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First time on a board

March 28 2011 | Stories,
by Jim

Last evening I took my friend Tim surfing. It was his first time on a surfboard. There is something truly special about watching someone discover the magical elements of the ocean. We see that discovery... the magic... mostly with kids. When I take my son to the beach he's stoked beyond belief to play in the waves. He stays in the water from the time we get there to the time we leave. But let's face it, adults are different. We're usually so concerned with looking cool that we miss out on the joy the ocean offers us. We're too busy looking at ourselves to see the ocean. Surfers, a group that spends arguably more time IN the near-shore environment than any other group, also tend to miss the magic. When a dozen dolphin swim through a pack of surfers it's not a big deal. It happens with such regularity that it's not extraordinary. The discovery isn't there... the newness is gone. It was great to see the discovery... the appreciation for how insanely amazing the ocean is... reflected on my friend's face. The truth is that the ocean was kinda lumpy last night. The wind hadn't settled down like it typically does for an evening glass off session. The waves were waist-high and crossed up. If I was out with another surfer we might have complained about the conditions. If I was by myself I may not have even paddled out. But I did paddle out and I was stoked that I did. Surfrider's mission is "... protection and enjoyment of oceans, waves and beaches..." My sense is that it's something approaching impossible to get a person to help us protect our oceans, waves and beaches if they don't see value in them. It's hard to ask someone to step up and defend something that they haven't been personally touched by. So Tim. Now that you've connected with our oceans... time to connect with the idea of preserving them. Join Surfrider.

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