Pure stoke when the surf gets serendipitous

Gary Kewley
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Friday - October 03, 2008
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Two young friends suspended in serendipity at Waimea Bay

Aloha, surfers and beachgoers! Welcome to Rocktober! The waves backed up the new month up with some good-sized North swell.

Trouble was a cold front coming down the Island chain along with the surf. Weather and wave conditions weren’t perfect. The good thing is that we expected the front to come along for the ride. And, hey, I don’t mind a little imperfection - it makes me appreciate the cleaner, brighter days. These periods bring my expectations in line with reality.

One thing I love is when my expectations are not met - in a positive way. Think “serendipity” ... “Look for something, find something else, and realize that what you’ve found is more suited to your needs than what you thought you were looking for,” said Lawrence Block.

Or how about “Serendipity is looking in a haystack for a needle and discovering a farmer’s daughter.” That’s from Pek van Andel.

There’s also Peter H. Reynolds: “Serendipity is putting a quarter in the gumball machine and having three pieces come rattling out instead of one - all red.”

For us surfers in town this past week, serendipity was “Expecting October’s south swells to go down, but they go up.”

Indeed, the land Down Under wave machine pumped up some fun sets from the SSW. We’re way past town’s prime time for swells. Thank God for “surf serendipity.”

I wonder if this word (Persian origins) inspired the Disney lyric,“Zippity doo da, zippity eh, my, my my, what a wonderful day!”

The thing I love about surfing is how we get to experience this concept of serendipity more often than most sports enthusiasts. Yes, I’m biased, but I’ll back it up.

You see, our sport depends entirely on the blessings of the powerful forces in the known universe: nature, and one of the most powerful forces on planet earth, the ocean. These forces determine to great extent our stoke, expected or unexpected. We are at their mercy.

Thing is, waves are merciful and gracious much of the time (at least here in paradise).

Yet so many variables come to play in finding that magic session. When you paddle out thinking you had something less ideal coming. Then the wind shifts off-shore, the sun breaks and the surf builds ...a nd no bodies on it ... except for you and your best friend.

You spend the next few hours going round and round, wave for wave, hooting and hollering in utter bliss. You get outside and look at each other with a permanent grin and shake your head in disbelief.

Then ... you want more ... and more often. The bar has been raised deep inside our brains on Mother Nature. If she gave us this “freebie,” why can’t we have it all the time? Come on, we’ve been good boys and girls, most of the time.

The next day you return for more surf serendipity, but alas the surf dropped, the wind is blowing onshore, there’s a crowd and ... it’s raining. Now tell me this isn’t more painful to these two surfers who had it the day before. Ouch!

Well, whatcha gonna do? Go surfing, that’s what! No matter what, always keep surfing. Your special day will come. Why not increase the odds?

To increase your odds you can also log on to SURFNEWS-NETWORK.COM. (I know, a blatant plug, but I have to increase my chances of making a living.)

Last but not least, the Hawaiian South Shore Hawaii Blood Bank drive Saturday October11! The event will be at 320 Ward Ave. You can save three lives - in just 20 minutes.

But we need to register early, like today. Let’s unite in the Aloha State and give ‘em what we got! Log on at HAWAIIAN-SOUTHSHORE.COM and click the link “blood drive.”


Thank you so much for sharing your time with me here in MidWeek. See you in serendipitous surf!

GQ, dropping in 4 U!


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