Weekly Photo Challenge: Big

The size and power of the Ocean

This weekend I felt really small.

It started with my new toy:  a beautiful paddleboard!! The wonderful instructor that introduced me to paddleboarding helped me tie it down to the car.  The board is small compared to other SUPs but it is still huge.

Once I arrived at the hotel, I had wished that I had requested a first floor room.  The stairs were too small for the board. I was actually grateful for that.  Six floors carrying the board…no thank you.  The elevator was just big enough once I wrestled the board into the right position.

The next morning was my big chance.  I had about an hour to get to the beach and christen the new board.  The beach access behind my building was blocked so I lugged the board over to the next building and down to the water.  That alone was a workout!

I surveyed the water and determined the best place for entry.  The waves were huge!  I have never been in water that rough but I was determined.  Fish were everywhere.  Did I just see 2 small fins swimming near the shore?  …but I was determined.

I carried my board into the water and the spin cycle started.  The leash helped me real in the board a couple of times.  Then, Big Red and I get our break.  I jump on the board and paddle out surfer style.  It looks like we made it past the break and I paddle on.  I look up and see a big wave building towards us.  We position ourselves to cruise over it as 2 fish jump out of the water right in our path.   The shark that may have motivated their leaps also motivated my toes out of the water.

By the time Big Red took me beyond the biggest swells, I was already tired.  The water seemed to be calming down so I rose to my knees and started to paddle.  Just as I considered standing up, another monster wave took aim.  Back to my belly.  Save me Big Red!  I thought about going out even further to get past some of the shore action but I looked back to shore, and was already further out than I had planned.  Nothing left to do, I enjoyed being on the water at sunrise and road the powerful waves back to shore.

Even after surrendering to the power of the ocean, it was not satisfied.  Just in case I had not gotten the message about how small I was, the ocean gave me a final slap as I neared shore.  I sacrificed my hat to the ocean, grabbed my paddle, reeled in my board and headed back to the elevator wrestle.

Can you find the 2 people in the photo?

My first paddleboard experience.

The waterproof Nikon camera that never left the balcony.

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