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"The way to get started is to quit talking and begin doing." - Walt Disney
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Monday, July 23, 2012

That Big Blue Scary Thing

I finally had my first experience swimming in the ocean!

I've been in the ocean before at Pismo Beach. When we were younger, my sister and I had boogie boards and we would go in up to our chests and ride the boards back, but I never actually swam in it. I can't remember the last time (before this story) that I actually had my head under the water in the ocean. Chris took me out to Campus Point at UC Santa Barbara on Thursday when he got home from Bakersfield. We parked at the campus and walked out to the beach carrying our boogie boards. Chris is the expert (compared to me ;P) when it comes to the ocean. It was quite windy and Chris deemed the water unsuitable for boogie boards.

We spent around half an hour or so just relaxing and sitting in the sand. I took this time as an opportunity to attempt to get a tan- it's looking quite nice if I do say so myself :P Then Chris went out on the rocks at Campus Point. I wish I had a picture to show you what it looks like exactly, but I didn't bring my camera, for obvious reasons (sand... water... etc...) This is the best picture I could find on Google that shows the rock structure:
The rocks in the lower left hand side are the rocks we jumped off of.
We've been here once before, about a year ago. It was high tide when we went out on the rocks and the water was hitting very hard. I remember being too scared to jump off the rocks then, and Chris told me it was okay because the water was very strong that day, but when we went out Thursday, it was was low tide and the water was perfect for jumping. As I was saying, Chris went out to the rocks and jumped off a few times, all the while I was sitting there hoping he didn't kill himself. Hey! It looked scary to me!

After about 10 minutes or so I put on some sun block and joined him. You start by walking across the big rock touching the shore. This picture must've been taken at high tide, because you can walk all the way to what appears to be the second rock in this picture. The only time you actually have to get into the water when you cross is when you want to get to what appears to be the third rock in this picture. The water between the rocks there is about waist high and coming in from both directions... and cold! It's not extremely difficult to keep your balance, but I remember grabbing onto Chris multiple times. Once you finally dunk your body in the water, you do warm up, so you're not freezing the entire time. Though you are cold until you finally decide to do so!

Then comes the climb onto the "third" rock. It's more like a couple of steps than a climb, but it can be slippery! Once you get up there you walk to the left, wait for a wave, and jump into the ocean. Sounds easy right? Just jump into that big thing that can take you wherever it wants to, like into those rocks... oh! and not to mention any of its inhabitants that might be lurking invisible under the water. Sounds like fun! Well, I put my trust in Chris. He jumped in first and then told me when to jump. I was so surprised that I jumped the first time he told me to, lol. He said he was surprised too! Right where you jump in, the water is shallow enough to stand on your tippy-toes. Yay! But then comes the swim back.
Another high tide picture.

I was breathing hard the entire time... because I was scared haha. You can swim all the way up to the shore or you can swim back between the rocks to jump again. We just swam around until I got a bit more comfortable. I ended up jumping off the rock two more times that day and I'm so glad I did! Now I can tell people I've swam in the ocean!... because I have... and it was scary, lol. I know I wouldn't have been able to do it without Chris. If he wasn't there, there would be no way I would be getting in that water!

I learned that the ocean isn't that scary, how to determine if you should swim over or under waves, and that I can probably trust Chris with my life. I always feel so safe with him (:

What was the best part about that experience you ask? I'd probably have to say the shower. It felt soooooo good to get all the salty water and seaweed off of me!

-A
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