07 December 2007

I'll Gladly Take the Leftovers

Some people are offended by the very idea of settling for leftovers. In a city this large, with as many surfers (or should I say with as many people with surfboards) as we have, I can't bear being at a crowded break on a big day. Yeah, I missed the "fun" on Wednesday. I didn't get run over, run into, fallen on top of or anything else. I was safely on the bluff watching the festivities. I've been in the water before when the surf was that size and I didn't have to worry about the crowd. It was all I could do to worry about myself. And I came away from those several occasions unscathed. I didn't feel too confident about the unscathed part with this recent swell.

The break where I did most of my watching was absolutely packed on Wednesday. There were cars everywhere. When I looked at the cam before six, I could see (in the dark!!!) that cars were already lining the highway. When I checked the same cam at the same time on Thursday, I think I saw one or two cars. It was obvious the swell had made most of its appearance on the previous day, but I knew there would be something left for me. And there was. Compared to Wednesday, that break was a ghost town. The waves were no longer pumping and I had to wait awhile for the tide to go down. But once I got in, I got some tasty long rides with good shoulders. Better yet, I rode those waves alone. I've not had rides like that in a long time. Believe it or not, one can find surfing happiness the day after a big swell.

Although I didn't get in on Wednesday, I made a point of watching the surfers who were out there showing their stuff. One guy in particular (a big guy in a red hat, who Whiff said is Hawaiian) was out there killing it on a longboard. He wasn't just killing it, HE WAS KILLING IT! He took everyone to school. I think it was the first time I'd seen serious Hawaiian-style progressive longboarding. I got schooled big time! I'd only seen people surf like that on videos. But to see it in person was a treat. Whiff and I sat on the bluff watching that guy continually snag some sweet rides. Whiff, did you get any pictures of that guy? Anyway, that guy's surf style stuck with me. I saw, for the first time, another way to surf a longboard. I saw how he stood. I saw how he carved. I saw him use his entire body to make that board do what he commanded. For me, it was mind-blowing. When I got on my board on Thursday, I found myself standing in a little different spot and trying to emulate some of his moves. I failed on most of my attempts. However, on one hard turn, the board did exactly what I wanted, went where I wanted and and did it how I wanted. As I paddled back out, I knew I wanted to surf more like that. I probably learned more from watching that guy than I would have had I paddled out on Wednesday.

The only negative to Thursday's session was the fact that I couldn't ride the Bonzer. I finally waxed it. I'd been holding off since I'd told Clayfin I'd get some nice shots of it for him. I did that after my session on Tuesday. I went out on Thursday hoping for bigger waves that would accommodate the Bonzer. Now that I think of it, I should have paddled out on it. I've heard on more than one occasion that it's a myth that Bonzers require a steep wave. I've heard they can handle just about anything. Oh well, hindsight and all that.


At 12/7/07, 11:08 AM, Blogger Whiffleboy said...

I didn't get any pictures of that guy, unfortunately. He's aggressive on the wave though, that's for sure. ;-)

At 12/7/07, 1:38 PM, Blogger gracefullee said...

I'm with ya! Thursday may not have been as big as Wednesday, but it was nice not having to worry about everybody else in the water.

At 12/7/07, 1:54 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

So, you guys were only worried about other people in the water? No worries about yourselves in 12 foot surf? No fear in that department? Sure about that?

At 12/7/07, 2:23 PM, Blogger Surfsister said...

Anon, I was definitely worried about the size of the waves. That's what I was saying. In waves that size, the only thing I want to worry about is me. I don't want to worry about the hazard posed by other folks in the water.

At 12/7/07, 6:09 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks. Now I don't feel like the only one.

At 12/10/07, 10:54 AM, Blogger clayfin said...

dang, I read this whole post waiting to hear how the bonzer ripped, and you didn't ride it??? Arrghhh!!


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