Our last planned activity of the vacation was surfing. Now I had a feeling that I wouldn’t be that good at surfing, and then when we got out there and the waves were ten feet tall and the surf instructor was worried that we might have trouble with a lesson in these conditions I knew it was going to be a bad experience.
We were picked up at 2 in the afternoon about an hour before high tide at our hotel in our instructor Todd’s “Red Rocket” a beaten up Honda that he bought 8 years ago for 2000 dollars, I am not sure I would have paid 2000 colones (4 dollars) for it. And he brings us down the winded road to the beach. He starts by giving us an in depth lesson about the beach and waves and where they come from. How they reached this beach and how you can tell waves apart. I was so confused but tried to look like I was paying attention. At this point I was more worried that I would end up falling under the board and having the fin slice my neck. The Doctor on the other hand could not wait to get out on the water and try to stand up on these ten foot waves. If you have been following this blog then you are not at all surprised by this.
We finally get into the water right as high tide is hitting and there is not really any beach left. The first wave hits me hard but I am able to stand up to it until my board rides the wave back into the trees and pulls my ankle out from under me. I fall face first into the next wave. Hmm, I am not sure that this is going to work out well. But I get out into the water and begin paddling out past the break zone, finally I feel a bit more comfortable and I am able to balance on my board and actually sit up. He gives us a quick lesson on what to feel for when the wave catches us and when to stand up.
The first wave he wants us to catch comes up and we begin paddling to shore. The Doctor catches the wave and is able to get to up on his board. I get thrown from my board head first towards the shore and then pummeled by the waves until I am not sure which way is up. Thank goodness I have spent many years in the ocean so I know not to panic and in a few seconds my head pops to the surface and the board yanks me backwards. So this time was not my turn to be successful so I begin to paddle out again with the Doctor. A couple of waves hit us hard but we make it out again and watch as Todd rides a wave into shore. Apparently that is how you are supposed to do it. Since I have no idea what to do when I wave comes I wait for him to come back and then I try to catch a second wave, that kicks my ass, and then a third which I had no right to even try. It kicks my ass so hard for a moment I almost panicked because I had no idea what was going on and I had swallowed about a gallon of salt water. I come tumbling into shore. I rip the safety cord off my ankle, hold back the urge to throw the board and walk in back up to the red rocket and place the board in front of it. I then go back into the water without the board. Take on the waves without an anchor and have a blast watching the Doctor stand up on his board for some huge waves. I was very impressed.
Finally after about another 30 minutes of me in the water getting beat up by some huge waves the Doctor tries to take one wave and gets clobbered, he tumbles off his board and is then hit by a set of waves that wouldn’t stop. When he finally surfaces he decides that he has had enough and returns to shore with his board and the instructor. The instructor buys us a beer and we talk for a bit before we return to the hotel in the red rocket. It wasn’t my idea of a great time but we made the best of it, and I did enjoy being in the water, I just didn’t enjoy having the board strapped to my ankle. It was fun to watch the Doctor get up on his board though.
Tomorrow is supposed to be a day at the beach, we will see how that goes.
Until then, once again… Pura Vida
Once again photoes are up on the travelblog... www.travelblog.org/bloggers/gregandjon