Surfing is one of those ‘To-Do’ adventure that I started YEARS ago, but never succeeded in it. Perhaps due to bad experience, I have left it aside for too long. If you think about it, you need a crazy amount of arm strength just to get out beyond the waves, and then you need more strength again to jump up to stand on the board! Repeat that every time you get on a wave, you can imagine how tiring this sport is! This is putting aside the concern with sharks lurking around beaches. It is simply not very appealing when compared to snowboarding!
I have decided to really give it a go this summer though. The sun is fantastic, and I have finally let go of the "Gold Goast has better beaches" mentality, and actually appreciate the great number of beaches Sydney has to offer. I was fortunate enough to have another newbie (Kris) that was willing to start surfing with me. We picked Manly Surf School, and off we went..
One conclusion I had at the end of the day, was that if you want to surf and improve at it, a good surf school and instructor makes all the difference. By the end of the first day, I was able to get up on a long board surfing in white wash. The instructors taught us a lot of theories about waves, rips, tides and currents which would be useful if I ever go surfing on our own. Of course, this isn’t a sport without its risks. So far, I have already incurred a severe bruise, and a mini-scar on my face:
The bruise on my arm was from someone else’s fins slamming into my arm, while the scratch on my face was from my own board hitting me when one of the waves toppled me! They are only superficial, but I can imagine this putting people off surfing!
Fortunately, me and Kris were both motivated enough after the first class to continue..
On the 2nd weekend we went, the waves were bigger, and the wind was stronger. Perhaps it was a little too big for our skill level. We struggled to get out of the waves, and can barely stand on it when we eventually caught a wave. We were being toppled by the waves every time! But, the last thing we expected by the end of our struggles was a loud siren going off from shore. Swimmers started to get out of the water. Most surfers started to ride their last waves and come to shore as well. It was an evacuation. Everyone was evacuated from water!
It turned out, someone spotted some sharks lurking in nearby waters. As a result, the lifeguards evacuated everyone from the beach..
It’s kind of a weird sight seeing everyone out of water, at a packed beach like this. Everyone was busy staring out looking for shark fins. I can understand the fear though, given there have been at least 2 shark attacks recently that made it onto the news. It was probably half an hour before it was all good to go back into the water again.
Despite all of the negatives, it hasn’t put me off yet, which is a good sign. I am planning to go every weekend and hopefully will be able to surf well enough to really enjoy! You probably won’t recognise me, as I can see more and more tanned by the day! Let’s see!!!