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22 October 2012

Back on the board

My good friend Sheila and I packed up and headed to the beach this weekend for some paddlebarding and beach camping. I haven't been paddleboarding since the beginning of summer, and I was eager to get back on the board and see if it was anything like riding a bike. (Thankfully, it was!) Neither of us had ever been beach camping, and we were both excited at the prospect of it. The weather forecast was gorgeous for the weekend, so there was no time like the present!

We left for Carolina Beach Saturday morning, and our little neighborhood of tents was set up by 12:30 in the afternoon. We had beautiful ocean-view property this weekend. 

Sheila, chillin' at our camp site.
How awesome is this?
After we set up camp and ate some food, we ventured out with our boards. Unfortunately, the weather was a little tricky, and we weren't able to get as much time out as we wanted. While the sky was clear and the air was warm, the water was really rough. And, for two relatively new boarders, we didn't feel like going ass-over-teacup into the water.  After a little searching and some help from one of Sheila's friends, we were able to put into the sound and paddle, just in time for sunset. 

One of my favorite views. 
The weather was truly gorgeous. We couldn't have been luckier ... unless the water was smoother.

Despite multiple images of me sitting on my board, I actually spent most of my time on my feet. When I first learned to paddleboard, standing made me really nervous. Well, not actually standing but the motion of going from my knees to my feet. That's the time when you're most likely to take a tumble. This time, I stood up with ease every time. I was pretty stoked about that. 

We didn't get to paddle as much as we wanted to, but just getting out on the boards was great. It confirmed my love for the sport and my desire to start saving up for a custom paddle. Those babies aren't cheap!

After boarding for a little while, we made it back to our campsite for a fire. The sky was absolutely clear, and all of the stars were visible. It was so beautiful and peaceful. Hearing the waves crashing while sitting in front of a toasty fire was amazing.

Pier lights, moon light, and fire light.
Fires with Sheila and I always mean s'mores. And, this time, we added popcorn to the meal. 
Jiffy Pop!

One of the things I was most excited about this weekend was watching the sunrise over the Atlantic Ocean. I've seen it set over the Pacific and the Gulf, and I've seen it rise over mountains and skylines. But I've never seen the sun just appear out of no where. I've wanted to all my life, and finally, at 32 years old, I got to see it. 

Looking out my tent at 7am, I finally realized what inspired the poetic line "rosy-fingered dawn." This picture doesn't do it justice, but the sky was indeed rosy.
Looking out my tent door as dawn approached.

Out of nowhere, he rose. A tiny little red flame at first, but he quickly morphed into a red fireball. The few wispy clouds in the sky ignited with light. The wet sand shimmered in his reflection.

I sat in silence and watched him rise until he was high in the sky. It was awe-inspiring. I took over 100 photos with my real camera (these are all from the iPhone), and I'll be doing a whole separate post with them. I'm still in awe from it all. 

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