Fare Thee Well, My Love.

Fate Thee Well, My Love.

By Dan Dobbin.

He knew it was time, denial and dismissal no longer an option. As much as one can wish and hope and dream and plead, all things have to end.

He didn’t want to let her go, couldn’t reconcile letting her go, but letting her go is what he needed to do, for both their sakes.

Each was clearly suffering in their own way.

As he ran his hands over her scarred body and gently carressed her flanks, he couldn’t deny what his eyes saw, his palms felt.

Rails scratched and scrapped and scared from run ins with rock ledges after broken leashes or carelessness on his behalf on trips down to South Coast ledges. He’d soothed over the worst of them by doubling over some aluminium foil and giving them a quick pass over with a hot electric iron, but this only delayed the death by a thousand cuts.

A slice from the fin of an errant surfboard piloted by an all the gear, no idea European gumby at Padang Padang cuts a swath across the back third of her tail peg. Stuffed with Shelley’s liquid nails from the hardware store, it kept her alive and water tight.

Come to think of it, the mysterious compressions in the slick appeared after the return flight back from Jakarta. Fuck you Jetstar baggage handlers, there was  a clearly visible fragile sticker on his board bag. He even added extra padding by strategically stuffing his springy and towels into the bag as well, all to no avail.

Her deck looks like a London City cabbies road map. Elbow creases resembling the Great Rift Valley on the right, and the Mariana trench on his preferred left. The lower third of the board featuring 45 degree fracture lines from his habit of absorbing the impact from flips predominantly on his right hip.

Still, these imperfections are somehow beautiful to him, like the lines on the elderly from a full life lived.

He’s pretty sure her spine is broken too. The clicking sound when he flexes her is a strong indicator that something is wrong deep inside, some catastrophic structural failure.

He looks at her one more time.

Underneath it all he still sees the vision of her virginal beauty, before he first popped her cherry and penetrating her with the plug that tied them together as they moved forward together on the great adventure of life.

The wrenching of this plug straight through the deck by a thick backed reef lip was when he knew she was truly finished. No coming back from that mortal injury.

The hole in her deck mirroring the hole he felt in his heart as their point of connection was severed for good.

He knows she is tired. Her time come. She needs to rest.

His mind starts to wander to what a new love might be like.

Recoiling out of the bottom turn, rather than nursing it around. No more missing sections from an inopportune rail bogging. The feeling of popping rather than flexing off the lip. Rocketing over the shockie and not fearing that familiar feeling of folding underneath him. A new lease on life!

He knows he’ll never forget her, never truly replace her, but it’s time. Time to do what’s best for her. For them both.

Carefully he lowers her into her final resting place, entombed forever more in the old board bag. Not discarded, not forgotten, just somewhere quiet and peaceful for her to lay. The least he can do to thank her for all she has given him.

Rest easy my love.

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