-- Last Updated: Feb-01-13 5:31 PM EST --
I found that when I finally got a successful roll up in surf, my tendency to run to the right was unfortunate. I got up and promptly got knocked down again - twice - because I didn't realize that I was coming up on the down side of the next wave face. If I had possessed the presence of mind to realize where I was with respect to the water dynamics, I could have come up with virtually no effort on the left and been in an easy brace into the wave.
After the second time I got at least mostly up and knocked over again, I couldn't find the strength to set up a third time so I exited. It was a annoying as hell because I had finally gotten up, and if I had gone left I may have had my first (truly) successful roll in surf rather than being rescue bait.
I got kudos for what I did do right. I had capsized on purpose because another paddler appeared over the top of the same wave I was on heading right at me, and I did try more than once. There was no easy call on which of us may have chosen wrong to start with - the wave heights were big enough to easily hide a paddler. But I may have had a more successful experience if I gone for the roll on my less automatic side. Even shortly afterwards I couldn't recall which side I had capsized to, another possible solution.