“Pics or it didn’t happen” is what people these days shout out when you’re heading out the door, into your car or a bus, on your way to another adventure. Unfortunately, I have no photos of my first surfing experience. Or my second. Or third. As soon as I hit the waters and got on that surf board I couldn’t think of anything else (sounded like a poser right there). But really, it’s the best feeling, actually getting to stand on the board that one time and ride the waves, especially after repeatedly falling face first into the water during the last few attempts. I can already hear my instructor shouting, “Wipe out si Ate!”
So no, I don’t have a really cool pic of myself on the worn out, yellow long board that I used for three hours, not even one where I’m just standing beside it. But I do have a great memory of my friends and I lying on our long boards in a line, waiting for our instructors to shout “Ready!” Of us drinking beer and then digging into Styrofoam containers stuffed with deliciously grilled pork belly and white rice as we sat in a nice little shack along the beach. Of gathering around a campfire during acoustic night in Panatag, where surf boards turned into tables topped with soft drink, Emperador, and beer bottles, and more grilled pork belly. Of shots (and not remembering anything else…just kidding) taken in turns as guitars strummed out sweet melodies while a full moon, at first covered in thick clouds, rose high above us and illuminated our small, spontaneous party. Of waking up the next day and trying once again to surf despite (tiny) jellyfish stings, sore muscles and aching limbs.
I realize that memories are enough to compel people to return and experience the same things again, except differently. I wouldn’t mind myself going on another five-hour bus ride to Aurora just so I could surf/fall all over again. That was definitely the highlight of my summer.
But of course, I can’t deny the fun of taking photographs and the enjoyment one derives from looking at them. I don’t mind much that I don’t have one of myself – I’m happy enough to have captured the fun we had in Baler. 🙂