Now tell me if there has ever happened to you:

Now tell me if there has ever happened to you:

About eight years ago my buddy Hans and I were working on the Magician, good old friendly Captain Ira's boat. Its was a typical December day. The waves were breaking over the breakwater at 6 AM, and the wind was howling. Ira did the right thing and called off the dive trip. All Hans and I had to do was wait onboard and turn all of our students around with the " We control the diving but God controls the weather" speech.

Its now 7:30 AM, Hans and I get paid for the day, and we have all our gear with us. So we do the logical safe thing to do in a winter storm, we go beach diving. We decide Laguna would be the safest place to dive, protected coves and all that.

We park and can see the surf ain't too bad from the bluff, so we gear up and head down to the sand to evaluate closer to the water. It was "iffy".

Now "iffy" is a very technical term. It really means we shouldn't, but I ain't gonna be the one to say it, I'll wait for my dive buddy to say it. Given the high level of testosterone flowing that morning, we give each other a manly "Thumbs Up" and go in.

Because of all my beach diving experience I timed the entry perfectly. I mean I nailed it right on the head. Its was perfect. I entered the surf zone just AS THE BIGGEST WAVE I HAD EVER SEEN IN MY LIFE CAME OUT OF NO WHERE. I considered writting my last will and testament on my slate, then realized I barely had time to grab my mask and hold my reg in place.

Then I heard it. Hans was next to me, in the exact same position, and just like me, his giggled had turned into laughter. We laughed real hard for ten seconds and then I got to see what a cat sees when it goes through the complete cycle of a washing machine.

We got stomped, smacked, twisted, spun, invereted, smashed together and just as our gear got entangles, we got ripped apart. When King Neptune finally got bored, he allowed us to rdie the top of the wave for about two seconds, just in time to realize that we were heading towards the rocky shore, but with no water beneath us.

The landing was rough, volcanic rock and neoprene and flesh really don't mix well.

After we got up, Hans decided to return to Holland to go back to being a Dutch Navy Seal ( he actually ended up high in the food chain of one of the recreational agencies. ) I convinced him that Tequila Sunrises aren't just for breakfast anymore so we headed to Tortilla Flats.

The best part was I only used 50 PSI, so I didn't need to get a fill.

It was the worst five minutes of my life, and we laughed all the way through it.

I hope you did too.


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