Do you remember that feeling of driving without an instructor for the first time? Or riding a bike, landing a job, your first kiss, getting a good grade? First catching a green wave gives you that profound sensation of achieving something new, but it’s amplified by a million things.
As the first surfers blazed their trails; expressing their freedom and exploring coastlines, they were often misunderstood and outcast. Much less appreciate that guys were out hunting for waves instead of working 9-5 jobs, so surfers were branded abnormal and lazy among other things.
But In the 90s bleach-blonde surfer bum was the definition of ‘cool’. There were half a dozen surf mags on the shelves and every other t-shirt was covered in Californian surf prints; surf boards, palm trees, campervans. Along with the rest of my generation, my perception of surfing was lead by the media, brands and fashions, rather than the sport or lifestyle itself.
I had a romantic notion of surfing in my head, but that’s all it really was, I was in love with the idea of surfing. For years I’ve been dreaming of a remote beach in the middle of the ocean where I can get off the radar and enjoy robinson’s life! My first connection with surfing was during my stay in America. I was trying to catch the waves on my tiny surfboard in the freezing ocean ! For the first time I tasted the strength of the sea and the force even in knee high white water. I like to think my experience in those first few waves was life changing. It was definitely fun, but God knows I went home with bruises and redness all over my body. However, that didn’t stop me, it only motivate me to do it again !
I’ve have visited Bali for the first time 3 years ago ! I fell in love with a island so much that I’m constantly come back since then ! Even considering to move back in Bali for good ! And Bali is perfect place to start your surfing adventures. It’s nothing else but you and mother nature, just for that one moment in time. It gives you a feeling of being grounded, feeling alive, being “present”. Big or small, that wave will never come again. However you want to try and understand it, the fact remains that surfing allows you to very easily detach from every day life. A feeling which is becoming more and more rare in our modern age of “always on” technology.
This time I teamed up with my friend and great photographer Haddy El Nath. Idea and retouch was mine and he did the photos. Check his work here! I’m promising, next year I’ll try to do “real” surfing photos from the Ocean, until then this one will work !
Get in the water and try it. It doesn’t matter what the definitions of surfing or surfers are in your head. One day, if the universe permits, you might end up catching your first proper wave and for that moment nothing else will matter.
And I, I can’t wait to come back to Bali !