Sunday, April 25, 2010

REI Garage Sale

Yesterday i got to REI at 4:30 am to wait in line for the REI Garage Sale, and I was the 5th person in line. A group camped out the night before and pitched their tent by the front door in order to be first in the massive sale. I went straight to the clothing rack and got several pairs of pants, shirts, jackets, boots, sleeping bags, and mountaineering gloves- all at least 60% off, some items even at 90% off! Saved a bundle on a bunch of gear for my Africa trip. Even got a boot dryer for my wetsuit boots!

Friday, April 16, 2010

On Vacation!

Scored cheap tickets to Hawaii so jumped on a plane to paradise! Got myself a board at HIC in the Ala Mona Shopping Center (on sale for $424) and surfed rockpile the first two days and got tore up in the reef on day two.
I forgot how shallow it was and caught a wave too far over and ended up getting rolled onto the reef. Shredded my arm getting out and got stuck on the reef until a wave lifted me off. As I paddled in I could only stroke fingertip deep at low tide and still ended up with a huge gash in my left hand and blood streaming off my hand.
Yesterday we ventured up to the North Shore and tried to watch the Womens Pipe Classic, but it was pretty flat so there wasn't much going on. We checked a couple of my old hangouts when I went to college out here and i was pretty disappointed. Everything was much more expensive and the vibe had changed. We only saw tourists. Life is a lot different when you live here than when you come out for vacation and you get treated different too. My wife was born and raised on the windward side of the Oahu so she is enjoying this trip home too. We, of course, got the island staple: plate lunch from L&L Drive-In. One of my favorite dishes: Chicken Katsu. My wife got the BBQ Chicken Mini-Plate

Below is a picture from the balcony of our hotel South towards where i usually surf. I like to line up of the green buoy- notice the exposed reef visible at low tide (when this picture was taken).
Day 3 (today) i am waiting for the sun to come out to cure the ding repairs on my board so i can get out to surf. Low tide was about an hour ago so it should be safe to paddle out at Rockpile or I may take my chances with the tourists and surf schools at canoes.

Sunday, April 11, 2010


Thanks to the taxman i was able to get myself the GoPro waterproof camera system. I also used my REI dividend and 20% off coupon to take a good chunk off the price.

I bought the surf package from and mounted it to my longboard this morning in the parking lot before i paddled out. I made sure to clean the surface of the board with acetone nail polish remover before i stuck the mount to the surface of the board to ensure a good clean bond. After two and a half hours the camera still had a solid grip on the board even though i took plenty of spills and got crushed by some closeouts.

I posted a 1:44 clip from the two hours i shot in the water on youtube. Didnt need to post all the paddling, duck dives, getting smashed, and waiting. It was a beautiful day for around here- the best i had seen at this break- i am glad i ignored the surf forecast. The longboard worked great even though we got crushed occasionally. Its still water tight and shows no sign of distress. Only problem is that i would need a separate mount for each board.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Return of the FloMaster

One of the saddest days of my recent life was when i broke my favorite surfboard and had to turn it in to get repaired- if possible. When I finally got the phone call that it had been saved and was ready to pick up i was anxious, excited, and a little worried. Those butterflies accompanied me to my local surf shop where the scarred board was waiting.

The repairs were awesome- the shop owner showed me with pride how a large section of foam had been replaced as well as about a 12" section of the stringer, but the craftsman ("artist" really) was able to keep the concave of the board and not add any extra weight. He was even able to save most of the graphics, but i asked him not to color match the repaired area. I wanted a scar, a permanent reminder that if i do something stupid, like take a longboard into overhead closeouts, eventually something bad will happen.