05 August 2006

The Horror, The Horror

Part of me wants this post to be a tirade full of cursing and threats. Yes, I remember what it was like to be a beginning surfer. No, I'm not ready to compete in the Longboard World Championship. In terms of my ability on a surfboard, I am somewhere in between the two extremes. I like to think of myself as a level-headed, sympathetic surfer who is sensitive to the trials and tribulations faced by those who are learning how to surf. However, today was not a day when I was thinking good thoughts about the beginners. For the second time in three days, CYT paddled back out to the lineup and told me she was hurt. When she turned around for me to see if I saw a lump on her head, I told her I saw both blood and a pretty bad looking gash. What happened this time? Once again, a guy let his board fly. CYT ducked, but the board still clocked her square on the head once she came back up. (Luckily, she hadn't broken a bone in her hand when she got hit by the board on Thursday.) She kept telling me she was sure it was nothing. Since I was the one who was looking at it, I told her it wasn't nothing and that it looked like it needed stitches. (No, I'm not a doctor; I know what I'm looking at when I see a cut that's wide open.) She called me later to say the gash required a liquid bandage to close it up and, as she'd feared, part of her head had to be shaved. Of course, once she got hit (again!), I was too through. I'd had just about enough of this bullshit. I was doubly irritated since the waves were still shapely. Here a shoulder, there a shoulder, everywhere a shoulder . . . when the waves actually rolled through. But all of this damn mayhem was bummin' my trip, man. CYT remarked on Thursday that she, in essence, throws caution to the wind when she surfs. She said she's not careful like I am. I didn't used to be careful. I'd bomb down hills at 50 MPH on my bike. I'd ride in rush hour traffic, flipping off bad drivers, banging on cars that came too close to me, and basically not giving a f@!k about my safety. Then I became a mother. That changed everything. It's one of the reasons why I'm not a hard charger in the water. I watch everything. I assess risk. I've always said I'm safer in the water than I am on a bike. Now I'm not so sure about that. I won't stop surfing and as I improve I tend to charge a little harder. But on days like today, when the waves are relatively tame, I'm almost afraid to go out. The good breaks are all packed. The bad breaks are dangerous (since they can't handle the angle of the swell). That doesn't leave a person with many options. I guess I'm basically saying the aloha spirit is about to be forgotten in an effort to stay safe. What other options does one have?

4 Comments:

At 8/5/06, 8:11 PM, Blogger Whiffleboy said...

One option isn't pretty - get in the water before the sun comes up. It'll buy you a couple of waves to yourself at the least.

Really sorry about CYT. You may want to consider abandoning RPB and looking for a break that is populated with a better caliber of surfer. Yes, your wave count will go down, however, you will be at a little less risk of injury from others.

 
At 8/5/06, 11:03 PM, Blogger Surfsister said...

We're already a step ahead of you. We'll be out there tomorrow at sunrise. I am considering other breaks. It's just that RPB is closer and/or cleaner than the others I'd like to hit up.

 
At 8/11/06, 11:05 AM, Blogger puttzle said...

Now you guys know why I always was a dawn patrol kind of guy! As whiffleboy mentioned, you may be able to get a wave or two without the riff-raff.

Or, come to da islands.

 
At 8/11/06, 2:26 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

All the more reason to encourage everyone to wear a leash when the surf is over about 1 foot...It's about others safety..Not cool...

 

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