Saturday, December 24, 2011

Bring it, Santa.... Ana's.. HA you thought I was gonna say "Claus!"

So tis the Season for strange weather. Yeah actually December around Christmas it really is not unusual for a visit from the Santa Anas.. I remember growing up in Orange County..(Santa Ana to be exact. LOL) and having our Christmas lights blown off our house one year.

Any way I surfed last week in the wind..BUT this past Thursday was CRAZY. Started out ok. We ended up at Blackies, because the Cliffs and Bolsa were no Bueno and Newport actually had a bit of motion in the Ocean..
Only thing is my friend Irma and I thought we better get in right then, because when the wind picks up it's gonna get too big. So when we got in it was 2-3.. but more 2.. and the waves were not easy to catch. Lots of paddling for nothing is how I felt.

I caught like 3 rides. I had one of my fun long lefts.. ALWAYS A FAVORITE!.. then the wind started picking up.

It was getting COOOOLD. I was putting my hands in the water to keep them warm. They literally were turning purple. BUT I was only out for maybe less than an hour and I didn't care how cold I was getting I wanted more waves.. more rides.

The wind whizzed by my head. The ocean was creating this bumpiness, the waves started breaking inside.. and the spray was strong. I still sat outside waiting.. and waiting. Then all at once everyone up and down the break started paddling inside. So I did too. Nothing was happening outside. So if you wanted a ride, you had to get it inside.

Then the Ocean just stopped. The wind was crazy. The sand was blowing at us from the shore. BUT NO waves. Then when a little something happen.. EVERYONE PADDLED FOR IT. Seriously. These were not waves worth fighting over. But everyone was desperate and wanted something. I just sat there on my board watching the show. I was pretty much by my self to the left. But I was where NOTHING was happening at all.
Then A nice swell came.. and I was woo hoo I am gonna take this in. I catch it go to stand up and the wind pushes me down. The wave closes out. I am ON my hands and knees on my board laughing as the spray from the offshores is hitting my face like needles and I can barely stay on my board on my hands and knees!!!!! I was all what the ????
I told my friend Irma.. this is Crazy.. she says.. "I KNOW". We sit out there for a bit longer. Then we decide to go in. Tried to wait for one more wave. BUT there was nothing. SO I boogie boarded my board in, with the little bit of white wash there was.

NOW getting out of the ocean and to the Tahoe.. that was a different story. OH my!!! The sand was beating at us, the wind was pushing me back. My board was like a sail. I kept spinning around, trying to figure out the best way to move forward. Then a bigger gust of wind would come and spin me around again. I didn't feel so bad. It was happening to everyone trying to get out.

Wow what a funny sight to be seen.

I finally got to my tahoe and that tub of warm water was the most beautiful feeling in the world as I poured it over me.

But it didn't last long. That wind was strong and cold and was winning. I could not feel my fingers and had the hardest time getting my wetsuit off. When I did and got dressed. WHICH took me forever. I went right to the coffee shop and got me a Large Cup of never tasted to good!

Well that is it. I Really wanted to surf Friday. BUT had to do ALL my Christmas shopping and now it is Christmas Eve and am at work.. but not for the whole day. AND I would really LOVE to try and sneak a Christmas morning surf in..BUT I don't think it would be possible. I hate living so far from the Beach.

Any Way! Merry Christmas.. Hope some of you are catching some Christmas Cheer.. in water form!

Monday, December 19, 2011

Surfing and the Mentor!

I am in a bit of a fog...(So I am not sure what to title this post).. please excuse me if my post is all over the place. I usually do not like to write unless my head is clear. BUT I feel I need to write to help clear my head. HA!..TOO much going on in my life ugggg! But I want to and have to post about my Saturday Session.

I surfed last Saturday with my friend and surf Surf Mentor if you will... Natalie. We had not surfed together since I first started this addiction of surfing. She wanted to see how far I have come. A few reasons we do not surf together. 1) she is far more advance than I. 2) she is a shortboarder and we surf different breaks and different times. 3)Our schedules are not in Sync. But we were hanging out one day and she wanted to see how far I have come in my 2 and ironically exactly to date 1/2 years of surfing. (I didn't realize that Sat. was the 17th. WOW!)

So we set a date in advance to surf and just hoped the conditions were doable. Yes they were. Perfect surf day for me 1-3' and then we got some light off shores.

Natalie picked the cliffs to surf. A little bit of something for everyone. There are short boarders and long boarders and lots of dogs. LOL.. I never surfed here, but have heard different things from different people. When I mentioned I was gonna surf the cliffs to a fellow surfer. She said "oh boy...time for the big girl board shorts"..That made me a little nervous. So did surfing a new spot I have never been. I was not sure what type of break or how the vibe is or what to expect. I heard that the cliffs,(when I first started surfing) was not a place for beginners. I still feel very much like a kook. But Natalie said it is still good for beginners, but maybe not people who are learning. Leave that to Blackies. ;-) So this is a step up in some ways.. But then again it always depends on the surf conditions. This spot is between HB and Bolsa. Technically still the wave is like that."But I feel it is better than Bolsa, does not do that drop thing as much"..
I was really wanting to impress Natalie. I wanted to make her proud. She introduced me to something I love so much. The only gift I could give her, was not screw up. Made me nervous. I know I shouldn't be. But sometimes I surf like I have never been on a surfboard before. Sometimes I surf like I totally have been for years. I just wanted to show her I can catch a wave and stay on the board.HAHAHA. I know I still have a lot to learn.

