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Start surfing... Again!
Posted July 26th, 2009 by peter
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When i wasn't surfing i thought I wasn't a surfer. Life gets in the way. Its a fact of surfing for the vast majority of us. Either an injury, a new job / relocation, your family... there are lots of forksin the road in a surfers life that lead us into dry terrain but surviving the drought, negotiating the troubled (lack of) waters, and overcoming lifes challenges are part of BEING a surfer.

For me its been a humbling, sometimes humiliating but ultimately triumphant and life affirming chapter in my life.

Ironically I stepped away from surfing to make real progress in life in the form of building our design company without distraction - even made a conscious move away from the ocean to the border of the desert to avoid temptation. I love surfing... too much - so much I knew that I had to create distance in order to create the focus I would need to achieve my goals.

Getting back was hard... having something so familiar and so dear to my heart, something that i once excelled at, something that was tightly linked to my self confidence and self worth/validation,

surfing defined me...

BUT suddenly I was back in the water and, not only was i blowing hits and missing barrels but i was missing WAVES, falling on turns, didnt recognize many/any faces in the water, and even my board felt awkward under my feet... my timing was off and the ocean seemed to move in a slightly different rhythm and my timing was... failing to resonate. And i ate shit... a lot. Never had so much post-surf nasal drain in my life.

To have something i loved so completely and with all my being feel alien killed me... at first.

But once you've known the ocean, known surfing, those ties are bound with solid unbreakable gold and no matter how thinly they get stretched they will always lead you back into the fold if you put in the effort and follow them back to what you love. And i can tell you right now its a direct line to the essence of life, youth, awareness, and empathy. Different people find this in different things, for me its surfing. Things look different but they are all the same, we are all the same, with beautiful and necessary variations, wondrous ripples and reflections of each other and the world around us.

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Usually a surfboard under 7 feet with a sharply tapered nose, three fins, and built for performance and/or tricks. Countless variations exist with anywhere from 1 to 5 fins and various shapes. Generally ridden by younger, lighter surfers. Often ridden by people who are not ready for them which causes the side effects of crippling their style and fluidity while making bad habits harder to unlearn later. Many shortboarders would be happier on an egg, longboard, fish, or "fun" board but cant get over the need to be cool. Their maneuverability, makes mind blowing things possible but it comes at a price. They are harder to surf well, harder to catch waves on, and break easier but arguably more challenging and rewarding.

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