When your husband is “waterfowl” like myself, the gift of leisure supersedes the hearts, cards and flowers of traditional gift giving. Have you ever seen how expensive wet suits are? Lowest price is at least $100 and can go as high as $500!
By the end of first month that we met, he (then boyfriend) took me to the windsurf camp for the first time. Other than a swimsuit, I had no windsurf gear, so we stopped at the convenient windsurf and board sports shop, right near our camp on Sherman Island. I tried on a girly black and PINK wet suit. I saw the price tag screaming $100 and thought, “better get the credit card.”
When I walked out of the dressing room, he asked me how it fit, and of course, I said, “like a ‘body glove'” (the brand), trying to be clever. He asked if there was anything else I needed…like I would even begin to know what windsurfers need other than luck. With that, he took my curve-hugging, unforgiving, giant, black, spandex-like body glove and purchased it.
That was it! I was elated, impressed and terrified all at the same time! Now I had to perform! Pressure, much?
Once we got settled and headed to the beginner windsurf area, I had to get “dressed.” Note to self,
never ALWAYS put on your wet suit in the trailer and not by the side of the truck. I was nervous and I began sweating. Try putting on a wet suit while you are sweating.
Once I got dressed, of course he took pictures. My 49-year old body didn’t look so bad. We headed out to the water to start my lesson. I had dreams of utilizing my water and swimming skills to hop up on that board and go! I was determined to wow him with my first attempt of standing on the board.
Did you hear that? Those are the sounds of me falling into the water eight thousand times that day.
As you can see in the photo, beginners must crawl unceremoniously onto the board, stand up and balance, while grabbing the up-haul line attached to the sail. Then you pull up the sail and attempt to align it with the wind, and off you go…theoretically. Even the person behind me in the shot is up-hauling. It is brutal and definitely NOT as glamorous as I had imagined.
I won’t go into the gory details of my misery, but three hours later, I had bruised my shins and knees badly from climbing up onto the board. Mind you, I am very athletic, but learning the complicated sport of windsurfing will humble even an Olympic athlete his or her first time. Slowest. Learning. Curve. E..V…E….R!
Now after all these years, I am much better at windsurfing and rarely have to up-haul. I really must have been in love to be able to put myself through that initial learning phase. And he must have loved me enough to buy me that first wet suit! I am glad I didn’t get flowers. I still have the wet suit, and although I use a newer one now, the pink and black body glove will always hold a fond place in my heart (and my closet).