Releasing -- 8/1/98

No surf pics; just a cracked fin

Snapped awake at 6:25 AM. S#!T! I raced out of the house knowing I was late for my surf session with Buddy, Rich and Makani.

I've been stressing recently due to a heavy project that I'm kind of in charge of. Working late nights have been tough on the family and on my sanity. I was looking forward to this dawn patrol, but I guess my body said I needed the extra sleep.

Surf was expected to rise on the south, so I had put together a crew to make an assault on Jimmylands. Fortunately, Makani and Rich (Buddy's brother) had surfed Jimmylands before, so they didn't have to wait for me to show them the way.

After breaking 80 mph on the freeway, and making the long, tricky trek to the launch point, I finally hit the water at 7 AM (a miracle in itself). In my haste, two things happened: I found that my rear fin was breaking off (gotta get it reglassed) and I decided not to bring my water cam (bad call).

We were hoping that Hurricane Darby would throw us some good easterly swells, but it turned out to be a bust. However, Darby did cut off the tradewinds, providing us with dead calm wind conditions, ideal for the usually blustery Jimmylands.

All of them were in the water, already enjoying the good surf. Bud and Rich were waiting in the parking lot patiently from 5:15 AM, but went in after waiting a while. Bud wondered if I had bailed on them and went somewhere else. That's not my style. :-) Makani had just arrived a few minutes before me.

The surf was in the two-to-four foot range (overhead on the sets), but inconsistent. It wasn't pitching real hard, more slopey, but it still afforded some nice long walls to play on. With the dead winds, conditions were as good as it gets--sheet glass and fairly sunny.

All three of the boys were surfing well. Buddy was getting better acquainted with his new stick--looks like he didn't let it cure long enough with some rail cracks showing. Buddy caught one wave that he jokingly said he did 15 snaps on--a really long left that lined up all the way to the inside. I also saw him score one of the rare rights that heaved up nicely--sweet!

Rich, who I'd never met until this session, also surfed well. All I remember of his riding is the spray coming from the snaps as he traveled down the line. Rich likes to go big, and I'm looking forward to pushing myself with him (and the rest of the crew) at the North Shore this coming winter.

Makani, well, he just surfs unreal! His style is so smooth and effortless--I daresay Curren-esque. Makani actually had some trouble getting waves, but when he did, wow! Great fans on his backside on one right. Just busting on the crumbling section going left. Originally from Kauai, Makani lived in Central Cal for several years, and raved about some of the spots up there. Didn't lose any skills; maybe even got better.

As for myself, I was having a blast, sketching on some late takeoffs (yeah, even with my 9'0", I take off late), and awkwardly racing down the line on the lefts. If I saw myself on video surfing backside, I think I'd laugh my ass off--no grace whatsoever with odd body posturing and arm flailing. But I was having fun doing what I was doing.

There were other people that came and went during our session, but we had the place pretty much to ourselves. We were doing "the share thing", giving each other waves and hooting it up in encouragement. That's the best kinds of sessions; a rarity in these crowded times.

Rich and Bud bailed after 9:00. Makani and I weren't quite satiated yet so we surfed on. Right after they left, a hint of southerly wind started flowing. It sooned turned quite breezy, crumbling the more and more inconsistent waves. We finally left the water at 10:30, tired but stoked.

I'm still stressed about the work I'm in the midst of. However, I know I had to get some water time to blow off some steam, especially since I probably won't get a chance to go for a while. Even the writing is therapeutic--a release to help get all the play out. Now I'm centered and ready to focus myself on the task at hand.

Hmmm. I wonder how the surf is? I think I'll call the surf report... :-)

Aloha from Paradise,