Wednesday, November 30, 2016

One Step At A Time, notes from the Rogue.

"Some people, they're just gonna be grumpy, liking 'how it used to be.' But nothing ever stays the same. You
can't build fences around life. It's just this ongoing process. All you gotta do is just keep paddling. It's simple"
--Gerry Lopez, A Brokedown Melody.    
Inshore late autumn colors. Cabin Creek... Secretary, MD  11/23/2016.                                   

   So, I made my return to the shoreline with life plans. Marriage. Big step. But one with no doubt. A future home in the beach vicinity. Big step. One with no doubts, but conditions. Sell the home in Salisbury. Find the new home closer to the beach. Get back into the job on the 'Shore...or an acceptable equivalent. Surf check...the most prevalent step. No doubt. We do this on Wednesday. Running around doing errands.
Time for the penquin rubber needed. Flatlined surf sesh, Roadways, 30th St. 11/23/2106

   The Shore was seasoned for the Thanksgiving holidays. The Coast was no exception. Conditions were model. Chest. Clean. Already formulating a plan as to how I could take advantage. Except they were not. And, I was not. Standing there, smiling...overlooking the deficient swell, salt in the wind, I realized the whole extended weekend was coming together as it should. No distractions. Like the evening's conditions...calm.
The water was semi-calm, in the mid-50's. Warm enough to charge into...with rubber. Real nice night. Light winds. But the swell was maybe ankle plus...near flat. Would remain so throughout the weekend. No seduction here. A sign, one I welcomed. All about focus. Life plans require focus, and God was watching over.

   Bonfires, food, family, and foosball. Thanksgiving this year. Also included 2 brews. The first brought from the Midwest. Two Brothers Brewing; Warrenville, IL...Cane and Ebel, a Red Rye Ale brewed with a buttload of hops for a bitter finish at 68 IBUs. Another buttload of Thai Palm sugar adds a lightly sweet, flavor of vanilla that goes well with the toffee of the malt. Combined with the spiciness of the rye gave this brew a unique top end aroma and taste. Poured a dark, almost opaque ruby red, with a finger and a half khaki head. Very dry finish of which I'm not a fan, but really a nice rye IPA. At 7% ABV, the third one took it's toll. Rated an A-.

   The other brew, a White IPA brewed to roll out during the fall by 3rd Wave Brewing in Delmar, DE. Now, I'm not usually a White supporter, but the can got me. Sundancer White IPA features the logo of one of Ocean City's legendary, but defunct surf shops, Sundance Brotherhood. Sweet rendition. A Belgo that poured a hazy, burnt yellow-gold with a finger plus head. Hints of yeast and pepper with stronger tones of coriander in the aroma. The taste further defined the coriander with the strong citrus bite of orange and a clean, bitter close. Brewed with 58 IBUs of hops and a stout 6.4% alcohol level. Bought a sixer on the coast. Put down a couple refreshers after the long ride back. Rated the beer a B; the can, an A.
"Life and beer are very similar; chill for 
best results."       -Circle of Life

Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Dry Spell, notes from the Rogue

"When will it rain, I feel the heat burning through my shoes
Soft shoulders are getting harder, adding to my blues."

   Really feelin' this dry spell I'm in. Watching the surf cams. Clean. Sloppy. Waist to head. Knee-hi's. Whether the surf's up or not, this distance...inability to even get wet...has me down. Now Standard Time has set in. Pretty definite that I won't see any action before the Spring. Hell, I'm fighting just to schedule a glimpse of Miss Atlantic's coastline this next trip. The distance is definitely felt. Don't get me wrong. I'm psyched about the wedding coming up. Right on the Chesapeake. Stoked. No second thoughts on this decision whatsoever. Gonna be a great time. We do this for us. We do this for family. But, I surf for me. Haven't done it much this year. Kinda bluesy. So I sit back. Contemplate. Cigar in one hand, Bloody Mary in the other. Chaser brew in the frig. Fade them blues away. At least fuzzy 'em up a bit.

  An appropriate brew. Dirty Bastard Scotch Ale. A Founders Brewing Company wee heavy that pours a very cloudy dark brown with ruby tints. Thick, one and a half finger brownish-tan head. Solid lacing. Aromas of molasses, almonds, and chocolate. Flavor has a nice combination of nuts and fruit. Malt, raisins, and toffee up front with a badass bastard's fill of hops to the tune of 50 IBUs, for a bitter-sweet resiny pine finish in the back. Stands up to it's discript "wee heavy" style. At 8.5% a little boozy...will blurr the blues in a heartbeat! Rated an A-.
Lonely break...the toll of Standard Time.  11/2016