Posts Tagged ‘Witch’s Rock Surf Camp’

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36 was pretty cool

May 12, 2014

With the turn of the year I always think it’s fun to take a look at all the awesomeness that made up my one chance at being 36 years old.

I learned how to fight.
– There were a lot of firsts that came with me starting MMA training this year including: first time being punched in the face; first time being kicked in the head; first time getting kicked in the liver and having it spasm forcing me to involuntarily make heaving noises like I am about to puke. I think this training has been especially fun for me because it requires reflexes and reactions that can’t be predicted. I can’t turn my brain off at all, which I think I have a greater tendency to do with lots of other forms of exercise (ooops!).

The boy and I sparring on the day after Christmas.

The boy and I sparring on the day after Christmas.

I cracked a rib.
– So this wasn’t awesome (obviously) but now I can say I’ve checked that block. How on earth did it happen? Duh. See point above.

I went to a chiropractor.
– See two points above. I had grown up swearing I would never, EVER go to a chiropractor but when something gets knocked out of place (like a rib) then you just go. And they jam it back in again and again and again. Which leads to:

I taught the boy how to put a rib back in place.
– This was essential at surf camp after a couple wipe-outs where you get tossed around like you’re a rag doll in a washing machine. And also because it’s expensive to go to the chiropractor all the time.

So obviously, kind of gave it away that this year I also learned how to surf!!!
– This was a major highlight of the year. After a cold trip to Canada ice climbing in 2013 I decided I wanted to try something warmer for playtime. So we decided to give surfing a try. I loved it. So much so that I was ready to go back before we were even home the first time. So we went back. And had an even better time, even if I did break a tail fin off the board with my ASS. I hope to get back again this fall because I am making GREAT progress with starting to walk up the board. I love long board surfing and my goal is to walk to the nose some day. And surf in Nicaragua. People love to ask about sharks when you tell them you went surfing. One morning I was out with my instructor and he yelled “shark!” and you wouldn’t believe how fast I had all of my appendages up and balanced on that board. Turns out it was just a rooster fish, but I was glad to know I have a fast reaction time there, too. Plus, there are usually kids in the water and I figure the sharks will go for kids first before trying for the adults. Kind of like how they attack baby seals.

I also finally learned how to walk on my hands this year!

I also finally learned how to walk on my hands this year!

Things are quickly going south right about now...but eventually the ratio of wipeouts to rides starts to turn.

Things are quickly going south right about now…but eventually the ratio of wipeouts to rides starts to turn.

That's when it starts to get really fun.

That’s when it starts to get really fun.

I discovered Athleta.
– This is an accomplishment I am sure the boy wishes would have never happened. I discovered how perfect the Athleta knickers were to many of my sports because they don’t move and keep me nice and covered. Then I discovered how much I like wearing their swim suits to surf in, and skirts, sweat shirts, tank tops, … you get the picture. I am teased incessantly at home for the vast amount of Athleta I now wear in my everyday life but hey as they say, if the “ATHLETA” fits…

I even learned how to pole dance!
– Don’t knock it ’til you try it! I’d seen this class that didn’t look easy and we had a private one of our own with some girls from the gym and trust me, this was a ton of fun. And silly for someone like me – of course – but fun. I mean who doesn’t want to be able to hang upside down hands free on a pole?!?!

The only major downer to 36 was having to say goodbye to my sweet little Beatrice. She taught me a lot about loving unconditionally and even in passing has helped me to grow into a better person.

Beatrice how she mostly was, which is to say sleepy.

Beatrice how she mostly was, which is to say sleepy.

With so many new ‘firsts’ in 36 I wonder how can I top it with 37? But, with a move in a few weeks to another NEW place I’m sure we will have plenty. In fact, we’ve already got the SUP boards in the garage ready for the ‘first time we live on a lake’! Which also makes me realize we will be at least 40 years old before we move again. 40! Crazy how I feel nowhere near that number, as if I am still just 22 but not nearly as dumb as I was then. Seriously dumb.

Anyways, thanks so much to everyone for the birthday wishes (and especially my sister for the funny cat lady T-shirts!), it’s always fun to have a day where you get to feel special like that.

P.S.
– If you want to train MMA and live in the Clarksville area you must go HERE: SSF Submission Academy.
– If you want to learn to surf you must go HERE: Witch’s Rock Surf Camp (anyone want to join me for some rainy season surf in September???)
– If you want to do CrossFit in Clarksville go HERE: CrossFit Clarksville!

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Costa Rica!

February 3, 2014

Today is one of the saddest days of the year for me.

Why?

Because it is the LONGEST time span between now and when the NFL starts playing again. Sure, there are little spurts of excitement around the combines, and then the draft, maybe a little pre-season but none of it is the same as sitting on the couch and watching games on a Sunday afternoon. And obsessively playing Fantasy Football, naturally.

Oh, I know there are lots of people out there who have a gazillion better things to do with their time than watch an NFL game, which they like to remind you of on FB on Superbowl night. But, I am sure they have their own (obviously VERY dorky) sport they follow so just suck it. I know, I know you are totally on a different cultural level than me, but I’m OK with that. Because people like me are crass and tell people like you to suck it. See, there I did it again.

