August Bank Holiday seems so long ago now, but only two months have passed. We have a tradition in the UK that the weather on a bank holiday can always be guaranteed to be worse than the day before, and certainly colder and wetter than the day you go back to work! This August was not so bad, and the long weekend found the intrepid duo in the far west of Wales at Whitesands. The Saturday was fantastic, the sun was shining and we had the perfect walk along the sea cliffs.Sunday though was a little different with a thick fog and no visibility. Walking didn’t hold much appeal, but we had come to Whitesands to poke our toes in the water as a recci. One of the Welsh 100 challenges is to surf at Whitesands. The beach is a great place for messing about in the sand and water, with a broad sandy bay, and the place was packed even though the weather wasn’t prefect. Not only that but the architecture was also a cut above the usual sand castles with a mini replica of Stone Henge. Fitting really considering that the Bluestones in the original henge came from down the road.
Aunty has never been body boarding let alone surfing, but I grew up 200m from the sea and much of my teenage years were spent on the beach. Maybe not exactly surfing, but messing about in the sea. In those days the water seemed to be so much warmer than it is now, and reaching the “Ooh zone” as you wade into the water didn’t seem to have the traumatic effect it does now. So It was agreed unanimously that wet suits were absolutely necessary. Renting a suit each didn’t appeal to either of us – personal hygiene and all that (but we’ll leave the description out). So we spent an hour squeezing into and peeling off suits of different sizes until we found a suit each that fitted in all the right places, and a few wrong ones as well.
We didn’t go the whole hog and buy a board, but we rented a body board for a couple of hours and hit the surf. Why we have never bought a wet suit before now I can’t imagine. Aunty went straight into the water without a single girly squeal and hit the first wave perfectly. It took a while to persuade her to let me have a go! I spent most of the time trying to look the cool surfer dude, but only managing the beached whale look. I’m anticipating a call any day now for the next remake of Moby Dick.
I’d like to think that my baldness gives me a certain streamline effect in the water, but I missed most of the waves. But that said it was great fun. The wet suits made all the difference, and there is even talk from some quarters that we need to buy our own body board. And I’m sure I heard Aunty singing Beach Boys songs recently.