holiday magazine:

* You can chew gum in Singapore, but you can't buy it. The city wants to reduce the sticky mess that gum makes when people discard it on the street. (Disney theme parks operate under the same philosophy.)

* You won't see many windows or clocks in casinos because they're thought to introduce too much reality to the fantasy-filled gambling atmosphere.

* The German autobahn is not as wild as you might imagine: Nearly 80 percent of the superhighway has restrictions and speed limits. Near major cities, in fact, the speed limit drops to 100 kilometers per hour, about 60 mph.

* Female visitors to the Vatican must cover bare arms before stepping inside. -- T.B.

Driving concerns

Though at first glance Curves on the Highway: A Self-Help Guide for Female Automobile Travelers (Roberts Rhinehart Publishers, $11) may seem demeaning, it's actually a fairly handy tool -- particularly for newly widowed or divorced women used to traveling with a partner. The book is designed for cross-country, solo travelers and contains practical tips on what to pack, how to stay safe and how to deal with unexpected auto emergencies. Female-friendly attractions are highlighted, along with ways to keep yourself entertained. -- T.B.


Ever wonder what spies really do? A new museum aims to tell you. The International Spy Museum, scheduled to open in Washington (at 800 F St. N.W.) July 19, makes its mission the exploration of "the craft, practice, history and contemporary role of espionage."

The museum (right) claims to have the largest collection of espionage artifacts ever put on public display, including a shoe transmitter used by the Soviets for eavesdropping, a German robot camera for photographing through walls and Enigma, a German coding machine from World War II.

Exhibits will include "School for Spies," an introductory look at the world of spying that describes the necessary skills and motivations for joining the profession; "The Secret History of History," which chronicles spying from biblical times on; and "All Is Not What It Seems," which focuses on spying in the 21st century.

Admission will range from $8 to $11; museum hours will be daily from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. For more information, go to www.spymuseum.org or call 202-393-7798.

-- T.B.

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