So many times I have sat down intending to write; instead allowed distraction to lead me elsewhere. When I’m wishing I could fall back asleep, or when I’m driving, or when I’m walking on the beach, I can’t staunch the flow of words bleeding from my mind — but as soon as I am in position to type, either inspiration dries up or the chaos overwhelms. Like going all week without taking care of the domestic chores. Suddenly it’s Saturday and I’m faced with stacks of dishes, piles of laundry, animal hair layered on the floor, unopened mail that surely needs responding to. Where to start in such a cluttered state? Easier to leave — or view the world solely through a computer screen reflecting endless browsing options.

The only thing I’ve been doing less than writing is surfing. Nonetheless, two sessions in January need recording.

#3: South Beach. I warned them: the wind was wrong, the swell direction was wrong, the tide was wrong. But my friend just wanted to get in the ocean after a long absence. Fine. So we paddled out at South Beach with south winds and a west swell and at low tide. Absolutely terrible conditions. And yet, she caught the slop that passed as waves and stood up and grinned so huge that I couldn’t help but be glad we’d gone.

#4: Clean, but disorganized in the sense that the waves looked good, provided shoulders to go left, go right, but were as liable to roll in and break there as here or maybe over there. So being in the right place proved challenging. Better to stay and wait for the set to come to you? Or better to chase the peak up and down the beach? Ultimately I found a right — or maybe it found me — that made the effort worthwhile. A couple feet overhead, a steep drop, a fast slide down the face, holding long enough for me to get my bearings and play my way to the beach.

Should have a fifth session to report, but showed up without a leash tie for Nick’s board — which I didn’t realize till we were half-suited up and foaming to get out in what looked like seriously fun surf. Really, no leash tie in the whole entire truck? Nothing we can use? No one around to borrow from? Stymied and feeling stupid, watching in the rearview as a surfer went left on a wave that went forever.