As the saying goes I “didn’t take much rockin’” last night, slept like a baby and woke up ready to catch my first wave. I wandered out to the front of the hostel to be greeted by this glorious view…
I did however need to be a bit patient as Katia (hostel owner and host) had arranged for me to join a couple of other guests to go out to the point in a Zodiac. To explain that one, the point where the wave starts is a long way out so its either a long paddle or you hire a zodiac and driver to take you out and hang with you while you surf.
I met the said couple at breakfast (nice breakfast too), Stacey (American guy) and his partner Margarita. The 9am start got pushed out to 9.30am, at which time wetsuit on and board under arm we headed down to the beach to meet our Zodiac man. Boat loaded, in we jumped, through the break and off in search of our first Chicama left hander.
The nerves were starting to kick in as we arrived at the point, no SUP’s in sight just surfers catching the perfect left hand break. The wind was blowing offshore as it does everyday here the locals tell me, this condition is a major factor in making these waves what they are, clean and beautifully shaped.
Surfing terminology explained – Natural or Goofy
A bit of explanation on surfing terminology for the uninitiated, there are 2 positions to stand on a board, you are either a natural or goofy footer, sorta left or right handed.
Natural footer – when standing in their surfing position and going across a wave that goes to the right they are facing the wave.
Goofy footer – when standing in their surfing position and going across a wave that goes to the left they are facing the wave.
I’m a natural so my preference and way I go 99% of the time is right, going left to me feels a bit strange and unnatural. Time to get over it though, there is no such thing as a right hand wave here so left it is.
Go left young man…..
Into the water I went and off to join the line-up, it all felt a bit eerie, I was a bit hesitant and took a little while to get the confidence to paddle into the right take off position. Then it happened I caught my first wave at the famous Chicama, wow it felt good, so clean and even the fact that I was going left (my backhand so I had my back to the wave) didn’t feel so bad.
It was no looking back from there, with first wave done and dusted I spent the next couple of hours enjoying the most perfect waves I’ve ever experienced. It really is like it is in the photos.
Session over and it was time to get in the Zodiac for the ride back to the main beach, then the walk back to my accommodation feeling a bit weary but very satisfied.
I have that exciting feeling inside me that this is going to be a very special couple of weeks.
Checking out the locals
Surf session done, showered and refreshed, I needed a few supplies and to change some money into local currency (Soles) so it was a good chance to go for a wander to check out the town. Exploring places like this really gives you an appreciation of the fortunate life we lead as Australians, a lifestyle and privileges that are so easily taken for granted.
It was an interesting wander and although very aware I felt safe as I explored. First up was the bank where I changed some USD into Soles at a rate that was much closer to the market rate than you would ever get in Australia, no massive margin difference here. Then I went in search of some sort of supermarket, there were a few very small options, no Woolworths or Coles here, very small and local.
I found more of a supermarket, this was the equivalent of their meat department, not something that we are used to but this is how it is.
I didn’t buy any meat but I did buy some veggies and bread that cost me next to nothing.
And this is how day one at Puerto Malabrigo Chicama ended, say no more…..