Tuesday, August 09, 2005

Double surf day

I picked up Jade from her preschool. Nowadays, when you are the uncle and not on the pick up list, there needs to be a note and don't forget your ID - picture ID. What other kind of ID is there? I ask myself. Jade stares at me with big eyes and seems. subdued and nervous. She's very used to having her mom, my sister, in charge. She's only 2 years old and quite attached to Liz's attention. No one knows where her flip flops are. When we get to the parking lot, I carry her. She seems comfortable enough as we walk across to the mini van with the built in child's seat. Jade has alot of personality when she is in her comfort zone. I guess that holds true for most of us. 20 minutes or so, we arrive at the house. I take her out of the chair and soon we are in the house. I take her to her room, she hops in bed and I put on her lullabye music. While I sit on the couch, reading a book, surfing cyber info-waves, I can hear her singing along with the music for the next hour or so.

But... that was yesterday. Today, after yoga and tai chi, I grabbed the 12 foot nerf board and walked the 70 or so yards to the ocean. The break here is called Backyards. "Experts only" in the winter. This is the summer. The waves are small. Kind of like summer surf school for the likes of me. The tide is on the low side - the reef is exposed at the shore and shallow where the waves are breaking. Early on I learn that there is no room for error. When I fall off the board, I hit the reef. My foot is bleeding and stings slightly. Welcome to Backyards. Time passes. I fall off the board. No leash. Swim like crazy to catch the board before a wave takes it. Suddenly, I inadvertantly grab the reef. Oops. Now, the center of my left palm is bleeding to compliment the top of my bleeding right foot. I end up catching around 8 waves on a pretty flat day. Cool.

Liz asks me to take Caio to swimming lessons and then soccer practice. We hop in the green Explorer. Caio is initially quiet. He wanted his mom to take him. "Why can't you take me?" he asks his mother. So, while we are driving, I try to clear the air of silence that I perceive.

"Are you getting tired of me sleeping on your floor?"

"Yes, it's not you," he says quickly "I want my friend, Chase, to sleep over. When are you gonna leave?"

I laugh at his forthcomingness and say: "October."

"When does October come?"

I explain and he sits there taking it in. I then say when I am actually departing, August 24th.

Caio tells me that he likes people to sleep some where else. That's why he likes when his Bump and Nana visit because they "sleep some where else".

Our discussion clears the air and he relaxes and starts acting more naturally. Swimming goes quickly and takes place in an above ground pool. 45 minutes later, I take Caio to his soccer practice. Only 3 other teammates show up. It's the first practice and on short notice. I talk with the coach and end up being asked to help coach. So, if I am available, I'll share some soccer wisdom with the kids. The coach runs the kids through a couple drills and gives them some things to practice on their own. The next 35 minutes, the boys play 2 on 2 with me in one goal and a father in the other goal. The coach's 5 year old son joins in towards the end and demonstrates that he can play the game. He's by far the best 5 year old soccer player I have ever seen. Too bad he is too young for the team.

Back at the house, Liz fixes some soy dogs with cheese or avocado. No catsup.

As the sun begins to set, Liz mentions that the waves seem rideable. I grab the 12 foot nerf board for the second time today. The water feels nice and I easily paddle out to the place where the rides begin. I catch 3 waves or so as part of the sky turns orange and a big fluffy grey cloud hangs in the distance. I sit on the board listening to the waves and watching the twilight prepare the sky for stars.