Thanks to the UK lifestyle blog Love a Happy Ending for letting me guest post this week over there about surfing and my love of the sea! Since I wrote that post for them, I won't put the whole thing here but I'll past the first part below in case anyone wants to take a peek:
I was born in Cleveland, Ohio, more than 500 miles from the nearest ocean. I sometimes wonder what my life might have been like if my family had stayed there. Instead, my family relocated to the warmer climes of Southern California when I was the precocious young age of three. It would be the beginning of a lifelong love affair with the sea.
Of course, when I was very small the ocean waves terrified me. My parents bought a trailer home at the beach where we would spend every summer while I was growing up. I remember my father carrying me out into the waves when I was still just a little tyke. He was only waist deep, but I was sure he would drop me into that torpid water swirling around my feet. Somehow I grew more comfortable, and braver, as I grew older.
By the time I was nine or ten, it was a matter of pride and honor among all of the children in the area to go out into the sea and prove ourselves, paddling out over the waves on our body boards. A green flag on the lifeguard tower meant small surf. Yellow flag meant medium size. Red flag meant that the surf was big and potentially dangerous.
Body boarding under red flag conditions was a source of major bragging rights. I’ll never forget the first time I did it and survived. I also remember the next time I tried, getting caught out all alone in a set of pounding waves twice as tall as I was, and subsequently rescued by the lifeguard. I learned something about my boundaries that day. I also learned that I could get in over my head and survive. Even without the lifeguard’s help, I knew I would have found a way to make it back to the beach on my own.
So thanks again to Love a Happy Ending, and if anyone wants to read the rest of this post you can find it over there!