Mistake number one: Thinking I should take the Taylor (my 7’8″ gun) out for “practice” at Camel. Just because I haven’t ridden it in forever doesn’t mean I should take it out in all wrong conditions. Was it overhead? Yes. Was it hollow? No. Was it perfectly fine longboarding/funboarding? That’s a redundant question to ask at Camel Rock.
Mistake number two: Carrying both the Taylor and the longboard down at the same time. I navigated through the pass at the bottom without bumping the boards into the rocks, but on the last step before straight sand, I lost my balance and smashed my longboard-carrying hand – the board was fine – into the waist-high boulder next to me. Blood, pain, the works. But the size of the wound is small, despite the stunning pain. I grit my teetch, continue to the open beach, call to Nick to go on without me (he’s with a friend and Bobby’s on his way down), lay the boards on the sand, turn around, hold my finger in such a way as to avoid bleeding on my wetsuit, gross out at the flap of skin danglin loose, hike back up the hundred stairs, snap at Bobby as we pass as if he’s done something wrong – “Just give me the keys! No, I’m fine!” – get to the truck, unlock the door, pull out the few waterproof bandaids I’d fortunately stashed in the glove box, pour my drinking water over my fingers to wash away the blood, blot my fingers on the sandy beach towel, stick the bandaids on my fingers, lock up, trundle back down the stairs and…
Mistake number three: Take the Taylor and leave the longboard on the beach. I catch very few waves, but the cold water feels good on my fingers and the bandaids prove their waterproofiness.
Nick and Bobby catch a ton of waves, some a good foot overhead on Nick. He’s awesome. And watching him get stoked fills me with happiness despite the wrong board and throbbing wounds.