Anyways! As much as I love to sit around on Sunday afternoon (I used to have Thursday and Monday too but alas, no more cable TV!) and do nothing but watch the NFL during the fall and winter months, one thing I hate doing is sitting around on vacation. It drives me absolutely nuts. My most boring trip ever was when we went to Molokai for a weekend. Molokai is a very sparsely populated island because it used to (well, actually still does) have a leper colony. There was seriously nothing to do there where we were but sit in hammocks, walk on the beach and literally nothing else. I was with awesome people, but holy SHIT I thought I would die of boredom. Of course, I was mildly concerned we might run into that a bit in Costa Rica but we didn’t. It was a super fun trip.

Here are some of the highlights of my trip!
– It is only a 3.5 hour flight from Atlanta to Costa Rica. Since I hate being squished in planes by annoying people that wear too much perfume and don’t know how to use their INSIDE voice, this is a HUGE positive.

– The surf camp sends a driver to pick you up at the airport (no charge if you fly in & out on a Saturday!). He has a sign with your name on it. I immediately felt like an important person, since I have never had someone with a sign for me! The other huge bonus is you don’t have to drive because that would be a whole ‘nother type of adventure, let me tell you. Not only do you navigate around cows and horses on the road, but bikes, motorbikes, pedestrians, cars, busses, all traveling at either 95 mph or 12 mph.

– The weather is very nice in Costa Rica so you don’t need to pack very much. We both packed everything we needed in backpack carry-ons. And even then it was more than we needed. Mostly you just need lots and lots of swim suits since that is basically all you will wear.

– I totally surfed waves EVERY SINGLE DAY. The number one question I’ve been asked was “did you actually stand up surfing?” and I’m not sure if I should be super insulted that so many people are surprised when I tell them, shit yeah I did, every single day! And on a variety of different boards and in very different conditions.

That’s me. And yes, I am surfing.

– I was lucky enough to get evidence of my surfing since obviously people think I was totally incapable of doing so. The surf camp sent a photographer out one day when we went to Playa Grande and he was paying very, very close attention to the times I stood up.

– Tamarindo, the town we stayed in, is pretty small so you can walk everywhere. Although walk OFF the road or risk certain death. Also be ready for lots of offers for “premium blow, weed…you want???” or maybe that’s just what I was constantly getting because I look like a degenerate anyways, although the locals did find my tattoos fascinating. It was definitely a tourist-y town which was nice because they took American dollars and almost all spoke some degree of English. Yeah, I am totally that asshole American that visits a foreign country speaking very little of their language.

– There are not waivers for ANYTHING in Costa Rica, which is kind of fun. You do everything at your own risk. Walk in this river with crocodiles? OK! Zipline upside down while your guides try to bounce the line enough to dip your head in the river? No problemo!

– Need I even point out that drinking Costa Rican coffee in country is totally awesome? Also, since they aren’t importing food you eat seasonally, which means everything is fresh and local. The best way to describe it is that you are eating in color, versus eating in black & white back at home.

– Sunsets, sunsets and more sunsets.

We didn’t miss a single sunset on the beach.

The less exciting parts of the trip that are nevertheless memorable!
– Having a cup of salt water pour out of my nose at the dinner table after a day of eating epic shit.

– Having to (literally) bring extra shorts with me because of my stomach rejecting EVERYTHING for 1.5 days. That was not especially pleasant. I think this one mean waitress poisoned me. Waitresses in Costa Rica seem especially put out when they have to do anything that involves their job. They are only happy when they are ignoring all of their tables and chatting with each other. So order LOTS of drinks as soon as you sit down, trust me.

– The constant application and re-application of sunblock. It was exhausting! I swear I spent 30% of my day putting on sunblock! But, no burns for me.

– The idiots in the water who don’t realize they are splashing around in front of BEGINNER surfers who have no idea how to manage their 9-foot board, which is attached to them with a very, very long leash. It was women with small children and super old dudes that would walk right on in and pop up in front of you as you caught a wave. Guess that’s where the no waiver for any reason part comes in handy.

Since we couldn’t spend every minute of every day surfing, we did some other extracurricular activities including:
– Canopy tour (zip lining)
– Estuary kayak tour (aka we need to go find us some crocodiles and monkeys!)
– Deep sea fishing (total bust! but we are going to try again.)
– Horseback ride to the top of the hills in Tamarindo to the beach (bring LONGER shorts for this, ladies!)

My dumb baby tuna.

The boy’s unit hosts “marriage retreats” CONSTANTLY. I have never had to go on one because I have always had other trips planned (he has had to go on a marriage retreat by himself!). Anyways, my point is that I assume they never do this.

Although maybe at marriage retreats you talk about that one time your husband tried to push you off your surf board. This is proof of that!

Monkeys! And some baby monkeys too!!!

We had SO much fun that as soon as we left we started planning when we would go back. Which we totally are. It helps that it is not very expensive to have a GREAT time in Costa Rica.

