Jim, Stephen and I met at Seabreeze to paddle on the bay. In early afternoon, on a hot sunny day in a holiday weekend. To nobody’s great surprise, every boat in the entire universe was cruising up and down the bay, making waves. Waves were hitting us from every direction at once. I was having real problems doing anything but bracing most of the time – yeah, the boat is fine if you put it over on its side, but you’ve got to keep your body and head upright, or you’re going to go over.
I ended up into a place that has been a problem in every boat I’ve been in. There is a long stretch of break-wall with some docks and boat lifts, and the break walls act as perfect reflectors, making sure that you’re getting every boat wake at least twice with very little attenuation. I dumped of course. No worries, Stephen had already dumped several times, and he gets back into his boat in no time at all. But I’ve only remounted twice, and those were in calm conditions where I could touch the ground if I needed to. So it took me a few attempts, and a little help from Jim, but I got back in. And paddled a few metres until I got hit by another nasty set of wakes and dumped again.
This time, as I was kicking to get in, one of my knees went pop. This is a particular type of pop I’m all too familiar with. It means that the normal level of pain in my knees, which is bad enough, is about to get 100 times worse, and it’s going to be sensitive to kicking and pushing and weight bearing. I got in, but I immediately dumped again at least partly because I couldn’t push easily with that leg, and this time I didn’t want to get back in. Instead, I climbed out on one of the docks and crashed a pool party next door to borrow a phone to call Vicki.
I feel bad about quitting for the second time in two days. And I worry about whether I’ve got what it takes to paddle in the surf. But I had problems last year in a much more stable boat and got better with it, so I’m hoping I’ll get used to the ski as well.