‘Right there,’ said Blair, ‘that’s your sweet spot.’ The last guy who said that to me got slapped, but this was different. I was head to toe in neoprene, prone on an eight-foot piece of foam, toes dangling over its edge.
The sweet spot – it’s where you should be positioned on the board to catch a wave. This was the first thing we learnt at Redgate Beach on that beautiful Monday morning. As we paddled the sand and practised our pop-ups, I knew I wasn’t the only one wondering what on earth I was doing there. Oh well, it beat being in the office.
Along with seven others, I was spending five days learning to ‘carve it up’ in the glorious Margaret River region of WA. Surfing is one of those things I always thought I should try but knew I was too much of a wuss to commit myself to anything. What’s to be scared of, you might ask? To which I reply: sharks, rips, dumpers, drowning, rocks, seaweed, concussion and now stingrays.
You see, I’m not the bravest of people. On the group’s first night together, we were asked to share the most adventurous experience we’d ever had. ‘This,’ I’d squeaked, then confessed that my adventurous streak had less momentum than Shane Warne on a hot day.
The Beauty of Learning to Carve it Up, The Sun-Herald, January 14, 2007