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 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.
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!
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.