For the love of beaches
We love beaches.
All of us love beaches. Think about that statement... can you name a single person who does not love the beach?
This is the simple reason people connect to Surfrider. It's about that love. It's about what our mom or dad introduced us to when we were kids.
It's about walking away from buildings and roads, computers and cars, gas prices and to-do lists... and standing on the edge of land and looking out to sea.
When I came to Surfrider a few years ago I started recording podcasts. I wanted to capture these stories in people's own words... capture the inflection in their voices when they thought back to being a kid connecting with waves and beaches. I recorded almost 100 podcasts and I think I can summarize all of them with the first three words of this post.
We love beaches.
We love beaches because they are simple and life is complex. They are (mostly) natural and everything else seems packaged, concreted or somehow tweaked. We love beaches because the cellphone reception is bad while our natural connection is great.
There are all kinds of asks on our time, attention and resources and there is something rejuvenating about pausing from those demands to unplug... go for a walk on the beach and let all those super, duper high stress issues fall over your back and into the ocean.
There is a re-creation that happens when we recreate at the beach.
Surfers talk about a similar thing. Paddling out into the ocean is a massive de-stressor. When you are about to duckdive under a wave or when you're dropping into a wave... you focus on the moment. The latest email thread from work means very, very little anymore.
I think we forget about these simple points.
We rob ourselves of the beauty right in front of our eyes.
When I think of every person I've met who is connected to Surfrider I think of one thing... love of beaches and waves.
The reason they work hard, the reason they seek novel approaches for systemic issues... is because of their love of the beach and their love of waves.
Let's make sure we remember why we're doing what we're doing.
It's about love.