When I catch a wave and ride it to shore...it feels like catching a piece of heaven.
If you wanna surf like the locals, you must be “kinda broke”, dedicating productive hours to surfing rather than making actual money.
I found this awesome merchandise design on Behance as part of my, well, refreshers for graphic design. Coincidentally, I used to own a Landyachtz board – though I never learned to skate.
After two tries on the devil of a thing, I sprained my knee. It took about a year before I was able to run again. Even now, my knees don't feel “brand new.”
Discouraged and traumatized, I let other people use and abuse the board. I essentially gave it away and took it to the spot where I used to surf and let all the locals have fun with it. Presently, it's in the custody of my SO. He might teach me to actually ride it, or I could just accept my own defeat.
I spent about 250USD for the complete setup. Paris trucks, Formula 5 wheels, Momentum bearings. I wanted to learn how to longboard dance. Sadly, I just sucked.
I didn't even know how to ride a bike.
So you could only imagine what I took upon myself when I decided to try surfing. I didn't skate, I didn't swim, and yet somehow I had the confidence to plant both feet on a board, on a moving wave, in waters where I could basically die.
I've wiped out a lot.
It's like upgrading yourself from illiterate to poet.
But I somehow had to learn how to surf. Or at least immerse myself in the surfing culture or atmosphere. The beach/tropical vibe helped me find the hues and colors that I couldn't find on land.
It was a newfound paradise, a discovery of some hidden corner of my soul. And as someone who never took a sport seriously before, my passion consumed all of me — mentally, physically, emotionally. Not before long, I started to plan my life around surfing. I decided to get married to my surfboard.
When I'm sitting in the lineup, waiting for a wave, it feels like I'm in the right place on earth. It's where I'm supposed to be. Like, heck, I was born for this.
And when I catch a wave and ride it to shore...it feels like catching a piece of heaven.
Writing these words is seriously making me reconsider my priorities.
Now I'm asking myself: do I really want to have children, get married, or should I just skip all the parenthood thing, just like how my SO turned his back on unplanned kids — so I could go surfing?
I can't even say that I've mastered surfing at this point. Sure, I can paddle out, sometimes I catch waves, but I'm not yet at the level where it's more fun than it is torturous.
In my last trip, I even broke down and cried because I sucked.
I need months of extensive experience, still.
If I got pregnant, had to tend to an infant, be a mother and also work for a living, well, there might not ever be enough time for surfing.
Popular literature like this attempts to draw a more positive, friendly picture, but does it apply to all mothers? The article is applicable to white western women, the financially and politically fortunate, who could afford personal trainers and babysitters. Not all mothers have the luxury of maintaining a hobby while also providing for a child.
Even if a woman is a time management genius, the costs of surfing — constant supply of wax, board maintenance, accessories, travel expenses — or any sport/hobby for that matter, remains secondary to the costs of raising a child and maintaining a household.
And more often than not, we make just enough to survive everyday life. Welcome to the Philippines, where labor is cheap as fuck. Where the government expects a family of five to survive on ~10USD a day.
No wonder some people quit surfing after starting a family. Money either goes to hobbies or to day-to-day existence.
In the lineup, you find these people:
- rich tourists who don't know shit about surfing and are only there for vacation / they usually get beginner surfing lessons for the pictures
- middle class people who earn just a little more money than necessary for survival, and so could afford to go surfing once in a while / they're not necessarily newbies but they will never be as good as locals
- locals who are poor AF
- foreigners who have bought a piece of land
- foreigners who actually know how to surf
- really rich locals who owns the resort or some establishment in the place, but not really good still because they have to tend to business / they're rare
If you wanna surf like the locals, you must be “kinda broke”, dedicating productive hours to surfing rather than making actual money. Unless you come from a rich family or have passive income sources, you just gotta be broke. You will end up broke. At least that's how it goes in my country.
Or you could be a unicorn with an actual job that pays well and still find time to surf a few times in a week. If you live in the rural areas where the surf is, it's a challenge, because again, cheap af labor in the Philippines. It gets cheaper in the rural areas.
And when you got cheap rates plus little time to work because you wanna go surfing on most days, you just have to say hello to poverty.
You gotta learn to live on less and have as little baggage as possible. To keep you light and buoyant. So you can be flexible and focus on the thing you love the most but doesn't get you paid.
And that's why my surfer beau is broke. And has rolled over on his kids. But heck, he's a free man and catches more waves than anyone in the lineup.
It would appear that there's plenty of thinking for me to do. For myself. For what I really want in life. If I really want to go surfing. If I even want to take on something really expensive and self-consuming such as family life.
Choices, they're not easy to make. I'll see if I finally got pregnant in the next two weeks and take it from there.