I came of age in the 1960’s with the Beach Boys and all that, so the idea (or ideal!) of surfing has always held that ray of eternal sunshine and summer for me.
Maybe a bit of youthful rebellion.
You know, “Tell the teacher we’re surfin'”!
I spent 4 years in California as a child, moving to New Hampshire at 9 years old and to Rhode Island at 12. But I never shook the idea of surfing, memories lingering in my former-young-mind-turned-older-mind of those human beings standing on floating slabs of whatever and hurtling through, within, under and above wild waves as they rushed together toward shore.
I couldn’t shake the idea of it.
So, at age 57 (7 years ago, a year when I purposely did 57 things in 52 weeks, things outside of my comfort zone), I decided to take a surfing lesson.
Who was I? Gidgit?
This lesson would be in the dead of winter.
In Rhode Island.
Maybe I just didn’t want anyone to see me. Maybe I just wanted to make it extra crazy. Maybe I was crazy.
But I did it! I loved it! Every moment of paddling out there, mouthfuls of Neptune Cocktails, all the while tethered to a surfboard. Feeling the air, albeit small air.
I may never surf again. Who knows? I haven’t surfed since that day in March 2010.
But the eternal sunshine and summer of surfing has never left me. I LOVE watching people surf. I love heading to the shore of Rhode Island when the waves are particularly perfect, like they were this past weekend as Hurricane Hermine teased the East Coast.
I stood on the shore of Second Beach in Middletown, RI this past Labor Day Monday, and up on the rocks, trying to capture perfect moments… of the waiting, of the rushing of the approaching waves, of the balancing on that floating slab and the hurtling toward shore.
Of and by the surfers.
And I loved every crazy vicarious moment of it all…
Ah, the Art Form of it all.
It always amazes me.
Just like when I was a little girl watching, mesmerized, from the California shoreline.