Sunday, January 24, 2010

A long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away...

I used to windsurf.

That was before the advent of kitesurfing, then standup surfing/paddling.

That all changed yesterday...

My scheduled ride (Roger - owner of the 28' Trimaran I've been crewing on) had to cancel because of strong wind. Well - what to do with days filled with strong winds... windsurf of course.

Here's my hierarchy of things to do depending on swell presence and wind strength:

Flat - Dead = SUP Distance Paddling or stay on the beach feeling sorry for myself
Flat - Slight Breeze = Sailing the Weta with the entire family, or SUP Distance paddling
Flat - Breezy = Break out the kites! Rip on the Weta
Flat - Nuking = Windsurf
Surf - Dead = Surf, SUP Surf
Surf - Slight Breeze = Surf, SUP Surf, Kitesurf
Surf - Breezy = Surf, Kitesurf
Surf - Nuking = Judge my windsurfing abilities against the swell size

In all this, discretion is always the better part of valor.

The hard part about living in Gulfport, MS is that the second half of this list doesn't ever get exercised. Without surf (or even surf culture, of which there is none down here either), life is missing spice. Having access to water does have it's benefits (psycologically as well as fitness wise), so I have to be careful of what I say/write. I've been landlocked before (Baghdad, 2005-2006) and let me tell you - I've never been so cranky.

But you have to always try to find the brighter side of things, and in the case I've just presented, at least I get to run through the first half of the list (as well as spend time with La, Big M and Noe the Terrible - she's a really rough wrestler).

Oh - and the pic is of me breaking out the old first generation Starboard HyperSonic (125L). The wind was blowing 17-22 down low where I was (the Gulfport NOAA Station was reading 22-27 up higher) - glad I decided to windsurf instead of launching the small kites.

When you haven't done something in a while, and you're able to pick it right back up, there is always a great sense of satisfaction and an upwelling of long forgotten senses - I think I'll be windsurfing again for a while - as long as I can get the wind to blow at nuking levels...

May the force (of the wind) be with you.

Sunday, January 17, 2010


There was some decent wind today - I chickened out because with the wind chill, it would have been cold and even though the winter insulation is in good supply (THAT'S WHAT HAPPENS WHEN YOU'RE A SURFER AND YOU DON'T LIVE NEAR SURF) - it still would have been too cold for the kids and La to enjoy the beach.

Would have actually been a good day for this... I don't own a formula board, but I do have a first generation Hypersonic that is waiting to be ridden hard -

Oh - my other excuse for not going out is the tide - it was low (+1 ft) from 0800 through 1600 today - too shallow for a standard fin. That's my story and I'm sticking to it!

New Acquisitions

On the way back from New Orleans, we stopped off in Slidell. They have a couple of pet shops that have some decent stock. Well - Marlon and Noe have been asking for these for quite some time. Finally found a couple...


He knows he the king of the tank

Aquarium of the Americas

We took Big M to the aquarium in New Orleans for his birthday.

Decent sized aquarium - we went ahead and got an annual pass that gets us in for free (a couple of times and it pretty much pays for itself). Also gets us into the zoo and discounted entry into the Insectarium.

I particularly liked the Gulf of Mexico exhibit - had an approach that touched on the industry and technology as well as the animals in and around the offshore rigs.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Sailing World's Boat of the Year

in the Dinghy class is in MY GARAGE!!!!

The Weta Trimaran was recognized by the judges for it's versatility, performance and value - and nearly took top honors and not just the dinghy class.

It's always reassuring to know you made a wise decision and other feel the same - not to mention it helps resale value and fleet growth.

The pictures are just a reminder (to me mostly) of how cool this watercraft really is...

I am hoping 2010 turns out to be a decent year for racing our boat here in the South.


Saturday, January 9, 2010

GoPro Kite Line Mount

I picked this up on our trip to Jacksonville - a line mount for the GoPro.

Now all I need is for the incessant North Winds to shift to the East (or West) and some time to get out on the water...

Did I say it is freezing down here...

Sucker Puffer

We went to Biloxi for the day to run errands and the Fish Shop in Keesler had to be stopped in.

We had been talking to the shop guy for sometime now about getting a small porcupine puffer, but everytime we've stopped by, they didn;t have any. Well this time they did.

We weren't planning to get another one (we got one when the last batch of fish came in - the Humuhumunukunukuapua'a, the three stripe damsels and a medium sized puffer), but since our current one was being ultra shy and not eating, and since the kids were cooing over it soooooo much, what's another $29.99????

Well, this one is eating like a pig and has even managed to draw out the first one (albeit still reclusive).

We ate lunch at one of the seafood joints along 90 on the beach - been there done that and won't be going back (I could have cooked that food with both my hands tied behind my back - not impressive at all).

Another good fishy day!

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Paddling in the cold

La's caught the paddling bug (along with the pullup and running bugs - New Year's Resolutions...) hard and we've been out twice already this New Year despite the cold. The North winds really dampen down the waves (at least on this side of the fetch). Makes for ultra flat water.

The air temps have been down below the 50 degree mark though - cold if you're not paddling, or running around after two kiddoroos, or digging holes in the sand - you get the idea.

Happy New Year!!!

First Sunset of the year!!!

Also - this place seems to have great potential for a fishing site. This is the lighthouse between Gulfport and Biloxi. Marlon and I will have to check it out one of these mornings (after a full moon, with real bait, and dressed warmly).

May you all stick to your resolutions, stay healthy and spend lots of time in/on/around/underneath the water in 2010!!!