fade to next morning, blair and i are walking down the trail into the carpark sipping coffee. we we checked pat's camper on the way, but it seemed to be feeling the effect of a small swell, maybe 3 ft @ 7 seconds, so we quietly passed. it's kinda cool out, fog in the trees lining the trail. could be norcal, oregon or the central coast. just then, pat comes speeding down the hill, driving the camper, which is basicallay a big pop-up trailer, on a chassis, and he's sitting in the front with a little sports car-like single rollbar. must be a motor somewhere! he's wearing silver, wire rim shades with mirrored lenses, a white silk scarf tied around his neck, and hair actually "flowing". ear to ear grin, boards flying everywhere, he slides the camper to a stop in the red dirt lot, hops out, and starts towards the edge of the bluff. blair and i join him and look down in time to see some dude racing the lip of an emerald righthander, and just as he nears this jagged, tombstone rock which almost reaches into the wave, he ducks and slips into an oily overhead tube! directly below us, not 30' away. eyes bug out. this is too good. someone says we're at shipstern's bluff. (doesn't look anything like the place but, but hey, this is a dream.)
a bunch of gnarly locals walk past, no words, a bit heavy. they check it. we're freaking, wanting it. after a few minutes the locals all turn to go back to bed, work, coffee, etc. one guy lags behind. walks over and gives us the lowdown. "it happens in front of the rock. if you don't get in by the rock, you're not gettin barrelled."
pat's disappeared, squattin in the woods. i take the opportunity to "borrow" his yellow 7'0 mair single fin. blair grabs a 6'8 baby swallow, red deck, orange bottom, very sleek, and we scramble down the cliff. water's fresh, stings our hands and face for just a second. we're alone in the lineup, everybody's gone. the wave comes at you from behind the headland and eases up just long enough to let you in. blair takes the first one. he comes off the bottom and rockets towards the lip. his fins are visible through the back of the wave as he redirects, lines up, and disappears from view, passing the rock. a few seconds later there's a hoot and blair glides over the back of the wave, still standing as his board sinks, and then he falls off the side. but the hoot was not from blair. it was pat, standing on the rock, new blue fish under his arm. he jumps off the rock and collects his board. looks like he's mis-timed his entry as a set is already clearing the headland, and blair and i are laughing. it's still 40 yds to the takeoff and there's no way he'll get past the set. the 1st wave pitched at the takeoff zone and is rifling towards the rock. on the way up the face, pat turns, strokes, and is gone. a white scarf blows off the top of the wave in the offshore breeze.