Sometimes I take myself too seriously. Sometimes its good to just sit back and laugh at your failures instead of dwelling on them. I am clumsy as shit, and pretty darned uncoordinated to boot. Ever see those videos of cats wearing socks trying to walk? That’s how I feel like I go through a lot of life. Fact. No biggie, though. It is what it is. I invite you to check out a couple of my less than perfect moments in surfing….. or maybe we should just call it falling? Cuz man, these are just no good at all. Enjoy and have a laugh!
Posts Tagged ‘surfing’
I haven’t written in a hot minute, and generally I try to keep things upbeat on here. But I’ve have a bunch of things swirling around in my mind recently, and thought that it might be helpful to pick up the keyboard again. Just a heads up.
When I’m feeling sad and alone, when life feels too loud and bright and like its spinning out of control, when I feel helpless in taming things I try to go to my happy place. It’s a beach about and hour and a quarter from my house. It’s a place I feel safe and comfortable. Where I run into good people that I know who do good things. Where I can strike up a conversation, or keep to myself if I’m having a day that I want to be alone. I feel like it’s my home away from home. The best time to visit is between September and May when its cool and quiet, and most of the summer crowds have left. I surf when the surf is good. I walk the beach when the waves are flat. I take in the beauty of nature and relax into the calm of thinking only in the present.
I watch the gulls splash and bathe in the shallow shore water and soar overhead. And while they are normally little bastards who try and steal my loaded bagels, those birds make me happy to watch them doing their normal goofy seagull things. Watching the sets roll in over and over and crashing with the most calming regularity. Way better than any artificial white noise machine.
In September the air has started to cool and it feels like fall. Luckily the sun is still bright and warm and feels good on my skin. It takes me away from all the dark that has seeped into my life and that I am now stuck with the complicated task of figuring out how to replace it with goodness, and then growing from this whole thing. All of the hurt and loss and guilt. Disappointment and that which I have tried to grasp, but have been unable to thoroughly understand. So I walk and think and stop to write; to get things out of my head; to keep them from bouncing around.
Collecting bits of scattered sea glass brings back a tinge of an old fond memory, which is now too painful to dwell on. What do you do with all of those feelings, or do they just fade and you have to suck it up and deal with them until they do?
A couple flying kites. The wind messing up my hair. The creepy old shirtless man wearing guyliner, who asks to take a picture of me shortly after I’ve finishing crying behind my sunglasses and keeps making small talk about the Blondie concert he just went to.. These things bring me back into the present and remind me to keep going. To try to replace the bad thoughts with the good. There is no good result that will come from dwelling on things that I can’t control or change. My control freak self needs to just settle down in the sand, feel the wind in my hair, the sun on my face and sit back and take in the beautiful sets of waves rolling in and crashing over and over. Wonderfully consistent, steadily.
This video was made by some friends of the surf shop that I spend way too much time & money at: Summer Sessions in Rye, NH. The recent Noreaster that passed through New England last weekend made for some epic surf and ski conditions on Halloween & these hombres decided to take advantage of the storm’s leftovers. Some super cool cinematography & a rad soundtrack. This video totally gives the the warm fuzzies for being from a region that is home to so much awesomeness.
There’s also a cool article/write up thingie here that explains the situation with a bit more flair than me.
This adventure is what happened immediately following adventure #7. Basically Juice & I had been surfing on the Cape, it had gotten dark, we went on basically a fruitless (ha!) search for local organic food, and then hung out on the beach near a place that played the worst reggae music ever while we pondered our next steps. I wanted a bonfire, and we needed to figure out where we were going to camp for the night. We could camp on an ocean beach, but we’d probably be woken up super early by tons of people & the sun rising directly into our faces. Or we could find a beach on a pond that Juice had a vague recollection of… Somewhere off the beaten path, not on maps, super small, pretty secluded where the trees would surround us and let us sleep in past 5am. He called it the “secret spot”. Immediately, that piqued my interest, and we head in that direction. Keep in mind that its about 1am, totally dark. I’m sleep deprived. Juice doesn’t remember exactly where we’re going or how to get there, and the roads are all screwed up and covered with debris after a storm that had passed through recently. Luckily, we needed some firewood, so as we drove through these dark unlit side roads, we were able to stop & scavenge enough firewood to make a good size (and free!) bonfire.
We keep turning onto smaller and smaller roads. And then we get to what seems like a dead end, but it’s not, it just turns into an unmarked & unpaved road. Driving down a super narrow dirt road through the woods in the middle of the night sounds kinda scary, but oh ! it gets even better. We then come to fallen trees in the road?/path that we had to get out of the car to move….in the dark…… And a few terrifyingly steep and washed out embankments that I had to drive down, with faith that Juice knew where we were going & hoped that I had cell phone service in case I needed to call AAA to tow us out if I got stuck. But damn, you gotta love Audi’s and their all-wheel drive! Eventually Juice said that we were there & we unloaded the wood & some blankets. And alcohol. Because I certainly needed it after that terrifying drive of doom, and also, you can’t have an authentic beach bonfire without open containers of alcohol.
