Zen and the Art of Surfing / by Nicole

Spirit (spir - it) : "the nonphysical part of a person that is the seat of emotions and character; the soul"

Folks are often surprised when they hear that I don't surf. Generally speaking, I'm not very good at any reduced friction sport. These types of activities tend to be coupled with speed - which means that the combination of a balance requirement, potential for physical harm, and utter loss of control are enough to keep me a passive observer. Plenty in that last statement for a mental health professional to dissect, but let's move on ...

 "One Watches"

Ocean Beach, California

Why so many surf-inspired photographs? There is a spirit to surfing ... a soul ... that is fed by a synergy with nature and with our world. Waves, in a way that is different from a snow-packed slope, are alive - they rhythmically rise and fall, breathing in a way. Person + board seem to feel the water, the tempo, the curl, the crumble - waves have personalities ... big, powerful, and enveloping, or gentle, nudging the rider forward. This zen is what grabs me every time I see a surfer stopped at the shore, looking at the waves, assessing, understanding - getting a sense of the water's mood. "One Watches" embodies this feeling ... this spiritual experience and way of life that comes from an appreciation and respect for our world. 

As for my "loss of control" issues ... I've signed up for surf lessons.

There will be no photographs.