Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Stoked to be Learning Again

This family surfing thing is turning out to be a lot more interesting than I first imagined. In fact, at first it had a bit of a pie-in-the-sky quality. I mean, really, who surfs in Vermont? However, the kids seem to have embraced it, and their willingness to learn has also inspired me to take it a little more seriously. I hate to admit this but I really wasn't sure how they would respond, and sort of felt that the cards were stacked against us. This made my leap of faith in gathering the gear together all the more precarious, but I'm happy to report that they are enthused about the whole process, which for the record is not an easy one. Then again, they are young and adventurous, which is the time to try new things.

I recall when I was learning to surf, it took awhile to get the hang of it. It's a hard sport, which explains why everyone who is within driving distance from the beach isn't doing it. At some point they simply give up, or never even try. It takes some level of dedication to something you can't really grasp until you've done it. I had access to the beach growing up, so there was ample opportunity to try, and try I did. Even then, it wasn't really until I had my driver's license that I was able to hit the beach on a regular basis and develop the skills to surf. Nobody was really willing to take me to the beach before that. My parents begrudgingly on occasion, but I knew better than to ask too often. Once me and my friends were able to drive, it was surf city.

And like all things in life, I took it all for granted. By the time I left LA, I was living right by the beach and never really surfing. I look back on it now and shake my head in amazement. I could have gone every day, no exaggeration, and I never went. I brought my boards with me to New York and surfed a few times, but after that, I had pretty much written surfing off. Two years in Rhode Island, which has killer surfing beaches which I never surfed, and now in New England, and who really thinks about waves?

Well, 20 years later, here I am, getting another chance. I am re-learning a lot, though I'm a step ahead of the kids because I did surf for years so it's not a totally alien experience. They have the gift of youth so they are enthusiastic, curious, and very willing to give this a try, despite the trials of learning. I, on the other hand, am old and cynical, but having surfed at one time in my life, know what a killer sport it is. I've tasted the fruit, I just want the kids to get a taste, as well. As long as they're willing to try, I'm hoping they'll get to the point where they'll be able to catch waves and feel stoked about it. I think we're on our way. At the very least, it's yet another endeavor where we're developing our skills together. Plus, they have the added benefit of a parent who is willing to make the drive to the beach, which is way more than I had growing up. Plus, mom is completely on board (no pun intended), so we can't pass up this opportunity.

Until the next time, thanks for reading, and thanks to Jillian for the pic.

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