I spent some time the other day talking with
a guy who has surfed with me at my "home
break" for decades. He hasn't surfed in a few
years now and is really sad about it. "You
know how much I loved surfing that old
longboard" he said. Loved (past tense) being
the key word. What had changed for him I
He'd stopped surfing a few years ago. A knee
injury impacted his ability to surf the way he'd
like. He's now in his 50's a bit older and has
slowed a bit with age. More importantly, he said,
the crowds that had populated his beloved
line-up had taken the fun away. changed the vibe.
"You know when I started surfing there I could be one
of the only people out…you remember" he said.
"Now the place is mobbed…you have to fight for a
wave… people are yelling at each other, angry, dropping
in, hasseling each other. I can't take it" he said. "It's not as
much fun anymore! Someone yelled at me for not wearing
a leash. I hate wearing a leash" he angrily said.
Surfing has grown in popularity over the past decades.
Every line-up in the world is more crowded then it was.
Surf schools are everywhere. Novices and
kooks who grew up with a sense of entitlement have
invaded popular breaks worldwide. My buddy is right.
But is there a way you can retain your stoke and continue
to have fun?
He was reluctant to seek out another spot or even move to
a different peak. He refused to do the right and safe
thing and wear a leash. He refused to accept and adapt.
Accepting and adapting…key ingredients to happiness
not just in surfing but in our lives. How do you do accepting
the things you cannot change? How well do you adapt?