I have witnessed beautiful tubes twice in my life. The first I saw was in 1962, at Point Santa Clara in Panama. I was seven and my dad bravely went body surfing. I vaguely recall he wasn’t out in the shore break for long, for the ripe barrels aggravated a fierce undertow. The rest of the family watched from the beach.

The second time was during the first summer of my two season surfing ‘career.’ My cousin took me to Makaha, on the west coast of Oahu. We had our boards, but the surf, running about 6+ feet was beyond my nascent skills, so we looked but did not paddle out. Yet, the break was gorgeous. Sometimes it pops up in my dreams.

I did manage to insert myself into the tube of a wave exactly once, on a lucky takeoff on a nice playful wave at a break called Ones and Twos off of Waikiki. But, young goof foot couldn’t keep the ten foot fiberglass and redwood Hobie there for long, and so I chopped through to the bottom to scoot out through the wash.

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