Monday, November 30, 2009

Small, Spring Saturday in Lima, surf city?

Went for a walk after borrowing a longboard and having a great cruise on Saturday. It seemed Miraflores had decided to come out to play too. Some shots here of the waves at Pampilla, Roquitas and Makaha, the Miraflores bowl, the cow exhibition and the love being shared.

There seemed to be a very strange sign, about cows (in a desert)?!?! And I really need to improve my spanish, cause I´m sure that sign on the plants means something apart from what I figured.

People in Peru more so the coast than the Campesino´s do like to snog in public for hours...light dry humping is not out of the question either. Taking a couple of piccies of people snogging made me feel like a right perv....It was great! Gotta take your kicks were you can.

I should write a disclaimer to finish. These photo´s might convey the impression that Lima is clean, verdant and care free, that isn´t really how I feel about it. Then again, it´s a city growing, it has job opportunites and you can surf (in the dirtiest water I have ever entered and smelt).

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Rubbish...I can´t pretend it´s not true anymore.

The North Pacific Gyre.

Gyre = In oceanic terms, its a current that´s wind driven on a large scale and you don´t get any bigger than the Pacific (direction of Coriolis force in the North Pacific is clockwise by the way).

So when I stumbled upon the term this morning, I guessed I´d be learning about swell patterns and how this was going to affect me getting some north swell in the didn´t turn out that way.

The North Pacific Gyre is home to the worlds largest rubbish dump. Due to the oceanic current, there is in effect a gathering of flotsam in the area, a collection point if you like. Somewhere in the region of 400 000 to 500 000 Km squared in fact. That´s knocking on for twice the size of the United Kingdom or Texas. A big waste dump in the big beautiful sea was always going to upset me. Surfing in English winters in absolute crap waves has tested my love sometimes, its being away from man´s world and being surrounded by forces, geology and water that were around before us and will be here after us that keeps me in love. Surely we can´t destroy the ocean, its just so big.

I jumped to find photographs of this "New Rubbish World" knowing why no great explorer or adventurer wanted to put their name to Columbus kudos here.
There aren´t any...not good ones. Scientist hype!?!? Nope, its not so visible, because plastic rubbish "Photogrades", its like everything I learnt about photosynthesis gone wrong. The sun breaks plastic down into smaller more toxic parts (plastic polymers).

In these troubled waters Plankton are outnumbered 6 to 1 by plastic. That´s another pretty ugly statistic (that´s 3.3 million pieces of plastic a square kilometre). Now I have to qualify that a little. This stretch of the Pacific is extremely deep. Deep ocean doesn´t sustain life like shallow seas and coastal areas. There is little in the way of stirring up of nutrients and therefore lack of nutrient cycle and food chain. So the life that exists in deep ocean like the North Pacific Gyre is based on Photosynthesis......which is screwed because the plastic is there. Low biomass getting much lower much too quickly. I don´t think humans will ever have a "Save the Plankton" campaign, they don´t make cool noises, they aren´t graceful and you can´t even see úm, but I feel something is array. Sailors apparently aren´t to keen on the area because of the vista and lack of wind (a compounding factor in terms of collection) and fisherman don´t go as there is a low density of large fish. Doesn´t stop Sea Turtles, Black footed Albatross and Jelly fish to name but a few dying in scores. Nor does it stop humans eating the Jelly fish which pass on lovely hormone´s riddled with toxic chemicals.

But it´s more than that. We just can´t behave in this way. It´s out of sight, it was out of my mind and now its not. Rubbish...I can´t pretend it´s not true anymore.

Further reading and viewing:

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Pit Pilot

Living with a journalist and surfing with two others has been inspiring. "That´s a good story" I hear instead of my Dad shouting at the TV or my friends reaction to news and media. It´s a new slant for me and one I´ve enjoyed hearing more aboutl. The big story in Peru at the moment is the Fat sellers, who have allegedly been killing Andean peasant farmers, extracting their fat and selling it to Mafia connections in Italy for use in anti aging creams. This is a"great story" in my

Anyway .....this has nothing to do with much on this blog save the fact that I had my first article published. Pit Pilot ran a story I wrote about surfing in Peru and I´m dead chuffed, they changed things round a bit, which I´ve been told by the Financial Times Journo is terrible because I´ve sacrificed my integrity. Well I have to say he probably saved my bacon more like. I´m going to have another go when I pull a few ideas together.