It was a new moon, so there was nothing lighting our way other than thousands of stars, and a tiny flashlight on my key ring. The beach was only about 20×20 feet, and there was a still silence. We were the only signs of any light or noise, so it felt like we needed to respect that serenity, talking in whispers & shutting off the car’s lights. Juice built an awesome bonfire (with my super helpful and totally appreciated guidance of course!) and we set up our respective blankets on both sides of the fire. That way, we both got a front row seat & we could also poke at the fire & bask in its warmth.
We stayed up for a few hours, talking, listening, feeding the fire. Talking about all of those wonderfully random things that only start to come up in conversation when its super late, you’re half asleep and in a chilled and relaxed state. And then the birds started getting noisy, and the sky started turning that light grey/purpleish color that it turns, right before the sun rises. That was our cue for bedtime. Right before I feel asleep, Juice said something like “Just wait till you wake up; the beauty of this place will blow you mind.”
We spent the morning swimming in the lake and catching frogs.
And then we packed up our gear & then headed out to try for another surf session. Trying to leave the “secret spot” as pristine as we had found it.
For a bonfire experience, I had expected something much closer to a beach bonfire scene from a 60′s beach party/surfplotation movie like Gidget or Beach Party. But this was really awesome in a relaxing and chilled out sort of way. I got to experience the bonfire & appreciate the setting (even if I couldn’t really see it until the next morning), instead of having to concentrate on navigating social scenes. Good times, good times. I can’t wait to do it again.
Watching a sunset on the East Coast is easier said than done. The sun sets in the west, however the ocean is generally to the east, so finding a good vantage point to check out the dwindling daylight is key. I thought that this would be one of those easy things to do during a boring week so I could check something off the list: Drive up some hill, watch sun set, go home. Nothing life changing, Easy peasy. Luckily this adventure was way more than that, unplanned, not well thought out and wonderful in its randomness and spontaneity.
So I have this friend who I hadn’t seen in 8 years, let’s call him Juice for the sake of some semblance of anonymity on the interwebs. I met Juice back in 2001 when we were both riding the Red Line from Braintree into Boston pretty late on a Sunday night. Normally I don’t strike up conversations with strangers on the T late at night (in fact, generally I advise against it), but he was carrying a surfboard and since there is no beach near the Braintree train station I was curious about what the deal was and what his story was. I struck up a conversation and the rest was history. Anyways. He moved to Californina around the time that I moved to Seattle and we kinda lost touch. Until recently that is. I’ve been on the lookout for surfing buddies & his name popped into my mind, so I decided to see if his cell phone from 8 years ago still worked. Shockingly it actually did, and he was east coast bound again, and he was looking to reconnect with adventuresome folks like myself. Funny how stuff works out like that.
Fast forward a few months. After some misfires on hanging out, I gave Juice a ring last Tuesday morning & was like “Yo. The fun time waves of awesomeness are here. I wanna go surfing. Let’s do this.” And then he was like “I’m in, but it’s all about making a trip out of it and going down to the Cape. Screw a day trip to New Hampshire. You drive and I’ll provide stimulating conversation and knowledge of the Cape geography where it relates to surf spots and illegal camp grounds.”
It was relatively early in the day, so I figure we could make it down to the Cape’s National Seashore and into the water by 4pm, and hang out in the water for a while. But I had forgotten how time flows differently around Juice, and how stuff always seems to take forever. When I got to his place he was still working on packing & he was very meticulous about it. (Somewhat randomly, I was also thrown off my game by the huge fricking beard that he had grown since we last saw each other, but that’s neither here nor there.) I just wanted him to throw his gear in my car so we could get moving, but it didn’t quite work out like that…. Although looking back at it, that’s probably for the best, since we ended up camping under the stars, so all that random shit like blankets and bio-degradable hand soap totally came in handy. My board was very excited, because it was the first time that it got to spoon with another surfboard on top of my car….
Anyways, so we finally get to the beach around 6.30pm, but then drive to 3 different beaches to find the best conditions. Finally, it’s about 7.20 and its starting to get dark, so we settle on the last beach, Nauset Light Beach in North Eastham. We throw on our wetsuits and carry our boards down the stairs to the beach, passing about 5 other surfers who are done for the day. There are only 2 other surfers in the water & then they too call it a day a couple waves after we get in the water.
It’s solidly dusk, and Juice and I are alone with our boards out in the water. (Well, alone if you don’t count the Gray Seals that were hanging out with us, swimming around us and popping up every now and then to see who we were and what we were doing in their ocean.) You can actually see the waves on the horizon way better when it starts to get dark, which is pretty cool. Looking towards the shore, the sun was setting over the sand dunes. It was a bit cloudy, and all of the fluffy white clouds had become neon shades of pinks, purples, oranges and reds. It was really magnificent. And then the lighthouse on the beach came on and added a whole different level of beauty to the setting. In fact, the sunset was so beautiful, that I had to keep forcing myself to turn around & keep an eye out for good waves to surf. It definitely wasn’t my best surf session because I was pretty distracted & in sensory overload. But, it was definitely the most beautiful view I’ve ever had while surfing. We ended up surfing till it was so dark that we could barely see the beach anymore & then we decided to call it a night & figure out the eating/drinking/camping situation. It was really a remarkable sunset. The view, the location, the vibe. I couldn’t have imagined a cooler situation to just sit & watch a sunset.
