Today we met up with Jen, who is aspiring to become the top competitor at the Australia Deaf Surfing conference next year. I think many of our group members have successfully convinced her to get out of her "competition jitter" and commit herself on appearing the NSSA Gold Coast conferences prior to the Australian event. I am sure every one of our member is thoroughly stoked about this news. I am too.
On the way to the surf, I was a bit worried about how well I can communicate with Jen, but it is cool, we exchanged a lot of messages throughout the day using text messaging and once I was talking live, I did not see any differences at all talking to her than anyone else. It is really cool she can even read my Japanese accent lips!
I was also fortunate to meet three new friends today at the Jetty. Jen, Kim and Katy, plus Mark (I now see that you are dedicated like we are!). In spite of the S swells that we all know about, the Jetty was not super crowded on a nice sunny Friday afternoon. We were so lucky. When I arrived at the Jetty though, Jen showed me her busted center fin. We quickly drove over to the HMB surf shop to get her a replacement.
We surfed for a couple of hours as the hour went on the break quality got better and I was able to catch so many waves with my Takayama DT4. Now I think the board is starting to accept me as a rider, but the board is still a bit touchy. But once it goes, it really holds me up and with an added speed and turning ability to the board, I can hold on to the ride longer. I am pretty stoked about this, needless to say. This board loves to be ridden on a forward weight from take off to during the rides. It needs a bit of getting used to, but I think I am starting to understand this board. I put on a longer middle fin this time so I think that is helping too.
Last several long board sessions, I have been surfing on a wide stance since it allows me to be stable and also can change weight shifting more dramatically. Strangely enough, the wide stance is something that I acquired from riding short boards, as on short boards, essentially the stance is max the board can take. It is really fun though when the board starts to become a part of my own surfing mechanism. It is so satisfying when I exert a control the board makes the exact course change I intend to do. I think that this is a bit of breakthrough of the recent since I am more consciously controlling the board, rather than letting the board to take me on a ride. Of course I would say the success rate is about 60% of the time. Other times, the rail would bury and totally stall or whatever, but it is a progress, nonetheless.
On to Manhattan beach tomorrow early, got some cool tips from Amy and Jen (So Cal exiles). More report to follow quickly if I get into the Internet, or if not, when I come back on Wed!
We all left the beach happier and stokes charged up to the shoulder than when we arrived!