26 March 2006

What Idiot Does Dawn Patrol on the Weekend?


I didn't just do it once. No, waking up at 5 a.m. on Saturday wasn't enough. I did it again on Sunday. I've come to realize something over the last few weeks. And that thing is this: there isn't enough time in the day. At least not for someone like me, someone who has multiple responsibilities and interests. By Thursday night, it was clear that surfing was not going to fit in with all I had to do on Saturday: a bike ride with Soul Brother #1, swimming lessons with Soul Brother #2, and the general running around that families do on the weekends. Okay, we got one of the grandmothers to sit with Soul Brother #2. That meant the bike ride was covered. I didn't want to bail on the ride like I did last week. Soul Brother #1 and I don't get much quality time together. Of late, we've been riding with friends so me choosing not to ride was not a big deal. But this week it was just us. There was no way I was going to stand him up for surfing. I still wanted to surf. I decided to sacrifice some sleep. I can catch up on that during the week, right? I was up and out before the sun came up. I needed to be back home by 8 a.m. Since I'm not accustomed to dawn patrol and didn't know how many people, if any, would be out, I took some protection with me—the dog. He thinks I'm his mother and goes after anyone he doesn't like who gets too close to me. Well, as it turns out, I wasn't even the first person to the beach. I started out at El Porto. I couldn't believe there was a line to get into the parking lot. It wasn't even 6 a.m.! I wasn't sure what I was looking at there. It wasn't big, but it wasn't particularly well-shaped either. I decided to move on and headed a little south. I really disliked what I saw there. The tide was too high. There was nothing to surf. Knowing that time was of the essence, I went to Venice. It looked good enough there. In fact, it was good enough. I got a few rides. On one of them, I paddled into a wave and then sat at the top of the lip, simply watching the wave build beneath me. Then, I just dropped in and took it as far as it would carry me. When I paddled back out, the guy near me said that ride was "stylish". Thanks, homie! I'm not even sure how long I stayed in. I was constantly looking at my watch. (Did you know I've got radios and clocks (or something that shows the time) in every room of the house? I've got a serious preoccupation with being on time.) As I was changing in the parking lot, a man approached me and said something about how I don't fit the surfing demographic. Before he could finish his thought, the dog rushed him. Perfect. That's what he's there for. The man was allowed to leave unscathed . . . this time. I got home in time to do a 20 mile bike ride with Soul Brother #1. Once back from that, I took Soul Brother #2 to his swimming lessons. Once back from that (wait, I have to stop to catch my breath), we headed out as a family to do some family stuff.

As we were running around yesterday, I realized that we couldn't get a babysitter for Sunday and there was no way both Soul Brother #1 and I would be able to do workouts. One of our friends planned a ride that was to meet this morning at 8 a.m. I figured Soul Brother #1 wanted to do it and I wanted him to go. I can forgo a group ride right now since I've got a lot of fitness. Soul Brother #1, on the other hand, is trying to get back into shape. Still, I wanted to surf. That left one option: dawn patrol. So I got up and did it all over again this morning. Once again, I looked at El Porto and then ended up at the pier. I didn't want to get in the water as soon as I got to the beach since I knew the tide was changing at around 6:30. I'd love to say the waves were good. They weren't. I got in anyway. I enjoy surfing even when the waves don't cooperate. Saying they didn't cooperate is an understatement. There were only two of us who bothered to get in. I have the feeling I'm the "poor soul" Uncle Grant talked about and photographed in his report today: The high tide - almost 6 ft. worth - at 6:30 is making it damn near unsurfable bout now. Plus, it looks like there has been an oh-so-slight downtick in wave energy as well. Only one poor soul trying it as of 7:00 a.m. and he/she (I couldn't tell) is not having any luck catching a wave in despite of his/her gigantic board. Yesterday, as the tide went out, it became fun enough for Roy of Ocean Echo (Ocean Echo) to describe it as the funnest day of the week. It does appear to have shape, with shorners a-plenty, so maybe it will happen again today. Chest-high (at best), semi-frequent sets; cloud cover and the water temp. remains a ridiculous at 53 degrees.

His caption reads: "He/She" - the only person out

The rest of the guys stayed on the pier and watched us. I don't even know if they saw the other guy. He was trying to take off right next to the pier at a spot that was working well yesterday. It gave him nothing but grief today. I only got two rides. I was still satisfied. Time spent in the water helps me maintain my surfing fitness. It also helps me clear my head. I don't feel like my time out there was wasted. By 8 a.m., I was pulling up next to Soul Brother #1 in the Marina (which is where his ride was starting). We then did the tag team parenting thing. He drove to the ride with Soul Brother #2 and his bike. He then handed off Soul Brother #2 to me. We then went home . . . after the obligatory stop at Starbucks for Soul Brother #2's latte. Okay, so he takes it decaffeinated. Okay!!! We really go there for apple juice (him), a cinnamon twist (him), tea (me) and a scone (me). It's now 5 p.m. and the weekend's not over. I'm going to leave in a bit to get my hair retwisted. (Hair update: it's still not fully locked. Now people are telling me that the process can take up to a year. Ugh!) I can't wait for Monday. I need to go back to work so I can get some rest.


At 3/26/06, 7:41 PM, Blogger TedZSurfer said...

At least you got in the water. On Saturday at 6AM I drove to the beach and there were NO waves. Went home and played with the kids. Ditto for today.

At 3/27/06, 8:17 AM, Blogger gracefullee said...

A good number of the regular crew was out at home break after the tide dropped and people were asking about you... they were surprised you weren't out! I think quality time with Soul Brothers, though, is quite a good reason to be MIA from the water!


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