10.02.2016 30 °C
Days 6 & 7 Galápagos
They say age is just a number, it's about how old you feel. Well, I feel about what I'd imagine 60 would be. Haha. Super stiff and sore from my first day of surfing. But enjoyed it so much, after a night of partying with the Ecuadorians, went back and surfed all afternoon again today. 60 years old.
Pico, the incredibly handsome and intelligent guy who was to teach me to surf walked with me the 1 hour to the surfing area of Tortuga Bay. On the way, we clicked instantly. Talking about world politics, environmental issues and how they are the same shit different pile everywhere. We talked about the local flora and even went deep into plant medicines like ayahuasca and cannabis. It was delicious on so many levels. When we got to the beach, we stretched and did a bit of a debriefing before heading out into the surf. No fear, big respect, is the attitude to have when playing with the power of the ocean. We waded out far enough so that the water was neck high. The waves, were about 3-5 feet high. The power of the wave, wow! I got into position, lying flat with my chest up ready to ride. Pico showed me which waves were good and powerful to ride. He'd say Go! And I'd start paddling my butt off. Surfing is such a metaphor for life. The centred and balanced state you must achieve to stay on the board, the patience and wisdom to know when to trust the time is right to pull back, and stand up, all have positive life affirming messages. The waves have things to teach too. It was nice to hear that my body type was good for a sport for once. Being thin with good balance is an asset to surfing. I managed to get up my first try. Now I'm hooked. We spent most of the day, catching waves, eating Oreos, catching more waves, and talking about life.
I was exhausted by the end of the day. Surfers show know how to take a beating! Pico and I talked all the way back to town. It felt like I had made a close friend. Primo! We brought back the board, but seemed like we weren't finished hanging out. So he showed me a few things around the pier and walked me back to my hostel. I hope to stay in touch. I may need a bigger house, with all the new friends I've invited to come stay with me. Haha
Later I met up with another surfer, who's gay and out. A rare occurrence in the religious climate of Ecuador. After, it was yet another night of Carnaval festival. This time, bigger then the other nights. I grabbed a beer and immersed myself in the Ecuadorian world. There was the odd foreigner there, mostly just walking past after their day trips, back to their hotels. By 9pm I was the only white person that I could see. I danced, grooved and grinded to those spicy Latin beats. I'm sure I looked mighty strange with my dancing. But, I figured, I'm clearly a foreigner, might as well run with it. Then, a face full of foam, followed by a face full of paint shortly after. And it continued. Until I was covered in water, paint, and foam. It was awesome!
I have a confession, I'm a surfaholic! I went surfing again today, despite being really sore and tired. The first wave, I did something different, my board went side ways. Without trying. I was riding the wave, after coming down, going length wise. Oh yes, I thought, this is what those surfers do. I continued the afternoon of trying to recreate whatever I had done to make that happen. A slight lean to the side, while leaning forward perhaps. The waves were a little more powerful today. They really pounded you while trying to get out to deeper water.
This evening I met a gay Chinese man who works at the embassy in Peru. He is on a week vacation. We grabbed some drinks and talked about travel. We hit it off and walked around the docks, taking pictures of the sea lions sleeping on the benches. We decided to hang out again tomorrow, after he gets back from his day trip. And possibly a trip to Tortuga bay together the following day.
I must rest these weary bones now.