I bought this little beauty from Roxy USA as they didn’t have my size left in the UK. It’s the first time I have been able to fit into a Roxy wetsuit and I’m stoked, I never thought I would see the day. I’m still waiting for it and it’s torture. What is it about a new wetsuit? I might not even use it for months but, I need it now. I just can’t wait to get it, smell it, feel it and try it on. One thing I will not be doing though is trying it on at work. I will never try a wetsuit on at work every again.
The daily anticipation, looking out of the window every few minutes, waiting,
and hoping is quickly followed by disappointment when it doesn’t arrive. You renew you hope for the next day and anticipation begins again. You are in a cycle of excitement and pain that can last days, sometimes weeks. Then, one day when you have almost given up a package arrives, you rip it open and breathe in the unmistakable smell of fresh, unworn, brand new neoprene. You hold it up against yourself, smell it again, feel the seals, open the zip, close the zip. Yes your new wetsuit has finally arrived!
Last year I stupidly bought my first winter wetsuit online without trying on that brand first to see if it would fit but, I was an over eager, landlocked kook with no restraint or sense. I only waited 4 days for it to arrive. As soon as lunch time hit I ran across the corridor to the disabled loo to try it on, I couldn’t wait. I’d never worn a 5mm before so expected it to be a bit harder to get on than my summer suits and it had the added complication of a rashy stitched inside.
I pulled the legs on, it felt nice and toasty. I pulled it over my waist and bum and put the rashy over my head, oohh even more toasty, I had started sweating but, I carried on. It was normal to be that hot right? As I got my arms in I felt like it was starting to constrict and rolls of sweat were now dripping off the end of my nose. The rashy was somehow twisted and it felt like the wetsuit was creating a vacum with me inside. Panic set in as I got hotter and hotter. I tried pulling one arm out and then the other, it didn’t work. I was starting to question if this was a wetsuit or some sort of S&M onsie for people who like to be compressed. I grappled with it for about 20 minutes, my wrists were sore and my shoulders red raw. I knew there were no colleagues left in the building to help me, I had to get it off quick for fear of passing out!
I opened the toilet door, I could see the scissors on my desk, I had no option I was going to cut my new wetsuit off! Sweating, bright red and heart pounding, I hot footed it across the corridor. I grabbed the scissors and ran back without being spotted by any students. I inserted the scissors and made the first cut, I’d be out in a minute but, the plastic handle snapped! Shiiitttt, I got hotter and the gimp suit got a little tighter! ok, ok what now? I work in art, there’s a scalpel in the drawer yes! I creeped out again grabbed the scalpel, ran back and cut the shit out of that rashy. As i did it I could feel my heart rate calming and panic fading as the whole upper part of the wetsuit loosened. I managed to get it off but my skin was bright red and the wetsuit was soaked. This whole debacle lasted about 40 minutes and unless you have been stuck in a winter wetsuit while it sucks the life out of you in a disabled loo with the radiator on full and a rising body temperature you can never know the fear.
Never buy a wetsuit with attached bits if you have a tendency to get tangled up generally
Never try a wetsuit on in the office toilet
Always have an assistant close to hand who is prepared to assist
Just stop being an idiot
My latest winter wetsuit purchase, I am pleased to say, is perfect. I got a Body Glove Vibe. It’s the same as one I wore and tested out from a hire shop on a surf trip. I tried it on first time at home not at work. I jumped about in it I’ll continue to wait patiently for the new Roxy wetsuit to come and try not to be an idiot when it gets here!