Sometimes, I get all worky - focused on productivity and achievement - and I sacrifice coastal release and pleasure in pursuit of other goals. I mean, don't get me wrong; work offers pleasures too, and I know that there will always be other times to surf.
The last couple of months it's been easy to put surfing aside; I had such a wave and pleasure-filled summer that I have been able to draw on left over feelings and memories. I've been able to reconcile the amount of fun I had with having to get back to the other parts of my life. But lately the pleasures of my summer have felt lost to me. It's like I have used them up.
More and more I find that when I am away from the sea for too long, I start to forget what it is like to be there. I lose touch with how it feels to surf, and how it is even possible to do that. I lose trust in the strength of my own relationship to the sea and to surfing. When I write that down, it sounds crazy, but it all becomes so intangible and immaterial that I get frightened that it was never real at all. That absence leaves the heart to wander.
When my mind starts down that rabbit hole, the thought of going surfing becomes tinged with concerns and when an opportunity arrives for me to make time, I worry: What if it's crowded? What if there are no waves? What if it's too solid for me to paddle out? What if something comes up and I can't go at all? When you let your mind start down this road, all you can see are the dangers, the negatives, the what ifs...
But rare is the time when I get to the sea and it does not fill me with joy. Rare is the time when I can't enjoy the sensuous pleasures, the energising effects and the overall fun of being in the water. And it is this fun that I try to remind myself of when my thoughts take a turn towards worry.
I think the next time that I let myself lose trust in how I feel about surfing I'll watch this clip and focus on the pleasures and joys that I know I will find in the waves and the sea. Because the waves in this clip look incredible and because Jack Lynch makes surfing look them so fun.