Last weekend I travelled to Orlando for the Surf Expo Trade Show. This is the show that we go to and check out next years summer clothing, windsurf gear, SUP and surf stuff. While it is fun (and a lot of work) to see the new gear, I was a little disappointed in this years show. I was looking forward to seeing some new SUP boards and gear, and there really wasn't much. Maybe that is a good thing, but I was hoping to see some more. I did get to see a lot of friends and I had a nice time hanging out with Jane from Boardsports School in SF, so that was all good. Now I have to get serious and start writing next years orders for the store. Oh boy!
I left the show Sunday and spent some time at Calema Windsurfing and then over to Cocoa Beach to hang out for a while, before heading to Melbourne to visit my old college roommate Tom Price and his family. His kids are growing up fast, and his oldest daughter was already off to college. Man.... it just seems like yesterday that she was a little baby running around Hatteras butt naked, playing on the beach . Tom took Monday off and we drove down towards Sebastian Inlet looking for some waves. The tide was all wrong and the there was nothing going on, so we ended back up near his house and surfed there. Tom got a bunch of short rides on his new retro fish, and even I got a couple on his 9' long board. We went back to his house for a dip in the pool. After a quick swim we headed up the road to Da Kine Diego's Insane Burritos . Very funky place with flip flops nailed to the wall and surf stickers every where. That damn burrito must have weighed 5 lbs, but it was tasty!
After lunch, Tom I stopped at the Longboard House in Melbourne. The shop has the most incredible selection of surfboards I have ever seen. They have this balsa board with mother of pearl inlays that is way cool. It is tagged at $20,000, but still way cool. If you could afford it, would you surf it? There were a ton of other beautiful boards, and I told Tom I had to leave before I did something stupid like buy one.......and I own my own surf shop! We hung out a little longer and then I headed back top Orlando for the flight home.
As always, it is fun to go places and spend time with friends, but it is also good to get home to Annapolis, Sarah, the Chesapeake Bay, and East of Maui.
Tuesday morning 7:30 am, 45 minute SUP session in Annapolis harbor, not exactly Florida, but still pretty darn good!
Today is my 50th birthday. Thanks Mom and Dad. It doesn't seam like it was very long ago I was a little kid riding bikes around the neighborhood. Several weeks ago I decided that for my birthday that I was going to do a 50 mile bike ride to celebrate. My buddy and business partner Mark agreed to work for me on his day off so I could play on my Birthday. Many thanks ( I think).
If some is good, more must be better, so I started thinking about what else to do. I came up with five for fifty.
#1. Go for a 50 minute SUP session. Oops, I went out and and paddled for an hour and a half.
#2. Go for a 50 mile bike ride. Except for the flat tire 8 miles from home, I had a great one. Ended up with 53 1/2 miles.
#3. Get a massage. I thought it was at three, turns out it was two. Oops (again). Nancy was kind enough to wait for me, and even kinder to give me a $10 discount for my birthday.
#4. Go windsurfing. I got home from the massage, grabbed my gear, and you guessed it....I got in a 50 minute twilight sail. Sweet!
#5. Play then eat. Sarah and I celebrated our birthdays (hers was the 3rd) with dinner at the Chart House. I had the Filet Mignon, she had Prime Rib. Not like I had any extra room, but somehow I managed to choke down the complimentary Mud Pie.
All in all the first 50 have been pretty damn good. I have been blessed with many special people in my life. Some of you I still see or at least talk to from time to time, some of you I have just met, some of you I have not seen in many years, but you all are part of me, and I thank you all for being my friends and the part you have played in my life.
Mark and I closed East of Maui on Monday for the Third Annual Labor Day Luau and Surf Safari. A rough count looks like we had more than 30 people join us for the party. We had a great day on the beach with plenty on food, friends and even a little bit of wave action. When Sarah and I first arrived the tide was in and the waves were small, so Mark and I ventured out on the SUP's. We paddled a good distance up the beach to give us some elbow room. There were a number of crash and burns, but we got a bunch of rides too, including what was was probably the longest ride I have ever had in my life. FUN FUN FUN! We came in and chowed down on the subs that Danny from Three Brothers had brought to the party. YUM!
The tide changed and the waves picked up a bit and it was time to grab the longboards and paddle out. Danny was catching a ton of long rides on is big Infinity. Mike Meer finally got his new Takayama wet and was totally stoked. Even I caught a few waves on my 9'6". The happiest camper had to be Anna K. Not only was she wearing her beautiful new engagement ring, but her fiance, Josh got his first ride on his Joel Tudor. Way to go Josh. (Both for catching the wave, and catching Anna. You done good.)
Tammy's daughter Amanda wanted to give surfing a try, so L-Go volunteered to take her out and giver her some pointers. She never got to her feet, but she got a couple rides on her knees. If she keeps at it, she will probably out surf us all by next Labor Day.
Keeping with the theme, let's play then eat, Mark fired up the grill and everyone chowed on burgers and dogs. We watched the wild ponies completely destroy an unattended food basket just up the beach. The herd decided they were ready for burgers and made an advance towards our little party. We formed a human barricade around the food, and L-Go guarded all of our boards with an paddle. The ponies continued down the beach looking for an easier target. After the excitement was over, Mark's brother Matt grilled up some pound cake and then topped it with a pineapple, jalapeno salsa.
We cleaned up the food and carried some of the boards and gear back to the car. I went back out for one more short session on the SUP, and got a couple more rides.
Everyone else had to head home, but Sarah and I headed up to OC for a little go-kart racing. We split 2-2. We might have to go back to the beach for a tie breaker! It is not like I was hungry or anything, but since the ice cream place was just across the street...........MOCHA MADNESS SUNDAE. Coffee ice cream, hot chocolate sauce, and chocolate sprinkles. Oops, I forgot about the whip cream and cherry. MOO! I think I'm going to stay off the scale for a few days.
Thanks to everyone that came for making it such a great day. We missed those who couldn't make it. Don't forget to mark the calendar for the Annual New Years Day Snowboard Trip and Chili Party. In the winter we play in the frozen snow, and in the summer we play in the unfrozen snow.
PIC'S: Mark & Mark, Danny in cruise control, Josh and Anna, Amanda and L-Go head out, MB wipeout!