In other news, we heard from a reliable source that our Ecuadorian born blogs sometimes come through the U.S. internet with strange symbols. If you have witnessed this, rest assured, we are not bleeping out bad words. It just gets lost in translation during the commute, I guess.
Back to the beach.
Let's set the stage again: Swell + High Tide = Waves of Unusual Size
I put on a life vest, though Geoff thought it was superfluous.
We dragged the kayak to the ocean, waded it out to deeper water, and I jumped in. Within seconds a large wave crashed the kayak, stripping it from Geoff's hand and I went flying with no oars toward the beach. It was briefly fun except at that crucial moment when the kayak came to shallow water, hit the sand, and catapulted me on the beach. I sustained only minor bruises on my right foot from rolling onto a rock and yelled back toward the ocean at Geoff.
Maybe the waves are too big to do this today! Let's try another day!
My husband's concerned and loving reply?
No, it'll be fine, you're okay, let's give it one more try!
Me, giving the submissive wife thing a go:
We dragged the kayak back into the surf, both made it in, and we hit the current. We managed to find the riptide and were able to dodge a lot of the waves as they surged toward the coast. We crested a few and dropped hard on the other side, managing to hold on, and paddling like crazy between waves. It was pretty fun and just scary enough for a good adrenaline rush! I was glad we gave it another try, we were going to make it to open sea, only one more break left!
Then came THE WAVE
It was big. No. IT WAS HUGE!!
Geoff and I watched it build, and were in equal parts awed and scared by it's incredible beauty and size. We only had to make it over this break and we'd be on the open sea. We were doomed.
Yeah right - to what? A sea kayak is not like a river kayak where you get to cuddle inside - you sit on top and try to balance!
The wave caught us, lifted us straight up and we crashed hard core into a wall of white. Geoff, the kayak, the oars and I all tumbled out of control in the punishment of the wave. As soon as the boat flipped I kicked to get away and nailed my LEFT foot on an oar or something. Geoff made it to the surface unscathed and even managed to grab the kayak - show off. I had one oar. I also had no sunglasses. Glad I wore the spares!
While we were surfacing we failed to notice the hasty advance of big brother...waves travel in packs! Geoff didn't know that I was clear of the kayak and it was stripped from his hands; he was sure it killed me. When we surfaced from that wave's beating I was still holding my foot, floating in my handy dandy life vest in a curled position. It sort of freaked Geoff out, but he was relieved to know it was only my foot that was hurt. My foot felt differently. At that point he agreed we could call it a day. Thanks, Hun.
We swam back to the shore having retrieved the oars and kayak. The top of my foot was worse for wear, cut open and knotted up which is a serious threat to my flip-flop lifestyle. No worries, because there are no establishments near us that actually require shoes. I love Ecuador.
Other than the foot thing and the whiplash that necks never report right away but I feel today, we had a great time on our kayak adventure. We were very thankful to not have sustained any serious injuries on our stupid, but still sort of fun, adventure into the surf! We'll make it out next time...at low tide, with no swells, of course.