01 September 2005

Who? Me?

That's what I was thinking when one of the really good surfers in our crew approached me as I exited the water and told me, with a look of sheer glee, that I had gotten so much better than I was the last time he'd seen me surf. He was damn near speechless. It's been months since we've seen one another. I knew I'd improved, but damn!!! I wasn't even having a good day today. I felt a little off for the first half hour or so. Things just weren't flowing. For one thing, every time I paddled for a wave or was up and riding, someone else was also on the wave with me. I haven't been at the home break much so the party waves were throwing me off. I was on a board made for a point break. That thing ain't got no rocker! And it doesn't always like our fast, lean wave. I finally pulled it all together after about 40 minutes. Some of the people left the water and that gave me the elbow room I needed. Then I started surfing for real. Still, it wasn't a remarkable session. I was just surfing . . . and enjoying myself. I guess I surf best when I'm having fun. But when I got out, the guy I mentioned at the beginning of the post and a couple of other guys started telling me wonderful things about . . . me. One of the things they harped on was the fact they saw me holding onto my board a lot when the ride was over. They said they've been a bit disturbed by how many people in our crew, especially the women, fail to control their boards. Well, I don't think I'm so great. I simply learned how to do it because I spent so much time at other breaks this summer. Malibu will make you step up to another level, whether you like it or not. I know that's what made me really concentrate on keeping the board from flying away. I still lose it at times—and yes, I wear a leash—but that's usually when I get dumped. I now either kick out, crouch down and grab the board, or simply climb up the wave and exit from the top of it. I still think I have a long way to go, but it was nice to be complimented. They also mentioned the fact that I was whipping frontside turns on the Tyler. I was? All of a sudden, what I thought was a fair session became an excellent session. Guess what I did next? I passed on the love. While I was in the water, I saw one of the shortboarders in our crew take a nice wave. He's a pretty good surfer who always gets good waves. What shocked me was when I saw his board snap off the lip of the wave. Usually, I see people do that and fall off. He did that beautiful snap and kept riding. He and I walked to the parking lot together and I gushed over that wave. I'd never seen him surf like that before. He admitted to being glad someone saw that move. It was truly sweet! I was hooping and hollering when he did it, but he hadn't heard me. See, this is why it's nice to surf a regular spot. Everyone shares the stoke.


At 9/1/05, 3:57 PM, Blogger gracefullee said...

I agree! Kudos to you!

And I agree about controlling the board at the end of a ride. I can't bear to put on the leash if it's waist-high. Going leashless makes you learn real fast how to keep the board close to you.

At 9/1/05, 9:27 PM, Anonymous riab said...

Good job out there SS! I picked up my board today and for the life of me could not find where the gash was --- three cheers for Aqua Tech.

Like I mentioned to both you and G. I'm now trying to focus and work on controlling my board vice just the ride. I need to work on it, and going leashless in small, uncrowded surf is my next challenge. I've done the going over the top of the wave to end a ride, but I need to work on kicking out and grabbing the rail. I think I'm still at the point that when I'm on a wave, I'm so psyched that I don't think about the dismount....


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