A friend’s GroupOn mishap resulted in an unexpectedly awesome father’s day gift for Paul this year: Surfing lessons. Admittedly, surfing lessons would not be the first thing I would think to get him, but it turned out to be fun and totally radical!


The lessons were through Adventure Out and took place at Pacifica Beach. Although there was some fog in the morning, the setting was beautiful for both the passive observers/kid-runner-afters and participants. It is also a dog-friendly beach, as long as dog stays on leash, so Beast got to come along! At first it was a bit torturous for him as there were birds and water and kids and birds and kids with food all around him, but he settled down after a while.

The surfing lessons were, I’m told, a LOT of fun. Paul even got up and rode a couple of waves in! After a brief on-land lesson (they sat in a circle which reminded me of summer camp), they headed into the water.


They stayed in the water for about 2-2.5 hours! This allowed them plenty of time to practice “reading” the waves and jumping up onto their boards. The instructors were very “zen-like” and very helpful with tips and getting the students onto a wave. You could just see them all picturing themselves as the next Kelly Slater. 😉


Unfortunately, I didn’t get any good photos of people getting up on their boards, so you’ll just have to trust me that people really did get up! Paul said part of what made it enjoyable for him was just sitting on his board and looking at the beautiful scenery.
While Paul bopped around on his board in the Pacific, Monster, Beast, and I strolled along the beach and spent some time with a couple of friends of mine and their own monsters. The other little ones could walk and run on their own so their moms got a good work out chasing them around the beach and trying to stop them from eating all of the sand. I popped Monster in his Ergo carrier and was able to enjoy a relatively easy day at the beach. In fact, I’d say Beast required more of my attention and disciplining, as in “No! You will never catch that seagull! You don’t have wings!” (Yes, I do talk to my dog as if he can understand me. I know, it is endearing.)

After the lessons and the obligatory beer on the beach, we headed south on scenic Highway 1 for a late lunch at the Moss Beach Distillery. We enjoyed some delicious garlic fries, a creative and very Nor-Cal Salmon club which had salmon, avocado, and bacon, and some clam chowder. We were able to score some seats on the gorgeous deck and let the views of the Pacific take our minds off of less attractive things. Image

Oh, did I mention they have fire pits out there to ward off the chilly Nor-Cal summer air?
And, of course, they are dog friendly!

After all of this people time, we decided to take Beast to the dog beach at the Lighthouse Beach in Santa Cruz. He got to romp around with other dogs and finally chase whatever brave, or stupid, seagulls that were hanging around. All in all, a fun and memorable day! Now off to clean out the sand that has moved into Monster’s ears.