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Sunday, March 18, 2007

The Week of a Hundred Waves

I don't know what to write here. I surfed Monday through Thursday. Wednesday was the pinnacle for size, (6 to 8 feet) and Thursday was my personal apex. After each session I returned back to this forum and typed out something but never posted what I had to say. I called Taylor and Cole after each session for there was plenty to talk about but when I came here, sat down and typed, it wasn't about surf. I talked more of sobriety and how that is what let me excel like I had but I don't want to speak of that any more. Pages were written but it just wasn't enough to propel you, my reader, to come back tomorrow and see what I had to say another 24 hours later. So here I sit, Sunday afternoon, overcast, a chill in the air, coffee in the cup, and fighting to forge out what I want to say.

In the past week Taylor and I have been swapping surf tales. This time last week he was in the middle of a 3 day surf epic between the North and South shores of Oahu. He traversed between Cliff's at Diamond Head in the South and a spot on the North Shore which has been requested to be left un-scribed. On a yellow legal pad I have a scrawl of something I wrote during the week:
"Taylor calls me this morning, 3 hours behind my late cali wake up. He calls simply to tell me that he thinks he'll never loose his stoke for surfing. I was patiently waiting for my coffee to brew while he was on his second cup and still reeling from a way point weekend of conscious surfing. Conscious in the way of choosing to step up his level of surfing. Choosing to get to the next section, choosing to push his ability, choosing to link together all of his ability both mentally and physically to drive his surfing to the next level. Abandoning any idea of wishing or looking down the wave and saying I could have or should have, He pushed it and he excelled."

We had surfed the same swell, the same swell which ripped across the south side of Oahu and then marched it's way up the coast of Baja to Huntington Beach, to my Cliff's. Here I think of the Mike Stewart story. The tale of his following, and body boarding, a swell from Thaiti to Hawaii to Baja to California to the experation of the swell within the Gulf of Alaska. One man in sync with a force of nature, following it from it's inception to it's death. Though Taylor and I only experience one aspect of this swell, it brought us both to new heights in our surfing and it was a way for two old friends, two surfing buddies who are separated by an ocean, to surf together again. I broke out my pin tail for the last two days of my session and rediscovered what three sharp skegs and a tapered tail can do for speed and cutbacks. I pushed myself as well and took some risks where a year ago I wouldn't have been so aggressive or careless (in the fun way, not in the reckless way). Doing things like: pulling into head high close out tubes and Dropping straight down in an elevator drop through 6 feet of white wash for no other reason that nobody else would have been able to get the wave and I felt it needed to be surfed (I had my fist clenched and my arm raised in triumph as I went through the white). But every wave I went for, I made the drop. 7 feet to 3 feet, I dug and then popped and stuck. Just aggressive, just hard, just like I had never surfed before in my life.

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