18 May, 2013

I Wanna Go Surfing!

Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaargh, sodding computer ate my post.  Bastard that it is.
Rightio, let's see if I can remember this properly.  This time last week, 12.25pm, I was doing my damnedest to catch a wave!  I know!  Mad huh?  Best fun I;ve had in ages.  I may not have been able to get into 'poohing position' - a technical term if you don't mind, but I was able to get onto the board, arch my back and, occasionally, manage to drag my knees forward so that they were level with my hands on the board.  More often than not though I was so thrilled at catching a wave I would 'whoopwhoop', get a bellyfull of water and fall off.  Ick.

I agreed to go surfing with Ger and the zumba-ers ages ago.  She mentioned Donegal and I mentioned how I’d love to go there and she then, mentioned, cackle, that I could come along if I liked and sure “it’s only €55” and before you know it I’d handed over the money and was booked in.  I think I started to panic about ten minutes after the booking was made.
Would the wetsuit fit?
Would the zumba-ers like me?
Would the wetsuit fit?
Would I be caught by Japanese Whaling boats because they thought I was a whale.
Would it be possible to lose five stone in three weeks??  (no, definitely not!)
Anyway, was mostly excited and only a little terrified.  Ger picked me up on the Saturday and we and three lovely Spanish girls were on our way.  God, they were (are) so young.  All in their twenties and fabulous.  Due to the lovely Spanish Au Pairs in the back of the car we couldn't sing.  Which was a  shame.  Love car-e-oke.  Fuck, that just looks like ‘cake to me’.  I hate cake by the way.  Seriously over cake making.
I remember why driving with Ger can be a pain in the hooohah.  She doesn't make a great passenger (could be just me though).  She kept “hmmmhmmming” every time a speed limit sign zipped by.  Also kept saying things like “Jesus, would you watch the road” and stuff like that.  Meh, I'm a great driver me.  I do, however, get borred easily.  Managed to get us to Fermanagh before losing the will to drive and passing the wheel onto yer wan.  The girls in the back weren't asked to drive as they had all  each, at some point or another, nearly run someone over.  Wish I had've thought of that excuse.  Oh, also gave the car back to Ger in Fermanagh as the roads were very bendy and a little vw polo, well, it can be a bugger to steer when there are five lovely ladies in it.  Five lovely ladies and enough food to feed a nation.
Found Bundoran and wow.  (Note: GO TO BUNDORAN!!!)   It’s beautiful.  It really is.  The sea is terrifying to look at and we looked at it in terror.  It was huge, alive, angry and grey (cackle, I’ve just made the sea sound like an old bull elephant).   And it looked cold.  You know when you see something cold and your teeth start to chatter?  Yeah?  Well that was us.  Mind you, our teeth could have been chattering, in best scooby doo fashion, due to terror of aforementioned big, angry, grey sea.
We found the Lodge and the Lodge boys sent us to our hired house.  Jesus.  I wonder what they thought.  The Spanish girls that is.  Three bedrooms.  One with three single beds (which the Spanish girls took), another with a single bed and set of bunks and a third with a double bed and an en-suite.  Which one do you think myself and Ger took?  A bedroom each?  The one with a single and bunks?  Huh?  Nope!  We eyed each other up and said, coyly, “shall we share?  I mean, we’d either be in two separate rooms with no one to talk to or one of us will have to sleep in a bunk so ...., coyly . . .. shall we share?”  
So share we did.  Fuck it was funny.  It’s amazing how stupidly funny stuff is when you are trying to not sound like you are having a rare aul’ time with your mate in a double bed.  Cackle.  We were nearly wetting ourselves giggling at stuff that had happened during the day.  We also nearly pissed ourselves trying to imagine the wetsuit nightmare and we also thought “I wonder if the Spanish Girls think we’re a couple?” 
A couple of what??!!  I think we eventually fell asleep at 3 or 4am and you could have parked a bus between us hahahhahah.  No, seriously!  You could!!!
