Catholic guilt is a terrible thing.
Every time I nip down the waves when I think I should be working, or sneak in a surf after a meeting, I get consumed by 'maybe I shouldn't have done that'.
So last Wednesday, after the tastiness of the day before, I took myself off to confession at the Church of St Lippy the Glassy Walled. Old Father O'Barrellin' was taking confessions and as a true hard nut Oirish priest, he was driving a rock hard confessional this day. No room to move and the penances were merciless.
......Bless me father for oi have sinned ( I always slip into the Irish at church)... it's tree weeks since oi last had a decent splash.
That's no excuse son. Get on with it me boyo... What have you done?
Well fath'r, oi slipped off for a splash when oi shoulda been at a meetin'..
Go on, go on!!!
... and it was epic fath'r, breakin' from outside Rincon through the bowl, the new board was firin"
... this is naught goood!
... and on my first wave oi did a screamin' bottom turn into the biggest hack oi've done in years, followed by another off the bottom that had the fins a hummin', then oi slipped up into a noice little barrel and finished it off with a roundhouse and the sweetest of rebounds before a reo in the shorey.."
In the name of blessed St Thomas O'Blake 'tis wickedness, sheer wickedness young Michael.... how could ye?
How could I what fath'r?
How could you not call before before y'went down..? Oim - not - happy!
For penance it'll be tree dug rails, a blown take off and 4 caught insides. And you're lucky oi don't get yer to follow the example oi set that young Derek O'Hynd and not let him use his fins for three years!
Yer a hard man Fathr, tis true, but it hasn't seemed to stop our Derek.
Oi know m'boy, I always thought he'd come to no good and look at him now! Spinning round like the deevil stuck a merry go round up his ar... er... Never mind about that Derek. You'll thank me one day m'boy. Now what are you doin' on Sunday?
Welll Fathr, oi cannot tell a lie. The reports'r offshore... six to eight feet at 16 seconds.
Begorrah! Pick me up at dawn and could you throw in yer spare seven six? Oi think I'll need a bit of meat under me chest.
And so it was that the next day, yesterday, I had a pre meeting surf down on the Island, it was horrible and cross shore, I dug rails, had gimpy legs and managed half of one good wave. The old bugger got me. To top it off, late in the day on the way home I checked a few likely spots for some action, I'd run out of time and found a couple of secrets doing their thing.
I only hope the reports are right or penance will be surfing onshore slop for months.