I went surfing today. I was too tired, really, but I know that my chances to get out are numbered as we head into winter. The conditions were supposed to be beautiful, about 6' with low wind, so I made myself go even though I wasn't sure I was up for it.
It turned out to be 6' with swells up to about 8', and it really was nice out. It wasn't very cold, although the waves had a bit of a bite to them and there was a pretty strong rip. You can tell it's autumn.
I did ok - I find I'm so lost when I go out lately. I'm not really charging with my front foot, so I end up in this shallow stance (feet close together) on the board when I get up, and then I shuffle my feet around trying to balance. It's pretty weird. I'm just working it out - it's what I've always done when I'm not surfing regularly - but it's irritating. I got a bunch of rides today, but nothing smooth or long. And one washing machine-type wipe out. I'm mostly hopping around on the board for a while and then falling backwards. Not exactly refreshing or restorative.
I got caught in a little rip today. Another guy did as well. He was taken out about 10 yards past where he wanted to go, I think, and I was being pulled out as well, but not as far. I kept my eyes on him to see if he was ok, but then decided to worry about my own self. That was a good idea, because I was starting to panic just a bit, and just pausing and refocusing on myself helped me to relax and go with the flow. I was back on track in no time - the ocean was just sucking up a lot of water to make a big, huge wave - but it did get my heart racing and convinced me that it was time to hang it up.
I missed Jules' instruction and companionship today. I thought about Ray from Hawaii, too, and still am resolved to finish writing about my lessons there. I'm talking with a friend that I met this year in Costa Rica about going back together next year - isn't that fun? But I learned more in two days with Ray than I did in over a week in CR. (I also think it would be fun to do a school in a brand new country - Nicaragua, maybe?) I'm resolved to go back to learn from Ray at some point. I definitely feel in a funk with my surfing; I'm just not getting better and not really seeing how I'm going to with how infrequent my sessions are.
But. It felt really good to walk into the water today and get on the board and give it a go. There's really nothing like it. So I'm going to keep trying.