I  was awoken BEFORE THE ALARM WENT OFF by Ger sending texts or checking Facebook or whatever.  Think she was trying to get her hands on some milk.  When it was noticed that I was awake (I think it was my whining that did it) she started on about how we have to get up for breakfast and sure isn't it 9.15 or something?!?!!?  We didn't have to be anywhere until 11.15.  It was only 9.15AM on a Sunday morning and I was awake listening to someone obsessing about getting milk for a cup of tea. Fuck.  I really don’t like being awake when I'm tired.  According to G. I'm not very pleasant in the morning.  But honestly  who would be when woken 15 minutes before the alarm was due to go off and 2 hours before we had to be anywhere????  Who???????
She got her tea, I got a slice of toast and some juice and it was time for the ordeal, sorry, fun to start.
Anyway, when you get to the Surf Lodge you go around the back and all stand in a huddle whilst three lovely men look you up and down, twice, and then hand you a wet suit.  They eye you up to size you up!!!  Jesus Christ but I was mortified.  What if they only had a whale skin for me or something??  But no, they had a wetsuit that fitted, eventually, perfectly.  It did have a wee hole in the bum though and my (too frilly for a wetsuit) togs kept making a break for it through the hole and I looked like a tail.  As I had touched Ger’s bum earlier she happily poked my tail back in.
So.  You have your wetsuit.  Now for the fun part.  Getting the Jaysusing thing on.  Holy shit.  I think it would have been easier to get into a whale skin, with whale still in it.  Nothing like wet rubber to er, heat you up on a cold May day.   Seriously, you are in such a sweaty panic trying to get into it that you are roasting by the time you eventually see the sea.  Not the terrifying sea either, but the tamer one they keep around the corner for beginners.
To get into the suit you first stand still, holding it out in front of you in disbelief.  You then stick one leg in, then the other, turning the suit the right way out as you go.  Think of it as a duvet cover and you’re the duvet.  Right, so now you have the suit at your knees.  If you are Ger you are panicking at this point because it won’t go beyond your knees.  If you are me, and terrified of being noted by all the skinny zumba-ers as not a skinny person at all (cackle, as if) you shimmy into it as fast as one can into wet rubber and grab the suit around the crotch, hauling it up so it’s sitting, moistly (heave) under your own crotch and . . . breathe.  ‘Cos that just took a huge amount of effort.  All one has to do now is shimmy the suit up over your waist, get your arms in (it’s still inside out remember) and, hup, and over your shoulders and YOU’RE IN!!!!!!  Fanfare please??!!!!!  Zip up, and happy days . .. well, happy-ish . . those bloody things feel quite tight around one’s neck I tell you.
I then spent 3 minutes HooHaahing my wonderfulness at getting into the bloody thing and another ten minutes wondering ‘why the fuck are the arms so long on this thing???’  Bloody arms were about 15cm longer than my own ones.  Arms, that is.
Hahah, turned to Ger and she’s puce in the face. “Hssss, I can’t get me arse into it”.  Cackle.  I asked permission to touch her bum (ooer missus) and skooshed it in and zipped her up.  Then it was time for the booties (I don't think there is a more disgusting feeing in the world than wearing a damp, wet pair of rubber boots).  I swear to Jesus I was knackered by this stage.    The lovely Giles (more on him later) said you should’ve heard some of the things he and Conor could hear: “It’s too tight!!” “Fuck, can you get it on?  Can you get it in?”  “Is it up yet?”  “Jesus, I can barely move after that” etc.  Mind boggles, huh!
Then it’s all into the Jeep for the mentalist, bestest ride to the beach ever.  Fecker drove fast but I didn't notice because all I was aware of was how everyone else seemed to have normal length arms except me.  Said as much to Ger whereupon she told me I was a ‘fucking eejit’ as I didn't have the suit on properly.  The relief, twofold!  Firstly because it turns out I didn’t have oddly stumpy arms and secondly I felt less like choking when Ger had hoiked the shoulders of the suit off my elbows and onto my actual shoulders.