I wonder if Klimax surfboards and Boz wetsuits will do me any "favours" after giving them a plug in print. I owe BOZ a cool 1000 Soles just under 400 dollars for a custom made 6/4 with built in hood that I´d promised myself for my return to England. A discount on a custom board is always handy......being a teacher hasn´t really helped my powers of monetary persuasion, Christian would be walking away with a free board and the guy´s wife.

In true Golden Balls fashion the guy has stolen the show, contributing nothing whatsoever to the article, Greg the Editor asked for some photo´s. I told G.B to send some over from our session at Pacasmayo in Jan the highlight of our trip, and he gets the shot, well I´m reduced to throwing a shaka with the Motorscooter driver who is 4 foot tall making it look like a freak show......Golden Balls, just stand next to him because the sun always shines on him and sometimes it passes on. Don´t bother planning a surf trip , ask him where he´s going and follow him, that way there is swell, sun and all things good. He´s coming back soon I hear so we´ll be getting more god waves.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Small Senoritas and dreams of the desert.

Some pictures from Senoritas the other day.

As summer stumbles into life. I shall have to find my feet at the same time. The doctor has given me the okay after no surf for four months and recent developments elsewhere mean that I should be racking up some quality water time. Anticipation and a little fear tingle the toes. It is flat for the next few days so........ I wait a little more. I can´t help but notice that Peru´s constant over head surf has retreated a little bit coming into summer. Even though dreams of returning to Chicama are probably not realistic for a good few months now, the call of the northern desert of Lobitos, Piura, Oreganos and friends begin.
I haven´t quite got the hang of the formatting side of blogging yet, but I´ve included a clip of some guys who quite liked Lobitos too. For a dirt track and a shambolic town it certainly does have awesome waves, easy tubes and a surprising crowd.

Having said that though, I think a thorough investigation of the stretch north of Lima to Trujillo is in order. Not the sexiest part of a fairly unsexy coast but, seclusion and waves of quality I suspect. Just what the doctor ordered before chrimbo and then strike out in the New Year if Golden Balls turns up.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Cabeleros and Playa Negra, Punta Hermosa.

Spring cedes to summer and the beach no longer is inhabited exclusively by surfers and walkers, it takes on that slightly more festive feel. The bikini´s come out and everyone is that much happier because they do. That was Punta Hermosa today. It´s about a 30 minute drive south from Lima and a wave rich area.

My camera isn´t really meant to shoot from the distances required at low tide so the images don´t really do it justice, but there were some good tubes going on out at Cabeleros today which although it looked disorganised had some great waves.

However my Chiro said I "could surf in 2 weeks when December begins..." that´s nearly a month, but nice of him to break it gently. So with not much else to do, towel down, speedos on, beer for lunch and Ceviche and Chicharron (raw and fried fish) brought down to the beach by the kind man all for the bargain price of just over twenty dollars. Its easy to remember it´s a private beach and the real Lima is not lying on the beach, feasting on raw fish and bikini´s.

Lunch was followed by a heated discussion with Financial Times Correspondent and flat mate Naomi Mapstone on world issues such as American health care, the state of Islam, and of course the environment. Now the Penwith massive of Cornwall have instilled in me high environmental morals that I have at times found rather hard to follow. For instance in Penzance when I have seen people litter, I have taken the litter back to them and explain they must have "dropped it by accident" , if you took that approach just wouldn´t come off. So anyway I couldn´t help but have a chuckle at the new Eco Toilet that has been erected.

