The whole time I’ve been away, surfing has been the space where I allow myself just to be.
At first it was simply because it was the sole purpose of my holidays, and so, I surfed guilt-free, without having to think about other things I should have been doing.
I came back to Bali because I needed a place I could access the internet to look for a job (oh my god, yes, it’s coming to an end). I didn’t know what the fuck I was doing. I didn’t know if I would be able to find work. I didn’t bring a lot of the documents I need for working visas to be approved (Before I left I thought I was being smart by getting high quality scans and having them witnessed by a JP, but no, any decent, legal, well-paying job needs originals). No-one was replying to my emails. I became filled with a sense of dread. I felt sick when I woke up that I’d have to spend the day looking for work. I had Skype interviews (which all went well) and I’d wake up in the morning with pre-interview anxiety.
What a relief it was to get out into the water. It was my one chance to have a break where I thought of nothing but catching a wave. Sheer relief.
Anyway, I’ve found a job. I have a contract for three months with a language school that seems to be decent. Actually, it seems like a normal place to work with fantastic people that give a shit. Not like the hell-hole nightmare of an office I inhabited for 7 years.
I’m still on Bali. I have to wait for the visa paperwork to go through. There’s no surf. You can’t imagine how many times a day I refresh the surf forecast, hoping it will change… It’s been between 0.6m to 1.1m, but it needs to be at least 1.5m to work, and at 1.7m it’s great. I still get out there to keep up my paddling strength, and I always get a few nice little waves, but maaaaaan it’s a nightmare being here and just waiting for all the things.
The surf here is a fat wave at the best of times, and I’m riding a 6’3 which is a little too small anyway, and in small surf is just ridiculous. Because it’s small and fat, the wave doesn’t have enough momentum to push me into my pop-up (I like a fast take-off) so I find myself scrambling about and then the wave dies out. I have a few more weeks here yet, and I’m hoping it picks up before I leave so I can get in a few last surfs.