Then it’s time for the beach.  I thought I’d be morto parading around in a rubber suit but no, not a bother.  Hahah, I think it’s because I knew that no matter how gobshite-y I looked I didn't look nearly as gobshite-y as Ger with her hat on.  We had to warm up by jumping up and down and running and stuff like that which isn’t easy when you have a desperate need to pee.  Yup, I was no sooner in the bloody suit than I needed to pee.  I couldn't get into the sea quick enough.  Classy!
Anyway, so we ran around a bit then we were introduced to our boards,  rails, nose, fins, bottom and I’ve forgotten the two other bits??  Oh, oh, Deck and ...........???  End?  Rear?    We were instructed again, by the lovely Giles, on how to get onto our boards by simply gripping the sides (that would be 'rails' to you non surfer babe types)and sliding on (we’re on the sand right now by the way), then you pull yourself forward so your feet are just over the end/rear of the board and whoohoooo you’re on.  Then you throw a quick look over your shoulder, sight the wave, start paddling, give FIVE big paddles and whooooooohoooooo (again!  Actually, I should point out I was with zumba-ers so there was lots of whoop whooping going on) you’re riding the wave, man, so now it's time to arch your back, pull your knees forward so you are kneeling on the board (deck, see, see??!!), adjust yerself and then get into the ‘poohing position’ which is basically like a sideways squat with your bum hanging over the edge of the board, then you simply stand up.  Doddle!  Fucking hell, I struggled getting from knees to poohing position, never mind from poohing position.  And that was on the sand!!  Giles made us do this four or five times before he let us into the sea.  Oh, he showed us hand signals so we knew what he was telling us and how we could tell him we were in danger.  Shame the ‘I’m fucked’ signal  is so like the power salute one gives when they manage to stay on board their board. 
I think we were in the water for two hours.  It felt like ten minutes.  It was exhausting and wonderful and wow.  I caught four waves by myself, getting as far as arching my back.  Three waves with help from the lovely boys (there was a Conor too) and spent most of the time going, in my head,going:
“okay, steady, threre’s a wave . . . no, no, shit, missed that one.  Okay, there’s  a wave . . one, two . . . on board, whoohooo . . . . fuck, bollox . .. I’m not on the board . . . okay, there’s a wave . . . I’m on the board, I’m balanced on the board . . paddle!!!  Fuck, paddle faster!!!!  Oh. There goes the wave . . without me on it. 
Okay, here’s a wave.  I’m on the . . fuck, I’m off the board.  Aargh, fucking board.  Where’s the ground??  Cackle, gag, swallow water.  Fucking water.  Jaysus. 
Okay, one, two, three . . .fuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuck.  Okay, next wave . . . . “
Yeah, that’s pretty much how I spent the two hours.  Laughing and swearing.  And loving it.  The worst thing about surfing is when you fall off your board, into the sea, inhaling as you go only to work out which way is up, stand up and then turn right into a wave only to get knocked over and swallow yet another gobfull of water.  Actually, another brutal thing about surfing is when, near the end of your two hours, when you catch the wave and make it close to the shore and you Whoop Whoop yourself (causing all the guides to look at you in panic as you are doing the “I’m in trouble here arm in the air thing” again”) is . . . the sea is really far away now.  And it’s bloody knackering trying to get back to the waves.  What with that heavy board and all.  Plus, you are pretty much 70& salt water at this point and . . .shattered.
I’d do it again today.

Rest of the day:
Getting out of the suit is nearly as hard as getting in.  Tea has never tasted so good.  That dog was only a pup??!!!!  Hah, who does your wan think she is being so dismissive of me?  Wagon. Inline skating?  Are you mad??  You drive, no you drive, okay, I'll drive.  Fuck, was I asleep??  You should drive.  Drop offs, sleepy and home. 
Oh, and below . .. yeah, that picture there.  That was pretty much me on the Sunday morning.  At 9.15am.  When I didn't have to be awake for two hours.  

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