Pico Alto had a few rather large bombs coming through with no takers, Senoritas doesn´t seem to have had a decent wave since the end of last summer. I´ll be interested to see if Cabeleros losses or gains ( I never worked that bit out) sand and deteriorates whilst Senoritas improves through the summer. So I went to see how Scarface was getting on over at Playa Negra. It looked much better than it actually was and though there was size, it was pretty closey. As I straddled a crumbling wall on a sandy cliff, I couldn´t help but notice a left on the otherside of the bay that was big,bulky, beautiful and completely unridden, I´m sure it has a name and people ride it but for now I remain in the dark. Anyway Scarface was out there of fame and it was a beautiful session for them as the sun shone till the death of the day.

Peruvians are not the first people to back down, anyone who has driven in Lima will know what I it was with great interest that I saw my first Localism fight today. Interesting tactics were used, rather than a good old fashion put your dukes up situation or even a less respectable kick, these boys taught me Peruano styly. So kicks and punches are out, gotta watch the looks etc, instead lots of grabbing and rolly pollys and then when one tires of the farce the winner then drowns the guy in the shorebreak, holding him under.....I´ve never seen it done before and may be never again, but that´s what went down.

The last picture made me remember a conversation I had with Claire Whiley aged 9 when we did a.... you show me yours and I´ll show mine. .... obviously someone has to go first.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Spine findings by Chiropractor

I haven´t surfed since mid July. The longest period without a surf since Tomo first showed me the light in his Ice Cream van in Scarborough, North East England 1997.

I´ve had four back spasms this year, each one has been followed by various treatments such as Osteopaths, Shiatsu massage, assorted chiro´s lots of physiotherapy etc. The latest findings by Artur Gardinalli at Quirovida (my spanish isn´t great but if that means Chirolife, that is defos the worst name I can think of) are enclosed in the photo´s. My right pelvis is 2 cm lower than my left...which is a lot when you look at the X-rays. I have subluxations in a load of vertebrae starting at the top neck my C1 all the way down to my s4 that sits on the sacrum.

Now I have pre existing injuries from my Bali days when an obsene amount of surfing combined with hitting a pot hole that looked like it was created by a nuclear bomb and then sneezing (definately missed my one eighth of an orgasm on that one) lead to problems. But it would seem that the reason for this is either I have a short right leg and therefore will need a fake heal in my shoe to stop un necessary wear on the right sided joints or it is a twisted sacrum. The chances are its both! yeah! Since Brazilian Artur started snapping me around like a character from "Strictly Come Dancing" I have lost the shooting pains and the constant pain but developed soreness around the groin, hip, thigh area. I am hoping this is caused by a release of parts of my body that have been working too hard for too long in less than ideal circumstances (A bit like my job). Anyway change is happening and it certainly feels for the better.

However there is another issue here in back care. The original specialist that I was kind enough to give 1000 dollars of wonger to failed to both diagnose this problem or affect change. In fact add the inconvenience of 2 trips through thick Lima traffic a week into the bargain, I am going to give the "San Borja spinal Unit" the big thumbs down. Nice people, crap doctors, extremely expensive and I was stood up twice by Physio´s not turning up....booooooo!

Shiatsu, If your sore from stress and/or surfing definately worth a go. The ladies name escapes me but she comes to your house with her matt for 70 soles she is very firm and always leaves me needing the toilet for about three days her number in Lima is 999931182 and I would have no hesitation recommending her...but she doesn´t manipulate and I think that is what I need. Proper massage though, not a pretty girl with some oil.

Carlos the Physio 999936818, bit on the puny side for my liking. Relaxing massage, some stretches but the dude is like 5ft 2 inches and when he goes to manipulate, which is rare, he seems to nearly break his arms on the gringo......beef up mate, nice guy may be if your a chick or not a beef cake.

So I´m back in the land of Chiropracters, some are better than others. Daniel the Ethiopoian, in Miraflores may have actually caused my 2nd back spasm......a chiro without x rays may be cheap, but from now advice "Not with my centre of nerve control pal"

Lots of people are scared of Chiro´s and the cracks etc.....a good one though and when he cracks me.....I´m getting the orgasms back....quietly addictive I reckon. Artur said I´d surf my summer away and I believe him. The Yoga continues, now I just need to knock the fags on the head and lose the riduclous amount of weight I´ve gained.