So we get there. But as we were driving I am getting that fluttery feeling in my stomach. I start to get anxious as we get closer. I am excited and just want to get in the water. I always feel like a kid getting ready to go to the candy store and when we are there I cant wait to get in.
We run into my friend Jen and her Husband Alan. I thought Natalie may know them. But she didn't, so I introduced them and told Jen, Natalie was the first one to take me surfing and has not been out with me since. Jen told her I have come a long way and is proud of me. That made my heart fill with pride also. THANKS JEN!

So we get out and Natalie is describing the break and what to expect. We paddle out. The paddle out was easy. There was a bit more people than I thought. But it was ok. I felt safe with Natalie there. I get my first wave a left and take it all the way to shore. Natalie watched and when I hopped off she was clapping. I think she wanted to cry. I get back to her and she said.. "Michelle that was awesome" you did so good. Yep she was proud. =D
I go after a few more. I get some and some I don't. I wipe out a few times. I rode a total of about 5 waves I say. Some Natalie was coaching me on. I could always use a few pointers. I also am learning when to paddle for a wave, how to read them. I paddle after everything. haha. Sometimes I paddle and there is nothing, the water plays tricks with my eyes and I think it is a swell. I start paddling and Natalie calls me and says come here. I do and she said what are you paddling for? There was nothing there. LOL.. She was teaching me about shoulders. Lefts and rights. I am getting lefts and rights and I have been calling them out when I see them before they break when I go after them. But sometimes I think a left is a right and vice a versa. Or I stand up on my board and realize what it is at that time. I have to say more than not I get it right. I also paddled for a wave that is gonna break left but It swells up way far from me..and it would never be my wave. It is too far away. Sometimes I paddle to early, sometimes too late.. Or I paddle at the peak..and I learned.... That is why I pearl sometimes. I am still learning to judge waves. I still am not sure about positioning as well. It is all a learning process.
I had never been out on a day where the offshores blew. It was not bad. but you could feel it. Natalie was pointing out the spray that comes off a wave when it is off shore. I thought it was beautiful.. and sometimes you see rainbows in that spray like it was being projected on movie screen. For me that was a magical moment. I just sat outside for a while watching it. I love finding beauty in things I never knew I would.
Well a few of her friends were out there. Her Boyfriend Donald came out too. The over all vibe was great. When Natalie gave me pointers a few people confirmed what she was saying or cheered me on or told me to paddle harder and told me I got things. It was a great experience. Definetly a great surf day.

We saw Jen again walking in. I Was out there for 2 hours Natalie, almost 3.. Natalie was telling her about my waves. She said I ride them all the way to shore. I tire myself out padding back to the line up. I look exhausted and panting paddling back out. I do. Funny because, Jen was also telling me that not too long ago, and said to not take them all the way in. Especially on days where it is hard to get outside. It helps save energy. I told both of them, Yeah I know. BUT When I get up. I want the ride to last as long as it can..hahahaha. I just get so excited riding my board.

We went back to Natalies pad and she made us grilled cheese, and we had wine and cheese and crackers and homemade sugar cookies. Had great conversation and bonding time.

The view from Natalies living room.. NICE!

I am so glad Natalie has came into my life for more reasons than one. Thank you Natalie for everything.

Friday, December 16, 2011

Hold on to your hats.. or in this case surfboards

So I have tomorrow off and had not surfed in over 10 days..We have these very powerful NE winds which make it offshore. I hear that is good for surfing.. Helps shape a nice fun wave. Surf report says 2-3 and fair at least where I plan on surfing.. HOWEVER if the winds are as strong as they are right now. I think I will get blown Right off my board if I try to stand up....
... Stay tuned and I will let you know what happens..If I don't get blown far far away...or if I even surf at all=)

Monday, December 12, 2011

Surfing Safari..Celebrity Style

awww The infamous words from the beach boys.

I have been reading about a lot of female celebs trying surfing lately..and I have also read a lot of negative comments about it. Got me thinking is all...

I have read. Lindsy Lohan, Lady gaga..( < honestly that one surprised me, along with the next one) Reese Witherspoon, have all recently gave surfing a go. Also there is Minnie Driver, Vanessa Hudgens, Helen Hunt, Maggie Gyllenhal and Avril Lavigne to name a few... Don't believe me.. google it there are pictures.

What I don't get.. WHY are people so upset about it???.. Especially other surfers. Do they feel they own the ocean? I am an advocate for everyone should try surfing..maybe it is because of how much I love it and how much it does for me.. I want people to feel the same way. I am all for sharing the waves..However.. I would like to work out a time schedule at some of the more crowded breaks. Ha HA!

