Date #4 – 9/4/17
Push-ups – 15
Let’s go skateboarding!
For so many different reasons, the Tampa Riverwalk is one my favorite places to go. Along the Riverwalk is Curtis Hixon Park, a spot that I believe, makes the Riverwalk so appealing. Curtis Hixon has also become one of my favorite places to sit or exercise. I love the big open green space at Curtis Hixon because it’s a space of greenery that can transform itself into so many different personalities. I can relate to that. 🙂
From concerts to ice skating, to bounce houses, margarita festivals, to posh chill-house lounge, and so much more, that park got it goin’ on. But my favorite part, and what I love most about the park, is when there is no event is happening. The people of Tampa and visitors alike come and make it whatever they want to. There are huge wooden, step looking, mini-deck like spots in the middle of the park and even though I’ve spent countless hours sitting on them, I have no idea what they are called. It’s my spot. I will lay on them and look up at the clouds or stars depending on the time of the day. I’ll listen to music and recharge. I’ll write or daydream. I love to people watch while I’m on the Riverwalk and at Curtis Hixon. I soak in the playful dad kicking a soccer ball around with his kids, or a couple walking their dogs or a group of women letting loose during a free Zumba class.
I lived at Skypoint, a downtown high-rise, at the time the Tampa Riverwalk was being built. I would wake up almost every single morning to the construction, dust and never-ending beeep-beeeep-beeeeps from the trucks. I always wanted to throw my fist in the air and yell at all the noise, “Are you serious!!!??? Are you kidding me!!! Come’on!!!” Years later and a little more mature (debatable), I am very thankful for all that construction. I am a happy Tampa citizen who thoroughly enjoys the beauty of the Riverwalk and Curtis Hixon park.
The Tampa Riverwalk runs through Curtis Hixon park and is also where a there is a kid’s playground and dog park. I frequent the Riverwalk not just to run and exercise, but also to sit on the many park benches to read and write. Sitting along the water and watching people walk by has been the inspiration behind most content I’ve created.
Which brings me to skateboarding. Over the past year, I’ve noticed a rise of skateboards on the Riverwalk. I began to take note of all the skateboarders every time I was downtown. Each time I saw the skateboarders rolling around, I thought, “Damn they’re cool. That’s so cool. I want to skateboard.” I thought about buying a skateboard so many times, but you know, life happens. You think it’s silly or you think you don’t have time for something like skateboarding. Well, today I made time! Thanks to my friend who lives downtown by the Riverwalk, I dropped Priya off with him and headed off to my skateboarding date! Thank you 😊
I packed my car with some of my fitness equipment that has been sitting in my closet and headed to Play It Again Sports with the hope I could do an even trade to buy a decent skateboard. I found a great looking board (it’s so pretty!) and asked the sales guy if he thought it was a good choice for a newbie like me. He said it was my best bet! It was $100 and they were going to give me around $60 for my equipment.
The board had a 20% sticker on it and I looked at the board, looked at the guy, looked at my weights I had brought in, and firmly said, “Even trade? Cool?” “Sure, I can do that.” He replied.
I headed to Curtis Hixon with a big smile on my face. I was excited! I drove down Bayshore Blvd with the windows down and music blaring anticipating my date. I had tried skateboarding when I was about 13 or 14, but I have never really skateboarded.
I felt a tad nervous. I knew there was a good possibility I might wipe-out and fall. It was also clear to me that I was going to have to suck it up and know that I was going to look silly at times trying to learn how to skateboard in a busy public place. By myself.
I had a blast though. I cruised down the Riverwalk to the Tampa Convention Center feeling more and more confident with every foot paddle. Peddle? I don’t know skateboarding terminology…yet. Making big turns was not as easy as I had anticipated, so I found myself picking up the skateboard to even it out. Lame, I know. But I got to start somewhere.
I began to feel pretty good about my balancing skills so I headed up a hill and thought how hard can this be? I talked myself out of it at the top, thinking maybe I was getting a little too cocky and I needed to come down a notch or I was going to crack my skull open on the pavement in front of the entire Zumba class shaking their booties in the middle of the park. So I settled on trying half the hill. Success! I called it a day and headed to my friend’s place for some water and see Priya.
I like skateboarding! And I love being outside. Especially the Tampa Riverwalk and Curtis Hixon Park. I want to get better and go back to attempt skating down the big hill. Maybe the halfpipe is in my future…who knows 😊