at my local spot there is this one guy that has taken it upon himself to police the beach to the point where he actually chases away anyone he deems "inexperienced." on more than one occasion, when i was starting out, he came up to me and gave me the same speech about how dangerous a spot i had chosen and that he was a "trained professional" (he's not a pro) and that i shouldn't go out because i could die. i remember several times being intimidated to the point where i wouldn't even go out. it severely hampered my progression.
finally after the 5th or 6th time of having him hassle me (i think he just wants the spot all to himself) i made up my mind that i was just going to have to confront him and ignore his attempts to "keep me down." i went down to the beach and rigged up. as usually he approached me and gave me the speech. i not so politely told him to stay the f away from me and to leave me the f alone...he has since done so. BTW in all the times that i have kited at this spot, or anywhere, i have never put myself or anyone else in danger. i am almost over cautious-if there is such a thing in kiting.
anyway, today i was down at the beach with my kids and the conditions were gustier than usual. no one was out nor was there anyone on the beach near the launch area. i saw an older guy start to unroll a kite and thought to myself that if he went out and it looked good i'd give it a go. almost immediately the resident "trained pro" came out of nowhere and i could see the body language and knew the conversation without even hearing it. a minute later i saw the older bloke rolling his kite back up and leaving the park...another newbie shot down in flames. he never even had a chance to inflate his kite.
what's my point? i don't know, i just had to get that off my chest. i felt so bad for the old guy because i remember how intimidated that guy made me feel. i realize that safety is a big issue and i wouldn't want to see anyone get hurt, but this sport is still so young that i can't imagine anyone forgeting how intimidating the whole learning experience was. the next time you see someone starting out give them the benefit of the doubt. be positive and encouraging. explain the dangers and safety issues, yes, but too much negativity is bad for the soul.