Careful, with the extreme stuff. Do not cry 4 it at home. Go for a cable wakeboard park. To me, wakeboarding was the ‘heard-of-it-before’ kind of thing, I guess I came across the word itself in around 2005 or so, as mentioned by a girl coming from a extremely competitively drinking family. For that talking under influence matter, I was not even sure that she was ‘spelling’ that correctly.
When I decided to short-cut the full-week-long techno party on Pag Island in 2010, I was expected to join for something crazy in return for the early return. And that was when the term came up again, as our plan B, actualized, realized.
We arrived at a long-established cable park close to Budapest. The staff was actually quite friendly, and they have been like that ever since. However, on the first occasion, we did not mean to show up as rookies, so we went to the counter and asked for rental gear of the best kind. With that equip, you start from a seated position, queuing up sitting on a flat platform, hanging your board in the lake.
As the queue was getting shorter and shorter, we kept losing self-confidence regarding the anticipated ‘right first time’ start. The first couple of attempts must have looked more like some catastrophe. The handle pulls you much faster and more powerful than you would guess. And the board – together with the compulsory life vest made sure you are really close to getting drowned.
After about 5 tries, I seriously considered wakeboarding as something not for me. I decided to join the ad-hoc company of losers around a table. Some of them were truly worried about not being able to stand up despite their daddy’s already done investment into a yacht. Yes, life can be tough, and yachts might have to be sold with a thick loss but I decided to give it one more try when i had about 10 minutes remaining from my wake-time.
By that ‘last’ try, I could slide all the way to the first turn. About 150 meters, I guess. And that was already enough for a serious celebration. My first year with wakeboard was not an intensive one, it was rather getting accustomed to some of the stuff I originally found weird at it. And I could not make a full circle during the 2-3 days I spent there.
The Summer of 2011 – an incredibly busy year – was just about the same. Very few show-ups, and still (fear > joy). My third year, 2012 was the one that brought about the break-even. I started out at late Springtime, bought my wetsuit and changed my wakeboard stance from left to right leg to the front. Going round and round became absolutely comfortable – and kind of boring by then. Getting closer to the end of Summer, I also purchased my gear and that made me ‘eligible’ for hitting the kicker.
Going for such a venture was actually preceded by heavy motivational talks by my pace-setter, Brigitte. She is not smoking (when cameras are around), so I took the blame – and the cigarette – for the critical moment.
Anyway, it was late Summer 2012 when she kept convincing me about the kicker jump being perfectly safe, therefore a rational thing for me to do. She was also brilliantly packaging this into a soft blackmailing. So I went for it, two tries = two trip-overs, one being more painful than the other.