A Way of Being

Posted by Jacinta Hin on May 7, 2007

While I am enjoying an ice-cold beer after a day of sun and windsurfing, I watch my fellow windsurf-club members laughing and joking around. I am utterly content because today I finally booked a long overdue lesson and learned a basic yet critical for my progress technique that I had been afraid of trying.

Since last summer when I started windsurfing, I belong to a local club.

It is early evening and we are having a barbecue on the beach. Après-surf is as important for this group as the sport itself.

Today was also “test day”. A well-known manufacturer of boards and sails had brought new models for everybody to try out, the experience of which for these adults is comparable to kids getting permission to eat anything they like in the candy store.

Excitement is in the air. Today’s experiences are discussed, stories are exchanged.

Our club owner, a windsurf legend in Japan and my teacher today, sits among us as a proud patriarch. Later that evening I talk with him about the club, the beauty of windsurfing and life on and around the beach. We discuss how at the club members average age, career and other aspects of personal background do not matter.

A couple of meters further from us “the locals�, as they are fondly called, many of them advanced windsurfers who live around the beach, are having their own barbecue.

Surfing is changing me. I am learning to slow down and to be in the moment. Each time I am out there on the water I am overcoming limitations and gaining something new.

But perhaps more importantly I am discovering a new way of being and a new way of belonging.

I am warming up to the idea of lifestyle, a word which I have always associated with urban fashion trends, but, as I start to I realize, actually means a deliberately chosen way of living.

And I love belonging to a club, something I always steered away from, where judgement, competition and hierarchy are absent, and people genuinely support and encourage each-other.

Yes, this summer promises to be a pretty good one.


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1 Comment so far
  1. markinjapan May 9, 2007 10:00 am

    Jacinta, another fantastic post! Not fair – I want a cool beer at the beach too ;-)

    Funny, just before coming here I had a “quick” peak at David Seah’s monster review of Tim Ferris’s “The Four Hour Work Week”.

    Sounds like your kind of wave?


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