If you are interested, let me know! Also, check out Witch’s Rock Surf Camp – we had our own instructor, Josimar, the entire week. He was a great instructor. Even after a few days he knew me good enough to know that I desperately NEEDED a pep talk after I had a HORRIBLE day on Wednesday when a huge swell came in and we all ate shit for 2 hours straight. The next day he then gave me FIRST RIDES EVER on a brand new Robert August surfboard. I wasn’t nervous about that AT ALL. The pressure to not crash! But, it was an epic board. All the instructors are funny. I don’t understand much Spanish but I do know they were making fun of SOMEONE for acting like a chicken when they stood up. I’m pretty sure it wasn’t me though, I’m putting money on it being the velociraptor.

One guy told me to go look for “Costa Rica butterflies” in this well. I am not dumb though, I knew it would be bats. And I was right!

And if you are my FB friend, you can see all of my Costa Rica pics (well, not ALL of them, obviously) here.

How can you not want some of this?

And they were sooooooo good!!!! I actually felt a little bad for the boy when we’d eat these since I would insist on eating half. Most of the other girls there would never eat HALF a plate of these, much less a quarter, which means their partner got lots more. But, I am not most girls.

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Velociraptor

January 28, 2014

Late, late Saturday night I got home from our amazing trip to surf camp in Costa Rica.

It was so much fun.

SO MUCH FUN!

Even if I got so sick I pooped my pants, it was still fun.

I will hopefully have a return trip planned by the end of the week!

Nothing I have stated thus far is not a fact.

So yeah, that TOTALLY happened.

Let’s move past that last gross part with this pretty picture.

Anyways, when you go on a trip like this, you’re bound to meet lots of people. And we did. There was an awesome trio of guys from Indiana. I thought it was a three generation thing, but it turns out there was just a lot of years between the two sons. So a dad and his two sons, the youngest of which was a senior in high school with his calculus book and trying to decide between Purdue and Indiana University. Obviously I told him that boilermakers are dumb. But it was funny to see him drinking beer with his dad and older brother, being awkward with all the girls, and paddling for any wave within 200 feet of him. Also, super cool of the dad of at least 60 years to be out there trying something new, and taking his sons to Costa Rica for a very unique experience like that.

There was a British gal there who thought the older son was cute. It was so funny. We’d be out on the beach taking pictures of the sunset and he’d walk by and she’d make sure to get him in the frame of MULTIPLE shots. I thought he was awkward because he didn’t talk very much. But hey, not everyone thinks I’m as much of an entertaining conversationalist as I do.

So why is the title of this blog velociraptor?

Because THIS is the person I got the most entertainment watching on the trip.

I first noticed her at lunch when I overheard her talking to another woman that was traveling by herself. She was talking (very loudly) about “how I had the most VISCERAL reaction….” and so I knew immediately she is a recent divorce (the French kind, I don’t know how to put an accent on there!).

There is just something about “artistic” women of a certain age that are divorced that use words like “visceral” (and veracity, while you’re at it) while eating chips and salsa. I knew immediately she would be gaming for attention the whole time from one of the many single guys at the surf camp as well. And boy was I right.

She immediately became known as the velociraptor. The boy and I would track all of her movements when she was in view. Here was a typical morning (please read this as if a narrator with a British accent is speaking!)

– The velociraptor awakens from her slumber to stumble down the stairs and lay her head on the table. It has drank far too much booze for a female of 43 years who has a surf lesson at 6 a.m., as we watch we must ask: will the velociraptor awaken to get in the water?

– The velociraptor is lured to the board cage with the appearance of a young, shirtless 20-something male handing out boards. He gives the velociraptor the biggest, safest board available (aka the super-duper newbie board no-one but the velociraptor uses for more than one class even though she’s been surfing for a week). The velociraptor flirts insatiably with the young male, cackling in a manner not at all appropriate for the hour.

– The velociraptor cannot carry her own board to the beach. She whines about it until her 93lb. male instructor carries it for her…along with his own board.

– The velociraptor returns after her lesson and showers in front of the restaurant, ensuring all males gain visual access to her gigantic breasts which are spilling out of her ill-fitting suit.

– The velociraptor takes a seat in the restaurant and begins to hunt for a male on which to feed. She does this by trying to start conversations with any male that walks within 10 feet of her. She offers water, her towel, her half-eaten food, even a massage! Absolutely anything that would get one to sit with her.

We had a surf camp field trip one morning, in which we were lucky enough NOT to ride in the velociraptor’s van. After the velociraptor fell off her board a dozen times, she started devouring the poor, innocent man selling fresh coconut water on the beach. By the time we came in she had consumed 2.5. How do you think her stomach felt later?!?! Hahaha. That fresh coconut water is not something to be taken lightly, FYI. Not that coconut water was my particular issue.

Watching the movements of the modern day velociraptor on vacation in Costa Rica was truly fascinating. Occasionally she would lure a man into her trap. Including our neighbor! Not that I know if anything happened, but I did see him check out of the hotel on Thursday. So I was surprised to see him out on the beach on Saturday. Apparently the velociraptor was far more cunning than I gave her credit for!