But really I just read on a Surfers Magazine Facebook Post regarding a picture of Lindsy Lohan with surf manager/agent Blair Marlin. There were some very negative comments. I know she has been in the news with a lot of negativity lately..BUT she is still a human a being.. and MAYBE surfing can quiet the fire in her soul and help take away the addictions and demons she is dealing with. Cut the girl some slack will ya!

With Lady Gaga... I read a few negative comments..that are too stupid and immature to mention. She actually looks like she got the surfing thing down. GOOD FOR HER!!

I really don't understand Why people are upset.. Are female celebrity's not allowed to surf? Is the feeling mutual about Male Celebrity surfers? I really don't see as much negative comments about them.... Is it mostly guys that feel this way?.. Is it because they are celebrities and more public figure that these comments are made?.. would they be made about me too as I am learning to surf if I was famous?

Just wondering.... as I read surfing articles..these thoughts are swimming through my mind..and wanted to see what others thought.

Friday, December 9, 2011

I just love to surf and I love HB!

OK I know almost everyone reading this is probably a surfer... So I know you understand and relate!

When I first left the house in the morning, I was having 2nd thoughts,thinking I am crazy leaving on a 38 degree morning travel 37+ miles, to go and get in the cold pacific ocean, AND..not sure if there will even be surf.. There must be something wrong with me?! can you say "Addiction?"

I had a few first again.. and even if I did not, Wednesday still would have been one of those favorite surf days. I have been having more favorite surf days than not..SO I lost count at which is my favorite to date..MAYBE the day I stood up for the first time.. or maybe my first(and so far only) overhead wave.. or when I first went left, or right...but I say this day was right up there.

Of course when it is my day off the forecast and ocean decide to go flat..(always happens to me either that, or we just got over some rain, or its windy.. (the wrong kind)..but low and behold.. WE FOUND LIFE IN HB!

My friends daughter was in surf competition by the HB Pier, for her High School surf team so, since she was there, she gave a surf report, said it was small, but not flat just south of the competition, which was South Side of the pier.... OH AND a shout out to her Daughter Irene.. GOOD JOB!!!! She took home 1ST PLACE LONGBOARD DIVISION!!! Also the only one to take 1st place in her whole team!

SO what made this small surf day so special?
ONE) there was surf 2-3'(ankle to knee, with some very occasional and rare waist high)but nothing bigger, and fun. Could have had a little more push to the waves. BUT I HAD A BLAST..

TWO) Of course the company I keep, the girls I surf with are the best. They all rock and are so encouraging. Today there were 4 of us and our honorary Wahine Kai guy, Eric. Plus the other people in the line up were so chill and cool. Till some young groms came and crashed into my friend Jen. They were kind of annoying youngens too...anyway lets not ruin the great vibe here...

Three) I caught so many rides I lost count.

As for my "FIRSTS"... We surfed Huntington Beach..First time I ever paddle out past the break there and actually surfed. I kinda surfed there one other time when I was beginning..but it was a hard day and the ocean was not very nice, and I never made it out past the break. I also hear it is so localized and was not sure about that, So I was a bit scared to go today.

Another first. I borrowed my friend Laura's 7'9" and actually surfed on it. It is the smallest board I have ever been on. BUT I rode waves on it. NOT very gracefully, It was odd to me. Such a difference going from a 9-0 to a 7-9.. that 2 feet and 1 inch is a big change. I had no idea where the heck to put my body on it. Then I felt I was too far up on the nose. Paddling was different. It was SO light. But when I started figuring it out..(after one yucky wipe out, I tumbled like I was in a Maytag dryer for a minute or two)..I was shocked I could ride it. BUT Tallulah is my security blanket/board. And I felt like when I was on the 7'9" I was in a canoe in the ocean, and the 9'0'was like being on the fishing boat the Nautilus.. haha..but I am happy I did it. "NOW I am looking forward to my 8'0 Val!!!"
Anyway.. boards were passed around that day. I just tried the one. Laura tried mine and another. I thought it was hilarious to watch Eric on my big pink board.

I also had another and to date my best, right! So I guess I know what I am doing. As a matter of fact. I had a wave crash in front of me, as I was paddling back out to the line up, Instead of going through it, I spun my board around and didn't even paddle as I caught a ride, haha! I yelled I am cheating as I rode some white wash in. My friend Laura, said she does not want to ever see me in white wash again..HER words were something like this.. "You are above and beyond that, you can catch waves..If I catch you going after white wash again.. I am cutting your leash!".. aww I so feel the love.. and I genuinely mean that in a nice way..The girls I surf with really do rock, and have mine and we have each others back. I know I have come a long way, but their words of encouragement help me to see that much clearer.

I feel like the lil caterpillar is leaving the cacoon and becoming a butterfly.. SO question..when am I NOT a KOOK any longer?

Well I am at work for another 8 days..So I am hoping to get back in the water a week from this Saturday.. or if I get the cajones again..and surf cooperates. I may sneak in a dawn patrol before work on Sunday...
See ya in the water!