Those dazzling back muscles, the geo-lessons, the ability to… wait!
There’s more to surfing than just flying to shore. All that paddling, all that waiting, all that travel. It enriches you in ways you’ve long forgotten.
1. That back!
Most people in the gym call them lats, traps and tri’s. We just call it paddling. Be thankful for the form surfing has given you. You don’t even feel obligated to to the Jersey Shore with your dome frozen with L.A. Looks gel and pumping that fist!
2. Reactions from civilians
Ever been at a party and listened to the part of the conversation where hobbies come into play? The bland reactions to tennis and skiing are exasperated. Like Hamlet did when he showed his uncle “The Mousetrap,” watch the eyebrows raise and the heads veer slightly to the right as they ask you for details of your biggest waves and how you braved the locals in El Salvador with a cervesa in one hand and a machete in the other.
3. Geo-political knowledge
Your geography teacher never thought you would amount to this and you may not realize it while you’re mesmerized by a world map looking for surf-able coastlines. However, as you memorize main and back roads in back countries, you’re filling your brain with culture and knowledge. All of a sudden, you meet someone from South Africa and they can’t believe you’re an American who knows the difference between the N1 and Naz.
Waiting for the waves is like someone in cell block C waiting for the Parole Board to stamp their papers. Patience. Patience. Patience. This comes into life waaaaayyyyy more than you think and realize when checking Surfline.
Ernest Hemingway would have lavish meals with all of his friends at round tables and they would sit at the table for hours, eating slowly and drinking Sangria. He even wrote a book called A Moveable Feast. Which has nothing to do about eating. But it does teach us to respect, love and to savor the things that are fleeting and fickle in our lives.
Like when wind, water and time allow us to have that perfect day of surf.