Left here right about 8, got up there about 8:40. Parked, got out of the car, put my blades on, and headed off to the meeting spot. On the way i ran into two other skaters heading to the same place. The three of us got to the meeting spot and found... the three of us. The skate wasn't supposed to start till 9, so we waited around and in the next ten or so minutes two other people showed up. It turned out that the guy who normally ran things couldn't make it that week, and there was a group of four people who were running a little late, but the regulars were still a little surprised by the low turnout.
We skated towards the beach to meet the four people partway there, then after we'd gone down the beach a ways someone who'd shown up late caught up with us, making the total number 10. On average the people there seem a little ahead of me in skill, i was generally able to keep up with the people in the front of the pack if i worked at it, but it was tiring.
So after about 20 minutes it occurred to some of us that perhaps the turnout was rather low because some people had bothered to read the weather report. We decided this shortly after we started feeling scattered raindrops. It got a little heavier for a bit and we debated turning back, but it lightened up again and we decided to keep going. We made it down to the marina and went a couple streets inland, by which point it had started raining again and harder than before, such that the ground was getting pretty thoroughly wet. We took refuge in a couple parking structures for awhile and skated around inside them for a bit. It turns out that it's a good thing i bought kneepads and wrist guards and decided to wear them. Skating on wet asphalt was okay, but the smooth cement inside the parking structures was very slippery while your wheels were wet, and at one point we ended up skating downhill into one of the structures, so we were going pretty high speed when we hit the little grate thing at the entrance, which caused me to stumble a half step, which is normally no problem at all, as long as when you take that half step your skates don't fly out from under you :)
So after awhile of that it was pretty clear the rain wasn't going to let up, so we started making our way back towards Santa Monica. About the point we got back onto the beach it was turning into actual serious rain, as in i was getting soaked through my clothes. When we got back close to the 3rd street promenade the group left the bike path to go up one of the streets, the reason for this i think is that the hill we originally came down was pretty steep, so we wanted to take a route back up that was doable. By this point there were seven people a fair bit ahead of me, and two a fair bit behind me. We were heading back in the direction of where we started from, but a the road was getting a little curvey at this point and i lost sight of both the group ahead of me and the group behind me several blocks before the meeting place. I didn't know if we were actually heading back there, but since i had no idea where else to go i just kept on heading in that direction. When i got there there was no one else there, and i didn't know if it was cause they'd taken a turn i hadn't seen while they were out of sight, or because no one had wanted to stand around in the rain any longer than they had to and had broken and headed off to their cars. Since i didn't particularly want to wait around in the rain either after a couple minutes i headed off to my car rather than wait any longer to see if the people behind me were going to show up or not. By the time i got to my car i was soaked almost completely through everything. But once i got the car started and the air going the drying off bit was kinda nice.
All and all it was a lot of fun, despite of, or possibly even partly because of the rain. Hopefully next time i go there will be more people and less water from the sky :)
(Oh, and i should try the moleskin again next time, to see if it just fails to work in general, or only when the socks i'm wearing over it are soaked =)