Thanks to Juice for taking so long to get ready that our surfing at sunset was a necessity, his senior surfing expertise & advice and also for the awesome company.
I’m turning 29 later this month. That means I only have a little over 1 year left of being in my carefree 20′s. There are a bunch of things that I want to do while I’m still young and spry. Similarly there are a bunch of things that I think are good things to know how to do in general, and definitely would like to learn them before I hit my 4th decade.
I’ve decided to be like a million other people and make a list of 30 things that I’d like to do, try, learn, or re-try before I hit the big 3. oh. I think it’s totally doable and my list an extended version of a bunch of things that I’d like to do. And I reserve the right to change things out and add to as I see fit. Here we go: (in no particular order)
Purchase & use a hammock in my yard. Fix my lower back tattoo (finally, after 10 years of saying that I should!)
- Get the new tattoo that I’ve been mulling over for over a year. (It’s been a year & I still want it, so I think its time!)
Take part in a beach bonfire. Go to NASCAR!
- Learn how to cook Coq Au Vin.
Learn how to braise a huge delicious monster hunk of beef. Practice alcohol abstinence for a month. Shoot arrows at random shit. Drink out of a fishbowl. Run a mile. (This body wasn’t built for running, so this should be interesting.) Run 5K. (This should be doubly interesting.)
- Learn how to can something savory. Like pickles. Or tomato sauce.
- Go winter surfing in New England.
- Go vegetarian for 2 weeks (organic & locally sourced when possible & maybe for a month if I get my act together.)
- Watch a sunrise.
Watch the sun set. Visit a new continent.
- Go on a road trip without a destination in mind.
- Travel solo internationally.
- Learn how to disassemble, clean & reassemble a gun.
- Play paintball.
- Paint a mural.
- Work as an artist’s model.
Model in a Fashion show.
- Go fishing.
- Learn how to gut and clean a fish.
- Go snowboarding. (Not on the bunny slope & without the day ending in a temper tantrum, haha)
- Rent a car on my own.
- Go skinny dipping!
- Read 15 new books.
- Go on a bike-riding day trip.
- Run away & join the circus…. (This is open for interpretation obviously…)
- Go sky diving.
Obviously some of these are contradicting. Like trying to follow a vegetarian diet. And then cooking meat, going fishing & butchering fish… But I’m kinda a walking contradiction in general.
Anything I’m totally missing? Anything that’s a really bad idea? How about you? What do you have on your Adventuresome To-do List?
D & I went to Puerto Rico for our 4th anniversary & had a really relaxing & fantastic time.
We layed on the beach a TON. We also checked out El Murro in old San Juan, hiked through El Yunque to swim in La Mina waterfall, and I took a surf lesson in water warm enough so I didn’t have to wear a full wetsuit.
Click on the pic to check out the entire photo gallery.
Recently I’ve gotten into surfing. I go to a ladies’ surf night in NH and I’ve been having an amazing time. I’ve started looking at surfboards to see what my options are and have noticed that huge number of women’s surf boards come with hibiscus flower motif’s on them. I’ve also been looking at getting a new motorcycle helmet since my current one is pretty old & should be replaced. In my browsing for women’s motorcycle helmets, I’ve found that the hibiscus motif plague has invaded this area as well. It’s crazy! The manufacturers of inherently bad-ass things are decreasing their “bad-ass factor” by sticking hibiscus flowers on everything. What the heck is up with that?!? I like pink flowers as much as the next girl, but when I’m looking to buy something for one of my non-frou-frou hobbies, I don’t want a stupid hibiscus flower stuck on it….
Therefore, in honor of this phenomenon, I give you a list of 6 things that are made WAYYY less bad-ass (and/or butch) by having a hibiscus flower on them……
#6. A mens’ tie. Unless you’re from Hawaii (and even that is up for debate), you should not be wearing these.
#5. A Knife. A knife is inherently bad-ass. So, why would you go about and muck it up with a design on it? Imagine yourself on a dark night in a bad section of town. A thug jumps out of the darkness and challenges you to a knife fight. Then you whip out this “shank”. True, you might very well win the fight, but only because your opponent would be extremely vulnerable while they are rolling around on the ground in utter hysterics.
#4. A motorcycle. Good for you for customizing your ride, but really? Couldn’t you have gone with some skulls or flames? Or flaming skulls?
#3. A motorcycle helmet. Just imagine yourself: Sitting pretty wearing your pink hibiscus helmet, riding your hibiscus motorcycle. Looking the the total opposite of bad-ass. Although this look definitely has potential to work if you are employed as a flower delivery person…….
#2. A surfboard. You could totally be one of the guys with this awesome surfboard with a floral motif. Except none of the guys would ever be caught dead riding your chicksauraus-maximus board.