I think I like the idea of surfing good size waves more than actually doing it. Plus, I haven’t surfed consistently for a long time. But, when you’re in Hawaii, it’s a must. And let’s just say that Florida waves don’t come even close to comparing to Hawaii waves. My brother is a big surfer and it was our last full day on Maui so I was all in. We picked a decent break that wasn’t a local spot. The challenge was that the small sandy entry was sandwiched between two large collections of sharp lava rock and the current pushed toward the rocks which meant that you had to constantly paddle north.
We got up early and headed straight out. Earl and I start paddling the long paddle out and I beat him out passed the breaks. I was feeling pretty good. Let’s just say, that didn’t last long. I was so excited and eager that I took the first wave. All that excitement ended as I nose dived and got sucked under water. I got up as quickly as I could and tried to catch another to only find the same outcome and then my board got away from me. From this point on, I was sucked under wave after wave without being able to catch my board. All this time being pushed by the current closer and closer into the sharp lava rocks. At this point, I’m trying to figure out how I can quickly grab my board and use it to brace myself against the lava rocks in order to not die.
Initially, my brother is thinking that I’m doing great, but after what seemed like 5 minutes of not seeing me anywhere, he started to panic. He paddled with the current toward the lava rocks and sees me floundering in the breaks. He yells toward me telling me that I need to get my board right away and that he will coach me out and back to shore.
This was no easy task for two reasons; one, I was already worn out and two, we had to paddle in a “U” shape pattern to avoid the breaks and the current. This literally meant a mile of straight paddling to get to the safe sandy shore. We were able to get successfully back out passed the breaks and all the way north passed the sandy shore. Now all that was necessary was to paddle diagonally toward the sandy shore without getting pummeled by the breaks. At this point I literally start praying over and over, “Jesus, please get me into shore without getting hit by a wave”. Suddenly, the the water flattened out; the sets were gone. Now only to make it to shore without another set coming in. I prayed and paddled, prayed and paddled, prayed and paddled and finally got into shore. It was a one mile paddle without falling off my board. I gladly set my feet on the shore and thanked my brother. I told him the story of the prayer and without even thinking, I said, “Jesus and Earl saved me today.” My brother said, “now that is a country song if I’ve ever heard one.”
Yes, Jesus and Earl did save me that day and when I turned back around to look out into the ocean, there was a double rainbow. All I can say is, WOW!