Thursday, August 21, 2008

Party time with Fay, the tropical storm.

Yay for adventure! It has been several years since the last time I got to ride ‘big’ (relative to my limited experience) waves.

       And now time for a commercial break. [Insert commercial break about contest to win FREE titanium dentures here___. Clearly everyone should have a pair, even in addition to natural teeth. After all, two sets are better than one!} And now back to the not-so-regularly scheduled program, or lack thereof.

Currently I am in FL to visit my mom, and yes, we are related. Also visiting is Fay, our local tropical storm. Anyways, so today I went to the beach. For some strange, unknown reason, there were very few cars out on the roads. We saw some cool stuff on the joyous journey to yonder location where water and sand collide. I spied lots of debris about included several tumbleweed that catapulted across the road. However, it turned out to be just a lowly herd of palm fronds out for a frolic in the excessively blustery conditions. We also saw downed power lines, and several traffic lights that were out.

When we got to the beach, a flock of surfers was packing up and leaving, but there a couple of them that stayed in the water. Other then that, there was no one else around. Anywhere. I looked out the window of the car, and in the distance I saw some gorgeous waves. So I snapped a picture of George the wave, framed by the wooden railing.

Next, I gleefully hopped out of the car and was almost blown over by a gust that needled sand and rain into everything exposed. The sound of rushing wind, hammering rain, and roaring waves drummed against my tympanic membranes (and yes, I will try to keep those too). Gripping my fins and boogie board against the wind, I excitedly anticipated the great rides on the

 Finally, I was ready to get in. Upon closer inspection, the waves looked to be about 7 feet tall out at the sandbar. Still big enough for little me. With grand ideas in head and board and tow, I launched into the tumultuous, muddy brown sea. Whenever salt water jumped into my eyes, the pouring rain quickly rinsed it out. How convenient.

I spied the bigger waves were playing out at the sandbar. Tada. Desired location determined. Swimming as fast I could, I only made slow progress. It went something like this: SWIM, get pummeled by a wave, breath, dive under next wave, breath, SWIM, breath, dive under wave, ect. Well, after a good bit of that the local friendly current washed me into a mild rip current. Presto! A way to get out to the happy waves. Problem solved. Upon quick arrival, a wave came and the shore was distant no longer.

It was awesome catching that wave. The water started growing taller around me until I was fairly high up. Then there was a split second of freefall as I dropped into it into it. I felt like I was flying as I sashayed across its face. We were hurtling towards the beach together, lurching and overtaking smaller waves. It tried to ride it well, for it was a living thing to be respected. Its thunderous roar blotted out the sound of pounding rain as the tube of the wave started to close around me. I tried to race out of it, but in an instant, I was caught in its grip. I was plunged down and then around and around. I thought it would be fun to graph it. Then I thought I should find the surface and promptly put graphing out of mind. (don’t worry Graphing, if you are reading this, you are still important to me and you are welcome to come back to mind anytime you wish!)

Just as my search for the surface ended, the wave got greedy and slurped off one my lucky fins. I immediately felt the difference and couldn’t swim as fast. I reached toward my estranged fin, but before I could grasp it, another wave came crashing over to visit with such exuberance that I was fully preoccupied with surface finding activities once again. After that detour, I found my fin to be a little further out. I swam for it with all my might. But alas, the current was strong and I was smack in the middle of the crash zone for the breakers. After getting dunked by another two successive big waves, I resigned myself to continue my commitment to “All About Safety”. So with a reluctant and fastly beating exercised heart, I turned my back on my dear fin and swam for shore.

Moral of the story: going to the beach during a tropical storm is absolutely awesome fun! However, one must make little leashes to ensure that fins don’t swim off on their own without your approval and shorten your time in the water. And in the mean time everyone, don’t forget to register for your chance to win a FREE pair titanium dentures today.