Visitor's Pass -- 6/19/00

Buddy, just visiting
Also check out more of Buddy's pics 1 and 2.

Swell was scheduled to peak on Monday, so an afternoon sesh was in order. Unfortunately, when the morning came, we were disappointed to find it much smaller than expected. We decided to chance it anyway, so I ended up stealing away from a meeting, citing a PT (physical training) requirement.

Makani offered to drive, so Buddy and I happily played passenger. It was best that he was in the driver's seat that day; Makani has an uncanny way of finding the best surf on a given day. If any session needed his magic touch, it was this one.

We headed west, targeting a secret spot that Buddy occasionally frequented in his hanabatta days. Notorious for its heavy localism, the spot can be fickle, or it can be the only working spot on the coast. Makani's luck prevailed.

Town was only head-high, but we scored some juicy, well-overhead waves. The only catches (besides the firm crowd) were the shallow reef on the rights and the increasing backwash, making for some sketchy rides.

Makani was the usual smooth operator, gliding on both the rights and lefts. He caught some good ones, including several nice left hooks. Mid-sesh he decided to play Eddie Aikau and waited way outside for a set. After a very long wait, his patience paid off with a jacking wall all the way to the beach.

Me, I played it a bit more tentative than I should have. Sat on the inside during most of the sesh, initially catching a few sweet drainers on the right, and one wicked, hooking left that threw out wide, then pinched and nailed me squarely between the shoulderblades. At the very end, I paddled outside and finally snagged a decent set wave.

I practiced a *lot* of Hawaiian pull-outs in the closeout rights, but had fun nonetheless. Of course, I eventually kissed the reef too--rather, the reef kissed my butt!

A good bodyboarding friend of mine, I'll call him "Deeks", was cruising the lineup. Hadn't seen him in ages--he used to just dominate me in the contest scene. Came to find out da buggah was on duty lifeguarding. Only on the Westside!

As for Buddy, he also had a decent session on both the lefts and rights. Big carves and some tube time made his surf real fun. But his relationship with the crew was what made the session stand out.

The moment we pulled up to the lineup, Buddy recognized one of the shredding rider as his old friend Timmy. We jumped into the water and it was all over. Timmy just started talking and talking and talking and talking--first with Buddy, then Makani, then myself. Just a superfriendly guy, Timmy had positive words for our whole crew. Although he was over 40, Timmy was as sinewy as a prizefighter and surfed as smartly and technically as anyone out there. Really eased what little tension there was in the lineup.

After a particularly good ride by Buddy, Timmy started hassling him just for fun.

"Brah, my last three waves all had mean backwash, then first thing you come you get one smooth one. You one visitor today! Wassup with that?" Timmy teased.

"Visitor's pass, brah!" Buddy replied wryly.

After three and a half hours, we decided we had enough. Actually, we got out of the water just in time as a small cadre of aggressive and talented groms (the worst kind) filled the lineup. After toying around a bit with Buddy's new digital cam, we showered off and made the long journey home just as the sun fell below the horizon.

They say that once you leave home, you can never go back. Well, I submit that you can, if you have a visitor's pass.

Timmy, bottom-turning with blurring speed way below me

Buddy, riding some liquid metal

Me, sketching on the rights (Buddy foto)

Aloha from Paradise,