Music and Words

March 24, 2010

Hawaii, Day 2

Filed under: Words — melomania @ 1:21 am
Tags: , ,

So Doug and I learned to surf today, and the experience wasn’t a dismal failure (especially for Doug, who took to surfing like you’d expect from a kid whose hair used to look like a blond afro). I found it to be a little harder, although my family who watched from the shore assure me I looked great. And hey, isn’t that what surfing is all about? Looking cool?

See? Don't we look cool?

We did have a very good instructor. We learned how to stand up on the boards before heading out into the ocean. Doug managed to catch lots of waves and I’m proud to say I had a couple of good runs. (Runs? Is that how you’d say it? That’s a snowboarding term.)

Anyway, I managed to at least stand up after a few attempts and a couple of times I was even able to ride the wave all the way in to the shore. I fell off the board a lot more often than I jumped off willingly, but I’m looking on the bright side – I’m still alive. And I never even got clocked in the head with the board.

It didn’t take long before my arms were killing me and I really just wanted to lay down on the board and not think about paddling. We were doing butterfly paddling, because it’s more powerful to have both hands doing the same thing at the same time, and butterfly happens to be the stroke that I was good at when I was on swim team as a kid. (Well, I didn’t get myself disqualified like the whole rest of the team because I was the only one that could keep form, but we’re going to say I was good at it.) However, I remembered very quickly why I didn’t actually LIKE doing the butterfly as a kid. See, there’s these muscles in your back and shoulders that you use when doing that stroke that you don’t use any other time. Ever. So it really hurts. And after paddling out once a few times, memories of pain in those exact muscles came flooding back.

I'm Up!

Oh well.

My first attempt to stand didn’t go so well, because I didn’t have my feet in the right place. Of course after that, I was being overly careful to get my feet in the right place, and it was taking me too long to stand up. That problem lasted the rest of the day.

There now, isn’t that a nice picture? Looks like the family members were right – I do look cool.

Doug looks like a natural, of course. He should consider growing his hair back out if he wants to make a habit of this. It would suit him.

Add some long blond hair and a better tan and he's all set.

Somewhere along the line, he switched stances so that his left foot was in front (which is the way I ride) and didn’t switch the leash to his back foot. Good thing he didn’t get tangled in it.

Like I said, we had a really good instructor who recommended I sit backwards on the board and ride in that way. Apparently, this looked like I was tired and giving up when really, it was the ride that made me decide to keep going. Surfing (like a lot of things) turns out to be a lot easier sitting down. I got to see all the ocean behind me and just had to look over my shoulders to make sure I didn’t run up on shore. I didn’t even fall off until I was getting close to shore, and then I meant to, so it doesn’t count.


I CAN stay upright after all.

After surfing, we loaded back into the van and drove the scenic route around the North Shore and back down to the house. We stopped to take a look at all the beaches where they hold the big surfing competitions – Waiamea Bay and Sunset Beach. We just missed seeing the Banzai Pipeline when we stopped at Sunset Beach. We didn’t realize we’d already passed it.

The waves were great. It’s already March, which means the surf will be starting to fade now into the glassy calm that the North Shore experiences in the summer, but surfers were all over the waves today. A couple of them even caught waves. One person got inside the pipe and we got to see him ride that way a while. It’s an interesting experience to watch someone do that after just learning the basics of the sport yourself. Maybe “interesting” isn’t quite the right word. Weird? Yeah, that’s better.

Waiamea Bay

We kept driving and passed a little stand advertising sliced coconut, pineapple, papaya, and various other tropical foods. We stopped and got some sliced coconut. I really liked it, and so did most of the people in the family, but Doug quickly realized that it’s not just the shredded kind he doesn’t like after all. He gave up on the coconut pretty quickly, but Dad and I had some more. I was really hungry after surfing, which helped the matter, but I did like it.

We drove back to the house, stopping on the way for dinner. We were looking for a Thai place, but we couldn’t find it, so we got some dinner from a grocery store and had roast chicken and salad for dinner, with pie and ice cream for dessert. Doug and I ate heartily but most of the rest of the family who had spent the day watching us weren’t so hungry.

The pie was good, though.

Tomorrow we’re planning to go to Pearl Harbor. I’m looking forward to a day of standing in lines and giving my eyes a rest from the contacts, rather than swimming. It’s a lot easier to wear contacts in this climate, but my eyes still can’t handle doing it all day. And mixing ocean water with sore eyes certainly isn’t helping. After we got back to the house today, I looked at myself in the mirror and noticed that I had gotten sunburned (or maybe windburned) on my face. This was especially apparent because my face was the same color as my bloodshot eyes. That can’t be good.

As I was saying, I’m looking forward to Pearl Harbor. I like learning about the World War II time period. I find it to be the most interesting period of American history. When I was in Berlin two summers ago, the most interesting parts of the trip were the Holocaust Museum and other sights related to World War II. Now, I’ll be seeing it from the point of view that I’m used to – the American one. The USS Arizona memorial represents the beginning of American involvement in the war, and the USS Missouri memorial represents the end of the war.

Also, there’s a submarine, and submarines are really fun to explore.



  1. Jameson’s face lit up when I showed him the pictures of you surfing. I don’t think he’s able to understand what you’re doing or where you are, but he recognized you!

    Comment by Elizabeth — March 24, 2010 @ 7:21 am

  2. And I thought my legs were white…

    Comment by fitzage — March 24, 2010 @ 9:27 am

  3. Matt, your legs ARE white. But so are mine.

    Liz, that’s great! I’ll have to see him when I get home. And explain surfing to him when he gets older and learns what an ocean is.

    Comment by Stephanie Bowyer — March 24, 2010 @ 10:18 am

  4. Yay! Pictures! Looks like lots o’ fun.

    Comment by easykeys88 — March 24, 2010 @ 10:48 am

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