Secret Spot, PHILIPPINES

The other weekend I talked about how it feels to be outside in the water when the conditions are not picture perfect. When beauty is hidden underneath the surface. And I remembered that day back in the Philippines in January when we were all stuck on the island for days with no power due to a typhoon and this amazing moment happened. While sitting on our boards, waiting for waves, a huge rain storm came up. Everyone out in the water felt it coming and paused in order to watch the elements slowly change. Everything around us got very calm. Even the birds and usual noises of the jungle behind us disappeared completely. Shortly after the calmness heavy rain arrived and we turned our faces into the vast realm of massive water joining us from above. Letting the rain stream down our forehead and cheeks felt like a tender touch rendering the dryness a salty surf session often brings with it, softening the rough edges life sometimes entails. 

playa Gigante, Nicaragua

I will never forget this morning when we were hanging out in the hammocks in monkey house high on top of the cliff. Leonard Cohen had died and Trump had become president. Everyone had just crawled out of bed, eyes still small and hair still messy, in order to be outside because with this view there's no other way than to be outside. And we were listening to Leonard Cohen. Like really listening because that's what you do when you listen to Leonard Cohen. And suddenly we started to talk about our dreams and why everyone is here at this place where you go to bed at 9 and get up at 5. 

And then we all went down to the beach with our boards. Each of us according to his or her skills. Some with short boards, some with longer boards. Some took the rather steep descent down the cliff and over the rocks. Some went around the little hill and through the village, some set off to the long walk along the beach over to Colorado to catch the bigger waves. And we all found peace and tranquility in this element called water. 

Cloud 9, PHILIPPINES

When you ride this wave with the sun setting to your right and you follow the sun and look at the shore with all its warm hugs waiting for you when you have dinner with friends later on. And you know that this is the wave, this is the moment and you could die right now because of its beauty. And it is endless and soft and connected through an imaginary line to the orange ball pulling you by its power underneath your feet. How amazing this is. And when you feel that the ride comes to an end there's no jump off, the water is too flat anyways now and the reef too sharp. There's no cut, no separation but a few balancing steps followed by another slight turn and like an actor on stage you bow down just like you would bow down in front of an audience. But there is no audience except yourself and this moment belongs to you. And in a tender movement you simply reach out your hands and grab your board and lie down feeling the sticky wax underneath your palms again and the wet strays of hair in your face and with the last light you paddle out to the shore before darkness catches your heels. Out where the palm trees whisper and where you don't have to feel sorry because already with the initial take off you knew that this is going to be today's last wave. And it will be the one that makes you come back again tomorrow and the day after tomorrow and even when there are no waves around you know that this is the one that makes your mind come back again and again.