day of week

Being a Skater Girl

1 July 2010

RipStik Castor Board

With my birthday around the corner, I have decided that I want only one thing.

A ripstik. Yes that’s right. I don’t want a designer handbag. I don’t want jewellery or a spa experience.


A ripstik is actually a brand of “castor board” – it’s a bit like a skateboard – but it has only TWO wheels, and you propel yourself using a twisting motion, much like surfing or snowboarding.

How on earth did this craziness come about?

It all started last Christmas, during the school holidays. Children in the neighbourhood, took to the streets with their brand new Christmas toys. Kids had new bikes, go-karts, scooters, skateboards, skateboard ramps… and these newfangled RIPSTIKS.

They were just SO NEW AND SO COOL. They were like the latest new thing. They were expensive, tricky to ride, and everyone thought they were just soooooo cool.

I must admit, I was intrigued.

So while I “supervised” my boys playing on the street, I watched various kids learn how to ride these ripstiks.

I couldn’t believe my eyes.

Over a few weeks, I saw a 7 year old go from tripping over his shoe laces to RIDING IT LIKE A PRO. Then his sister picked it up. Then his little brother had a go.

OMG I was burning with envy. Day by day I watched these kids practice, learn and get better and better. I felt SO jealous.

I guess it was ONE OF THOSE THINGS. A thing that I place in a box labelled “I would love to try it one day. I probably would never be any good at it. And I know I would never get around to it anyway.”

In that box I have also put – learning to play the piano, learning a second language, learning to kayak, and a whole bunch of other stuff.


A few weeks ago, I couldn’t help myself. I was in the park with my children and I saw some kids skating on the street. I stopped one of them and asked to have a go on his Ripstik.

So there I was. Being coached by a 7 year old. And his sister.

Put your foot here. Make that bit straight. Step up like this. Kinda wiggle your hips like this. God, I love kids and their uncomplicated way of explaining things.

I tripped up so many times. I didn’t fall on my ass. I didn’t break my teeth. I may have twisted my ankle a little. But after my first “session” I managed to stay on for 3 seconds. I was so excited, pumped and completely energised. I was very HAPPY. And I like being happy.

So it became a bit of a street joke.

Every time those kids saw me on my daily walk, they would run into their house, drag out their ripstiks and let me have a go. I could see they really enjoyed teaching me… and enjoyed the fact that CALLUM’S MUM was making excellent progress with her propelling motion.

Then more kids would come over to play and hang out. And soon there would be a hoard of kids mucking around on the street, and watching me skate.

Thank goodness, my own kids are not at that age, where they would be utterly humiliated by their mother’s antics.

I admit that during my “practice sessions” I would get a little embarrassed. You know, that I’m this total nutcase mother, the focus of attention, and possibly the reason that the neighbourhood kids are out on the street playing together. Because once I announce that I’m leaving, all the kids go “Awwww” and everyone goes home. How funny is that?

So after a few sporadic practices, I can now ride 30m in a straight line! I ROCK!

I’m feeling SO GOOD about it. So happy that I think it’s time for me to get my own board.

So here’s to conquering “ONE OF THOSE THINGS” in life.