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Special Interests - Surfing New York and New Jersey => Stories of Stoke: The Aloha Room => Topic started by: luke25 on August 16, 2005, 08:52:43 AM

Title: what i did on my summer vacation
Post by: luke25 on August 16, 2005, 08:52:43 AM
I'm stoked so I just thought i'd share a little stoke.  not sure why anyone else cares because it wasn't an epic surf vacation or anything ... but here it goes anyways. (stop reading here if you're looking for tales of tropical reef breaks and giant swells.)

After traveling for work every week since April and missing a lot of swells I vowed to spend as much as possibile of my two week vacation with my wife in and around water:

Aug 2 started by trying to camp in the "wilderness" area down the beach from a national parks ferry landing on FI.  super hot weather. swam 3 times by the time we got the tent up.  nice evening. then the mosquitioes hit. unbelievable. worst i've ever experienced. so many bites through the tent from where my body was touching the side in my sleep.  not much sleep that night.

Aug 3 next morning the green heads were just as bad as the mosquitoes.  couldn't get anything done that required two hand because they would just swarm you and seemed undeterred by deet ... so we bailed.  but not before a really fun low tide 1 1/2 hour solo session on super clean long waist high peelers with my 8'4".  so slotted on some that I started trying cheater fives even though that board is shaped like a gigantic shortboard with lots of rocker. almost got it!  so fun.  We had a borrowed car so Mindy suggested that we drive out to the end of the island where we'd never been.  nearly 100 degree day.  drove to the end, looked at the lighthouse.  scoped some famous breaks (not enough swell)  went swimming.  so refreshing.  decided to shell out for a great room right on the beach in town.  awesome evening relaxing on the deck looking at the ocean.

Aug 4  breakfast overlooking the beach, a little reading, a morning swim.  this is really starting to feel like vacation.  waited around for low tide, went and checked the break where they always hold contests.  looked a little crowded and not so great.  found a really nice long walling waist high left just off the beach back in town and just glided down the line to the beach for an hour on the old 8'4.  big smiles.  local groms and grommettes are ripping there! drove back to the city stoked.

Aug 5 rent car, drive to New Hampshire.  Stop to meet some friends and eat the the best pizza of my life (not kidding) at Frank Pepe's in New Haven.  Oops, i'm name dropping spots now, but you've gotta try this brick oven pizza.  long lines so go early for dinner.      northern New Hampshire smells nice.  good to see my aunt and uncle in littleton.

Aug 6 mini triathalon that my cousin and his wife put on every year in Franconia to benefit the franconia kids rec department.  super fun family day with a handful of serious athletes using it as training.  6 mile uphill bike ride, second half of which is off-road on rocky trails with lots of mud.  1/2 mile swim across echo lake with beautiful granite cliffs around it (turns out i'm such a stronger swimmer now than I was before I learned to surf!)  2 1/2 mile jog/hike up Cannon mountain, a pretty steep ski mountain right next to the lake. all so pretty and fun and clean.  nice change from the city.  spent the afternoon kayaking, dozing on a floating raft and learning to water ski on a lake next to my cousin's cabin outside town.  Fun! wondered later why my legs felt so tired...

Aug 7 basically spent the day water skiiing, including skurfing behind the boat with my 7'0" Byrne fun board that I had along for reasons that will become clear later.  So fun and so easy!  You can really rip some turns when you've got 28 mph of centrifugal force to lean into. Everyone who tried rode it first try even though none of the new hampshire folks had ever stood on a surfboard.  eventually drove to Cape Cod in the evening to stay at my parents' place. 

Aug 8 spent the day relaxing and learning how to take care of my 90 year old grandmother (who my parents take care of in their house).  she has pretty advanced parkinson's disease and just about the only thing she can do on her own is get a fork to her mouth.  can't get up or down from any seating position, can't even adjust her body at all while lying in bed, so she needs some help from somebody at minimum every 45 minutes all day and often contiuously for an hour or so.  got to swim in cape cod bay that day.  painfully cold! but lovely clear water

AUG 9 and 10  Gave my parents a couple days off so they could go somewhere together on their own.  Took care of grandma with help from home health aids who come for the overnights.  It was actually pretty relaxing and we managed to do some reading, a little kayaking, and enjoyed spending time with gram, who has good moments when she can converse pretty well, especially about the old days growing up on the farm in north Dakota in a pretty isolated German speaking comminuty  Her mind is all there, it's just her body that doesn't work.  She does pretty well with her situation but it's still sad and for myself I hope i go quickly long before i get to that point.

aug 11   went out to stay with my mother-in-law in chatham on Cape cod.  First stop: family picnic out on nauset where you get there by driving through the dunes with a 4wd and a town resident permit.  high tide but i still found a nice thigh high roller to get some little rides with the 7'0.  several seals checked me out from pretty close up (30 feet?)  so cool and so curious. water was 59 degrees! my hands hurt... i'm such a wuss.   spent the evening back at home playing hiding and chasing games with a 9 year old boy who is currently attached to the family (long story).  mans, kids are more tiring than surfing!

aug 12 kayaking and swimming in tidal marsh creeks in the morning, couple hours surfing small but clean and occasionally lined up low tide waves at a beach on the national seashore. beautiful huge dune behind.  managed to get in a few turns.  nice to be in the water, which was 65 and trunkable on this day.

aug 13 taught my mother-in-law how to sail a laser (small 1 or 2 person sailboat like a sunfish but faster).  plenty of lying around reading and cooking and eating.  more swimming in the bath-warm southern bays of chatham (it's amazing how it's 10 degrees warmer just 5 miles away from the outer cape.)  did I mention that we've been sleeping at least 8 hours and usually 10 every night?  that's a vacation.

aug 14 back to the national seashore for a morning surf in weak but clean thigh highs.  waited around for low tide and caught a few long rights including crouching and getting covered up more than i ever have (just by white water breaking, not a hollow crest) and pulling through.  that was fun. water was 60 degrees again.

aug 15 morning kayaking in the tidal creeks around osprey nests and great blue herons.  epic 2 person kick ball game with the 9 year old.  caught a bus back to the city. totally rested and refreshed and ready to get back to work.  oh yeah, and also feeling stronger and eager for the next real swell down here (I've still never caught the Cape bigger than waist high...). 
Bring on Jose!

see you in the water,

Title: Re: what i did on my summer vacation
Post by: krut on August 16, 2005, 09:26:47 AM
there's so many letters making words!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Title: Re: what i did on my summer vacation
Post by: waialuasurfa on August 16, 2005, 01:01:19 PM
Really nice stuff, Luke.
Thanks for sharing.
That sounded like a kinder, gentler vacation than my East Coast trip.
I should take some notes from you. I always end up hungover and injured. :-[
Title: Re: what i did on my summer vacation
Post by: -luke on August 16, 2005, 02:59:01 PM
any man who works hard for four months and gets 10+ days off and makes sure to spend it with family of all stripes gets much respect.  nice waves and cool vacation.
Title: Re: what i did on my summer vacation
Post by: NYLocal on August 18, 2005, 09:38:45 PM
Went to school in Hartford in the late 70's and your right the best pizza I ever had was at Frank Pepes. Have to take a ride up there some weekend.