Reach Out and Touch Someone
When did Good Friday become a pre-school . . . scratch that . . . a black pre-school holiday? I was forced to take the day off today. Little man's pre-school was closed for Good Friday. And since his school is closed all next week, I've got to take another day off. (See, the child will be juggled between two parents and two grandparents.)
Anyway, my mom was nice enough to watch him for a bit this morning while I went in search of surf. I started out at the home break. Too closed out. I expected that. What I didn't expect was the crowds I saw as I drove north. It was obscene. You can't tell me a decent session can be had when people are literally close enough to touch each other by simply extending their arms. I knew RPB would be bad, but it was more than ridiculous. It was absurd. Now, I know I've said I don't mind surfing at what some people consider a kook spot. I need to clarify my statement. I don't mind surfing at such a spot when it's not crowded with beginners. On a day like today, I'm sure the place was a nightmare. The waves were inconsistent to say the least. I'm certain at least five or more people paddled for each peak that popped up. No, thank you. There's no fun in that. I took a good look as I sped past. I didn't even think about stopping. As I proceeded north, I passed other well-known breaks. Can you spell "population explosion"? This city is too crowded. I drove by three well-known breaks that were crowded beyond their limits. So I kept driving. I was prepared to return home without a good paddle out. When the crowds in the water are that dense, you won't have much fun in the water.
I ended up at my favorite L.A. break. I figured the dying swell would make it mushy and perfect for a longer board. Well, it wasn't perfect. That was fine. It wasn't crowded! All I wanted was a short, uneventful session. The waves lacked shape. Not a problem. You could still get a wave to yourself. I probably could have gotten more waves had I (1) run over another longboarder who kept getting in my way when I was paddling for waves or (2) snaked other people. I'm not the type of person to do either one. I was happy to be out there. I got one bomb of a wave. I was sitting there minding my own business. I saw it coming. I was thinking it was too big for me. Then I heard some guy yell "Go!" and he was looking in my general direction. I assumed he was talking to me. So . . . I went. Now, the last time I surfed here, I was too scared to drop into the waves. Today, I didn't care. I stood at the top of this thing, shrugged, and dropped right in. That wave was good enough for me! There wasn't much shape. Nonetheless, I made the drop and rode as much of it as I could. After being out there for an hour, I called it a day. It wasn't much of a session. I was satsified with it nonetheless. If nothing else, I got away from the crowds.