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My New Toy

October 12, 2008

I am now an official member of Hawaiian society.

Not because I registered to vote here – which I did recently, as if my vote will count in an overwhelmingly pro-Obama state – but because I stopped shelling out ludicrous amounts of cash for board rentals and bought my own. Come to think of it, they probably wouldn’t have allowed me to vote if they knew I was not a surfboard owner; I am now legit.

The purchase did not come easily, which was a surprise to me. I would have thought buying a board in Hawaii was like shooting fish in a barrel. I should clarify: it is easy to find new boards, of course. I was looking for a used long board for a decent price. One of the reasons this is not a buyers market, I would guess, is that serious surfers collect boards like guitarists amass stockpiles of guitars.

So there I was, scouring Craigslist and the local shops, and coming up with nothing. All I was looking for was a ten-foot-plus beater for around $300. Then we heard about a place called Kimo’s Surf Hut located in Kailua. So we drove over for a a few hours of sun on Lanikai, a superb and somewhat secluded beach, and stopped in at Kimo’s on the way back to Honolulu.

As soon as I stepped into the shop I knew I had come the right place. Kimo’s son immediately showed me a couple boards that fit my criteria. Then his younger brother came and told him Kimo had one that had just come in that was perfect for me. I walked back out into the sun and there it was lying out on a couple of wooden workbenches: an old, yellowing 11-foot epoxy Robert August longboard by Surftech.

It’s about the most dinged up piece of junk you can imagine, but it still floats, and for a guy who still surfs like a granny, it is choice.

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