Saturday, April 30, 2011

Women's windsurfing clinic.

One of my favorite boutiques in Paia for clothes is Simmer, a surf/windsurfing store. My friend Rebecca works there, so a visit is instantly like shopping with a girlfriend and she has a great eye for dressing people. A few weeks ago when I popped in to pick up one of her necklaces (yes, she also makes fab jewelry) she mentioned a ladies windsurfing clinic and I instantly knew I was in.

In yes, in for what I wasn't sure as I'd never attended a group clinic before. First of all, you need to know that my average time on the water to sail is maybe 40 minutes once a month. The net result has been me sailing at the same level for YEARS with no progress what so ever. Hence my signing up for a push (or shove if required) to a new and improved level.

Six days of 10am - 4pm.........surely that oughta get me some where?

Oh dear, day one remedial student falling on land exercises and boldly going nowhere doesn't bode well. The edict from high "if you can't do it on land you can't do it on water" proved oh so true!

Learning any stage of windsurfing is not easy, in fact it's amazing that as many people sail as they do. In the full immersion program there's no way your regular frustrations are not going to show, which is why we were all there, to break through those grrrrrr moments and expose a new set at the next level. Thank f*#k swearing was not discouraged! However, there's no doubt in a group you laugh about your failings a lot easier and God knows you get your money's worth on that alone!

Ohhhhhhh but how sweet it is when it all comes together and you're controlling the rig and playing with the wind and the water. *Grins from ear to ear*

We played hard and none of us walked away unscathed and my body rebelled from the get go, but it was all so worth it.

Day one: Burnt scalp (I'm such a delicate flower)!
Day two: Goof ball hat purchased so head happy, but hands gained tiny blisters and small cut on foot irritating as shit in the sand.
Day three: Kook outfit progresses nicely with addition of recycled bike gloves.
Day four: Head and hands sorted but feet raw. Resisted temptation of booties for full on sexy neoprene centerfold look.
Day five: Don't care how I look anymore, hit the wall and bailed on the afternoon sesh for a nap.
Day six: Awoke in the night to rhythmically throbbing feet.

The complete outfit-winning! Alarmingly, the kookier the outfit the better I sailed.

Spot the impostor.

The brilliance of a clinic is the journey. In this case, six strangers came together with one passion and without having to rush, we played, learned and were educated specifically for our level on the building blocks of windsurfing. The multi-levels were helpful, as three of us with further to go could see what lay ahead and those ahead got to fine tune their basics and learned to jump and ride the waves. It was really exciting to see every ones progress and between mouthfuls of our well deserved lunch, Shawna critiqued our sailing thanks to her helmet Gopro.

I too had a Gopro, but perhaps I shouldn't have bothered!

The gardening gloves and doofus hat saved me from the sun and pain, but they have to go!

Six magnificent women, six completely different sailing levels and one fantastic instructor (well one and a bit-the lovely and talented Tatiana is MIA in this photo).

Shawna Cropas was our wonder woman coach. She knows her shit, communicates it well, has limitless 'let's go' enthusiasm, coupled with a total understanding for what you're going through. Here and there we dropped like flies, but not once did I see her energy flag. She's fantastically real, laughs easily, reads the group energy really well, is totally present, an excellent cook and gives nothing short of everything.

Other than my Mary Poppins like gravitational pull to the Royal Wedding, I have not a clue what happened in the world last week. Thanks to the numerous foodies in our group, we often had dinner together and it was a real pleasure hanging out with such juicy & witty women. Barley had I slept, cleaned my cuts and applied the Nuskin before I was happily rigging up again. I loved the simple routine and really felt as if I was on holiday with the rest of the girls. The consistent nature of information and practice, information and practice, information and practice, produced skill sets that changed my physical and mental way of sailing completely and I feel solid and excited by what I walked away with. I believe we all did.

As I pulled out of Stable Road for the final time I actually felt like a sailor and in my driveway on our last night, I reluctantly unpacked my well used gear for the first time in six days.

Fun, fun, fun so much fun and I can't wait to get back in the water.

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Da weekend.

A cloudless morning over Haleakala pulled me toward Poli-Poli to ride my bike. As I've not been riding regularly, the incline was hard going and not even a quarter of the way up I encountered the park gates that were surprisingly closed. Could I have snuck under them and carried on? Sure, but I don't mind admitting that part of me was relieved and instead I cruised from Rice Park to the Kula Hospital, where I witnessed a few patients being pushed in their wheel chairs by caring family on Easter Sunday....sweet.

Looking up toward Poli-Poli and Haleakala beyond, these are the fields to the Ali'i Lavender Farm and Ali'i passed away peacefully last week. If you ever met him, you were left with the clear sense that he was a passionate gentle soul, who's love and enthusiasm for the land was infectious.

It's a great Island wide view from up there and what I like about this otherwise dull pici is that you can see the shadow of the clouds on the isthmus.

The poppies are out in my favorite garden and butterflies were everywhere flitting in and out of the blooming wild nasturtiums.

On a weekday this is my breakfast, but today post morning exercise a protein shake was in order. Whey powder, soy milk and frozen bananas which often end up in my freezer free from the trees. Yummmmmm.

On Saturday, as I sat having coffee with my friend Oly at Casanova's, we chatted and watched the world go by, which at one point tipped in to the unusual. Never a dull moment in Makawao.

Talking of which, rigging up to go sailing at Kanaha also proved to be more amusing than normal when a bird not only crapped on my head (which made me jump), but the volume was such that there was enough left over to hit the bulls eye! The good news...I've never wanted to get in the water so fast and I had a great sesh, il segno!

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Even I was ready for a new post.

So the left tree asks the right tree, "dude, how do I get on to the Internet"? The right tree answers, "you log in dummy"!

Whilst on the woody perennial plant theme, unbelievably it's jacaranda season again. They are such majestic beauties and with the lush fields and moody clouds of upcountry as a backdrop, their color really jumps out.

As did these sun beams on my way home from work Friday night.

Despite having a closet in my house where everything goes to die, I don't consider myself a pack rat. However, the amount of shit I gathered for my garage sale this weekend would dispute that fact. I'll be honest, I was embarrassed at the amount of stuff that surfaced, that being said the $580 I made getting rid of it helped ease my shame!

There's a new kit in town....Cleopatra, who belongs to my neighbors. I joke with my tenants that they can have cats so long as they don't meow (nothing more annoying) and shockingly, neither of the two compound cats utters a word, purrrrrfect.

Last week as I drove by the harbor to check out the swell, I felt actual sadness at what I saw. My favorite buoy washed up and rendered useless, all naked and vulnerable, one can only assume by the tsunami surge. I'm crossing my fingers it will be back in its rightful and dignified place soon.

On your marks....

get set.....


Sunday, April 03, 2011

The little things.

Having just taken myself to lunch at Mala Restaurant, I perched on the pavement outside to take in the view. Were it not for the roadwork that began at exactly the same time as I sat down, my idillic moment would have been intact.

It's been a fun week of small south shore waves = big fun, though I'm surrrrrre they were way bigger then this.

God it's good here.

Back country.

Front and center, a couple of clicks reveals that this is a Pacific Golden Plover, super cute.

Despite appearances to the contrary I've not been bird watching this week, but as I unloaded my board (for what was to be a fab SUP session), I could hear a kerfuffle in the nearby trees. These two were the guilty parties, super duper cute.

Talk about a fish out of water...

.....yes, but did he go?