27 May 2005

Did You Get Any?

This is the question I often hear from one of the guys in our crew. For some reason, I'm always taken aback by that question. I guess my mind is in the gutter; I know he's asking about surfing but my twisted thought processes always hear it as a sexual question. Were he to ask me that question today, I would happily say, "Yes, I got some. And it was better than I thought it would be."

I had a good day. My friend and I had agreed we'd try the Venice breakwater. I've never surfed there. When I was still running in the soft sand years ago, I used to stop and watch the folks surf there. Then I'd run back to Santa Monica. It's a spot I'm anxious to surf. My only hesitation is the parking. Anyway we met up this morning and I told her I was sure Venice was going to be flat. The morning surf reports weren't very encouraging. She mentioned Sunset. I would have bet money that Sunset would be a waste of time. I'd already been thinking and mentioned El Porto. The way I see it, when there's a serious swell everywhere else, El Porto is usually on fire. I figured, conversely, that if it's flat everywhere else, El Porto will have a little something. And it did. There were waves, albeit small waves, to be had today. We both pearled on our first attempts at catching anything. This is typical for me. Once I pearl, I've got a pretty good idea of how the wave breaks. I think we were only out for an hour and a half, but we caught waves. What I find ironic is that a month ago I was complaining about the "Victory at Sea" conditions. Today, I was so happy to have something to surf that it took me awhile to notice that the waves got bumpy and choppy as the morning progressed. I did manage to put a nice ding on the tail of my board while getting it down from the car. Thankfully, one of the guys in the parking lot had duct tape. That was all I needed. I think I've gotten past the point of crying over dings. They're inevitable, especially when you're a short person who insists on surfing boards that are four feet taller than you are.

I got a lot done today. A few hours after getting home from the session, I decided I needed to attend to that ding. Once again, I got out the Solarez and went to work. What I love about this stuff is that it allows you to fix a ding in a matter of minutes. I spend more time sanding the spot down than I do applying the Solarez and letting it cure. After the Slick was patched up, I was so motivated that I dragged the Tyler outside and attended to some of the cracks it had on the rails. I wasn't sure if I'd dealt with them before. Better safe than sorry, right?

So I put Solarez on those cracks just to keep water from seeping in. As if the ding repair session wasn't enough, I then let the Tyler sit in the sun for a bit. We all know what I did next. Off came the wax! I haven't had time to re-wax it. It doesn't matter since I'm on the Slick for the time being. I'll get around to the Tyler in a couple of days. I don't even want to get in the water this weekend. Holiday weekends at the beach are not my idea of a good time. I'll be back on the bike tomorrow anyway. That means the Tyler can wait.

Just when I thought the day couldn't get any better, a mail truck pulled up (while I was stripping the wax off the Tyler). Guess what came in the mail? My new wetsuit. I know, you're wondering why I'm so excited about a new wetsuit. Well, I'll tell you. It's too warm for the 4/3 full suit. It's not warm enough for the normal spring suit. Last week, a friend told me that a local shop had just gotten a new shipment of long-sleeved spring suits in and that they were $99. That sounded pretty good to me. However, I've learned to check my wetsuit supplier before I run to the surf shop for anything. I found long-sleeved spring suits in their catalog for a little over $30. The following day, I got an email saying that if I ordered through the link in the email, I got 10% off anything I ordered. That wetsuit ended up costing me less than $30. Even though I paid extra to have it shipped quickly, I still saved over $60. This is exciting for a woman who hates to shop. (Yes, there are some of us who were born without that stereotypical shopping gene.)

I'm beginning to see the light at the end of the tunnel. There are only two weeks left in the semester. I know my students are tired of looking at me. Little do they know that the feeling is mutual! It's been my best semester yet. I feel like I finally know what I'm doing in the classroom. With a few drinks in me, I might actually be goaded into admitting that teaching makes me happy in some perverse way that even I don't understand. I still can't help but remind myself that if I were a full-time professor, I could have the summers off and surf as much as I want rather than having to teach summer school for three hours a day, four days a week. Oh well. I'm thankful I have a job that allows me to have a life and a little bit of money.


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