Sixty Pounds Ago -- 11/15/98

Makani da Rippah

Dawn patrol on Sunday. Couldn’t find the boys initially, so I hooked up with Gary Morihara of Yikes Bodyboards. We bounced all around the different breaks in the beach park area, but eventually settled on some decent Insanities sandbar action. Surf was tiny (1-3' Haw’n), but clean in the morning light.

Got my wave of the day there on my bodyboard. Shoulder high takeoff, ducked right into a very deep tube, rode high as it started gurgling inside, and made a fairly clean exit. Stoked!

Buddy eventually came by the micro Pipe/Backdoor area, and we paddled to Ehukai to see Makani. As we stroked by Gums, a couple of big dudes on longboards called me out. For the life of me, I could not recognize who they were.

They finally told me--Shige and Keoni--two acquaintances from my old bodyboarding comp days. Hadn’t seen them for about five years, but was stoked just the same to see them again.

The main reason I didn't recognize them was not because of a memory lapse from time, but rather their changed size. They had gained about 60 pounds apiece! Now, I’ve put on some poundage since the time we used to run together (15, to be exact), but not that much!

We talked story for quite a while, reminiscing about the good old days. They always wondered what happened to me--thought I got out of bodyboarding altogether. Funny, because I thought the same thing of them. Guess this island is pretty big after all.

Nowadays they hardly ever bodyboard, partly because of their weight, but also because of injuries sustained from years of high performance bodyboarding. That was reassuring because up until that point, I thought I was the only one getting creaky. I finally found others who admitted that bodyboarding can be brutal on the body. We all have lingering pains, especially along the back and neck areas.

It was really nice seeing them again--brought back good memories of a time long gone. We talked/dreamed of getting everyone else back together for a party or something. That would be cool, but very unlikely, since we’ve all gone our separate ways. Said my goodbyes, then paddled over to Ehukai to meet Buddy and Makani.

Makani was ripping on his new Wellman board (from Kauai). Da buggah was so light on his feet, carving with precision. Buddy was no slouch either--even made a good attempt at an aerial. Me, I was kooking over there, especially nervous around the crowd from the previous session.

Too soon it seemed, it became time for me to leave. The boys said it got a little bigger and more consistent after I left, but what’s new. I caught at least one good ride, and had a friendly reminder to watch my weight.

Makani, dealing with the crowd

Unknown bodyboarder at Insanities

Buddy going right

Buddy going left

Aloha from Paradise,