Friday, August 27, 2010

The Surf Diaries

#23 Rough

I've changed.  I realise this as I go paddling out among the boys in huge conditions.  There was a time not so long ago when a former me would have looked at these waves and laughed.  Or looked at the overcrowded conditions and shied away.  I'm still a rookie, let's face it, but I'm putting myself in the zone and attempting sick surf.  In these conditions, you have to be good.  I have the balls perhaps, but I'm still rusty on balance, and direction.  Balls are good.  I do some breathtaking stunts which I'm sure would scoop a few thousand hits on Youtube.
At one point I catch a wave, on my hunches, and bail/fail very close to the concrete pipe jutting out into the rough water.  The water is high and foamy so a lot of the concrete barrier is either submerged or not entirely in view.
Big wild swathes of boiling foam rumble towards me, my board tugging me powerfully backwards while I strain to gain a few feet in the opposite direction.  For quite a while I am struggling.  I'm going nowhere and I'm floating too close to comfort to a hard concrete platform.  Panic is possible.  Pain is too, as I'm kicking water and off my surfboard in an area where I know there are plenty of rocks. 
And then I start to move through the swell, and finally I get over another huge bouldering mass, get the board under my belly and try again.  There was a time, not too long ago, when I was too bangat to even be out there.  Now for balance.

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